Jessy reached out to us via Facebook recently about her OB/GYN, Dr. Amanda Reed:
Dr. Reed was fantastic. I was lucky enough to have her deliver all 3 of my babes with c-sections, with the first emergent and being put under general, the 2nd early with a NICU stay, and the 3rd with a rough spinal stick insertion. She brought the calm, each and every time!
Well, call us nosy, but we wanted to hear a little more about Jessy's three delivery experiences. She was kind enough to oblige. A natural storyteller, Jessy told her tale with genuine emotion and joy. And humor, as Jessy has the ability to look back at very serious moments through a playful lens.
We thought it only fitting to divide the journey into three sections (c-sections would also work here), one each for Ella, Tynlie, and Britta.
#1: Baby Ella
I scheduled my first appointment with Dr. Reed as my OB/GYN to deal with some issues I was having. I found out the day before my appointment that I was pregnant with my first child. So I walked in and told her about the issues that were going on but then added, 'Oh, and I found out last night I'm pregnant.'
And she just said, 'Okay, we're just going to pivot here.'
With all three, the pregnancies were pretty good throughout. At appointments Dr. Reed would say how pleasant I was, and my response was always the same: 'I really don't have anything to complain about.'
But with my first, Ella, they had to induce me because my blood pressure spiked. And I was 39 and a half weeks. So at that point, you know, good time, whatever. And things were progressing fine until suddenly they just weren't. The baby got stuck. And it kind of just took a turn within a relatively short amount of time. Then my epidural stopped working, and I wasn't mentally prepared for that. And so panic set in and it kind of just went zero to 60 really fast. And Dr. Reed is like, 'Time to get the baby out.' And I was like, okay. I was prepared for a C section. But when they went in for the spinal at that point, whatever they were trying to do wasn't taking and they couldn't get it in. So there I was on the operating table, screaming 'Can you put me under?'
I remember Dr. Reed was just so calm throughout it all, like, 'This is what we need to do. If you're okay with it, this is what we're doing.' And I was yelling, 'Go ahead! Whatever!'
Next thing I knew I woke up and I had a baby!
I had Ella at 2:43 in the morning. I didn't see Dr. Reed immediately after because it took me awhile to come out of anesthesia. But she did stop in to the hospital the next morning on her way to the clinic. I was so caught off guard because I was still a wreck at that point. She came in and gave me this big hug and said, 'Last night was a lot, wasn't it? I just wanted to come in and see how you're doing today.'
That shows you who Dr. Reed is as a person.
#2: Baby Tynlie
There were a couple of hiccups with Tynlie. She was breech the whole time, which was fine, but there was a little bit of a heart murmur that Dr. Reed noticed midway through, so we went to a fetal specialist, but everything checked out. All things considered, everything went well. Then one day early in my 35th week I thought my water broke in the middle of the night, so I went to the ER but the test results were inconclusive. Pee maybe? Went to work the next day still leaking fluid and not feeling 100%. I had an appointment with Dr. Reed already scheduled that day. She ran more tests but the results were still inconclusive. She did an ultrasound and everything was good with the baby, so I went back to work. Then the leaking became gushing. And my first thought was 'Here goes the next four weeks of my life. I'm just going to keep peeing.'
This went on for a few days, not consistent, but I just felt something was off. So I called the nurse and told her I thought I needed to go to the ER again. That's when they got ahold of Dr. Reed, who said I should go. At that point I knew something was wrong and I was getting a bit emotional. But finally we got confirmation: it was amniotic fluid. They asked if I wanted to wait for Dr. Reed to do the c-section and I said yes, as long as it was safe for the baby.
Dr. Reed arrived, we had the c-section, and I got to snuggle with Tynlie before they took her back to the recovery room. An hour or so later (the timing here is fuzzy; lots of throwing up) the nurse came over and said she wanted to take Tynlie to the NICU to get her breathing checked out, which wasn't sounding good.
Long story short, Tynlie was in the NICU for three weeks. Had breathing issues, the lungs weren't fully developed, and she had an infection. I mean the whole pregnancy and delivery were fine, and then this happened. But I remember after everything Dr. Reed telling me how important it was that I trusted my instincts.
'You knew something wasn't right and you kept calling. That's what you needed to do, because sometimes things come back inconclusive and we just don't know.'
And I told her how happy I was that it just wasn't pee the whole time.
#3: Baby Britta
With the first delivery, I knew I wasn't going to be able to relax my body for Dr. Reed to get the spinal in for her to get Ella out. And I never forgot the pain. Even to this day.
I knew that I really wanted a second baby and everything went so well until the NICU stay, and then that scared me. But I wasn't ready to be fully done having children. Eventually I arrived at the point where I was ready to do this again.
So with my third, it was a planned c-section. Britta was breech for a while-not the whole pregnancy- and one night I had a lot of pain (that was when she flipped), but otherwise there were no issues. Everything went well right through week 39. As Dr. Reed said, all was going swimmingly. And then they went to do the last spinal stick. I was relaxed; I really was. The anesthesiologist was talking me through everything, all was good. But when they put it in, I felt numbness down my leg.
'Is that normal?' I said.
They did it again. Same result.
And then more times after that. Then came the shaking. The tears. And my mind went right to the less than 1% who end up paralyzed.
But Dr. Reed and her nurses were so, so great. They're like, 'Okay, just put your hands here on me, take a deep breath, it's okay.' And they told the anesthesiologist, 'She just needs a minute.' And he was wonderful too. I was in the right position and whatnot, but it just wasn't happening for me. I got more and more anxious, was in more and more pain, and then I started to think, okay, they're gonna put me under, but that's when they ended up getting it in.
Of course, that's when my husband came in.
I'm not an emotional person, even pregnant, but I'm crying uncontrollably now, and my husband has absolutely no idea what's going on. And Dr. Reed in this la,la,la singsong voice says 'Oh, we're just getting into position and we're going to get the baby out.' Even as I'm sobbing through tears and I'm trying to tell my husband, Dr. Reed comes through, really bringing the calm to a stressful situation. She's just like 'Don't worry Jessy, everything's fine. Everything is looking great! Oh, here's a baby girl!'
And this all brings me back to before I was her patient, and I saw Dr. Reed's website video and she said something along the lines of caring for a woman throughout life, basically from when a woman first needs to see an OB/GYN through menopause, and I remember thinking, oh, this is somebody that's actually interested in learning who you are as a person and growing with you throughout those years. And that holds true even now. She knows my girls' names and asks how they are. At Britta's six-week appointment she gave me the bows for the girls, and they just loved that.
She builds that rapport, that relationship. And I wouldn't have wanted anyone else.