This is part 2 of my interview with Kayla.
5 days after Kayla’s 6th birth, she had a very scary experience and it made her plead to God to not have any more babies.
God reassured her that it was OK and there was that baby girl still waiting for her.
She did go on to have a safe and successful hospital birth, welcoming her last baby to the earth.
Kayla: Sure. I,first I’ll start off with how many kids I have.
I have seven kids, had those seven kids in about 12 and a half years. I live in a tiny town in Southern Colorado and we have a hobby farm and, three, I’ve got three boys and four girls. Sorry. And there’s one of them.
That was my almost five-year-old. and I think that’s pretty much it for intro.
Sheridan: here is the second half of Kayla’s story. You can go back to last week’s episode to hear the first of her six birth stories. But today we’re going to jump right into five days after her sixth birthday and hear what happens next
Strange Symptoms for Kayla – Lead to some Scary Moments 5 days after his birth
So after Glenn was born,the labor and the delivery were beautiful. And we were just soaking in having a newborn. About five days after he was born.
I started having some strange symptoms. my ears were ringing and, I was feeling a little bit short of breath and my, I would take my pulse and it was very slow. And so I was what’s, what’s going on with me. I’m not sure. And so my husband and I, we prayed about it and I was just like, okay, I don’t feel like we need to go to the hospital.
and something to keep in mind is that we live in a very small town. there’s only, a couple doctors, in the town next to us who are. Specialized in like pulmonary and cardiology, different specialties like that. I had to keep telling myself, okay, I’m all right.
Kayla: I’m okay. but I remember laying down that night and it was like all of a sudden I couldn’t breathe. and so I shook my husband and I was panicking because I couldn’t breathe. And I was just like, you need to take you to the hospital now. And this was probably a couple hours after we had prayed about it and felt like, no, we shouldn’t, but going to bed that night, it was like, okay, now we need to go to the hospital.
It was a little scary because, this was just before the world shut down for COVID. And I remember overhearing when we got to the ER, I remember them wanting me to put on a mask and just, they were really hesitant about letting the baby back into the ER department because they were like, there’s this weird flu going around.
And you’re showing signs with the shortness of breath and not being able to breathe. And so they were really worried and this was before they even knew what COVID was, And anyway, they looked at me and hooked me up to all the monitors. My, my blood pressure was sky high and my blood or my heart rate was in the forties.
And just very, slow. And so they hooked me up to an EKG and they wanted to do a cat scan of my lungs. And while they’re doing this, I remember the doctor talking to my husband and I couldn’t really hear what they were talking about because my head was just pounding from the blood pressure.
and,they, in a very calm manner, they told my husband their suspicions that this could probably be like, a pulmonary embolism. and they said just because I had a baby not too long ago, they were also worried about, an amniotic embolism. Which is, your amniotic fluid gets into your bloodstream.
Seeing God’s Hand in the Timing
Kayla: And the fatality of that is very high. So my husband thought that I was going to die. and it was a very scary thing. so they got the EKG results back in my heart. it had like a small blip in it and this is where I feel like God’s hand was in this situation because, I mentioned that my husband and I had prayed, to go into the hospital and the answer was no.
There was one cardiologist,onsite. And he was not at the hospital when we had prayed at that time. and so when we decided to go in, he was actually onsite at that specific hospital. And if he wasn’t, they would have flown us to Denver or Colorado Springs, which is probably about, oh, I don’t know, four or five hours away from us.
Kayla: There was definitely a silver lining there. and we were extremely blessed in that way to where it was just like, we can stay here. wow. And, so they. We’re going through the rollercoaster of all of these emotions and I’m having a hard time bonding with the baby because I’m hooked up to all of these IVs.
And I have monitors all over me and I’m trying to breastfeed and I’m trying to do all this stuff. and doctors come in and the atmosphere was so strange because, I had, at one time I had about five doctors in my hospital room because they didn’t know what was going on with me because the embolism or the blood clot tested negative.
Checking Kayla’s Heart
Kayla: Like I didn’t have one, there was nothing in the screenings. So they were thinking, okay, we need to check her heart. because her heart’s really low. She had high blood pressure, which they were able to get down in the ER,
By this time, I had been an admitted into the hospital. and, so I had an echocardiogram, which is an ultrasound of your heart. And the cardiologist on site was, he partnered with, just the general internal medicine doctor. and they came into the room and they said, okay, we want to get an echo of your heart.
But either way we want to fly you out to Denver. And, I was just no, I don’t want to fly out because that is so far. And I have five other kids at home, and this is already scary for them because I’m not home and they know I’m in the hospital.
And, and with all of these tests that they were doing, what they were looking at is something called, your triponin levels and triponin is, an enzyme in your heart. And whenever your heart is elevated in a way to where it’s being overworked, you can have something called a triponin leak.
