I absolutely cannot believe that I am sitting here, listening to my babies laugh and play in the other room with Tyler. This past year has gone by so fast and I now have healthy, happy babies which is definitely not the way their precious little lives started! They were born at 32 week premature, so I have partnered with Pampers to share with you about Harris and Goldie’s beginning. If you’re new around here, I’ll fill you in.
I started swelling a LOT during the latter part of my pregnancy. I was retaining water and there was nothing that I could do about it; I was eating less salt, I was floating in the swimming pool as often as possible, but nothing that I did would help. I couldn’t even bend my ankles because they were so big and swollen! Tyler had a minor surgery on a Friday afternoon in early July, and on the following Monday, I hobbled to my car to drive him to his post-op appointment. We were quite the pair. At his doctor’s appointment, I asked his nurse to take my blood pressure because I suspected that with all of the swelling and the way that I was feeling, I might be developing preeclampsia which is really dangerous, both for the pregnant mother and the child or children she is carrying. My blood pressure was really high, and I just didn’t feel right.
I called my doctor’s office on the drive back to our house and spoke with the doctor on call because my doctor was out of the office. She told me to drink a full bottle of water and not to go back to work, but instead to go home and take a nap. When I woke up from my nap, I felt just as awful and I didn’t feel right. It’s hard to explain, but as a mother, I think we have intuition when things aren’t as they should be. I called my doctor’s cell phone since I knew he wasn’t at the office and described to him how I was feeling, and told him what my blood pressure had been. He told me to go to the hospital and check into labor and delivery. I was feeling so awful at this point and Tyler was still on pain medication, so neither of us felt well enough to drive. As I was on the phone with my doctor having this quick conversation, our doorbell rang with a surprise visit from Tyler’s dad. He normally doesn’t just pop in, so this was incredible timing and he was able to drive us to the hospital.
When I checked in to labor and delivery, they ran tests such as taking my blood work and testing to see if I had protein in my urine. All signs pointed to, “yes! She has preeclampsia.” I spent the night at the hospital, and the following morning I had an appointment with maternal fetal medicine to check to see how my babies were doing. They appeared to be doing well, so the doctors there, along with my doctor, made the decision to induce me because the only way to get rid of preeclampsia is to deliver the babies or baby that you are carrying. I had an IV drip line of magnesium to prevent me from having seizures which is what can happen when preeclampsia develops, I got my epidural that night and I was in labor all night long and into the next day. I finally progressed enough to go into the operating room at about 6:15 pm on Wednesday, July 13th. The babies were in a position to deliver them naturally, but when you are delivering twins, it can go wrong really quickly after the first baby is delivered because the second baby has so much room and can turn into a position that the doctor is unable to deliver them. This is why we were in the operating room, in case I had to have a C-section as well.
After pushing a few times, Harris was delivered at 6:31 pm. His tiny precious body was miraculous to see. They whisked him over to a table to get him cleaned up and check to see what he needed. I continued to push to deliver Goldie for 15 minutes while she was essentially having a dance party in my uterus because she suddenly had so much room to move around without Harris cramping her style. My doctor didn’t know if he would be able to get her out, but she finally cooperated and was delivered at 6:45 pm. And all of that was the easy part.
After the placentas were delivered and I was stitched up, I was wheeled back into my room and I started shaking uncontrollably. My body was in shock from the medication and from delivering two babies, and it was so painful! My jaw hurt from clenching and it was all around not a pretty picture. After about 45 minutes, another medication helped me to relax and I was exhausted. My mom fed me my first meal in 24 hours and Tyler went back and forth from the NICU to take our family members to see our babies.
For the next 24 hours, I was in survival mode! My face was so swollen that my contacts wouldn’t fit into my eyes. Since I had delivered the babies a full two months early, I hadn’t packed a bag and didn’t have my glasses with me so everything was blurry as I was trying to learn how to pump and essentially just survive minute by minute! The magnesium IV gives the patient flu-like symptoms, so I was feeling really nice 🙂 Fast forward to that evening and I finally felt well enough to go see the babies. They were wrapped up so tightly and were so tiny that I felt like my heart might burst. Were these babies really mine? I still have those same thoughts and feelings to this day. How did I get so lucky?
