{Quad Squad} Final Homecoming + First Family Photo!

This morning I woke up in a panic thinking I needed to call the NICU because I hadn't checked on the babies all night. I was pretty happy to remember that all my babies were now home!! We brought our fourth little kiddo home yesterday, exactly two months to the day since they were born. With all four in close quarters and new surroundings, it was about 3am before the husband and I got to sleep. (Thankfully my mom is with us right now and has been such a huge help, especially when we get really worn down!) But no matter how wiped out I am, I'm always super excited to get up—whether it's 2am or 8am—and go see my babies' sweet faces. They are new all over again every day!

Myself with my mom and Trystan.
It was perfect that one of our favorite NICU nurses, Jane, was there the day our final baby was discharged. She had been there the day they were all admitted and had been one of their primary care nurses during their entire stay. She, along with several other wonderful NICU caregivers, got to know our quads from head to toe and helped them along in their first two months of life like they were their own. We are so grateful for such wonderful nurses—both from my stay downstairs in Labor & Delivery and from the NICU—that have made such a positive impact in our lives. We learned a lot from Jane about how to care for our preemie babies, so when we got home we knew just what to do!

Jane, one of our wonderful NICU nurses, with me and Trystan.

All loaded up and ready to go!
It was a very emotional day for me at the NICU. My husband and I had seen our babies grow from two and three pound premature infants to four and five pound healthy babies. We'd experienced a lot of lows and a lot of highs during those two months and we became more knowledgeable about preemie babies and health conditions than I'd ever thought possible. Every single day we made the trek from our house to the hospital, even as I recovered from my delivery, to see our fantastic four and hold their little hands and talk to them through the walls of their isolettes. Needless to say, I shed a few tears before I ever left our pod at the NICU remembering all those endless days and nights. I was saddened to leave some of the special people we'd come to know behind but elated to be moving past this phase and into "Phase 3"—bringing our quadruplets home!

Trystan Lee on her way home two months after birth.
Before we could leave the hospital, though, my mom and I wanted to stop by the Labor & Delivery floor where I had spent my own two months growing the babies and trying my hardest to endure the final weeks of the pregnancy. Just as in the NICU, I had some truly amazing nurses that made such a huge difference in my 57 day stay and helped me through the trying days and celebrated with me on the good ones. I am so grateful God put us in the right place at the right hospital with the right nurses and doctors!

Me with two of my favorite Labor & Delivery nurses that cared for me while I was in the hospital for two months.
Then mom and I loaded Trystan into the car and made one last drive from the hospital to our home. It was finally done, we were all together in one place! The husband was a trooper and had stayed home with the other three while we got Trystan and he was super excited to see his little girl arrive. Before we did anything else, we sat down and took our very first family photo with our quad squad. I couldn't believe it, here we are! We both have worked so hard to accomplish this, everyone home happy and healthy. I could not be any happier!

And so I want to thank you, dear readers, for your endless support, good will, prayers and uplifting comments as I shared my 30-week pregnancy, delivery and homecoming of our sweet quadruplets. I hope you'll continue the journey with us as we adapt to life with quads—plus I also plan to incorporate former blog topics like cooking, photography, travel and more into future posts as we go. After all, this is the story of our lives!


{Quad Squad} Homecoming: 3 out of 4!

So the past week and a half has been action-packed, to say the least. While I was busy sharing a three-part post with you about my delivery and recovery when I had the quads just seven weeks ago (read it here, here and here), the husband and I were busy bringing some kiddos home from the hospital!!

