• Meet Anna

Meet Anna

  • Baby Saves
  • 03.13.24

“I heard about the Count the Kicks app from several places, including my original OB-GYN in New York City, my OB-GYN and Maternal Fetal Specialist in Wichita, Kansas, and at several community baby showers. I am grateful that I got told about the app and started to use it!

It was really easy to use the app. I liked the fact that you could just tap it and that it calculated your times and tracked things. I have ADHD, which means I can get distracted easily, so it was nice to have it remind me I had one more kick to count. The trend tracking was invaluable. 

My baby, Anna, is my double rainbow baby, so there was a decent amount of anxiety in my pregnancy. We worried that she wasn’t moving enough or that her heart rate would be too low. I actually started using Count the Kicks as soon as I started feeling her in my second trimester because I really wanted to have the data to know what was normal and what wasn’t normal.

She was super active during my second trimester, and her movement changed a bit as we got to the third trimester. It was nice to be able to go to the OB-GYN and be able to talk about the change with my doctor. I noticed that she wasn’t ever really active in the morning, taking almost an hour to get 10 kicks in the morning. During the afternoon and evening, however, she was rocking and rolling. That was her trend throughout pregnancy.  

We had a couple of times right at the start of the third trimester that she had not made her kick count/had significantly weaker kicks, so we went into labor and delivery and they watched her and found that she was OK. The doctors appreciated that I was able to know what her normal was.

I was a high-risk pregnancy from the beginning and I was seeing a maternal fetal medicine specialist because of some pre-existing conditions. Once I got far enough along in my pregnancy, being already high-risk, beginning to have more complications, and having had times when her kick count dropped, my providers added in daily biophysical profiles (BPP) and eventually daily non-stress tests (NSTs) as well.

One such NST, during the morning “slump,” the provider performing the test commented that my baby wasn’t moving much at all. I was able to tell her that historically my baby wouldn’t typically move much in the morning and that it normally took her about an hour to move 10 times. This made the provider less concerned, but during that same NST, they found that she had low heart-rate variability, so my OB-GYN made the decision to induce me anyway.

I was 37 +5 at the moment when they told me they were going to induce me. It was much earlier than we had planned and we had hoped to avoid both induction and cesarean section because my doctors didn’t feel it would give me the best outcome. Therefore, I wasn’t expecting it. I didn’t have my bags packed or my house ready. My husband is a vet tech and he was working a rare Saturday shift. He happened to have to be in surgery that day, and he was going to be unavailable for 4-5 hours. Needless to say, I was apprehensive regarding induction.

They had the OB-GYN resident come over to talk to me. She let me know why they had to induce me that day, but she also told me that they could wait a little while as they continued to monitor because I was able to show kick counts were normal for the time of day.

We were able to finally get a hold of my husband and he arrived about an hour later after swapping out of the surgery he was in with a different vet tech. Right about the time he arrived we crossed the threshold to her normally active time, but she didn’t become more active. Until that moment, I had not been totally convinced that we really needed to be induced. But with the movement change, my husband and I knew the baby needed delivering that day no matter how ready we actually were.

I was supposed to have maternity photos in a couple days, and I was so sad that I wasn’t going to be able to do them. Two of the nurses said ‘we got this’ and took some photos of me next to the window; my husband got to be in some once he got there. They even added a bow to the monitoring band around my belly for one. They helped make my maternity photos happen and that was really special.

After that we went over to the main hospital and started the induction. I had not eaten for a long time at this point, and I had 40 hours of labor, so I struggled. I was progressing slowly, but I also wasn’t responding to the Pitocin really well. So they broke my water to get things moving. I ended up having an epidural that I hadn’t wanted near the end because I was just so exhausted.

At around hour 17 post them breaking my water I started having trouble and I wasn’t feeling great. I had a really high fever, and both my baby’s heart rate and my heart rate started going way up. They deduced that I had chorioamnionitis and when they checked the labs, it showed that I was septic.

They started antibiotics right away, but shortly after the resident OB-GYN came in and told me they needed to do a C-section, something I really didn’t want. This was a thing we were trying to avoid. I also found out that my OB-GYN wasn’t going to be able to deliver me if we had a C-section then, so I asked if we could wait for him and just keep laboring for a while because I didn’t understand how bad I was at that point.

My OB-GYN’s partner was the one covering his call and I had only met her once, but they said she would be the one delivering me. The lead OB-GYN came in to talk to me and explain why they felt it was important to proceed with the C-section instead of continuing to labor for a couple more hours. So a C-section it was! My husband and I got to watch her being delivered. It was pretty special.

She did really well, which surprised them based on how much stuff was going on with both of us. They had brought in the NICU team because they expected her to need extra care because she was a little early and we were both in distress when they pulled her out.

She had an initial APGAR of 8 and then an APGAR of 9. She was very vocal with her opinions of her being brought out into the world and they were very excited to hear that. We got to do skin to skin when we went back to the recovery room. We did stay a little extra long at the hospital, but the biggest thing was that we had a healthy, beautiful baby girl instead of an adverse outcome.

She has been doing good. And honestly, I think the reason why she’s doing this well is because we used the app, we caught an issue quickly, and we got checked. Because we had moments before where they had had to check her, they started doing NSTs and they caught her decreased heart rate variability. We were able to be induced and she came out as a healthy baby instead of us potentially losing her. So, no matter how crazy my birthing story is, the thing is, she came out as a beautiful baby and a pretty healthy one too.

Count the Kicks will give you peace of mind. You know what her trend is. By using the program you’ve got facts and data to better talk with your OB-GYN, both regarding positives and also when things are going wrong. You’re able to catch things. 

Also, for us, it was really reassuring to be able to say this is exactly the same pattern every day. We had already experienced two losses, but in using the app, it helped us feel much more confident that she was growing healthy.” -Rachel P., Anna’s mom

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