One of my favorite experiences in my entire life was giving Goldie and Harris their first sponge bath later that evening. Goldie wasn’t too happy about it at first, so they gave her a bit of sugar water to suck on. She sucked and sucked as happy as a little clam, and I smiled because she’s definitely my daughter. I’m sorry and you’re welcome for your sweet tooth, Goldie. Washing their precious, tiny bodies is something that I will always hold close to my heart.
I think what is so amazing to me is that these precious little 32-week old preemie babies could do so many things inherently. I remember the first time I saw Goldie suck on a pacifier. It looked so big next to her tiny face! These two were fighters. They were the littlest fighters.
I had the incredible opportunity to go to LA with Pampers and the March of Dimes last week to attend their Imagine a World event to help drive awareness for babies born prematurely. The idea behind it is to imagine a world where all babies are born healthy. I was astounded to learn that 1 in 10 babies is born prematurely. I had no idea that the numbers were creeping up so quickly and so high; it’s a national health crisis!
To champion the fighting spirit of preemies, Pampers created the first-of-its-kind NICU flat diaper for babies too delicate to wear a regular diaper. For more than 46 years, Pampers has led innovation supporting NICU nurses and their littlest patients. I love that they value the opinion and expertise of NICU nurses because there is no one that knows the needs of these babies better. They are caring for them 24/7, and our NICU nurses are like family to us.
It’s hard to grasp how tiny and delicate preemie babies can be until you see it with your own eyes, and these flat diapers will make an enormous difference in the comfort and care of these tiny babies. The babies that will benefit the most will be those with jaundice, those with abdominal defects and surgeries, those with severe skin breakdown and those with extremely low birth weights. In honor of World Prematurity month, Pampers will provide a box to every NICU hospital across the country and donate to the March of Dimes to continue their shared mission to care for the happy, healthy development of every baby, including the littlest fighters.
I LOVE that they are providing EASY ways for us to help!! Here’s where we come in. As the #1 choice of US hospitals, Pampers will champion the fighting spirit of preemies during World Prematurity Day by donating up to $300,000 to the March of Dimes and allowing us to participate by the following actions:
- Share your #LittlestFighters story about the first time you were inspired by your baby’s fighting spirit on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram from November 6-17 and Pampers will donate $5 to the March of Dimes (up to $90,000). See what I mean when I said it was easy?! I want to read your story so I am looking forward to reading it via that hashtag.
- Subscribe for any new Pampers on Amazon Prime from November 11-17, and Pampers will donate $10 to the March of Dimes (up to $150,000).
- Donate your Pampers Rewards points to March of Dimes and we’ll match them during the month of November, (up to $10,000).
- Submit your story on TODAY.com and they’ll donate $5 to March of Dimes, up to $50,000. Now through November 19 at 11:59 EST. Submissions may be used within TODAY broadcast, TODAY.com and/or on TODAY social.
I walked away from the Imagine a World event I attended last week feeling so hopeful. Yes, this is a national health crisis, but we have these incredible big companies with HUGE hearts that are working tirelessly alongside these littlest fighters to provide resources to both prevent premature birth, and also to provide comfort to those tiny babies that need that strength the most. We can fight together.
This post is sponsored by Pampers, a brand that I love and use every single day!
Lyndsi Bell says
As I sit here reading your story tears run down my face!! I to know what it is like to bring two beautiful, sweet, vulnerable, tinny, fragile 32 weekers into the world! My twins are now 10 month old beauties! Lillian and Stella are growing so fast and making leaps and bounds with there development!! I’ve been following you for a short time and I always love to read your post and see your Instagram story’s!! You’re truly an inspiration to twin moms/family’s!! It’s alway so nice to know that your not alone in your experiences, and to read your birth story is a confirmation to that!! I feel so blessed to have all four of my Children because being a mom is such a great joy!!! I just wanted to say thank you so much for sharing your stories!!! God bless!!!
All the best,
Jenica Parcell says
Lyndsi – your sweet comments made my whole day!! You are so incredible! Thank you so much for sharing your joy of motherhood with me. It’s a miraculous gift and I can tell that you are amazing. Those kids are so lucky to have you!!
Sarah Heinrich says
What a Beautiful story after a long journey ! Thanks for sharing 🙂
Jenica Parcell says
Thank you so much, Sarah! We sure are lucky to have our precious babies.
Have a great day!