When you have a baby early and they spend time in the NICU, the general rule is to expect them to be released by the time their original due date arrives. In our case, our due date—had we gone to a full 40 weeks like most "regular" single pregnancies—was August 11. But by now we all know that having quadruplets means things run on an abbreviated time scale, and any quad pregnancy that can get past 30 weeks is a real miracle. I have come to know many amazing fellow quad moms through Facebook and blogging, and I've read and heard about so many quad pregnancies. It's incredible how we each have our own unique experience while still sharing many similarities along the way. It should be no secret that multiple pregnancies are hard and higher order multiples are extremely challenging. Quad babies have been delivered as early as 23 and 24 weeks and as late as 34 and 35 weeks! It all depends on potential complications that arise during pregnancy (like a reverse blood flow in a babies' umbilical cord or preeclampsia for the mom, like in my case) and how one's body responds to the pressures and stress of holding four babies. In the past three days, three of my new quad mom friends have delivered their own quadruplets—ranging from 28w4d to 30w5d! I am so excited for all of them as we have become closely connected over the past few months.

But back to the exciting news: babies being discharged! Needless to say, the husband and I were well aware that our quads could be expected to stay in the NICU for at least two months. So we were completely floored when we walked into our pod there just over a week ago and found little miss Kailey sleeping in her car seat! She'd passed the car seat challenge, explained our favorite day nurse, and was ready to go home the very next day. We were elated! Finally, a baby at home! The next morning, we were anxiously getting things ready to go pick her up when the NICU called and told us that Harrison was also ready to go home! Wow! He would be discharged the next day (Sunday) and we had the option of either taking Kailey home and coming back for him on Sunday, or staying overnight at the NICU and having them both in our room with us then take them home together the following morning. We quickly chose to bring Kailey home first so we could get one night with one baby under our belts before catapulting ourselves into two. Then three. Then four. No biggie!

Needless to say, I was a nervous "new momma" as we loaded up our little girl and packed up her closet at the NICU. Was she in her car seat correctly? Is she still breathing? Is she comfortable? I watched her like a hawk the whole drive home as I sat in the backseat with her. Preemies barely fit in car seats as it is, so we had to use some rolled up receiving blankets to help anchor her noggin and keep her from looking like a bobble-head doll! She got lots of loving that night at home and was and still is a great baby. She sleeps very well, gobbles down her bottles and looks great in pink. (I am learning to accept the color, I have three girls now after all! I even wore a pink shirt, on purpose, the day we picked up Kailey in her honor!)

Kailey is also a mini-me. My mom says not only does she look just like I did as a baby, but she acts much the same, too! She's already earned the "little diva" title around our house. Here's me as a seven-week old baby on the left and Kailey at seven weeks on the right:

The next morning, my mom and I quickly got ready and headed up to the NICU for round two. Time to bring home my little big man! He was all dressed and ready to go in his football onesie and hat and slept through most of the excitement, only cracking open his eyes for a second when I got him strapped in to the car seat. 

It was extremely emotional as I exited our pod and walked down the hallway to the NICU exit. Just weeks ago, on June 10, we nearly lost our little guy when he hit a bad stretch. Within 24 hours, he'd been taken off the ventilator and put on the oscillator, received hand-pumped oxygen, had a second chest tube placed (he'd already had one) for air outside his lungs, formed blebs (air pockets) inside his lungs, had bleeding his lungs, pulmonary hypertension, a heart murmur, a grade II brain bleed, high blood pressure and received nitric oxide via the vent, two blood transfusions, morphine, versed, antibiotics and was temporarily paralyzed at one point as he was fighting the ventilator. (Read about it here, herehere and here.) 

After my initial update on Facebook about his condition, a prayer chain thousands strong was lit like a wild fire. And just 12 days later, Harrison was moved from his isolette and into a crib with nothing more than his standard heart rate, oxygen and respiratory monitors. Not only are my husband and I constantly amazed that our quads were able to safely grow in my belly and then successfully delivered at 30 weeks gestation, but we are moved to tears every time we recall our little man's transformation and miraculous recovery. This entire pregnancy and quadruplet experience has certainly strengthened our faith exponentially and we feel so blessed to have been entrusted with raising quads. 

