Tiffany's Early Delievery StoryJun 6, 2019
Advanced infant care eased this mother’s burden when she delivered early
A good night’s sleep can be a tricky thing when you’re a little over seven months pregnant, but that’s what Tiffany Zwolakowski was enjoying when her water broke.
“My husband was out of town, so I drove myself to the hospital,” she says, recalling the events of Oct. 11, 2014. “We live a half-hour away and I was seven weeks early, so it was pretty terrifying.”
Tiffany and her husband had only recently moved to Mt. Pleasant, and had chosen to deliver at East Cooper because it was close to her office. Little did she know how fortunate that choice would come to be.
“I arrived at the emergency room, and they had all my paperwork ready when I gave them my name,” Tiffany says. “I had sent all that in, but in no way expected for it to already be on file and waiting so early. Within 15 minutes, they had me upstairs and the doctors and nurses were working to see if we could keep the baby from coming.”
Her son, Weston, “would not be detained,” but the delivery was slowed enough that her husband was able to fly back and rejoin her for the birth.
“It was nice he got to be there,” Tiffany laughs.
Because he was premature, Weston was immediately moved into East Cooper’s Level II Neonatal Nursery, the only one in the area. And what would be a half-hour commute each way for his parents over the next 31 days became an easy overnight stay thanks to the Rest Easy program, which allows parents to remain close to their baby until he or she is ready to go home.
“I was able to go back to work, because my office is really close,” Tiffany says. “I could spend the night near him and be with him, then go to work, come back and lunch, then come back after work to spend the night. Because of the Rest Easy program, I was able to put off taking my maternity leave for four weeks, because I knew he was being cared for 24/7, and I could take that time once we brought him home.”
That day finally came Nov. 12, and Tiffany says that while she was eager to have her son at home, she also knew she’d miss the care and concern that her family received during her delivery and Weston’s subsequent stay.
“I can’t say enough good things about the nurses,” she says. “I miss them a lot, and not just because I’m the one changing his diaper all the time now. We talked to them for hours. They always kept everything under control, and from the moment I walked in there having labor pains until the day we left with him, we always knew what was happening. One nurse stayed by my side the whole time I was in labor, and she even laughed at my jokes. They’re not very funny, so that was important to me.
“We never thought about a special care nursery for the baby, because we never imagined he would come early. I am so glad we chose the doctor and the hospital that we did. I had such good care, and Weston had such good care. East Cooper is an amazing hospital, and I am so glad that it is here.”