And I’m sure there’s a lot of medical people out there who can help me explain this, but the way that I understand it is that when you have a troponin leak, depending on the numbers, that’s an indicator of how close you are to having a heart attack or having kind of some kind of cardiac event happen,
A blessing helps things to shift
Kayla: And so they were really worried about my heart. and so my husband and I, after the doctors leave, I had asked my husband and my dad to give me a blessing. and so they, they performed the blessing.
And again, it’s one of those things where people can speculate or whatever, where it’s just that’s coincidence or, something happened or whatever, but after the blessing, my troponin levels started going down. I personally believe that in some way I was healed.
I don’t believe that I, I was about to have a heart attack or anything like that, but I do believe that something could have happened had those levels kept increasing and going up. Yeah. So it was very scary. the most insane thing about this experience and why I share it is because,birth, anything can really happen.
and, I don’t know. I feel like just because scary things can happen. I don’t think we need to shy away from having kids, if that makes any sense. Yeah.
Sheridan: Yeah, it does because I think. It’s easy to go to that place of fear and be like, oh, like thats scary. I don’t want to do that. Or what if this, what if that, but in reality, like just life has uncertainty.
And so not moving forward with something that you feel impressed to do would be so limiting if it’s, if you’re just not moving forward because of fear.
Exactly. Exactly. and like with this experience, it also taught me that it really helped me put my life in God’s hands.
Kayla: And my almost like my whole pregnancy and delivery and just be like, I am, I’m doing a good work here, and I’m trying to. Do my best, The official diagnosis, came about, I never did get flown out to Denver.
Thank goodness. but the doctors still didn’t quite know what had happened because, they, I remember talking to the doctors and it was like, they get people who come in with panic attacks who feel shortness of breath. And like they have physical conditions of different things like that.
But mine, mine was to the point where there was definitely something physiological, that had happened. And they got on the phone with a maternal fetal medicine doctor, in Colorado Springs. And they had said, they have people like me who come in with these symptoms and there’s nothing
“wrong with their heart or their lungs” or anything. But what happens is that all of the fluid from pregnancy that are in your tissues, it got absorbed into my bloodstream too quickly. When you’re standing up all of the fluid, it’s like preeclampsia, all the fluid goes down to your feet and to your extremities because that’s where gravity takes it.
When I had laid down that night, it had all pooled around my heart and my lungs. And it felt like there was an elephant on my chest and that’s what caused my heart and lungs to be under such stress and duress, and so the official diagnosis was that I had something called a fluid shift.
Kayla: And basically the only thing that I could do from that point on to prevent it from happening again, is to walk and to sleep elevated for about two to four weeks. until all of that fluid had a chance to pass through my body.
Sheridan: Interesting. I never heard about that
Kayla: either. And it’s this is a thing, and because I was almost positive that there was something wrong with my heart,
Sheridan: because it was probably, it felt like in your heart was freaking out because there’s all that extra fluid it’s Hey,
Kayla: what’s going on?
And when you look at it, it makes some sense because it’s like high blood pressure. yeah, because you have a ton in your bloodstream and then a slow heart rate. Because your heart is just oh, trying to get all of the, all of that fluid to pump through your system and trying to keep it going.
And so anyway, it was a crazy phenomenon.
Begging Heavenly Father to Be Done Having Kids
Kayla: oh, and I totally forgot to mention this when I was in the ER, where people were just like, we don’t know what’s wrong with you. This is what we think is wrong with you. The whole time I was begging Heavenly Father to be done having kids because this freaked me out so bad.
And I was just like, I can’t do this again. I’m terrified. And I was very close to signing the papers to be like, tie my tubes. I am done. This is so scary. but in those moments, just several memories and continued confirmation. Where it was just like you have a little girl, you will get through this and you will come out on top, and it terrified me. so for about, I don’t know, a year and a half, no, probably a year. COVID happened and that added to the trauma because everybody was locked in their homes and, I, I was so paranoid about my heart. I was constantly taking my heart rate and just because I knew how it felt to not be able to breathe all of the symptoms of COVID.
Terrified me because it’s like shortness of breath. Oh, I felt that before, and it was just like, do I have COVID am I going to die? And so anyway, just a lot of trauma. And so time passes on and I’m going through, my emotional wellbeing. And, I can’t remember shortly after my son’s first birthday.
A positive pregnancy test! I cried all day.
my, my friend and I, we were talking about birth and stuff like that because we love talking about it and it was just like, I’m, I’m like two days, maybe one, one day late on my period. And so it’s just huh? Just for the heck of it. I’m going to go take a pregnancy test. Okay. It came out positive.
Kayla: And I just remember staring at it and I was like, I am not ready for this. And all of this trauma just came back and I cried all day. I told my husband and poor guy, he was so excited. Like my husband loves life. Like he loves babies, he loves our kids and he saw the test and he had this huge smile on his face.