Harrison telling his sister, Trystan, he'll see her at home!
Having two little babies at home still worked pretty well, there was one baby for each of us and my husband's mom had come to help out—meaning adults still outnumbered the little guys. A few days later, however, our little peanut, Logan Lee, was ready to make her way home as well! The husband and his mom went to retrieve our spunky gal, who has grown so much since her birth as the smallest in the group at just 2 pounds and 6 ounces.

Three babies threw us for a loop for the first few days. Thankfully, we were able to keep up a basic schedule of feeding every three hours, diaper changes and baths every other night. All that time we spent at the NICU learning how to care for our preemies—there are quite a few things that are different than caring for a full-term baby—and all the knowledge that the fantastic nurses imparted to us has been a lifesaver. It all has helped keep us sane and not worry that we weren't doing things right. After a couple days, the laundry was getting done (thanks mom-in-law!), bottles were washed and everyone was happily eating, pooping, sleeping and growing. Yes, that includes us weary adults, too!

Then we got a huge boost in confidence when we made our first public outing with all three babies to their follow-up eye appointment downtown. We successfully loaded 'em up in car seats, made the drive while they all slept, unloaded them into the strollers in record time and wheeled our way into the doctor's office early enough to change and feed them before our appointment! I was soooo proud of myself, I'd even packed a helluva diaper bag that had everything we needed. Then we took all three out again to their two-month pediatrician appointment yesterday and had another smooth experience, making me think perhaps this quad thing ain't so bad. That is until they received their second round of vaccination shots and we ended up with two screaming, crying girls for the better part of the afternoon when we got home—their poor little legs were so sore. Harrison, however, said he'd had worse and slept soundly in the pack and play while we did our best to console Kailey and Logan. 

So what's going on at our house these days? Well, I recently changed out of spit up-stained pajama pants into clean pajama pants (and, uh, PJs count as dressing up in our house right now!). We live in a constant state of repetition: pee, poop, change diapers, feed, sleep, make bottles, wash bottles, rinse and repeat. We go through more outfit changes then a runway model, we've both momentarily fallen asleep while feeding a bottle to a baby that's falling asleep, we're constantly short on C batteries to power our arsenal of baby swings, we've created storage spaces out of spaces that didn't even exist in our house before and we've learned how to operate on three hours of sleep. I caught the husband humming "Hush Little Baby" while he was doing paper work recently, and he also picked up Harrison a couple days ago and said "Good girl, Harrison!" He may not always be able to keep these little look-alike quads straight as to who's who—let's be honest, they all strongly resemble each other—but he sure does love his babies! But the biggest thing I've learned in the past week? I never knew teeny little people could fart so much and with so little shame. An invaluable piece of knowledge, to be sure. :)

Logan, Harrison and Kailey.
Well, it's almost time to go feed babies again and I need to get things cleaned up in preparation of tomorrow. I'm so excited to finally bring home the last of the crew, Trystan Lee! She is at the hospital just waiting on mommy to come get her!

Coming up on the blog this week: the fourth and final homecoming + a tasty 20-minute recipe + a day in the life of quadruplet babies + reflections on our time in the NICU + answers to frequently asked questions! Is there something you've been dying to know about our life with quads? Leave your query in the comments section and I'll answer it in my FAQ post!


Delivery Recovery & My First NICU Visit!

I'm wrapping up a recount of my delivery with the quadruplets and the day following. If you missed all the juicy details and are just dying to read about them, here's Part 1 and Part 2. And now, my dear readers, I must tell you about one of the most painful experiences of my life. I also hope I'm not scaring the life out of any fellow quad mammas who are reading this and are approaching their delivery days! But I felt inclined to share what the delivery of four babies was like and it'd be a crying shame to sugar coat anything now, so here goes...

