Turns out Asher's side of the placenta and his umbilical cord were infected and that's what caused the early labour. It was just a matter of time before the infection crossed over to Nolan too. The doctor said "good thing they came when they did or Asher wouldn't have made it". Those were pretty intense words to digest, but for the first time made me thankful for the 26 week birth.
My first thought was that the cerclage caused the infection and she said while it is a possibility because bacteria love a foreign body, it definitely could have been unrelated because moms with no cerclage get infections all the time. The more I think of it, that probably wasn't the cause because they had me on unbelievably high doses on antibiotics that likely would have killed anything that could have been brewing at that time. So what caused the infection then? That we'll never know.
So poor Asher, taking the hit for the team. Knowing the state of my placenta and cord, they now know that Asher's problems at birth with pH and BP were caused by the infection. These in turn likely caused the bleed. It breaks my heart to know that one brother paid the price for the health of the other. Just another reason to pray for a miracle that Asher comes out of all of this without issue because more than ever he is my little hero.
I guess it feels strangely good to know why this all happened. Thankfully my body was smart enough to say "better out than in" and I can also be sure that nothing that anyone did in pregnancy or labour caused this and there was nothing more or better that the doctors could have done. Everyone did all they could, myself included, and the rest was out of our hands.
So in other news, Nolan and I got a great kangaroo care session two days ago and he behaved like a champ, more settled than I had ever seen him. They decided to push him yesterday morning and take him off the vent and on to CPAP but that ended with an 11pm phonecall to us (talk about panic seeing that on call display) saying he was just working too hard and needed to be reintubated. Poor little guy but those lungs and respiratory drive just aren't up to par yet. The bigger and stronger they both grow, the more ready they will be to take over the breathing on their own. At this point, making them work too hard on breathing is wasting calories they could be using to gain weight. Asher is still ticking along unchanged. Much happier and calmer to be back on the ventilator but they will try him on CPAP again this week and see how he does.
Until next time, here's me and Nolan having our first extended cuddle.