Friday, September 25, 2015

Sonny & Rocco's Birth Story

I went to bed trying to relax as much as possible, knowing that I was going to meet my babies so soon. I'd spent the previous weeks praying that the babies would stay put and not come early, but by this point all I could think about was getting them out. I could hardly walk, shower, put on clothes, sleep and I was overall super uncomfortable. We were supposed to be at the hospital by 6am for my scheduled induction. I woke up a few hours after going to bed feeling like something was maybe happening, so we decided to drive in a little earlier than planned. Of course the man working the desk was super grouchy about my early arrival, and told us that the rooms were all full and we may be told to go home. I knew I was not going home, and that the babies were coming soon, so I just sat still until I could meet with a nurse.

We were brought to triage so they could monitor my contractions and check the babies' hearts. Sure enough, I had started going into labor on my own, so I would not be going home.  I hated the triage room. It was so tiny, the bed was uncomfortable, and there was nowhere for Louis to go. All of the delivery rooms were full, so we were just waiting for one to open up. They told me that if things started moving along before a bed was ready, that I could have an epidural and do almost everything in triage, but I was determined get of there.

A few hours later I started to feel a lot of pain but I was confused as to how a contraction should feel and how much pain was normal. I didn't mention it to the nurses. A little before 12pm I was super uncomfortable and had tried timing the pain, but it had just been constant for 2 hours. Louis got the nurse, who soon confirmed that I was 5 cm dilated. I quickly ate a piece of chocolate bread and gatorade that Louis had brought up from the cafeteria before I was wheeled over to a big, beautiful, delivery room.

The anesthesiologist arrived and explained the procedure and risks associated with getting an epidural. I was nervous to get one, but with the twin situation there was a chance I'd have to have an emergency C-Section. If we ended up going that route and I hadn't had an epidural, I'd have to be put to sleep completely and wouldn't be able to be present for the births. I didn't feel there was much of an option. It was painless and soon made everything quite delightful.

The nurse and doctors came in a few times over the next few hours and encouraged me to sleep. I felt pretty out of it and exhausted but was too anxious to sleep. My doctor came in to let me know that she may have to go home before the babies were ready to be delivered. I thought I'd be more sad and freaked out about that, as I always knew it was a possibility,  but I felt pretty at peace with whatever was going to happen. The only issue with another doctor handling the delivery ,was that she wouldn't be able to do a breach extraction if needed - meaning there was a chance I could deliver baby A vaginally and then have to have a c-section if baby B turned. I tried to keep my thoughts positive but I dreaded the idea of having to recover from both.

The sunshine soon began to fade and I attempted to sleep in my dark, quiet room. Frequently a nurse or the resident would come in to see how far I was dialated. The last couple hours they moved me into different positions to try to get the babies to come a little faster. Around maybe 1-2am, the resident came in to tell me it was time and explained  how to push. We did a few practice rounds before it was time to go into the operating room. They told Louis to put on his blue gown, hat, mask, etc. He took a long time to get ready, so they wheeled me in without him. The room was bright and cold, but it wasn't scary. The doctors and nurses all kept telling me it might feel scary and that it might seem out of control, but that it was just a lot of people with different jobs to do. There was a radio playing music but I can't remember what songs, I just know it seemed a little bit fun being in there -  a big room full of girls, everyone acting super excited about what was going to happen. I started pushing again before Louis arrived. When he came in the room he was lead to his seat near my head. Everyone had been informed that he was a bit squeamish and that he may pass out so they all shielded his eyes from my current set up.

They told me the pushing process could take hours, but I am pretty sure I only pushed about 10 times before they told me that the baby would be out on the next one. I could hardly believe it when baby A, my Sonny, was held up for me to see. I can't remember if I got to hold him, I don't think I did. They took him to my left to his own little bed where the doctors checked to be sure he was okay. At this point the big concern was whether or not baby B was going to flip. They managed to keep him in position and a few minutes later Rocco was born. Pretty quickly it was clear that something was wrong with Rocco because he was breathing really heavy and it just looked like something was off. I had some hemorrhaging so I wasn't able to really do anything until they got that under control and finished fixing me up. It felt like an eternity before I was finally able to hold the babies. It also didn't feel real.

That A on his little hat means baby A, which is Sonny!