I left off by saying I'd been taken to recovery where my husband, mom and step-dad were all at my bedside. I was shaking quite a bit from downright fatigue, blood loss and the shock on my system from the delivery. Taking out four placentas and four babies after your body has gone through one helluva fight to maintain them is a wee bit of a change! The shaking was annoying, but so was the pain that came with it—I was trying to keep from shaking and it caused my stomach muscles to tense (or attempt to anyway) and it hurt like the dickens. Plus, I'd puked after eating too many ice chips and that hurt like, well, whatever hurts worse than the dickens. Shortly after, they asked my husband and parents to wait in my hospital room for me while they wrapped up my recovery stay and got me ready to wheel back in. Oh goody, I thought, I can get back to the privacy of my room.

They got my IV bags all situated and checked my incision, which was sealed with some nifty stuff called Dermabond. There were no stitches or sutures, they'd basically glued me shut! My OB later informed me that within about six hours after the incision is closed it becomes waterproof and it took less than two weeks to completely heal. The scar turned out to be minimal and the glue was easily removed using alcohol pads and peeling it off. I was a bit of a chicken for the first couple days and didn't want to look at my incision, relying on the nurses to check it. It literally felt like it stretched from hip to hip, which is because my stomach was so big when I delivered. But as my stomach slowly shrinks, so does the scar and it's like a third of the size it was before. I'm quite pleased with the results!

But anyway, before the nurse could take me to my room she had to be sure there were no major blood clots remaining in my uterus. To do this, she had to press down all over my stomach with her hands, exerting enough force to dislodge anything left behind. This hurt so bad I yelled. I have never felt such pain in my life. Fresh out of surgery having delivered four babies with rearranged organs inside and muscles that had torn apart from becoming so distended—ouch! I thought I might pass out for a second but no such luck, and off we went to my room.

At this point my nurse gave me a limited dose of Morphine (I think), which thankfully relieved the pain and knocked me out for awhile. I groggily slept off and on the rest of the day with my husband, my mom and my step-dad going back and forth between my room and the NICU. I had a catheter from the surgery so there was no need for me to get out of bed, thank goodness, since I could barely move without intense pain anyway. Once the drugs started wearing off, I had to rely on pain pills to get the job done.

The next morning, the nurse removed my catheter expecting me to be able to make it to the bathroom within the next few hours. My day nurse had arrived and I told her my stomach was starting to hurt because I knew my bladder was full (I drank like a horse from a trough while I was pregnant with the quads, averaging four gallons of water a day!). In fact, I had a huge bulge on one side of my stomach as proof! But alas, I couldn't even make it off the side of my bed. I managed to sit up in a stream of tears and cries, but the pain was so overwhelming I couldn't push myself any further. This went on the rest of the morning and my doctor prescribed some injections for the pain to help me get past the "hump." At last I was able to get up and make it to the bathroom but couldn't go anyway and had to get the catheter back for another day.

During all of this, I was having a very difficult time connecting the dots. Reality hadn't set in that I'd had four babies because I hadn't really seen them. All I wanted to do was get to the NICU! But I wasn't even able to get into a wheel chair, so how was I going to manage getting there? The charge nurse that day was absolutely wonderful and had often stopped by my room to chat and see how I was doing during my pregnancy. She arranged for me to get into a smaller bed so they could wheel me upstairs and into the NICU. They actually squeezed my bed into the pod where our babies were so I could see each of them in person! (All this time, I'd be looking at pictures and video my husband was bringing back from his visits there.) The entire process was painful and time consuming, but everyone was so incredibly patient and accommodating and it meant the absolute world to me.

Remember our tiniest baby, Baby D, the last to be delivered? She was 2 lbs 6 oz at birth. Well, she surprised everyone by coming off her oxygen by the day after delivery and she wasn't attached to anything except her standard monitors for heart rate, blood pressure and oxygen levels. I got to hold her that very afternoon, on her second day of life. It was one of the most amazing experiences I'll ever have and it was incredibly surreal to cradle such a small living body in my arms. She was crying as the nurses gently maneuvered her out of her isolette and then she immediately settled down as they set her on my chest. A flood of emotions swelled over me. This is what all the struggling had been for, this is why I held out as best I could to carry four babies as long as my body would let me. This was the moment I'd been waiting for. It was all completely worth it.

