Saturday, December 26, 2009

My Birth Story

I have some time today so I wanted to get this typed up, before I forget

Dan and I arrived at the Macondald Women's Hospital at 6 AM on Thursday December 17th. We got all checked into our room and of course I realized I forgot my cell phone in the car. So Dan ran to get it while the nurse checked my vitals and prepared me for the pitocin. I also had an internal and found I was 4.5 cm dilated, which was another .5 cm dilated than the week before.

The pitocin started at 7 AM and the monitor showed contractions but I couldnt really feel them. My parents came up to my room shortly after and sat with us but not much was going on. Around 10 AM, not much had changed and although the contractions were a bit more painful, they were tolerable. My dad had enough of sitting in my room and my sister took his place.

My OB came in to check me around 10 AM and I was at 5 cm dilated. Still not painful. So we continued to wait.

At noon, my OB came back and decided to break my water, which I was fine with. Honestly, I had a feeling that once my water broke, my labor would really pick up. And I was right! The breaking of the water was easy and shortly after, my contractions became closer together and alot stronger. Honestly, I tried to time contractions but then Id forget to time one and get off track so I just gave up!

At 2 PM, the pain became pretty strong and since I knew I was going to deliver the twins with an epidural, I requested one at that time. I was probably around 7 cm.
The epirdual was not pleasant. It was hard to sit still when I was in so much pain and they had to stick me twice because they didnt position the first one correctly. But once it got in, the pain was very tolerable. I would still get a feeling of pressure and some discomfort but no real pain. The downside was that it caused me to shake, sometimes pretty bad.

Around 3 3:30 PM, my OB came back and checked me and I was 9.5 cm dilated so they were ready to move me to the OR for delivery. My sister and mom were in the room with Dan and I so we said our good-byes to them and I got wheeled into the OR by my nurse, Ashley. She was with me the entire day, through delivery, and she was great!

I started pushing around 3:45 and continued until 5:21, when Emma was born. There was pain, I wont lie. But I just wanted to get her out so badly that it was incentive to just push through it.

I always though that once I delivered Emma, Joshua would just kinda come out. Well yeah, he did not. He basically scooted himself back up so I had to labor another hour and 9 minutes to deliver him. By this time, the pain was back and I was exhuasted so they gave me more pain meds which helped. Joshua did stay head down but he turned himself "sunny-side up" and wouldnt flip around so delivering him was alot harder and more painful. He also caused me a second degree tear (TMI but hey, its my story, lol)

Once they delivered Emma, they put her in a basinette right by my bed so I could look at her while I delivered Joshua. I remember thinking she was perfect. She had a perfectly round head, long fingers and little round lips that were already sucking.
When I delivered Joshua, they put him on my chest for a bit and it was the first time I held either one of them. I remember thinking how small he was and how long his legs were. He also had the most intense eyes, which he opened almost immediately and appeared to be staring right at me.

The next hour was filled with getting cleaned up and taken back to my room. I really closed my eyes most of the time but not before I asked my nurse, Ashley, if I would be able to order food when I got back to my room. She laughed but I was starved.

While Dan waited for them to finish on me, he went down to tell our families the good news. I really wish I could have been there to see their reactions but I can truly imagine and feel their joy even though I wasnt there.

I got back to my recovery room at 7:15 and by 7:30, Dan and I were ready for our families to come and see us, especially since they had been there all day and only had until 8 to see us and the babies.

So thats that. My story. In some respects, I feel like this story is the end of a long journey and I guess it is. But in reality, its really just the beginning of a different journey. One that will be filled with different ups and downs, challenges and rewards and one that will change the person that I am. Because now I am mother.

A few pictures for your viewing pleasure:

Last Belly Pic- 38w1d

In labor and delivery- on my laptop, of course

Emma Sophia Born 5:21 PM, 6 lbs 5oz

Joshua Robert Born 6:30 PM, 5lbs 12 oz

Dan and I right after delivery

Our families waiting to see the babies

...and coming home!

And I wouldn't change a thing

I'd walk right back through the rain

Back to every broken heart

On the day that it was breakin'

And I'd relive all the years

And be thankful for the tears I've cried with every stumbled step

That led to you

and got me here, right here

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Life, One week later

This week has been a whirlwind! I cant belive how much my life has changed since last Thursday, its amazing.

We came home from the hospital on Sunday. I was actually released on Saturday, which is the standard 2 days after vaginal delivery, but they kept us in our room one more day with E&J so that they could continue to monitor them. I was actually glad to stay that extra day because I got alot of help with breastfeeding from several consultants.

I am breastfeeding both Emma and Joshua but have had to modify with Joshua because he was losing weight. Oh and he is a super lazy eater. So we did introduce a bottle to him, although I do begin with breastfeeding him each time and he does take to it. But the bottle is helping him get the nutrients he needs so he doesnt get any smaller.

