I have sat down and tried typing this up at least 3 different times now but am having a hard time finding adequate words. Life has also been crazy busy since our little guys arrived so that has made it a little bit difficult too, but I want to share my birth story. A day hasn’t gone by since my delivery day that I haven’t thought about it. I had such a beautiful birth experience and if I could, I would relive it again in a heart beat!
I can’t tell you how many times that I thought I would’ve gone into preterm labor or something would’ve gone wrong and required delivering the boys early. I’m a worst case scenario thinker and a tad bit of a worry wort. As time went on and we hit major mile stones, things got easier. We hit viability week – 24 weeks. Then we made it to 30 weeks. Then we made it to 34 weeks and somehow we made it all the way to 36 weeks and 6 days which was our scheduled induction day, 5/30/17.
My whole pregnancy flew by but definitely had stand still moments as well. I remember at one of my appointments towards the end, my doctor and I set the date for induction. I still didn’t have much confidence I would make it to that point, but having a date set felt crazy. The date seemed so far away at the time that it was scheduled, but after that appointment time sped up insanely quick.
It was the night before induction day and I had so many emotions running through my mind. I had no idea what to expect with labor and delivery, let alone delivering twins. I kept wishing that I had one more week so that I could get myself together. As I was going to bed all I could think about was how this would be my last night at home without being a mom and that I needed to get the best sleep I could. Well, that backfired and between anxiety, peeing 30 times and not being able to breathe because I had two humans pushing up against my diaphragm, I maybe got 4 hours. I woke up that morning and thought to myself, well this is it, welcome to TeamNoSleep.
Once we got the green light to head to labor and delivery, the real nerves kicked in. I don’t know if I was more nervous to go through labor or to bring home two tiny babies, both seemed pretty terrifying. I remember trying to sign all of the paperwork and having to sign HIPAA docs and other forms for my two unborn children… My children…. CHILDREN — Plural. Holy shit. After that mental fiasco and coming to the realization that I wasn’t leaving labor and delivery until I was a parent, we got brought back to the labor room around 6pm.
We got all settled in for the long night and I was started on Cytotec to get things moving since I was only dilated to a measly 1. After a few hours, nothing much had changed so we got started on a second dose. A little bit into that, Baby B aka Gunner’s heart rate had a few drops. It was around 11pm at that time and there was no sleep in sight. That was all I could think about. I just wanted to sleep. But between heart rate drops, nurse and resident checks and contractions beginning to get stronger I daydreamed about sleep instead.
I was started on pitocin sometime after that and the contractions started to become more regular. I was finally dilated to a…. 2 around 2 in the morning. Yay! The excitement and anxiety had worn off by this time and I was ready to be done. I wanted sleep, I wanted to be able to breathe, and I wanted these babies out. My mom and Jake were at the bedside asleep and I don’t think I have ever been so jealous in my life. So at that point I decided, screw it. I have nothing to prove. Let’s get this epidural so that I can get some sleep. And I did just that and have zero regrets. I got the epidural around 3am and once it had kicked in, they turned up the pitocin and it was goodnight.
I was finally able to get some sleep on and off until around 6am. I was laying in bed thinking about how I’d probably still be in labor at this time tomorrow morning with how slow my body was progressing. I felt a contraction come on and had the strangest sensation with it. It felt like I had a water balloon being filled up to capacity inside of me and then all of a sudden felt it burst and then a lovely gush of fluid. My mom and Jake were still asleep and silly me, I thought I could get away with letting the nurse know and not waking them up. I hit my call light and over the intercom whispered, “I think my water just broke”. Jake and my mom were instantly wide awake and bushy tailed after that. The resident and nurse came in to check and sure enough, Baby A aka Gavin’s water had broke. We were in business for real now and they turned up the pitocin some more.
I was checked on and off that morning to early afternoon. Things had started to speed up a little bit, but still not much. I was thankfully able to sleep in and out of the commotion. The things that I remember the most between 6am and delivery were how freaking hot I was and how tired I was. I had cold wash cloths on my head and a fan blowing in my face and still felt like it was a million degrees in the room while everyone else had to wear a jacket because they were so cold.
Sometime around 2pm, my nurse checked me and to my complete surprise, she thought I was at a ten. I never ever thought I was going to make it to a ten. So she paged my doctor and shortly after, she arrived in her proper OR attire of scrubs and shit kickers. She confirmed that I was at a ten and we worked on pushing to make sure that Gavin’s head was in the right station before moving to the OR. Yep, that’s right, the OR. Most hospitals require that twin births take place in the OR just incase something were to happen and an emergency c-section was needed.
And then, it was time. Jake and my mom were able to come back to the OR with me and I said goodbye to all of our other family. All the nerves and fear I had experienced the night before and of course the 9 months leading up to this point were gone. I knew I was in the best hands and was so ready to be done so that I could take a nap! I mean… meet my boys :P!!
I thought being in the OR would give me stage fright, but at this point, it didn’t matter that there were 15-20 other people in the OR with me as I got ready to deliver. It didn’t take long before we were in business and as my next contraction came, I was instructed by the nurse to push. Delivery was such an out of body experience. I was obviously there physically, but mentally I was in some other place. It was euphoric and beautiful and spiritual, hard to put into words. I felt more powerful than I ever had in my entire life. I found a quote while pregnant, that at that moment made more sense than anything else – “Mother is a cocoon where cells spark, limbs form, mother swells and stretches to protect her child(ren). Mother has one foot in this world and one foot in the next.” – Warsan Shire. One foot in this world and one foot in the next… The best and only way I can put into words to describe the moment of delivery.
I don’t know how long I pushed, but I know it was very long and at 3:07, Gavin James was born. Gunner was breech so I knew they would have to do a breech extraction for him. I’ll save the gory details, but Jake said that it was the most alien thing he’s ever seen!! At 3:10, Gunner Phoenix was born. Both boys had to be given to NICU staff to be examined, but shortly after I was able to meet and do skin to skin with Gavin. Gunner had some difficulties breathing and other issues typical of being “twin B”. Eventually, Jake was able to hold Gunner and for the first time we were all together, our own family of four. There are no words to describe this moment. The busyness of the OR faded away as we sat together trying to take it all in.
Gunner had to be taken to the nursery due to blood sugars being low and breathing issues and Jake was able to follow him there. I was taken back to labor and delivery with Gavin on my chest. Jake was able to then bring Gunner back to us a little while later where we were able to introduce our little family to our family that was there with us. Both of our little guys were then taken for further monitoring of blood sugars and Gunner’s breathing.
5/31/2017 will forever be the best day of my entire life. Gavin and Gunner made me a mom and Jake a dad. They have given us a greater purpose and whole new outlook on life. Time has flown by since they were born and I can’t believe that they are already 10 weeks old. They are busy, happy and feisty little guys and I am so blessed that they are ours.