Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Two Years Ago Today

I remember this day like it was yesterday. I can remember everything I did. Probably because I have been over it a million times in my head thinking about what I could/would/should have done differently. Two years ago today I found out I was having twins. I also found out that I was in labor, and was dialated to 4. I was 23 weeks and 6 days into my pregnancy.

I spent the next four days in the hospital on magnesuim sulfate to stop the contractions. I can clearly remember how I felt. I was so uncomfortable and hot. Not just normal hot, HOT. It was probably 65 degrees in the room, and everyone else was wearing jackets and shivering. I was asking my mom and John to lay rags soaked in ice water on my head and chest. I remember feeling like my pillow was on fire. Every time I closed my eyes I saw redness and flames swirling around. I kept having the strangest dreams.

To make myself relax, in hopes of slowing the contractions, I visualized my cervix closing. I kept an image of two little girl mermaids swimming around in ice cold crystal blue water. I still remember that image.

On the fourth day, the day that would be the girls' birthday, I woke up from a dream having one very long, very hard contraction. I suppose that was the contraction that brought me to 10. Shortly after that I began feeling pressure and hoped that I had to go to the bathroom. The doctor insisted on checking me, and of course I was fully dilated.

I remember the entire birth. I remember the kind, old man who was my anesthesiologist talking in my ear as he gave me the epidural. He had such a soothing voice that sounded just like Morgan Freeman. I remember the tears that rolled down John's face as they delivered the first baby, baby A, Holland. We were so scared. We heard her squeaking cry, and got a tiny peek at her as they rushed her to the table to be put on the ventilator. At the same time, they were delivering baby B, Eden. Eden's bed was down by my feet, so I didn't really see her until later in the NICU.

It was such a strange day. How do you act? What do you say? Do people congratulate you on the birth of your babies, or offer sympathy regarding the circumstances? We wanted so much to be happy that we had two beautiful babies who were ALIVE. But it was very hard to be happy. The best way I can think to describe that day is bittersweet.

Now, as we approach the second anniversary of their birth, it still feels the same way...bittersweet. We will not be celebrating their birth. Their birth was much too painful. Instead, we will be celebrating their lives. THAT is something worth celebrating.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

The Saga Continues

Ok...Sorry,sorry, sorry. Things have been so hectic around here that I haven't had time to post. Let's see, where did we leave off? Oh yeah, just starting to get sick in California. Well, turns out we did end up visiting the ER at Children's Hospital in Oakland. Holland's cold turned into the usual asthma breathing difficulties. They thought they were going to have to keep her overnight, but she eventually got her sats up to 95-97 and they let us go home.

I have to mention that during this illness Holly was the crabbiest I have ever seen her. She was really whiny and clingy and only wanted her mama. Unfortunate that we were away from home and Holland was so crabby with everyone, but fortunate that there were 5 other adults around to help. Also fortunate to have two very sweet cousins to help keep the girls entertained!

John and I were hoping and planning to be able to spend at least one night at a hotel in San Francisco, but the day we were planning to go Holland woke up with the worst bloody nose ever. It was seriously like a scene from a horror flick. Blood everywhere, all over me, all over her. She was crying through it all and pushing me away, so blood kept spraying out her nose. I think I held up pretty well through the breathing thing, but the blood just put me over the edge and I did have a mini breakdown. The same day John had food poisoning from eating sushi and was pretty much immobile for most of the day. Luckily he was well enough that evening that we got to go to dinner and see two bands play in San Fran. It wasn't the amazingly relaxing weekend in the city that we had imagined, but we had fun anyway.

Eventually we all got over it, and for the last three days of our trip Holland was delightful. Eden is always so good and sweet, even when she is sick, that she ends up getting less attention. I was glad there were others around so she wasn't completely neglected. Thank you Eden for always being such a sweetheart!

I was so glad that Holland got better in time for us to meet Liz, Brian, and Kaitlyn. It was really nice to talk to another family going through the micropreemie journey. It's a great source of support to meet people who have some understanding of what you are going through, even if they are dealing with different issues. Plus they introduced us to this really great Burmese restaurant in San Francisco. My aunt and uncle will certainly go back. I guess I'll just have to enjoy the memory:)

So we made it home healthy and happy, but it was shortlived. Friday night Holland started with the runny nose AGAIN. It's gotten worse, although the wheezing isn't as bad as last time. Today I took her to the pediatrician and she has an ear infection, and possibly pink eye. Now she's on pulmicort twice a day, albuterol treatments three times a day, an antibiotic, and eye drops, in addition to her usual Zyrtec and Poly-Vi-Sol. And she's really crabby of course. Sigh.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

California Girls!

At the BeachSwimming
Good news and bad news...

Oakland ZooThe good news is that we love California, and are having a fabulous time with our family. So far we have taken the girls on a trip to the beach, visited the Oakland Zoo, gone shopping and out to dinner in San Francisco at Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39, saw Uncle Keith play opera in the park, took a walk in Muir Woods among the redwoods, and shopped and had lunch in Oakland. Bay Bridge (June 30th, 2006)John and I also got a chance to escape for a dinner and opera date to see Uncle Keith play french horn in The Marriage of Figaro at the San Francisco Opera House. The girls have been amazingly good and flexible on our many adventures, despite the fact that their schedules have been completely out of whack.

Holly SlidingThe bad news is that both girls have come down with a yucky cold. Eden woke up stuffy from her nap on Saturday, and got worse throughout the day sneezing and coughing. Today Holland woke up with a constantly runny nose that also got worse as the day progressed. Edie SwingingHopefully it won't come to it, but I called the insurance company today to find out where we should go if we need a doctor. I can't help feeling anxious about congestion and coughing, even after being home for the past 20 months. It's especially scarey when I am away from home and out of my comfort zone.

Muir WoodsWe had to cancel plans to meet another micropreemie, Kaitlyn. I was so dissappointed, but certainly don't want to take any chances on making anyone else sick! Hopefully everybody will be well soon without any trips to the ER, and maybe we can meet Kaitlyn next week. Send get well vibes our way!