Jess’ twin birth story
I'm writing this post birth on day 3, in my hospital bed listening to the sound of fireworks and celebrations. All whilst sipping champagne from a plastic cup in-between pooey nappies and milky feeds. It's 4am on New Years Eve I'm drenched in sweat and my boobs are rocks. But for the first time in months I can see above my knees and I have never felt more complete (because of the twins not because I can see my badger). I want to share my birth story with you, this WILL be my last and maybe my most memorable so far, here goes..
I was originally given a date in early December during a scan with my consultant that I would be induced at 36.4 weeks on the 27th Dec. The babes were already measuring a healthy 5 ish lbs each and I was keen to get them out before they got much bigger. The date was booked, bags were packed and for someone that has already had two natural labours it was the strangest feeling knowing on that date I would be meeting our newest members. Christmas made things roll around even quicker and on Christmas eve I was experiencing some mild contractions and thought we may be having two baby Jesus deliveries, until I fell asleep and all sign of labour disappeared.
We enjoyed our last Christmas day as a family of four and I squeezed in a Christmas dinner, which immediately regretted when there was clearly no room for it. The 27th came around and Mum had arrived to look after the older babies. I told them I was going to bring the new babies home and as we were driving through the snow to the hospital I was overwhelmed with excitement and nerves.
We checked in I was strapped up to the monitors listening to the twins heart beats and being prepped as to what was going to happen. We had been there for around 4 hours when the doctor came to explain that the special care ward was so full of poorly babies it had to close therefore my induction was being postponed until safe, I was being sent home. I felt a little heart broken, not for myself but the reason as to why I could not be induced. It hits home as to how lucky I already am to have two healthy babies, when there are so many less fortunate. I didn't know when I would be next coming in to start my induction and the thought of more sleepless uncomfortable nights and heartburn really broke me but I knew it was all for the best.
The next day I got a call in the morning, explaining the babies they had expected to go home hadn't and again it did not look likely I was going to be induced. I felt like it was never going to happen, only to be called back half the day later and told to come now! I was a low risk as far as twin pregnancies go and they were willing to induce me before the twins got too big, although If the twins did need care they would be transported to another hospital. The car was still packed up from the last attempt so we made our way in.
Again being monitored on the bed, this time I was examined and found I was 2cm dilated. We moved straight to labour ward and my waters were broken around 6pm. I say waters, I mean flood.. it just kept coming. Props to the midwife at the firing end. It wasn't long before contractions started, thick and fast they didn't take long to build up, after a couple of hours I was on the gas and air, feeling like I had a few too many gins ( if only) and sounding like something off Star Wars. In previous labours I never sat still I found pacing the room and moving around helped the pain but this time was different, I was strapped up to all kinds of wires, this really restricting how much moving I could do. I lay on my side on the bed, all the pain was in my lower back which I found much harder to cope with. Soon by the time one contraction was ending the next one was beginning, there was no let up.
I still had not been given the hormone drip at this point as they wanted me to deliver in the theatre incase I needed an emergency c section. At the time theatre was in use, so they held off the drip in the hope I would wait to labour when theatre was free. My body had other ideas. The pain was getting unbearable and I asked for more pain relief, I was told to hold off as it may slow down the second labour. My husband could tell things were about to happen and encouraged me to get off the bed and stand up to let gravity help. The contractions were so strong I could barley stand, I honestly didn't know how much more I could take and at that moment I felt twin one lower down. I managed to tell the midwife twin one was coming and they helped me climb back onto the bed. I knew I laboured fast from previous pregnancies but I don't think the midwives ever expect them to come so fast. I was on all fours ( 'like a bear in the woods' apparently - he has a way with words ) facing the back of the room. My body took over and a couple of pushes and a few minutes later a tiny replica of Teddy was laying on the bed. Completely perfect, Hugo was born at 23:03. I was helped around onto my back as they needed to stabilise twin two to make sure he had not moved. That was the first time I realised how many people were in the room. A doctor and at least 4 midwives had appeared from nowhere, all rushing around and the sound of Hugo crying in the background was music to my ears, now to get the other one out. Twin two was breach, we new this through out the pregnancy and it was one of the things that made me most nervous about the birth. At this point I was lying on my back, exhausted, two midwives were stabilising twin two in my stomach and the doctor was asking me if I could feel a push coming but I couldn't, my contractions had stopped and I didn't feel any pressure. She told me I was just going to have to push. As I began to push I could feel twin two moving down, delivering breach was much more painful, when he was half way delivered they told me he was still inside his sack, the sack was burst by the doctor and after a few more minutes the head was delivered. Otto was born 9 minutes later at 23:12. Two tiny crying babies were passed to Courtney and I was overwhelmed with emotion. the relief to have delivered two healthy babies.
All that was left was to deliver my huge placenta! ...Because giving birth twice wasn't enough. The midwives said it was the biggest placenta they had ever seen, I'm not sure if I should be proud or grossed out. And it wasn't long till I began to feel the after birth pains. They had been painful after having Nell and worse after Teddy but I would of chosen to give birth again over the pain I was feeling. I couldn't hold the twins, the pain made me vomit which intern made it more painful. I couldn't open my eyes through the pain. I got as much pain relief on board as I was allowed and the midwives took the twins for a couple of hours so I could get over the worst. If labour x2 didn't put me off having any more kids, theses certainly had. They eased off after what felt like hours but it wasn't for a few days till they completely stopped. We were kept in for the next 5 days to monitor the twins weight as they were born just under 37weeks, Otto also had a heart murmur which has now gone and both twins had low breathing, after seeing all the paediatricians on the ward they decided we just had two very chilled out babies and nothing was to worry about. As much as I wanted to be home it was for the best thing for us to stay in as I was forced to do nothing for 5 days (every mothers dream).
We are now home and settled in to life with four. Nell and Teddy love their baby brothers and every day I realise how lucky we are. I had an amazing experience birthing twins and I can not rave about the staff at NGH enough, I even had a familiar face during my labour as one of the lovely ladies had previously been to our TMC Walks. They were amazing from start to the end of my 5 day stay.