Twin Birth Story Part II

If you haven’t already read part one, click here.

I heard someone come in the room a little after noon and recognized my Dr’s pink tennis shoes under the curtain. She checked me and said, “well you are ready to push.”

We were still in shock at how quickly things were going. It felt like we’d just gotten to the hospital. But I started pushing! She sat on the end of my bed and coached me through pushing. My mom and sister were both those “I pushed once and the baby was out” girls. I was not. I think bedrest really affected my stamina.

Chuck had to literally push my shoulders forward, because my abs were so weak. The Dr let me push in the nice delivery room and said we didn’t have to go to the OR until the last minute. After about an hour of trial and error with learning how to push, it was time to go to the OR.

They wheeled me down the hall and whisked Chuck away to get his OR garb. I guess my epidural wasn’t super strong because I was able to basically transfer myself onto the operating table. There was a guy putting sensors on me that I think was part of the anesthesia team. Someone put a lovely hat on me and mentioned something about how it had hippos on it. Exactly the animal pregnant women want to be associated with right? Oh well, we bless them.

There was a good bit of scurrying around and soon Chuck came through the door. I kinda chuckled at his hat and robe. He had the camera around his neck and was all ready to be a dad.

Okay time to push again!! The Dr asked for another nurse to hold my other leg while Chuck and the random guy with the sensors pushed my shoulders forward. My birth was seriously a team effort. Some women hate that there are so many people in a twin birth, but I was actually thankful for all the help!

Chuck counted 12 people in the room at one point.

Not too long after, our Autumn Hope entered the world. She didn’t cry. Of course, I immediately start asking over and over, “is she okay?” I watched them give her oxygen and then she let out a scream. Chuck and I both took deep breaths and shed a few tears. Apparently the cord was around her neck.

With no time to waste it was time to get baby B out. They used an ultrasound to find her position, and the Dr had the nurses put pressure on my tummy to keep her in place. When she went to turn her, she found she had slipped right into head down. Good girl! My babies had been listening to mama in all our nighttime bath conversations. 🙂

Baby B felt much easier in some ways because I finally knew what it felt like to push correctly. With her, I kept saying “can I push?!” In unison, they’d say “YES.” Less than 20 minutes after her big sister, our Charlotte Joy entered the world with a loud scream and outstretched arms as if to say “I’m here everyone!”

She was so pink and red compared to Autumn. Apparently her cord was super short. The NICU asked once when her water broke, and I had no idea. I asked the Dr and she said she didn’t even know. Twin births are are so intense, it can be hard to keep track of everything.

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After they weighed the girls they laid Autumn and then Charlie on my chest. Then the anesthesiologist jumped in and started taking pictures of us and the girls. What a gift! She was standing on stools to get shots. It was hilarious!IMG_1912

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There is nothing you can compare to that moment. Nothing.

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My cheesy little babies. They just stared at each other. It was so sweet!

The girls were on the smaller side. My Dr had told me they were measuring small at my last sonogram, but it took awhile for it all to register. Charlie was 3 oz from being able to come to the room with me. They joked that she probably peed on her way to the scale. They even weighed her again in NICU in hopes they could bring her to me. Not having Charlie with us was the hardest part for sure!

After the delivery we went back to the room and Autumn immediately ate like a champ! I was so thankful that I got the delivery I hoped for!

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My Dr came in and told me she was proud of me and gave me a kiss on the forehead. A little later, Chuck and my nurse were both staring at me. Chuck was saying did you bust a blood vessel on your forehead while you were pushing. I was so confused, and they were both staring at me trying to figure out what it was. Then eventually it hit me, it was her lipstick!

Ha! I was so thankful for the team of people who helped bring our girls safely into the world.

 

Autumn Hope 4 lb 9 oz
Autumn Hope 4 lb 9 oz
Charlotte Joy 4 lb 5 oz
Charlotte Joy 4 lb 5 oz

Later that evening I went to recovery where I had the best night nurses. Since my hospital stay was mostly filled with nursing and pumping we didn’t have much time for visitors but my parents came down from East Texas. It was sweet for them to come and meet the girls!

proud papa
proud papa

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Charlie in the NICU
Charlie in the NICU

We came home with Autumn 2 days later.

She was only 4 lb 3 oz at that point but perfectly healthy. I cried so much. I didn’t want to leave Charlie or the hospital especially those wonderful nurses!

IMG_1926We could not get over how tiny Autumn was in her car seat!

We are so thankful for two healthy girls and the countless answered prayers. We are in awe of how faithful God has been to us through this journey. He went over and above, and way beyond what we could imagine with our little double portion.

We may be a little sleepy, but we have never been happier or more thankful. God is good!

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when rest is best…

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The day before I would turn 27 weeks, my doctor came into the room. My usually laid back doctor gave me strict orders for bedrest. My sweet baby A in true first born fashion appeared ready to meet the world, and it seemed my body was trying to begin the labor process.

I cried imagining their tiny frames outside of mine. I knew about how much they weighed and it was so hard to picture them in the outside world. We came home that day and our lifestyle suddenly, drastically changed.

My second trimester was wonderful. After a couple months of throwing up all too easily, the nausea was gone, and my energy returned. The pantry got organized. I made bows. We made much needed storage runs to make room for our twins on the way in our two bedroom apartment. I even cooked and ate salmon. Then in November, I traveled to California, and to my parents house 5 hours away for Thanksgiving. I was gone a total of 20 days. I attended a conference, had a baby shower, was a bridesmaid in one of my dearest friends wedding, Chuck did a wedding, and we spoke at a school of ministry.

When we got back from Thanksgiving at my parents, I ferociously went through all the baby things my sister sent back with us. I washed all the newborn and preemie clothes, bought those sweet little baby hangers, and hung them in their closet. The swing was in multiple pieces, so I wrested with that a bit and got it all set up. We went to get our first Christmas tree at Lowe’s the next day, and I even helped carry it up to our 2nd floor apartment.

It felt so good to accomplish so much. I love to achieve. Then came the screeching halt. And in a moment, rest became what was best. For my personality, unfortunately I needed to be forced to a place of rest. I’d felt a still, small voice telling me to, “slow down” a good bit before my doctor prescribed it.

Something deeper is happening in me. Something I can’t see. Something I cannot check off on a to-do list. My body is growing life, two lives! Every day they are making strides and growing stronger. And I need to rest and let it happen.

It’s interesting to me that the God who never sleeps nor slumbers chose to rest on the 7th day. There are so many aspects of rest that I still don’t get, but clearly God wanted us to prioritize it. He wants to heal us from our performance based mindsets, and set us free to realize that as we rest He accomplishes so much more than we ever could.

Praying today that as a mama, I can be like Mary who “treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart,” and not get lost in the piles and to-do’s that are inevitable. Praying the same for you this Christmas season, that in the midst of the busyness you will find time to be still and to rest.

Love,

Anna