Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Monday, April 13, 2009

I finally woke Brian up at about 5 a.m. I'd been having weird pressure and pains down low and while at first I tried to tell myself it was nothing-maybe a little indigestion-I finally had to admit to myself that it was more than that.
We called Labor and Delivery. At first she said she thought I should just wait until 8:00 when my doctor's office opened and go into see him. She called back about 10 minutes later to say that I should come in-I was already getting ready to leave.
I was terrified all the way to the ER. We hadn't been able to take any classes about childbirth. I thought maybe since I didn't have an infection, they'd be able to stop labor. I thought maybe we could still save baby B. I just kept hoping.
We got to the hospital and I remember being angry because it took them forever to find someone to take me up to labor & delivery. They said it had to be medical staff in case I had to deliver in the elevator. Well, I suppose that's not much worse than delivering in a wheelchair in the middle of the ER waiting room.
Anyway, they strapped me in and I was, indeed, having contractions. The monitor was picking them up strongly and they were getting more painful by the minute. The OB that was on call came in and did an exam-my cervix was still nice and shut, so this was good news.
I just laid there, praying that somehow they could stop this. The next doctor came in and said the number, "24,000." This, I knew, was bad. It was my white blood cell count. It shouldn't be over 20,000 when you're pregnant.
Finally my doctor came in. He checked my cervix, which hurt really, really badly, and announced that I was 2 or 3 cm dilated. He informed me that they couldn't stop labor because I was getting the infection. He told me they couldn't leave Baby B in, because he would get the infection, too. I was going into labor because my body wanted to get rid of the "bad" to save me. My body wanted to get rid of my babies. I asked if I could have a c-section. Not that I wanted a huge surgery and a lot of recovery, but I couldn't bear the thought of delivering these babies naturally to have them not live. He told me I could have a c-section-but I should know that because the babies were so small, they'd have to make the incision the opposite way, and I'd never be able to have a vaginal birth. Not only that, but the c-section would probably have to be early the next time. I wanted to be selfish. I wanted to have the c-section anyway. But the look in Brian's eyes told me I had to do this.
I have never felt so awful in my life. I wanted to just lay there, to refuse to give in to the labor, to keep those babies inside of me. But the nurse kept telling me I had to do this. The contractions made me almost throw up, almost pass out. I was in so much pain. The man came to give me the epidural around noon. When I sat up, I thought I'd die. He came too late for the epi, and he had to push 3 vials before it even worked a little. I could move my legs the whole time-it didn't work all the way.
Soon they came and I was over 7 cm dilated and so it was time to move me into a different delivery room-the one right across from the NICU so the babies could get right there.
Brian had to wear a pimped out little cloth jumpsuit, which made him look awfully cute. This should have been the most exciting day of our lives. Instead, it was filled with dread. I pushed out our little girl, Sophie Mae, at 12:54 pm. She weighed one pound, 7 ounces. She was immediately whisked away. A few minutes later, during a huge contraction, someone came to tell me that Sophie was failing, did we want a baptism. I don't even remember what we said-I couldn't believe she was dying so quickly. At 1:17, out come came our little boy, Aiden James . I couldn't believe how big he was for being so, so small. They let us see him before they took him away. Someone commented on how squirmy he was, how that was a good sign.
A few nurses gave us the obligatory, "Congratulations." It felt SO horrible to think that our babies had come so soon. Too soon.
After a while, someone from the NICU came to tell us that Sophie had rebounded, and while she was critical, she was still alive. I laid there, hoping I could go see them. They wouldn't let us go until about 5:00 pm. My mom and I went. I put my hand into little Sophie's incubator. I touched her hand and she immediately curled her little hand around my finger. I will never, ever forget that. We stopped to say hi to Aiden, but they were working on one of his tubes. Later, Brian got back and we went down to say hi to the babies. It seemed like the second we got there, everyone started gathering around Sophie. I freaked out and had Brian push me out. The doctor followed us and told us we needed to come back if we wanted to hold Sophie before she died. I didn't want to. We went back. They put up dividers and got me a rocking chair. She was hooked up to so many machines. We held her as they took pictures. It felt so surreal. I truly hope that no one I know ever has to feel that kind of pain. Just the look in Brian's eyes was enough for me-I can't imagine what my own looked like. After that, we were told to go back to our room, to get some sleep. Yeah, right.