I’ve had a long hard think over the last couple of days about what I envision for this little blog of mine. I’ve had to go back to basics and really ask myself what it is i want to keep sharing. I mean it’s all good and well for me to keep sharing my life with you, but that can become a little self indulgent, posting things about myself every single week. I have realised how important it is to hear other woman’s stories, to open our eyes and our hearts to other peoples unique experiences.
For as long as i can remember i have been fascinated by birth and all the wonder around it, which is why i begin this series with such excitement! These stories will be posted under mommy memoirs and every week i will be sharing one woman’s unique experience. I hope you enjoy these stories as much as i do!
In my very first blog post i wrote these words, We are all on this exciting and unpredictable journey called motherhood. We are all strong and capable. Not perfect. Not invincible. But we ARE heroes. We, my friends are mothers. And i stand by this. My focus here is that we all be connected and closely knit through the very common thread of motherhood. I urge you to to join me on this journey and leave comments for the women who are brave enough to share their lives with us.
Christine Kenny’s story is where we will begin our journey…… an epic account of the birth of her twin boys, being faced with some serious medical hurdles and overcoming her biggest fears. This is one brave woman, a true hero in every sense of the word.
This is her story…….
“I’ve been pretty much broody since the day I turned 21 and just couldn’t wait to have children or a little baby of my own. So the day we found out we were pregnant, I couldn’t wait to tell the whole world. Being the organisation freak that I am, I immediately started making lists of things to buy and looking at ideas for the baby room.
I had everything planned; from the baby room layout, the labour plan, right through to what type of mommy I’ll be and how I plan on bringing up my little bundle of joy.
On week 8, we had the chance to see our first glimpse of the little one. So when the doctor proudly announced that he hears two heartbeats, I laughed and told him Whatever, can you imagine:. I though he was joking. We had never even thought of having twins. Neither I nor hubby had twins in the family, so we didn’t even consider it a possibility. But when he showed us those two tiny little specs on the sonogram, there was no denying it. We were expecting TWINS:
Don’t get me wrong, we loved the idea of having twins and couldn’t believe how lucky we were, but that day when we left the doctor’s office we were both a little hazy. All of a sudden my endless amount of lists meant nothing at all and I was now ranked as a risky pregnancy.
Through the elation of our families and all those cute matching first outfits, words like; pre-eclempsia, gestational diabetes, premature labour and NICU were always circling in our minds. I loved being pregnant. There is no greater feeling than that of your unborn child moving inside of you (which in my case was tons and tons of little hiccups).
The pregnancy went much better than initially feared and the months flew by. Due to it being a twin pregnancy, my OB insisted on a 36 week gestational period.
The Saturday before I was due for my Caesarean, I woke up to find that the right hand side of my mouth and eye was drooping slightly. Not wanting to take any chances, we rushed to Emergency to find out that I had what you called Bell’s Palsy, a condition that is apparently quite common in pregnant woman and is caused by the swelling of a nerve leading to the face. I had never even heard of this before that day. According to the doctors, the only medication they could provide could only be administered after the twins were born, due to the unproven effects of Cortisone on infants.
Words like; lasting effects and long-term paralysis of facial muscles were being used over and over, yet all I could think about was what effects it would have on my little ones. It took quite a bit of motivation from the doctors to make me wait the extra two days for my planned caesarean.
Here’s a link for those interested in finding out more. Click here
After spending the weekend in the hospital, our long awaited day finally arrived.
At around 08h00 that morning they started preparing me for theatre. Even though I was over the moon excited to meet my little ones, I was starting to freak out. I’ve never been really good with the idea of pain and after the insertion of the catheter and all that goes with it, my body was telling me to run. I was expecting the worst, so when I was finally wheeled into theatre at around 09h00 and my husband was nowhere in sight (he was busy getting dressed into scrubs), the only thing I could do was to look at the doctor with tears in my eyes, silently pleading him not to go through with this. He very professionally and abruptly told me, What’s the problem? You’ve been waiting months for this day. Relax now!. The theatre room was a madhouse (at least that’s what it looked like), there were four general nurses, two head nurses, two surgeons, an anaesthesiologist, two NICU nurses as well as the head paediatrician. Each person had a job, to care for me and my little ones.
Due to the size of my belly, I found it extremely difficult to bend over on the bed for the epidural to be inserted, but thankfully it was not nearly as painful as I had expected. Once I could feel the anaesthetics working its way down my body, the doctors allowed my hubby in to come stand next to me. I was so scared they were going to start without him. From there, time stood still. I could feel them working on me, but even though I was bracing for the pain, I felt nothing except some uncomfortable tugging. At 09h20, Aiden Thomas Kenny was born weighing 2,57kg. Looking up into my husband’s eyes and hearing that first little cry was like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. I couldn’t wait to see his little face. But there was more work to be done first. He was immediately handed off to the Paediatrician as the doctors went back for his little brother. Less than a minute later, Dylan Alexander Kenny was born weighing 2.4kg (much more than the worrying 2.0kg seen on the sonogram earlier that week).
As my husband was called away to go and have a look at the boys, my brain started thinking in overdrive. Suddenly I started worrying about the little things. Did they have all ten fingers and toes? Were they breathing properly? Would they have to go to NICU due to their early birth and low birth weights? Through all these questions, I remember the anaesthesiologist asking whether I was OK a couple of times. I also remember my husband returning and concerningly asking me if something was wrong and whether I was feeling any pain. There was no pain, but things were getting hazy and slightly out of focus. The anaesthesiologist was starting to sound stressed and started looking around for a possible cause to my low blood pressure and irregular breathing. Turns out one of the surgeons had accidentally stepped on my oxygen pipe and was blocking the oxygen from getting to me. My husband was asked to go with the boys and I was sent to recovery, where I spent a full 20 minutes in blissful nothingness, drifting in and out of sleep.
Once I was taken back to the maternity ward, placed on oxygen and given the medication required for my Bell’s Palsy, it was finally time for me to meet my babies. From the proud look on my husband’s face when he wheeled the boys into the room lying side by side in a nursery crib, I could tell that everything was OK and that they were perfectly healthy. They had all their little fingers and toes, they needed less oxygen than what I was receiving and they needed no time in NICU at all.
By the end of our 3 day stay in hospital we were all ready to go home. It took three weeks for the muscles in my face to gain their strength again. Three weeks of hiding my lopsided smile from all the visitors coming to see the boys, spilling every time I drank from a cup and hiding from all cameras, but each and every embarrassing and scary moment was worth it. I had two perfect little boys who didn’t care what their mommy looked like in the mirror, as long as she was there to hold them.”