21 December 2012

Max & Miles - A Birth Story

(Let me preface this by saying that the boys' birth was a bit chaotic and the photos have not been edited very much. I wanted to leave them "as-is," to keep things as authentic as possible. Daddy was running back and forth to three different places and had very little time to think about camera settings!)

After a few false starts, we were very excited to make it all the way to our 38-week scheduled c-section. It's rare that twins make it so far without bed rest, complications or extra hospital time, but we were pretty confident that we'd make it. My uterus has a history of being incredibly difficult to irritate or persuade, so Andrew and I had every intention of delivering these guys mid-December. We were scheduled for 1pm on Friday the 14th, and we arrived around 9 for monitoring and high blood pressure. I'd had a very rough night the night before, so I'm pretty sure the high BP was all due to my stress. Our surgery got pushed back several times, and I was already very nervous about delivery, and combining that with the Sandy Hook shooting, I was absolutely hysterical and beside myself most of the morning. I was trying to convince Andrew to pull Lucy out of school, trying to figure out if we could ever send her back again, and on and on and on. My BP did mellow out quite a bit just being at the hospital, which really made me feel better. I ended up with a lot of needle sticks for this and that, so that was a downside. The extra waiting was hard, just because we were so excited and I was so anxious to just get it over with. I was still in disbelief that we were even having twins at that point, and it just felt surreal to be there at all. It seems like the pregnancy passed SO fast, and suddenly there were were, waiting on these babies we didn't even plan for! I was just so overwhelmed and needed to hold them so badly. 
Me in pre-op, waiting impatiently. 

2:30, heading to the OR. I think Andrew must have taken this on the way out the door to the OR, since the boys were born at 3. I had to have been in the OR getting prepped, which is somehow very exciting and not fun at all. The sweet nurse who stood in front of me said, "Oh honey, it'll be okay! Is this your first spinal?" I sobbed back, "No, it's my fourth!" And then she looked at me like I was totally batty. Hello? It still hurts. 

They finally got that all done and then Andrew came in, thank goodness. I kept asking, "Where's my husband? When are you letting him in?" You know the husband is late when the OB is already standing there asking, "Can I start?" The NICU team was a little late and because of the precarious nature of multiples, we really couldn't do much until the extra 8 people got there. Their uniforms were all black, as Andrew noted, they looked like an "elite medical ninja squad". You also were not allowed to photograph them, would encouraged his crazy description of their existence & services...

Once they showed up and Andrew was in, it was go time! 

The boys' first beds, just minutes from first cry! Walking into the OR and seeing TWO little warmers was so exciting! 

This was at about 3:04pm as Dr. M was pushing and pulling. I wasn't really crying so much as just wondering when I'd be able to breathe again. It felt like there was an elephant sitting on my chest, which is normal when you have a spinal, since you can't feel your diaphragm. 

3:05pm, Baby A is here with a big yell! Welcome, Max Aquinas!

And he's a redhead! Max's breathing was a little shallow, so they were pretty fast with him. They didn't weigh him until quite a bit later, and people started saying "NICU," which was exactly what this mama did not want to hear. They were kind enough to spend a little time in the OR and wait to make sure Mama and Daddy got a few pics and so on. 

3:06pm, Miles Andrew is here! (Don't let the full  official "minute" clocked fool you, it was actually like 30 seconds between deliveries). We've been waiting so impatiently! 

Max in his little nest. 

Getting his first apgars - they both passed pretty well, from what I remember. 

Miles getting the once-over from the nurses.

One super excited Daddy! Two sons in one day! 


I think this is Miles, but...it was a long day! 

Miles skipped over to the nursery for a little checkup, and then came right over for his lunch. He nursed efficiently right away, even as difficult as it is to nurse in recovery. Coming off the spinal and onto the morphine makes your shaky, cold, itchy, weak and a little loopy. Minimal issues after delivery, out of the OR in record time, two big, robust boys and a whole lot of fluid! He said he couldn't have asked for a better case and he was totally comfortable dropping his gown in the trash and skipping out of there. 

Aww! Purple baby hands! 

Sweet Miles with his little bulldog face. 

Our nursery nurse Amber came over right away to deliver Miles and let us know that while Max was in the NICU for oxygen, he'd been admitted to the nursery and would be along shortly. She was absolutely a fantastic addition to our day! She worked a double and was with us for a full 24-hours, taking care of the boys, keeping us in the loop and making sure that we all stayed happy. Max was with us within about 20 minutes, and we found out that he weighed 6 pounds, 7 ounces and was 19 1/4 inches long. Miles was 6 pounds, 3 ounces and 19 inches long. As usual, they were completely in sync almost to the very last minute. Growing babies that evenly is nothing but talent, friends! I wish I could measure curtains as accurately. 

The brothers meet in the daylight for the first time. Sweet as sugar. 

"I had no idea that's what you looked like!"

Nursing Max - another super nurser! 

Boy, was I a happy mama! I just couldn't stop staring at them. I also felt my ribs and sternum for the first time in months. Andrew said, "So how are you feeling?" I replied (still in post-op), "Um, like a supermodel." 

I just stared and stared. Pulling two babies out of one body just mystifies me, and I think it's even MORE amazing now that we've done it. It seems kind of cool when you see other people do it, but the idea of multiples after surviving the pregnancy and surgery is just amazing. 

Max getting his check-up - red hair, red baby...

Nurse Amber, our hero! 

Max's footprints - the thing I love about this is that we have a book called, "Twins, Triplets and More" that is really great for multiples pregnancies. In the book are pictures of footprints from 16 weeks to 36 weeks, and each progressively bigger set really gave me inspiration to keep going. Every time I thought I couldn't do another week, I'd pull out the footprints and look at those 36-week prints. How proud am I to have 38-week footprints in our baby book?!? Bigger than any of the footprints in that book! 

(LOL, as I'm typing this, Molly came over and pushed on my belly and said, "I feel a foot down there - are you having girls this time?" Uhhh....no.)

We got moved to a recovery room by 5pm or so, and the boys were very content to nurse and sleep after their big afternoon! 

I was so excited to be holding my babies - I just couldn't put them down! 




The boys looked very different at birth, but the first week has proved to be a surprise! The boys look more and more alike every day, but we know that the first year or so means a different look every week, so we're just taking it a day at a time! 

The girls came to visit bright and early the next morning! 

Lucy hopped up in that bed and grabbed a baby right away! Such an excited big sister! 

Molly holding "the boy twin." 

Grandma! After two and a half months of watching that huge belly, helping with the house & girls and sitting through many, many doctor's visits (scheduled & unscheduled) and hospital runs, she finally got those babies! 

Claire attempts to take a bite out of a baby. 



Cooke, Party of Seven. 

A little gift from the proud papa.

Napping with my cute boys! 

Silly boys, telling jokes! 

1 comment:

Lisa Marie said...

Oh gosh this is beautiful!! it'll never get less miraculous or amazing... I kept looking thinking the same thing you eventually said- WOW... they just pulled 2 HEALTHY "big" babies out of her! WOW!!! haha. What miracles!!! Thank you God! I'm so happy and proud of all of you, and so very excited for your family. These boys have no idea how blessed they are :) I loved the pic of you w/baby sleeping on your shoulder and that sweet look of peace on your face, sheer joy. how precious! also the one of them "meeting in light" for the first time- I had no idea you looked like that-- hahah! too cute! Love you all so much- thanks for this post!! Felt like I could be there! :)