Tiny Rocco

They wheeled us out of the operating room, back to where we were previously, and brought the babies to their own little bed in the corner of the room. They told me that the doctors would be in soon and that most likely Rocco would be taken to the NICU. I was still pretty out of it and didn't know exactly what that meant or what was going on, but I don't remember being scared about the situation. I held and nursed Sonny and then they had to take him away too for his check up. It was strange going through such a long process only to be left in a room with our parents, without the babies, but I knew I'd get them back soon.

Around 6am they took me to another room. A shared room. As they wheeled me in, I heard the loud snoring of a woman who would be my roommate. I am the lightest sleeper on the earth and sleep with ear plugs in every night, so needless to say this annoying racket was already an issue. When I saw where I'd be sleeping I began to cry. My area was so small. We had so much family with us and I had imagined all of us being together with our new babies, but there was absolutely no space for anyone. They also told me Louis wouldn't even be able to spend the night. I still feel this is something they should let you know prior to having your babies because it felt devastating to hear at that point. The next several hours are a blur.  A nurse dropped off a breast pump with no explanation. I was exhausted and confused and extremely upset. People came in and out for the next few hours giving me instructions but my eyes kept closing during our conversations. Rocco was on another floor in the NICU and I think at some point Louis took me over to see him. Our poor tired families went home to rest and Louis laid in bed with me. Sonny was soon brought into my little room as well. Somehow by the end of the day I felt okay enough for Louis to go home. He needed sleep as much as I did.

My first night as a mom, with my Sonny, was so sweet. I held him lots, nursed him, and kissed him. I couldn't believe he was my baby and that he was the cutest ever. The nurse came in every few hours to check on us, and I had to call her a few times as well to teach me how to swaddle him. During the times that I was awake my roommate was as well, and we began talking to each other through the curtain. She was a 2nd time mom so she gave me little tips and encouragement.The nurses sometimes seemed abrupt so it was nice to have a person nearby with a little more patience and compassion, who didn't mind answering my millions of questions.  I was grateful to have her there.

It was strange only having one baby with me.  To visit Rocco I had to order a wheel chair, take Sonny to the nursery, and get someone to wheel me up to the NICU. I was surprised that I couldn't walk and that I still looked pregnant, but felt empty, and big, and weird. There were a few other little surprises that nobody warned me about which got me thinking. I liked getting to experience this for the first time, alone with my baby. Parts of me just weren't working right and I felt impatient and so emotional, I was glad my room was small and that nobody was around. Louis spent most of the next few days with Rocco while I stayed downstairs with Sonny. I felt detached from Rocco and it was hard for me to believe that I had another baby which made me feel sad and guilty.

On the evening of day 3 they told me I could go home, but Rocco had to stay. I was heartbroken and scared. I hadn't thought of his condition as really scary until day 3. I just figured he'd be fine and we'd all go home together. I wanted them to let me and Sonny stay at the hospital until Rocco was ready, but that was not an option. I sat in the NICU crying while the doctors and nurses tried telling me that he would be fine, but that he just needed more time before he could go home too -something that I'd hear over and over for the next month. He was on a c-pap which looks crazy on a tiny little baby, he couldn't breastfeed, and also would not take a bottle so he was being fed through a tube in his nose. After spending lots of time in the NICU, I know that all of these things are really pretty normal, but at the time I felt out of control and so sad.

Louis, Sonny and I stayed in our hospital room until the last possible second. Finally, we said bye to Rocco one more time, I cried a lot more, we asked the nurse a million questions about putting our tiny baby in the carseat, and went home.

Sonny Bear

Rocco Boo

Baby Angel

Me and Sonny right after I said bye to Rocco before we left the hospital. I was so sad to leave my baby.

I never want to forget those days. The actual birth was easier and more enjoyable than I ever anticipated. The nurses and doctors were amazing. Louis was amazing. Having our family there was amazing even if we weren't together the whole time. It was just nice knowing they were there. When we were in the moment, I felt focused, determined, peaceful and present. There is nothing like meeting your two perfect, sweet babies for the first time. I'm so grateful for such a precious experience.

1 comment:

  1. Oh sweetie, reading this brought tears to my eyes. I'm so sorry for the hard times you went thru and all the stuff you didn't know and for the brusk nurses...and I'm so happy for your babies. You're such a sweet, happy looking mommy! Becoming a mom for the first time is like nothing else, but you're in an awesome club now. :-D <3