Both babies had a bit of jaundice but by Tuesday, their numbers were in decline so they didnt have to put them under a light or a blanket. We went for a weigh-in at the pediatrician today and E&J are each up 3 oz from Tuesday so we are hoping to get them back at their birth weight in the next week. (Emma is currently at 5lbs 14 oz and Joshua is at 5lbs 6oz

Here is a newer picture of Emma:

And one of Joshua:

And both of them- on the day they came home:

I wont lie. Im exhausted and at times overwhelmed at all the things we need to do to take care of two newborns. But when I look at them, I realize they are the answer to a dream that I have had in my heart for so long. And it makes it all worth it.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. May God Bless you as much as I have been blessed.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Worth the Wait

Joshua Robert and Emma Sophia entered the world on Thursday December 17th after 12 hours of labor. Details to follow. And yes, Im in love.

Joshua on the left, Emma on the Right

Thanks for all of your prayers, cant wait to update with more details but right now, Im about to get some sleep!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

'Twas the Night Before Labor...

So this is it, Labor Eve. (Ok, ok, the Christmas-themed labor references are kinda lame, lol)

Anyways, Dan and I are packed and our bags are ready to go. We leave for the hospital eaarrrlyyy tomorrow morning so we are going to try to get to bed early tonight. Our Cavs are on TV tonight so we plan to watch them and just relax.

I dont know when I will be able to update again but I hope its soon. In the meantime, any prayers you have for us are much appreciated.

Wow, this is it. The time I thought might never come and the time I don't know if I could have reached without the support of all my friends. So thank you! I know I always say it but I truly mean it, thank you for always being here for me and thank you for never giving up on me.

Making the decision to have a child - it's momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.
- Elizabeth Stone

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Things I don't want to forget Part 1

Its inevitable- Joshua and Emma will be here in a couple days. As we prepare for their arrival, I am starting to reflect on things that I don't want to forget about the past 2 1/2 years.

Dan and I officially started trying to get pregnant in June 2007 and that journey took us all the way through April 23, 2009, which is when we found out I was pregnant. Now, almost 8 months later, our life is about ready to change in ways that I can only imagine. And before things get too crazy, I want to make sure I list out things that I cant bear to forget. So here goes:

1. The feeling of repeated dissapointment that came from trying month after month. I dont want to forget this because it has made me appreciate where I am but also to respect and have full compassion for those who are still on the journey

2. The way it felt to see 2 lines on a pregnancy test and to run with that test into the kitchen to show Dan instead of crawling into bed to cry with sadness

3. Our first ultrasound, when we saw 2 bouncy gummy bears and the deep love that I immediately felt for those two babies, who I had dreamed of for so long

4. The sheer joy that my family felt when we told them I was pregnant

5. Yelling at Dan to move faster through the grocery store so that I wouldnt hurl all over the floor during my morning sickness months

6. Dan trying to get me to move faster to the parking lot at our initial doctor appointments because if we parked for an hour or less, it was free (he has this weird, weird thing about paying for parking, lol)

7. Dan making me breakfast in bed almost every day that I've been pregnant and always setting out my prenatal vitamin before I went to bed

8. Finding out the sexes of the babies- Dan was happy to find out Emma was a girl but there was something about the look in his eye when he found out Joshua was a boy. I think his dreams of having a son to share all of life's lessons with was fufilled.

9. Watching my belly grow and grow. I remember thinking that I saw a belly at 14 weeks. Now I cant remember the last time I saw my feet when looking down

10. Feeling the babies move for the first times. It was a reminder of the great responsibility that I have in carrying them

11. Laughing everytime Dan reminds me of this toothless lady who said to me "All this walkin' is gonna be good for labor" when she saw me coming out of a store. We both say this all the time and laugh so hard

12. Just sitting in the nursery, after everything had been put together, and visualizing the babies being here. But not just being here, also growing into toddlers and then older and dreaming of everything they will become.

I put a "Part 1" after this post because I am sure I will come up with more I dont want to forget. And after E&J have been here for a few weeks, I want to make another post of the early things I dont want to forget.

Alright, Im off to take a nap. Im really relaxing over these days before the induction, which isnt easy for me. Yesterday was kinda rough- I almost made a new to-do list of things that I wanted to get done. But then I realized that I've already done everything that I really need to do so I hid the pen and paper!

Hope everyone is having a good week!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Date

I had my 37 week appointment on Friday and everything still looks good. We talked about our next step and after much discussion, Joshua and Emma have a birth date. I will be induced on Thursday, December 17th. I am really excited!

My OB still does not think I will make it to that date since I am a "full" 4cm dilated and now 100% effaced but knowing my babies, Im sure I will make it to the 17th. One of them (most likely Emma, taking after her mama, lol) is pretty stubborn and not ready to come out.