And then he looks at me and I’m like bawling. And , he gave me this big hug and he’s I’m so sorry, but I’m so excited. Anyway, he’s such a sweet guy. and so there was a lot of questions about, okay, am I going to do this in the hospital? Or am I going to do this at home? Because yeah, hospital or home birth.
And I was absolutely, gung ho about my home births because they were the most spiritual and they were the ones that I was completely in tune with my body. And , I’m a huge advocate for home birth. Like I just think it’s fantastic. but again, it’s a very prayerful matter for me. and so we were praying about it and I felt very strongly that I needed to have a hospital birth with this one. And it was just oh, I really don’t want to, because I
don’t want to be poked and I don’t want to be prodded or monitored and I can’t get in the zone or whatever, because you have all this stuff around you.
but as the pregnancy progressed, I. had a whole bunch of different health issues pop up. I got gestational diabetes. I had some symptoms aside from the blood tests where it’s just I had this constant sugary taste in my mouth and I was gaining weight. Like I had never gained weight before in any of my pregnancies, like in the first trimester I had gained about 20 pounds already.
Kayla: And it was just like, oh, something’s wrong with me? So I legitimately think I had something wrong with that. So I had gestational diabetes. And, with that, they like to monitor your ultrasounds. And because of my previous cardiac event, I was already getting monitored for, for that.
And so regular ultrasounds. near the seventh, eighth and ninth month of pregnancy. my baby, had stopped growing exponentially. and because of the weight gain, if I had a home birth, I don’t think they would have been able to catch on to the baby, not being able to gain properly because I was even measuring ahead of where I really was, with the fundal height and everything.
and I was gaining weight because, I was pregnant.
Sheridan: They may have missed that without those.
Kayla: Yeah. And so with her, it was just a very spiritual experience for me because they were able to closely monitor her. and I’m, you never know exactly what could happen. You can always speculate what could happen if you had done things differently.
But I honestly feel like if we hadn’t had her in the hospital, we might be looking at a stillbirth or something like that, because she was not getting the nutrients that she needed from my body. so I actually got induced with her at 37 weeks because she was diagnosed with, it’s something called FGR, which is fetal growth restriction.
because she had fallen, she was less than 5%, whereas at 20 weeks she was in the 50th percentile. So it was just this gradual. Dip in her charts. And so I feel like it was very warranted.
I finally felt that I was done having kids!
Kayla: After she was born, she was here.
I, I finally had that feeling where it’s just you’re done having kids. You got your Jacob. you’re number six was yes, a boy, but then Clara number seven. She’s your little girl. She’s the baby. And you can be done now.
That’s wonderful. And it’s just it’s opened a whole new chapter for me. So anyway, that is my story. Wow.
Reflections – twists and turns and guidance along the way
Sheridan: I love it. it has a lot of twists and turns. there’s so many things that I love about it, that I’ll just touch on a few. I love how you for that last baby, just following your intuition, as well as the medical advice, knowing that in this case it was better to have another hospital birth and then in the end that indeed was needed.
So what a journey you’ve been on.
Kayla: It’s been good though. I wouldn’t change a single thing.
Sheridan: Yeah. That’s awesome. thanks so much for sharing with us today. That was
Kayla: very powerful.
Kayla’s advice for other moms
Sheridan: Yeah. So I do want to ask this last
Sheridan: if you could give advice to a young woman just starting out her mothering journey, what would it be?
so my answer is actually very short, tune out the negative. one of the biggest things about The Gift of Giving Life, the book is that it really brings out the positive in any situation. And that’s one of the reasons that I love this book so much, is because you have all different kinds of scenarios, but these women were able to work with what they were given.
I think having an objective view on tune out the negative focus on the positive, but also have a very objective and logical view on the, what could happen, like the what ifs. and,
Kayla: Also another little piece of advice learn all that you can about the birth process. I kind of wish I would have known a little bit more about reactions in different phases, because like I said in transition, again, I don’t know if this is every woman.
But I’ve heard that it’s very common to be uneasy when you get well uneasy and almost a little bit an impatient, when you hit transition, because it’s I’m going to do this forever. Is this ever going to end? And when you start feeling like that, you are really close to the end.
And I remember feeling that way with all of my epidural babies. And it’s just if I could just held on a little bit longer, except with Landon where my tailbone was broken, because
Sheridan: That was a unique situation.
Kayla: Yeah. if I could have just held on a little bit longer, I truly feel like I could have had a natural birth earlier.
Again, I don’t wish to change anything because every situation taught me a different thing. but. learning about it really helped me, feel that empowerment.
Sheridan: Great. thank you. Thank you so much.
Kayla: Yeah. Thank you for this opportunity. It was fun.