A bittersweet feeling overcame Nyadia Thorpe as she left the hospital: joyful to be with her newborn son but also well aware this would be her last child born at Methodist Charlton Medical Center.
“When we were leaving, we took a picture outside with the three boys, and I felt so sad that I would not be coming back there again,” says the 38-year-old choral music conductor from Waxahachie. “I just love the place. I will miss them all greatly.”
Much of that, she said, is thanks to the nursing staff at Methodist Charlton and DeShawndranique Gray, MD, OB-GYN on the medical staff.
“They have played such a major role in my life,” she says. “They always made sure I was comfortable and felt cared for and really felt seen. “They are just like family.”
Nyadia with her newborn, Caris, husband, Jeff, and sons Caden, 10, and Caius, 4
MONTHS OF BEDREST
Giving birth to three sons was no certainty for Nyadia, who didn’t ovulate regularly because of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a common hormonal imbalance that is a leading cause of infertility.
Before delivering her first child, Caden, in 2012, Methodist Charlton became her temporary home for two months of bed rest.
She spent her days and nights on a tilted bed that kept her feet above her head. The topsy-turvy bedrest was necessary to ensure her son remained inside her uterus.
“It was wild to move into the hospital, be upside-down in bed, and not able to leave,” Nyadia says. “But I felt this calm and peacefulness that everything would be fine. It was really quite amazing.”
She credits much of that serenity to the nursing staff. They encouraged her to write in a journal to pass the time and even threw her a baby shower. It meant the world to Nyadia, who was missing traditional mother-to-be activities that she couldn’t participate in.
“The nurses made me feel loved and respected,” she says. “They were so kind.”
‘IT WAS A JOURNEY’
At a routine prenatal visit, Dr. Gray discovered Nyadia’s shortened cervix was beginning to dilate and there was low amniotic fluid around the baby.
“It was a crazy day I’ll never forget,” Nyadia says. “I was shopping with my mom for mattresses, and we spent the rest of the day in doctor appointments. When I checked in to the hospital, I didn’t check out until he was born.”
Since then, Nyadia has given birth to two more sons at Methodist Charlton.
For each of her pregnancies, Dr. Gray inserted a cerclage around Nyadia’s cervix, which is like a drawstring that keeps the cervix closed.
Nyadia and her husband, Jeff, conceive their first child with help from a medicine that triggers ovulation, and that combined with intrauterine insemination finally enabled the second in 2018.
“Doctors said, ‘There is really nothing wrong with you. It could be as simple as stress,’” she recalls.
Nyadia held a demanding job as a college choir professor and also directed the choir at her church. She realized she needed to slow down and focus on her health if she wanted to conceive and bear a third child.
“It was a journey to get my body to change a little bit,” she recalls.
Nyadia accepted a less stressful role as a middle-school choir director. She improved her diet by eating whole foods, avoiding processed fare, and ensuring she got enough sleep.
She also began an exercise program that featured 15-minute walks, yoga, and light resistance training. Nyadia says it also helped to take inositol, an over-the-counter supplement that is sometimes used to treat PCOS.
“Little by little over time,” Nyadia says, “I began to have a regular cycle, which is something I never had.”
On December 29, 2022, she delivered her third son, Caris.
“I am so happy my family is complete,” she says.
Nyadia credits the staff at Methodist Charlton for getting her over the finish line with each baby — high praise that Dr. Gray echoed.
“I have practiced at Methodist Charlton for almost 18 years, and the nurses on labor and delivery are not only caring and compassionate but they are competent,” she says, “I can rest easy knowing that my patients will be provided the best care possible.”
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