Thursday, November 11, 2010

Pondering October

Yesterday, the twins were officially four weeks old! Despite the fact that Paul and I are operating on very little sleep these days, the time has gone by quickly.  I realized that Tuesday was my true due date.  After we learned that we were having twins, I knew that I would never make it to November 9th and I just knew that the boys would be born earlier in October.  After scrolling back and looking at my blog, I realize that I have written very little in months. I've relied on images (no picture today!)  and there were things that I wanted to ponder here, but I just didn't have the energy or brain power to articulate much clearly. This pregnancy was unlike any of  my others.  Although it was my shortest pregnancy (I delivered the twins at 36 weeks), it  felt like the longest.  It seemed that I spent most of my pregnancy in the third trimester. Now, at a month postpartum, the memories of intense insomnia and lack of oxygen are fading quickly and suddenly I feel a little sad about that. I know that can be hard to understand since anyone who was around me heard me whine incessantly about how difficult the pregnancy was for me.  I wish I hadn't been such a whiner.  I wish I had treasured each day more, but I thought of only myself and for that, I feel ashamed.  Even though I love being able to take deep breaths again, I wish I could feel the babies move in my belly again just one more time.  What's wrong with me?

 I still can't believe I got two babies!  It's really just now sinking in despite all those ultrasound pictures labeling Twin A and Twin B.  I am so blessed and yet I couldn't see it especially during those last couple of months of pregnancy.  I went to my routine ultrasound appointment on October 13th truly hoping that my doctor would say that I could go ahead and go to the hospital despite his wanting me to last another week.  I did get my wish as he determined that the twins were developing twin-to-twin transfusion. For my entire pregnancy I was monitored for twin-to-twin transfusion. It's where one twin grows bigger and takes more nutrients than the other. The twins had been growing at the same rate the whole time that I wasn't really worried about it anymore, but at that last appointment, my doctor determined that twin B (James) was nearly a pound heavier than twin A (Liam).  I went home got my stuff and returned to the hospital.  My doctor broke my water and everything was fine for about an hour when I dilated from 4 cm to 10 in the next hour.   My doctor apparently thought he had some time too and he went home for a little while.  I had asked a few times for an epidural, but I thought I had time too and suddenly, there wasn't any time. I admit, this was not my finest moment.  Everything happened so fast after my doctor left. There was no gradual ramping up of contractions. My contractions were at 11!  Anyway, I found myself being wheeled into the OR for an unnecessary C-section.  My doctor showed up just in time to take over and deliver my little Twin A and I was saved from the C-section. I had been given a spinal minutes before Twin A was born.  Although I became strangely disassociated with my own body, I felt enormous relief because I knew that twin B was breech.  My little twin B was delivered feet first twelve minutes after twin A.  He didn't cry immediately.  I remember there being quiet in the OR and I didn't get to hold the babies right away.  It wasn't the birth experience I had hoped for, but the boys despite being small were healthy.

I'm so glad that Liam and James were born in October as it's my absolute favorite month of the year.  We enjoyed a mild October and I got to enjoy the Fall leaves longer this year than ever.  I thought that I would miss all the glories of Autumn, but I didn't.  Even though we didn't go to the pumpkin patch like we normally do or carve Jack O'Lanterns (we might still carve this weekend), we did get a ton of pumpkin pie pumpkins at the farm.  I have been surrounded  by pumpkins and I did get to enjoy a couple of pumpkin spice lattes.  I am now craving hot apple cider and thinking about making some pumpkin muffins with Luke.  Most of the leaves are gone now, but I still see some fiery yellow leaves here and there.  Autumn is fleeting and it always reminds me not to take anything for-granted. 

Now, here we are in almost mid-November.  Typically, I have most of my Christmas shopping done.  This year? Well, not so much and surprisingly, I'm not that worried about it.  Perhaps all that early shopping I usually do just adds to my end-of-year anxiety.  I know everything will work out.  Paul and I have plans to get everything done in one marathon shopping day (we'll see how that goes since we'll be taking the twins with us!) in the next couple of weeks.  I hope to enjoy a cozy no-stress Advent season with the kids.  I also hope to knit a small handful of gifts.  Life is returning to normal.  I feel that my brain power is returning and I'm feeling ready to tackle the challenges of life again.  I still want to nap every day, but I also want to do all the things that I felt I couldn't do while I was pregnant.  I'm exhausted, but happy!


Jennifer said...

Pregnancy was very difficult for me but even still, I felt a profound sense of loss when I had my daughter because of not being able to feel her anymore. I told my doctor, sobbing, that I felt like she died.
This is a horribly depressing comment! I just wanted to say I know how you feel and I think it can be a traumatic separation. My brief visit to a therapist said that those feelings are more pronounced after difficult pregnancies because so much of your energy and focus is on keeping the babies safe.
Anyway! I hope you are able to get your preparation done and enjoy a most beautiful Christmas with your family.

Sarah said...

I know how difficult pregnancy is, especially with multiples. And so many emotions are wrapped up in it, too! All the sensations of feeling them move; all of those appointments; feeling SO big ... It's hard on a mama!

I am so happy to hear that everything is going (fairly) well, that the birth wasn't too complicated, and that the twins are already 4 weeks old. It's so busy, that it does go by quickly. I think the first 6 months of my twins' lives was a total blur, total survival. So, take your time with all that you want to do. You'll get to do some things but may have to let go of others, and it. is. OK. =) Enjoy the upcoming season with your family, no matter how simplified it is. I hope it is one of the most memorable.

Oh, and I also can resonate with not being able to believe that you have two babies. I remember looking at my twins and saying the same thing to my husband (or he'd say it to me). I think that sense of awe is still there, and mine will be 3 next Saturday!

May God continue to bless you and your beautiful family!

P.S. Not sure if I've shared my twins' birth story with you. But if you're interested, here is a link:

Neen said...

The twin to twin transfer is something that concerns me so much. Thank you for sharing your story.