6/20/09

josephine sarah williams and amelia rose williams

You probably thought I died in childbirth, disappearing for more than ten days from the blogosphere. I am definitely alive, but entirely altered! Babies are here, but in the newborn intensive care unit, where I spend almost ten hours a day. I didn't know motherhood was like this; the orbit of my entire universe has shifted to make them the center. These two little beings are my entire life, and I'm not being melodramatic. I didn't know such love was possible, or was in me somewhere waiting to emerge. I feel like a person reborn, and like nothing else should be the same in the world, like maybe the sky should be purple and the grass orange or something.

Josephine and Amelia are beautiful. They are progressing extremely well, they just need time and a lot of attention. They need to learn to eat and digest. I'm hoping they can come home in a week and a half. They both definitely have their own little personalities and Trev and I just marvel at them. We are totally in love with these little girls, and who could not be? They are the sweetest, most adorable creatures in the universe.

They were born June 10th at 10:22 AM and 10:24 AM. I woke up at 7 AM that morning, stood up to start my morning, and my water broke. Exactly like the dream I had about it. We rushed to the hospital, after I explained to my father what documents to e-mail Julianne to give my final exam. Not exactly what you want to be concerned with when you are starting labor, but it was the day before their exam. We got to the hospital, my doctor was prompt, and there was absolutely no question about it that I needed a c-section. It was cut and dry - Amelia wouldn't survive a vaginal birth. Within the next few hours Jo and Millie were in the world. Trevor was my rock, and was excellent at comforting and supporting me. I hadn't really thought of relaxation methods, and all I could think of to relax my mind and body was to imagine the ocean. Remembering my favorite beaches, swimming in the waves, and I had Trevor recite whale species. I didn't respond well to my epidural, let's leave it at that.

Amelia was having a hard time breathing, but she picked up, and after only a few hours both girls were off oxygen. The doctors lifted their little purple bodies above the sheet protecting me from the sight of my uterus laying on top of my chest, and they were quickly whisked away. I was crying and balling to hold them, but I couldn't for hours.

They have been in the NICU since, and while they are both perfectly healthy, they are pre-mature and need to make some important milestones before they can come home with us (regulate body temperature and successfully breastfeed). I live next to their bedside. I can only hold them twice a day, when we practice nursing. But I can caress them and hold onto their hands, change their diapers, talk to them, stroke their sweet heads all I want.

They are almost exactly the same size and weight. They're always trying to touch each other, cuddle up close, or make sure the other is near. The other day I was nursing Amelia, and Josephine woke up, somehow recognized her sister was missing, and panicked. She flailed her arms where Amelia is supposed to be, and cried and cried (Jo is not a crier at all, she only cries when she's really mad or upset). I placed my hand next to her body, trying to make her feel like someone was there because I was not ready to put Amelia back into the bed, but it would not do. She had to have her sister. Touching each other's faces, nuzzling beside each other. It's clear they already share a unique bond as sisters and twins. It's tender to see.

They are definitely not identical, and are a good mixture of Trevor and I. They both came out with gorgeous heads of dark hair. Josephine is a little fairer than Amelia. They have the most beautiful eyes. I love the way they smell, feel, sound. I love them, love them love them. It's amazing. I'm totally exhausted all the time, between pumping every two hours (because, yes, I need to make enough milk for twins), recovering from a c-section, and having the constant stress of having children in the NICU. But I haven't thought of it much - I just take lots of pain medication and go back to the hospital. I am so anxious for them to come home. The last nine days have been a confusing and emotional blurr - full of extreme highs and extreme lows. It's the second the car has left the parking lot of the hospital that I'm hit with panic - my babies are in that building I am driving away from! - to the point I really need someone to drive me to and from because I'm not safe driving myself. And I'd probably never come home.

My poor husband. This is so taxing. He is in his finals week of this semester, and he's crammed with projects and assignments, on top of being a new father. He usually spends the evening with we three girls at the hospital, and then stays up all night working on projects. Between the two of us I think the total hours of sleep a night is probably around 4. Not that I'm complaining, I'm just so concerned for my little family - my darling husband who is so incredibly supportive and wonderful and patient and loving and stretched to his max (which my father says is "good for him, puts hairs on his chest," after which I informed him he already has plenty of), and my two baby daughters in the hospital. I hate that I can't take care of them all by myself. I have learned to do everything I can do that the nurses will let me (work the machines, place the monitors on, etc.) but it drives me mad to leave at night.

I haven't been terribly keen on visitors, mostly for the girls' sakes, because they really need rest and quiet. However, as they are getting stronger everyday, I'm starting to feel like I could use the support. This is the most difficult experience I have ever had to face. My mom has been so supportive and kind to me, and assures me I'm doing marvelously, but honestly I just take it hour to hour, and try not to publicly meltdown when I am pried away from Amelia and Josephine in the evenings.

I'll try to post again soon, but seeing as I have very little time at home, and when I am I need to sleep, it's a little unlikely. But now you know a little bit of what's happening! Keep us in your prayers, the little ones need it!

These are just a few pictures. They don't do them justice.

Amelia

Josephine

Jo (left) and Millie (right), wearing the smallest onsies I have, which still drown them.

Josephine on the left, Amelia on the right.

6 comments:

  1. Definitely take it easy, don't worry about the blog. :) They are so gorgeous. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Argh, it's KILLING me that I can't be there to DO something for you. I will pray. Lots. I can't imagine being separated from my newborn like that, it's got to be an incredible trial. Hopefully it will end soon, and you will happily embark on the adventure of having someone hanging from your body every minute of every day.

    Hugs and prayers and love for those gorgeous girls!

    Em

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congrats! I had no idea you'd delivered. Wow. That is really exciting. I'm so sorry you can't take them home yet. I can't even imagine how difficult that must be. I can tell you're an extremely wonderful mom! It will all work out, this time will pass and you'll get the little sweeties at home. I can't wait to come meet them after everything's settled down! Love you guys!

    ReplyDelete
  4. ps - make sure you get a priesthood blessing for yourself. This is the sort of time when that's a marvelous help.

    ReplyDelete
  5. They are so darling. I'm sure that it is really stressful and hard to have them in the hospital. I hope they can come home soon.

    All the best -

    ReplyDelete
  6. Shelley... they're stunning! You made it! Congrats. I'm definitely thinking of you. Call me when you're not napping or doing something more important- like loving on your sweet girls.

    ReplyDelete