Everything else faded away as I was wheeled to the bedside of each of my four new babies. They were all perfect in every way, beautiful newborns with strong little hands that gripped my fingers and squeezed my heart. By this time our little boy, Harrison, was already on a ventilator and went through a life-threatening struggle the following week—but my husband and I still treasured the fact that all the quadruplets had arrived safely and we were now proud new parents times four!

Our boy on the ventilator with a chest tube for air pockets outside his lungs.
Over the next few days, family came to visit and kept me company in my room when I was awake and spent their spare time visiting the babies in the NICU. I was the most exhausted I'd ever been in my life and was beginning the lovely stage of recovery, expelling tons of excess fluid I'd accumulated during the pregnancy (hello night sweats!), keeping up with my pain medicine and attempting to walk around a little more each day, visited my quads, began breast pumping milk every three hours and slept as I was able. After four nights, it was time to pack up my things and head home for the first time in two months. I thought I'd be ready to leave and would be dying to get in our car and get out of there, but it turned out to be quite the opposite. I was actually hesitant to go because I'd become accustomed to my life in my hospital room and having such wonderful nurses to take care of me, plus I was close to my babies! It scared me a little to think about going home, re-immersing myself into the real world and handling my recovery without nurses by my side. What if something went wrong?

But my incredibly supportive husband was right there alongside me and my mom, who'd been with us for a month now, helped me transition home and settle in. The nurse that admitted me when I'd first arrived to the hospital was, appropriately, the one to discharge me when I left. She, along with many other nurses at the hospital, had made such a difference in my stay. They were absolutely wonderful in their care and their support for me while I was there. They would often come in to chat when things slowed down for a few minutes, keeping me company on the long days that seemed to drag on forever and then keeping people away and keeping me comfortable on the bad days that were so hard to endure. I thank God every day for putting me in the right hospital with the right caretakers and the right doctor! I truly believe He guided each and every one of them to lead us to such a healthy delivery.

Baby girl A, Trystan on day two.

Baby girl B, Kailey. She was a tummy baby at first and didn't want to sleep any other way!
The first day home was an emotional one, nonetheless. I'd already cried on my nurse's shoulder when I left and coming home was like a tidal wave. I'd missed it all so much but it was almost overwhelming to be back again. Such an intense ordeal had left me drained, both physically and emotionally. Over the course of the next few days, I began to adapt better and better and also began splitting my time between the house and the NICU to see the quads. I had divided up our journey into three phases and couldn't believe I'd survived Phase 1 (the pregnancy) and was now in Phase 2 (the NICU stay) and would eventually reach Phase 3 (the babies' homecoming). After delivery, my husband had surprised me with a diamond necklace outfitted with three diamonds in a row. I think of them as a diamond for each phase and wore them nearly every day I went to the NICU.

The husband giving one of the babies a feeding through their feeding tube.
Now that I'm just reaching the point that I can look back on this experience in its entirety, it's become even more amazing to me all that I'd gone through and all that my husband and I had come to know during those long months. God saw us fit to bless with the challenge of quadruplets and I'm so humbled each and every day that He chose us. I wouldn't change a single thing and I can only smile (okay, and sometimes cry!) when I look around and see all four of our babies and realize how my life is forever changed.


Delivery Day, Part 2

...continued from Part 1!

While the husband changed into his scrubs, I was wheeled in to a flurry of activity in the operating room. I spied the babies' warmers, all labeled A, B, C and D, and a stream of people coming in and setting things up and preparing for their imminent arrival!

