I'm sitting in the nursery, keeping an eye on our beautiful sleeping twin girls. 6am, and I finally have a little time to jot down how they got here.
I worked my last day on Friday, February 28. My blood
pressure had been running high enough that my doctor wanted me to stop
working. I was in the office until noon and finished the rest of the day
at home. I took it easy, and other than a conference call, mostly
rested and checked email.
We sat down to dinner, chicken breast
and steamed broccoli, around 7pm. I wasn't very hungry, so I didn't eat
much. I started having these gas-like cramps, but I wasn't passing a lot
of gas or anything. I went to the bathroom a couple of times. After
dinner, Kim took Katie and Penny to Hobby Lobby to pick out some stuff
for a craft project. While she was gone, I started to suspect these
cramps were actually contractions. I texted Kim and called my mom. We
started making a plan for what to do with Penny in case we had to go to
Around 11pm, I was starting to have pretty regular,
timetable contractions 4-5 min apart, so I took my blood pressure. It
was fairly high, so I took that as a sign that I needed to at least get
checked. I was at 2-2.5 cm at my last appointment, so I figured this
could possibly be the real thing. Kim stayed at our house so we could go
to the hospital.
We got to the hospital just after midnight on
March 1. I was actually really glad of the timing because it put us at
exactly 36 weeks gestation. Every week counts! They put a bracelet on me
and a nurse came and took us back to a room. She hooked me up to three
monitors (one for contractions and one for each baby), and once they
noticed my contractions were coming every 1-2 minutes (what??), they
started me an IV of fluids to make sure I wasn't just contracting from
dehydration. They took a bunch of blood to check on a bunch of things,
and we settled in to wait and see if they were going to keep us or send
We waited until about 3 or 4 in the morning before the
nurse came back in and told us that, based on my contractions (which had
slowed to every 5 min or so, but hadn't stopped or gotten any weaker)
and my blood work, which showed high levels of uric acid (which can lead
to seizures in the mother), I was going to have some babies today!
Which was both exciting and terrifying to hear. The contractions were
strong enough that, now that I knew I was staying, I went ahead and
requested an epidural. I was concerned about labor moving quickly
because it wasn't my first pregnancy, and I also wanted to have my
epidural in place so that if they had to perform an unplanned c section,
they could easily numb me up and not have to put me under in an
Around 7am, there was a shift change, and the new on
call doctor, Dr. Williams, had them start me on Pitocin and break the
closest bag of waters. Both babies were head down, so the plan was to
try for a vaginal delivery (my preference, and also how Penny was born).
Things were progressing pretty well until I got to about 6-7cm dilated.
Dr. Williams performed the check and said, “I feel a face.” She frowned
and said, “I'm not very comfortable with this.” Apparently, instead of
trying to descend top of the head first, baby A was trying to peek out
with her face. The doctor explained that this could cause neck injuries
to her if she was born facing that way, or even issues like cord
prolapse, where the cord comes out first and cuts off the baby's oxygen.
She told me she wasn't going to rush me, but it looked like we were
heading for a c section. She had the nurse turn me on my left side to
see if the baby would move a little. I'll admit, once she left the room,
I started freaking out a little. I called my mom and sister and let
them know I might be headed for surgery. At this point, Cory was the
only one at the hospital with me. They started hurrying to get there to
see me just in case. I might have cried a little. I knew we would all be
alright, but I just hadn't expected this little wrench. I figured I
would either know I was headed for surgery in advance, or get to try
pushing and have to convert to a c section. This was something
different. A slight difference that changed everything.
on one side and then the other didn't help. The doctor gave me a little
extra time to wait, which allowed my mom and sister to make it to see
me. I really appreciate how kind Dr. Williams was in this situation; she
did her best to allow me some control when I really didn't have any.
She came back to check on me, and I told her I was ready. At that point,
everyone sprang into action. They briefed me on how it would go and
started giving me anti nausea meds and upping my epidural for the
surgery. I said goodbye to my mom and Kim, and they wheeled me away,
Cory following behind.
They had Cory put on scrubs outside the OR
while they prepped me. I was totally naked and could see my reflection
in the lights above me, which creeped me out a little. I remember being
relieved when they put the sheet up; they angled it so I couldn't see
them or anything else past my chest. Then they let Cory back in and he
stood by my face and they began. I didn't feel any pain, thank God. That
was one of my worries, that the pain medication wouldn't take fast
enough or something. I do remember being so tired that my eyelids felt
heavy. I was trying not to fall asleep while they worked.
have to wait long. After some vague pulling and tugging sensations,
baby A, Clara Rhea, was born at 11:20am. Baby B, Hazel Marie, followed
right after at 11:21am. Cory got to hold both of them and bring them to
me. He was the one who thought A looked like a Clara, and B looked like a
Hazel. I agreed immediately and that was it for names! Clara cried
right away, and Hazel made softer noises but did okay. They were
concerned about Hazel's breathing at first, but then she started
screaming and they worried a lot less about it, haha. The decision was
made that they didn't need to go to the NICU, so after they closed me
up, we all headed to my recovery room together.
My twins' birth
was so different from Penny's birth I can hardly compare them. Pretty
much everything that could have been different, was. I can't imagine
only having one of them, though. We're adjusting to being a family of
five and it's pretty great. After I had Penny, I knew our family still wasn't
complete. I wanted to experience pregnancy again, and I felt like
someone was missing from our family. Now, I feel like we're all here.
Cory and I and our three girls. It was a little more than we bargained
for, but it feels wonderful and exactly right.