My main purpose of starting my Blog was two fold. One, too help educate my family and friends about Autism and our story with Wyatt. Two, is to help me talk about our story and workshop my grief, feelings, both positive and negative, and to give me an outlet. I have had a few difficult blogs and this will be another one. However, I feel it is so important to tell my story and to help me move past my grief.
I was so busy with raising two infants, one with medical issues, that I didn’t realize how deeply effected I was at the birth of my twins. I had just gotten a call that my sister had delivered my niece Delilah and I ran to Hoag Hospital to finally meet my sweet niece. The room was filled with family and I walked over to Lindsay and Delilah and the second I saw her, I could feel panic and felt myself become flush and started having a hard time breathing. I felt weak and felt like I was going to faint and immediately started sobbing. Everybody was happy and celebrating and I could barely keep it together. I realized then that I had experienced a traumatic event and never healed properly.
After years of trying to get pregnant, Cullen and I started IVF. As we were going thru the process, we also found out that my stepfather, Bob was diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is aggressive and brutal and I wouldn’t recommend it on my worst enemy. Within 6 months, Bob had been admitted to Hoag 18 different times and had lost over 100 lbs. This was incredibly difficult managing my stress and staying healthy for the babies. Bob told me that he was holding on so he could meet the boys because he was sick of being surrounded by so many women. 🙂 After 5 months it was clear he was suffering tremendously and couldn’t fight anymore. Bob passed away in March and my mourning period was placed on hold, in order to keep my babies healthy.
On May 13th around 4:00 am, my water broke. Granted I thought I peed myself so I went back to sleep only to be awoken again with another gush of fluid. I called the doctor and when I said I was almost at 33 weeks with twins, she told me to rush to Hoag Labor and Delivery and to not take my time. We were there within 15 minutes and I assumed they were going to send me home since I was so early in my pregnancy and naive since it was my first pregnancy. Since I was only 33 weeks, we didn’t have a bag packed or anything.
The doctor came in and said they were going to take some blood and check me out but that I would deliver soon since my water broke. She sent my husband home and told him to pack a bag and get whatever we needed to welcome our two babies home. They took my blood and ran some tests and I anxiously waited for the results. Within a few minutes, the door to my room opened and I saw a doctor come rushing in with nurses in tow, pushing a gurney. The doctor explained that my blood pressure was over 200 and they needed to rush me to the OR for an emergency C-Section as they were afraid I was going to have a stroke. Within 5 minutes, I was lying on the gurney looking at the 18 different doctors and specialist all standing by to help our babies. I started to panic and told the anesthesiologist that I was going to need a Xanax and he said I would be fine and he would walk me thru it. The door to the operating room opened and I saw my husbands panicked face. He rushed to my side while I tried to explain what was happening.
The doctor opened my stomach and was working on getting Baby A or Wyatt out and I could feel my pressure drop dramatically and became nauseous. They pulled Wyatt out and all I wanted to hear was crying. After a what felt like hours, he started crying. The doctor started working on Baby B or Tucker and I noticed my husband was looking over at Wyatt and his face turned white. I heard him ask if he was going to be ok? He wasn’t getting any response and later told me that Wyatt had stopped breathing and they had to resuscitate him numerous times. All I saw of Wyatt was him being held in the hands of someone running out of the OR. Tucker was next and they had to assist him with breathing as well and they also took him out of the OR and into the NICU immediately. My husband looked at me in a panic and I told him that I would be fine and to go with the babies. All of the sudden the room went from 18 to 4 and it was horrendous not knowing what was happening with my babies and not being able to see their faces.
My mom came in the recovery room and all I remember is that I couldn’t stop shaking and I desperately needed to know how Wyatt and Tucker were doing. A women came in with two pictures and said, “here are your babies.” Both had Oxygen masks on and tubes everywhere. It was not the delivery I had expected. Why couldn’t I see and hold my babies? Cullen came in with his parents and they he still looked pale and scared to death but all of them put on a happy smile and tried to reassure me.
My blood pressure was not stable and I wasn’t able to see my babies for over 48 hours. It was torture. The doctors had me on Dilated (painkiller similar to Heroin) and I think that was the only way I made it thru the 48 hours. 3 days after the delivery, I was able to visit them for the first time but still couldn’t hold them. They were both 3 lbs and had tubes everywhere. 5 days later, on my birthday, I was able to hold Wyatt and Tucker for the first time. Tucker was improving but Wyatt was still unstable. I made the nurses bring both boys to me and I placed them next to each other on my chest and sat still for hours. I swear to anyone that asks that this was the point that Wyatt started to improve; after he was reunited with me and his brother. I did this daily and after 4 weeks Tucker was allowed to come home. Wyatt had sleep apnea and a soft pallet and was transferred to CHOC. After 8 weeks he was discharged from the hospital with a heart and oxygen monitor and a feeding tube.
After a year of procedure and or surgeries with Wyatt, he was a healthy, happy little boy and we were overjoyed with his progress. Tucker kept growing and both boys are know in the 98th percentile after being in the 0 percentile for height and weight for months.
I am sitting here typing at my desk and I feel like after writing this blog, a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I feel grateful that I have two beautiful boys as so many families aren’t as lucky. My birth and delivery story wasn’t the story I had envisioned, but I wouldn’t change the story at all, as I have grown tremendously as a person. I had no idea how strong I was until this experience and I am proud of my family for taking it one step at a time. Most of all, I am proud of Wyatt for overcoming so many obstacles and reminding me to take one challenge at a time and hard work pays off.