Monday, October 7, 2013

One Week

**I started writing this on Friday, which marked one week for the girls. Obviously it's the longest post ever, but there are pics at the end!

One week ago today our precious little girls were brought into this world. Just thinking about it brings on a torrent of thoughts and emotions and memories that will be hard to put to paper, so please bear with me.

Remember my post last Tuesday about how happy I was? Well, the next day was one of the most stress ridden days of my existence. It started out the same way Tuesday had; I was on a high from recognizing all of the amazing blessings Heavenly Father had given me. By midday I was still feeling pretty great about everything, but by 4:30 when Rob called I was in shambles and I didn't know why. I couldn't establish full sentences. I was just sobbing on the phone even though nothing had changed since the day before. Of course, Rob, being the amazing husband he is, dropped everything and came to the hospital. And my mom, being the amazing mother she is, took care of Gideon so that Rob could come to my rescue.

I thought I was going insane. How could I feel this way if just the day before I was on cloud nine? The girls were doing well, we were surpassing all odds and I should have still been elated. Was there something wrong with the girls? No. Was there something wrong with me? Not medically speaking. Had anything spurred me to feel this way? I certainly wasn't getting emotional about the episode of Storage Wars I had been watching. 

When Rob arrived I just kind of looked at him through my tears and laughed. I felt ridiculous. I've always had trouble showing my weakness to people; especially the ones I love. And this didn't even seem like weakness---it just seemed like the onset of insanity. So he climbed into my tiny bed with me. And he held me. And he laughed with me (and maybe a little bit at me). And he comforted me until the nurse came in.

That is when my anxiety started to make sense. She showed us the heart rate strip and Baby B (Olivia) had had three significant decels and wasn't looking very good. Doctors were called. An IV was placed in the case that we were going to deliver. I was told not to eat and I was giving a "rescue dose" of steroids for the girls. Everything seemed to happen so fast, and yet not fast enough for my liking. I turned up the volume on the heart monitor and couldn't help but keep my eyes glued to the strip. After 9.5 weeks in the hospital I had become pretty adept at reading the outcomes and I also felt like I knew the rhythm of my girls hearts. My doc wanted to just sit and wait it out to see how the girls would react to everything and that was the hardest part. Eventually everything quieted down and the emergency feeling of it all faded, but I was still on edge. Rob stayed the night to provide some comfort for me and we tried to watch television to take our minds off of it. Needless to say, I did not sleep much. Through the night the girls had some decels, but by and large they were insignificant.

The next morning Rob went to work before we were able to meet with the doctor, so my mom made sure she was at the hospital to help me and support me while I spoke about options with the doc.

Dr. Posner came in as chipper as always, and assured us that he believed that the girls could make it until 35 weeks (which was still a week and a half away). He did, however, let me know that if I felt like I was done that we could deliver. I was incredibly torn. Did I take the advice of my specialist or did I risk the chance of jumping the gun and having the complications of prematurity? We had already made it past our original goal of 32 weeks, so that was comforting, but I didn't want to wait around for another emergency situation. I told my doctor that I was going to consult with my husband and that I would pray about it and let him know. It was then that he decided to tell me that he was going out of town for 3 days. Seriously?? How could he leave right when things felt like they were getting intense??

I spent the next couple of hours conversing with the Lord and analyzing my feelings. I wanted to make sure that I was not going to make a decision based on my weakness. I didn't want unwarranted stress or anxiety to make my decision for me. I called Rob at work and we prayed together over the phone. I honestly felt that my breakdown the night before was Heavenly Father's way of directing Rob to be at the hospital with me when things got scary, and I knew that Heavenly Father would direct us to make the decision that would be best for our precious girls---His precious daughters.

As I saw it we had three options:

1. We could schedule the csection for Friday morning before my doctor left town
2. We could schedule the csection for Tuesday morning when my doctor came back to town
3. We could wait it out until October 8th, our original scheduled csection date

If I've learned anything about my personal relationship with God it is this---He is more inclined to answer my prayers if I come to Him with a solution and seek approval rather than just asking His opinion.

When Rob arrived at the hospital after work we prayed about it one more time, then we talked over our options again and decided to go with option 1. When we prayed yet again to seek approval I was filled with a sense of peace. Heavenly Father had entrusted us with His precious girls, and He was going to help and protect them.

We then called our Doctor and let him know that we would be seeing him the next day.

The morning was a whirlwind of preparations. I felt so calm and yet excited at the same time. I knew we had made the right decision and I just couldn't wait to meet my girls! My mom and dad were able to come down to the hospital beforehand and we took a couple minutes as a family to pray and have a spiritual moment before they took me away to administer the anesthetic. I hated that Rob wasn't allowed in the room for the spinal, but he joined me soon enough.

In the operating room everything was very relaxed. Dr. Posner was great at explaining every step of the procedure and Rob was absolutely enthralled by the process. We chitchatted and made jokes as the doctor made the incision, and suddenly he said it was time. He told me I would feel a "little bit" of pressure (which really felt like both he and Dr. Pan were sitting on my stomach).

Before I knew it he was holding Annelise over the sheet so that I could see her. She whimpered but didn't cry out like I had expected. Apparently she had a bit of fluid in her lungs and needed some help working it out. Olivia, on the other hand, came out with a wail. My parents were waiting in the hallway and they said they could hear her above everything else.

Then came the cords. They were twisted together so tightly that it was impossible to distinguish one from the other. At the top, nearest to where the cords were connected to the girls, was a giant knot. It was crazy to hear my doctor, a well known specialist, utter an exclamation of surprise as he held the cords up. He was shocked at their condition and amazed that the girls had done so well. After he finished sewing me up he had one of the techs grab his phone and he took pictures with the cords like a proud schoolboy.

I am so grateful that my little ones made it here safely and I can't wait until they get to meet Gideon and join us at home!

 The Miracle Cords!

My first time meeting Olivia

Holding Olivia's hand

Meeting my sweet Annelise

 My girls holding hands (they did that all by themselves!)

Grandpa holding Annelise and Grandma holding Olivia

Lola and Olivia (sorry about the lighting--they were a little jaundiced)

Papa Tony and Olivia


  1. This was so fun to read! You shared your story & feelings beautifully! Great pictures too! We all still really miss you, but are so grateful for two healthy beautiful girls & healthy mommy as well!

  2. Debbie and Rob, We are so happy for you! Thank you so much for sharing your experience. It is so tender and beautiful. Your girls are darling! We love all of you!

  3. Great post!! You're so right about coming to Heavenly Father with a plan, and asking if that plan is right! I love that we are supposed to use our agency as much as possible, and that he'll guide us after we have done all we can! I'm SO glad that your beautiful girls are healthy!! Any idea when they will be released from the hospital?