The nurses helped me sit up—a struggle in itself when you've got a 20-pound stomach sticking out!—and sort of wiggle my way over from my hospital bed onto the operating table. It was the most narrow thing in the world and I remember wondering why in the hell they made such a small table for pregnant women! I was told to swing my legs off the side and sit, hunched over, as they prepared to give me my spinal block. While they got that ready, one nurse was on my right side putting a heart rate monitor on my finger and another was on my left side hooking up things to my IV. Then I felt hands on my lower spine and them telling me to relax and keep my back hunched and my shoulders down. A nurse stood in front of me and gently put pressure on my shoulders to help keep me in position—it was very hard to stay that way with my big huge stomach that extended from right under my chest all the way down to my hips and pretty much stuck out so far it sat on my thighs. There wasn't a millimeter to spare in my little body!

I freaked out a tiny bit when they inserted the first needle into my back. It was the numbing medication and didn't really hurt so much as it felt wierd. That's a very odd place to receive injections! I tried my best to remain calm as they had told me NOT to move. I took a couple slow deep breaths to calm myself then they began the spinal block meds, which I could mostly just feel the pressure from, but it was still freaky to feel things being injected in between my spine. The very second they were done they frantically told me to lay back as quickly as possible before my lower half went numb and I couldn't move my body. How in the world I swung my legs up and laid back on the table without rolling off onto the floor I have no idea.

Next I feel a very warm sensation flood down from my chest all the way to my feet. I wondered how quickly they'd go completely numb and kept wiggling my toes so I could tell. At this time, modesty went all the way out the window. The nurses hoisted my hospital gown up and began positioning my body on the table to properly prepare for surgery. I could vaguely feel them move my legs into a frog-legged position and shave the skin smooth where the incision would be. Not only was there nothing I could do about it but I was in the middle of a room full of people bustling around me! Then I realized these folks do this every day and I was about to be opened up in a room full of people, so was I really gonna worry about this? Obviously not, because by this point my thoughts had then drifted to the fact that I suddenly felt extremely nauseas and might throw up. The female anesthesiologist had taken up residence by my head at this point and when I told her I felt like puking, she quickly administered some sort of meds through my IV and in less than five minutes the feeling was gone.

We were getting very close to beginning, but I was still worried that I was going to feel something when they started. How do you really know you're numb enough? She told me they would do a test and we would know. So at this point I tell her it would be very helpful for her to walk me through the delivery as things happened so I'd know what to expect, like when they would start pushing or pulling or shoving. (This was extremely helpful and kept me pretty calm through the actual delivery.) By the time our mini conversation was done, she asked if I'd felt anything. I replied I hadn't and she said the test worked, they were ready to begin! Apparently someone pinched me really hard and I didn't even flinch. Sweet.

The husband had made his way into the room by this time and was given a stool to sit on next to my head and shoulders. I had each arm stretched out on an "arm rest" since the table was shaped liked a capital T. They were tangled up in a mess of blood pressure cuffs, IV tubes, heart rate monitors and so on. I started to get really nervous again so my husband put his hand on my shoulder and I asked him to talk to me for a minute so I would stay calm and focus on him rather then on waiting those final minutes that seemed to tick on for hours. My doctor was also in the room (along with four other OB's!) and popped his head over the blue curtain they'd pulled up to be sure I was doing okay and to tell me he'd never seen so many pediatric doctors and nurses in a delivery before! Seeing him helped me breathe a sigh of relief. After all, the husband and I had entrusted him with my care for the past several months and he'd done such a fantastic job. I trusted him completely to handle my delivery! The other doctors from the practice had also scrubbed in, there was one for each baby plus one! (One of the doc's wife was also an OB and she attended, couldn't miss out on quads!)

Just before the action began. That's my giant stomach sticking up underneath the blue paper and that's my wonderful doctor in the black scrubs with the green towel.
Just a portion of the team ready to take care of the quads!
Exactly five minutes before the first baby arrived!
Then an OR nurse announced to the room the time and the patient's name and that we were ready to start! At that moment, everything in the room became quiet to me. Like in the movies, when all the noise is dimmed down and a single sound is elevated, like a heart beat or something. I waited, motionless, as they made the incision through my skin and muscle and into my uterus. It took a few minutes and then suddenly I could sense a burst of activity and a nurse shouted out, "Baby A is a girl!"

