Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Not really happening

Birthday Week at Flexible Parenting

Brought to you by Alex Elliot of Formula Fed and Flexible Parenting, I'm writing my birthing story in honor of her son's birthday.


I was 27 weeks pregnant with twins in early August. While I looked like the size of a small elephant at 15 months gestation, I was healthy. On a Thursday morning I felt a bit lousy sitting at my desk at work so I called the head nurse for my obstetrician (he was the chief of obstetrics at a major teaching hospital - he had layers of nurses). She demanded I get into the office ASAP.

I went to a meeting instead.

I took the subway to the hospital.

I was yelled at in the examination room.

The medical team was beside themselves. I can't really recall what the issue was but I was put on bed rest. I clearly didn't do it well because a few days later I was in the hospital for a few days to keep me in a bed. I called it "bed rest boot camp".

Eventually they let me out and I spent three weeks getting up from bed, walking to the sofa, and watching Amazing Guy place a full ice chest of drinks and food next to me since I couldn't get up to fix food in the kitchen. I could only get up to use the toilet.

"If you get to 30 weeks," our doctor said, "[the babies] will go to the graduate school of their choice". Gives you a sense of the educational expectations of where I live.

In the middle of the night at 30 weeks, I woke up feeling waves of pressure and this feeling of panic. Amazing Guy calls the hospital and the doctor on call said I had a urinary tract infection.

At some point my husband starting yelling at the guy that this wasn't a urinary tract infection and that we were coming to the hospital.

This part is all a daze. The young woman obstetrician on call checked me and announced I was giving birth that day and an anesthesiologist whose first name was Wolfgang came in to give me an epidural. While I don't recall the pain leading up to it, I remember feeling very grateful to have the epidural. To the point I was suggesting we name the babies "Wolf" and "Gang" in honor of the man with the medicine.

I was wheeled into an operating room after 6:00 am with three obstetricians, Wolfgang the anesthesiologist, several nurses and a medical team (comprising of a doctor and nurse) for each baby. Including me and Amazing Guy we had enough to field a football team (American or futbol, take your pick).

We didn't know the gender of the babies but knew they were identical. We agreed on two boys names when we found out during the 14th week of pregnancy we were having twins. We could not agree on one girl's name, never mind two. Right before the babies came out, Amazing Guy leaned into my ear and told me he agreed to the two girls names I had wanted.

It was clear that I could deliver vaginally so I was told to push and actually enjoyed feeling the waves of contractions without the pain. One of the obstetricians told me a head was appearing and asked if I wanted to reach down and touch the top. I reached forward and giggle. His response was, "that is the best thing I've heard all day."

We'll disregard it was only the 6th hour of the day.

But I'm grateful for that touch. I wouldn't touch that baby for another 24 hours.

After a few more pushes our son came out, let out a cry and was whisked away to a table. I didn't see him.

The other son took another ten minutes to arrive. There were several jokes that he was enjoying my uterus all to himself. He eventually came out, didn't cry as much and was also whisked away to another table.

They were eventually wheeled away while I laid on a table. They would spend the next 2 months in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.


jodifur said...

my best friend just had almost the exact same experience and I know how hard it was on her. I'm glad you and the twins are all happy and healthy years later, but I know how tough that must have been.

painted maypole said...

2 months? oh, allison. I can't imagine.

i love that you giggled, though

the dragonfly said...

I can't imagine two months in the nicu...

It makes me laugh that when they told you to get to the office ASAP you went to a meeting instead. Stubborn mamma!

Virtualsprite said...

Holy cow... the Ubergoober was only a day in NICU and I went nuts. I don't know how you did it.

Beautiful story, though. I love that you giggled, too!

Jami said...

Damn, girlfriend! I would have gone absolutely bonkers after, like, 2 days in NICU! So glad everybody's OK now.

Jenn in Holland said...

Ah, the birth story revealed. Man, what an ordeal and for some of us it's over and done with the birth complete (well, granted parenting is a whole new gig no matter what)but for you that "birth day" is only the beginning of getting these guys here and into life.
What a tremendous woman you are, my friend.
I love that you shared this.

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

2 months... oh, SMID HUGE hugs. Obviously, though, they've turned out beautifully.

Whirlwind said...

Wow, I can't imagine 2 months in the NICU. My daughter spent 12 hours in the NICU and even that was enough. Glad they are healthy!

Alex Elliot said...

Wow! I am also surprised that you gave birth vaginally. I don't know why because I know moms of twins do it all the time, but I guess all the moms of twins I know had c-sections.