So the babies will be born at 38w1d. I am thrilled to have kept them in for so long and am even more excited to meet them.

Dan and I have been spending our last weekend together as "just us" As excited as we are to become parents, there is that awareness that it will never, ever be the two of us ever again. Its an odd feeling to leave one part of your life behind and start a new chapter. I cant wait to see what this new chapter brings.

I will probably blog every day leading up to the induction, just so I can remember everything I want to remember.

Hope everyone has a great day!

I see a light in the sky
Oh, it's almost blinding me
I can't believe I've been touched by an angel with love
Let the rain come down and wash away my tears
Let it fill my soul and drown my fears
Let it shatter the walls for a new, new sun
A new day has...come

Friday, December 11, 2009

Still here- 37+ weeks

Baby Watch 2009 is underway but as of yet, no signs of E&J.

When I found out it was twins, I always thought they would come early but in all honesty, there are many women who carry twins to 38 and 39 weeks so really, its not a big surprise that they arent here yet. Im still patiently waiting for them but if I do make it to 39 weeks, I will be signing a different tune Im sure!

I had my 37 week u/s yesterday. Both babies are still head down, fluid and movement levels were perfect and they are both measuring around 5lbs 14 oz. The tech did say it was hard to get measurements on them because both of their heads are so low but if anything, they would be bigger than that estimate, not smaller. Im happy with that, I feel like those are good size babies.

Today is also my last day of work, which feels kinda weird. Work is such a huge part of my life that its going to be weird to not be here while Im on maternity leave. Im sure I will get used to it pretty quickly though!

37 week Belly Picture

How far along? 37 weeks, 2 days

Total weight gain: 35 lbs

Stretch Marks? None

Maternity clothes? Yes, but I have outgrown most of them. I refuse to buy anymore though and am just making due with what I have

Sleep: This is horrible. I cant get comfortable because my back hurts if I lay on one side, my ribs hurt if I lay on the other and my groin hurts the entire time so I can barely roll over or get up- which I have to do often because I always need to pee. But only a trickle of pee. I am!

Best moment this week: Every day I make it is a good day. Im so greatful for the chance to grow them a little bigger and a little stronger each day.

Movement: Yes and its actually kind of painful. If Emma moves, she is so low and that hurts. And then Joshua must have the strongest legs in the world because he still kicks the heck out of my tummy. But I have to admit, If I dont feel them move it makes me nervous. I do love being able to feel them move

Labor Signs: 3.5cm (almost 4) dilated and 90% effaced. I am still getting mild contractions on and off for most of the day

Belly Button in or out? Its not in or out, its just flat, like it blends into my belly.

What I miss: Putting on my own shoes and socks.

Milestones: I feel like every day is a milestone. But Im also proud that I made it to 37+ weeks at work and feel comfortable going on maternity leave at this point.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Almost 37 weeks

So Im still here. And no I have not had the babies yet! The list of people that I have to update daily is getting longer, everyone seems to think the babies are coming any day now. My sister is so sweet- she emails me every day just to check in. But they aren't here yet. If I had to guess, I think Im close and that they will be here by the weekend but what do I know?!

I did have an appointment and made further progress- I am between 3.5 and 4 cm dilated and 90% effaced. So really, these babies could come any day.

As I get closer to welcoming Emma and Joshua into this world, I hope I always remember the way I feel right now. I feel this amazing combination of excitement, greatfulness, fear, love, happiness- all rolled into one. I don't think I will ever feel the way I feel right now ever again. I know my life is about to change but I also fully comprehend that I have no idea how much its going to change. And I cant wait! I know things wont be easy but honestly, when are they? I hope I can remember to enjoy as many moments with my babies as I can and appreciate every chance I get to experience something new with them. And I wont ever, ever forget what it took to get here.

I have an ultrasound on Thursday and an appointment on Friday. I will update when I have new info.

Have a good week, my friends!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

36 weeks and Ouch!

Well I made it to 36 weeks, Im so happy! Its hard to explain but I guess I kinda feel proud of myself for making it this long, without any complications and still working. (and not that ANYONE who goes earlier or has complications or goes on bedrest SHOULDNT feel proud, because carrying one or more babies is alot of work.) But just for me, Im happy that things have worked out this way for my situation.

Here is my 36 week picture. I dont know, it doesnt look alot bigger than last week but its feels alot bigger. I have tried not to complain much during my pregnancy but man, I feel horrible lately! My back, my hips, my groin, my tummy- Ouch! I actually cant remember what its like to not have something hurt every time I move or talk. Or breathe. But its all worth it and Im prepared to do it as long as I need to for E&J

I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow so we'll see if there is any new info after that. If not, I plan to take it easy this weekend and get ready for a new week!