It seems basically impossible. Over a year since the twins were born. Everyone says time flies with kids, but you can't fathom just how quickly till you actually have them. At the same time, with things like colic and teething and colds and (for some) surgeries, time moved so slow. My only regret this past year has been the times I thought "I can't wait until ___ is over and they start doing ___". I wish I hadn't wished for time to move past something. Because it's been a year and I'm already finding myself wishing for time to move backward.
I've never written out the story of the day the kids were born, so I thought I'd share the specifics of that day. If for no other reason than to have them documented. But also because, to me, it's a pretty hilarious/terrifying/wonderful story.
I'll start at Thanksgiving day:
My parents were hosting the family Thanksgiving last year. There were going to be about 30 people packed into their house. I remember my stepmom being kind of a mess that whole week, making seating arrangements over and over and lists and finding dried leaves to make place cards with (despite how frantic she can get preparing an event, the woman can put on one heck of a get together). I'd volunteered myself to make baked mac and cheese and this AWESOME Martha Stewart cranberry cornbread. And as soon as I'd volunteered I thought "Well congrats, Maggie. You've officially bitten off more than you can chew." At 34 weeks pregnant with twins, I was basically tired all the time. Standing up for longer than 15 minutes was exhausting. My ankles were finally starting to swell and I was around the size of a 3 to 4 bedroom house. But I really wanted to cook. Call it the new domestic supermom in me, but this was something I wanted, no HAD TO, do. So Thanksgiving morning I was in that kitchen, cooking like an idiot. I took a lot of breaks and my two little birds were throwing a party the whole time, kicking me like mad.
Cooking was done, family had all gathered, my husband and I sat with my cousins and we joked about how it would be hilarious (not hilarious) if I went into labor right there in front of everyone on Thanksgiving day. Later, we all hung out in the backyard, playing bag-o and watching football on the tv my dad had set up near the fire pit (its a lot less redneck than it sounds). I kept having these weird...pains. Kinda like cramps, but mostly like the feeling you get when you eat too much greasy food. I didn't think a thing about it. Clearly the sweet potatoes and the mac and cheese and the pie were all creating chaos in my tummy. I'll take some tums when I get home.
Home we went, and I told Joe "NOW we can officially start celebrating Christmas!", which meant I wanted to watch Home Alone 2: Lost in New York in bed as soon as we got in the house. I fell asleep halfway through, still having these weird digestive pains, but I figured theyd be gone soon and this was a nice end to my Thanksgiving. Perfect even. And then I woke up at around 1:30am, my tummy hurting a little more intensely than before. It would come in waves and then go away. This happened for at least an hour and a half before I actually thought, "holy crap, is this contractions?!" And when I said that to Joe he said "shut up, thats not whats happening...is it?" He was terrified. WE were terrified. We called his sister, a nurse, and I told her what I was feeling. She asked if the pain was in my back now and I said yes and she said she would go ahead and call the hospital and go over there and get it checked out. Here's the problem - we were set up to have the babies at Germantown Baptist Hospital...TWO HOURS from where we lived. I was still in Memphis when I found out about the babies and saw my o.b. there and thats how it happened. Plus we were having a planned c-section, so we thought it would be fine. So I called hte on-call nurse at my o.b.'s office and described to her what was happening. She told me I should make my way to the hospital, this was contractions. And they were about 5 minutes apart. I told her how far we were and she simply said, "Well you better go now!" It's about 5am, still dark outside, and deer are a really big problem on the roads here in rural Mississippi in the fall and in the dark. I tried to keep my calm as the pain got more intense, knowing Joe was on the verge of a total freak out. We got to Batesville (about 40 minutes away) and the discomfort was getting to be constant. And it was making me sick. Joe asked what I wanted to do. Oxford was another 20 miles away but much nicer than the Batesville hosptial, Tri-Lakes, which is affectionately nicknamed "Die-Lakes" because of their bad reputation. "I can't have my babies at Die-Lakes," I kept telling myself. We sped towards Oxford and got about 5 miles down the road before the contractions started making me physically ill. Joe pulled over and I literally pulled a Linda Blair on the road. Poor Joe was gagging at the sight of his pitiful, swollen wife who couldnt even bend over to throw up because my stomach was as hard as a rock. Finally, right then and there I had to make a decision: go to Tri-Lakes and hope for the best, or have these babies in the car because there's no way we'll make it another 20 minutes. I told Joe to go to Tri-Lakes. I was doing my best to not freak out or cry or yell in pain. Joe was so freaked out (rightfully so) and I just wanted to prevent a heart attack. We pulled up to the hospital, the parking lot had, like, 5 cars in it at about 6am, Joe went in for a nurse and she came out with a rickety old wheel chair. After the nurse ran me into the curb about 3 times, we were in. It wasn't long before they were checking me out, measuring contractions, seeing where the babies were and what they were doing. My water broke as soon as I got on the bed. They examined me and Davey was ready to go! It was too late for pain killers and the doctor said if a surgeon didn't get there soon, I'd have to deliver naturally. I broke my pelvis in 7 places a few years back so naturally was off the table until that very moment. And the surgeon was on call. He wasn't, like, at the hospital or anything. That would be silly. So he finally arrives but he doesn't have keys to the operating room. WHAT?! That's a thing? That happens? Apparently at Tri-Lakes it does. So now we're waiting for keys. Somehow the cosmos aligned, everyone showed up on time, and I was able to have the c-section. The wheeled me into the operating room, but not before mistaking Joe for one of the surgeons and almost having him sign off on some medical documents that a doctor should sign. The spinal epidural didn't take so I was going to have to be put out completely. At this point I'd held it together. I never screamed. What good was losing it? But I finally got scared. Still, I trusted God, the surgeon, and any good kharma I had stored up. It was about 7:20am or so. I came to around 9am, and it was all over.
I had two babies now. Two itty bitty wonderful babies. They wheeled me by the window and I saw them for the first time. I remember thinking "Everyone has this reaction I'm sure, but my babies really ARE the most beautiful babies I have ever seen!". I remember I said that a lot. To everyone. "Most babies come out all squished looking and weird, but mine didn't! They're perfect!" While I still think they're perfect, looking back at photos from the hospital, they were a little squished. But still just perfect.
It was a month before we got them home, but ever since then, every day, stressful or not, has been amazing. Charlie was 3 pounds 11 ounces and Davey was 4 pounds 5 ounces. They're now both around 20-23 pounds, Charlie is so chatty and a daredevil, Davey is incredibly tall and sensitive. They're these little people now. They won't stop growing.
I'm just glad I can remember that day so well, still. That day when they were so tiny and brand new.