As quickly as the first one arrived, she was followed in rapid succession by two more within the same minute. "Baby B is a girl!" "Baby C is a boy!" I strained my ears to hear for their cries, willing them to make noise, to breathe, to fight for their little lives. I knew it wasn't abnormal not to hear anything, since preemie babies don't often have the lung capacity or matured ability to scream and yell like full-term newborns. But I wanted more than anything to know they were alive and well and had come into their new world as strong as I could will them to be.

Then it was time for the last one, I knew it was little Logan because she was crammed up in my right rib cage—the place she'd spent most of her time kicking me in the ribs. One of the female doctors had to reach in for her because her hands were the smallest. I could feel lots of tugging and then it was almost like a suctioning release when they popped her out of there and my lungs were able to retract a little. I could breathe! "Baby D is a girl!"

Baby D, Logan.
Baby B, Kailey.
I went to turn my head to tell the husband that we'd done it, but he'd already jumped up and run over to the warmers where the babies were getting cleaned up and checked out! He did not want to miss his opportunity for pictures!

Proud new dad with Baby D, Logan.
And with Baby C, Harrison.
Each baby was surrounded by their own team of nurses and a pediatrician, it was completely organized chaos. At this point, I hear a few of the tiniest cries to ever greet my ears and I could feel myself overflow with joy at the sound of my brand new babies. As swiftly as they were arriving, the nurses and doctors were checking their breathing, applying oxygen or CPAPs as needed, taking their foot prints for certificates and bundling them up in plastic bags at first to keep them warm, followed by swaddle blankets.

During that split second it took for me to realize this, I hear the doctors shout urgently for them to administer the pitocin to help my uterus contract. It's a little bit of gory detail, but like most C-sections, they did have to remove some of my organs and they also pulled out my uterus to clean it out and remove blood clots and then sutured the incision they'd made. The medication helped my uterus begin contracting to continue to expel blood clots and attempt to begin its return to a normal state. My doctor popped his head over the curtain again to tell me that the babies looked good, that the first one had a tiny birthmark on her leg and it was very cute and that the last one looked a little small but they were all good. I knew Logan was the tiny one and I knew from the minute we saw her on that first ultrasound that she'd be the one to impress everybody. Little did we know how much!

About the time they were closing me up, I began to shake pretty bad. My arms and chest were shuddering so much and it was completely exhausting. One of the doctors said it was because my body was trying to maintain its temperature after all the blood loss, plus I was totally fatigued and probably experiencing a little bit of shock. They piled warm towels all over my arms and around my head to help, but I still kept shaking anyway. Another doctor, who I also loved, came and held my hand for a few minutes since he noticed the husband was still away taking pictures. He told me I'd done a great job and that the babies looked good!

Before the babies were taken up to the NICU, a literal parade of people came by my head to show me each of my little guys. I was pretty out of it by that point but couldn't believe that all of the babies were now out of my stomach and in the real world!

One proud new daddy!
After that point I have no recollection of anything else and my memory "picks up" in the recovery room next door. I was back in my bed and they'd drawn a curtain around me and my mom, step-dad and husband were all there. I was insanely thirsty and asked if I could have water, but was told only ice chips. So the husband got some for me and I guess I got a little too enthusiastic about eating them because five minutes later I threw up. Let me tell you, that shit hurts!!! Right after a C-section and trying to contract muscles that didn't even work yet, oh man it was painful. Then my arms and hands started shaking again (my whole body did this for several days when I exerted energy) so my mom and step-dad held my hands and my husband stood next to me stroking my hair and telling me how the babies looked and what a wonderful job I'd done. I couldn't believe it was over, I'd done it!

Stay tuned for the final conclusion, Part 3! 
The recovery and my first visit to see my babies in the NICU! :)

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