I know everyone wants to know how big I was in the end. The answer? Huge. This was taken two days before the births.
Less than 12 hours before my water broke I enjoyed my gut shelf for the last time.
At 1:30 a.m. on December 7th (Pearl Harbor Day), I posted as my Facebook status message: "If the twins are born today it will be a day that will live in TWINFAMY!" Little did I know my water would break six hours later... (On one hand I would have liked for them to cook a little longer even though nearly 36 weeks for twins is pretty good; on the other hand I get to use "Day that will live in twinfamy" for the rest of their lives...)
I woke up at 7:45 a.m. feeling water gushing out of me.
"Mark, I think my water broke."
"Are you sure?"
[I sit up and water REALLY gushes out.]
Run! It's an amniotic fluid-nami!
I called the hospital and they said to come in within two hours and confirmed that I would be imminently giving birth.
"Mark, it looks like we're having some babies today."
Despite what you may think from watching TV, only 1/5 of births involve water breaking. Incidentally there were a lot of births that day at the hospital and a nurse said there are theories that it often happens on cold rainy days - like this one - because of the change in barometric pressure. Between the cold weather and the twins' most active kicking session ever the night before, it's no surprise my water broke.
After calling the hospital, I called my parents so they could start driving up from San Diego. By the way, when you call your parents at 8 a.m. when you're as pregnant as I was, they have a pretty good guess why you're calling. I then took a shower (while shaking from a combination of happy excitement and fear) and put on make-up. Some people find it weird that I put on make-up but I did have two hours to get to the hospital. All the while I was afraid I was leaving a trail of water breakage throughout the apartment, reminiscent of the dotted line in Family Circus.
Replace Kittycat with Kathy and her leaking bag of waters.
I already knew I'd be having a C-section since Twin A (the boy) flipped to the breach position a few weeks earlier. When we arrived at the hospital we were told a set of triplets was going to be delivered before our twins, but then our doctor came in a few minutes later and told us she had changed her mind. We were next! Suck it, triplets!
An hour and a half later I was wheeled into the operating room and given a spinal block. A curtain was stretched across my lower half and Mark sat next to my head. I could feel some pressure as the doctors cut me open, but no pain. Twin A (the boy) was taken out and a minute later Twin B (the girl) joined him. The doctors held each one up for us to see for an instant before weighing them and getting them ready (a.k.a. wiping off the placenta goo). Twin B was laid across my chest and that's when we met our baby girl. She was tiny and red and already in a little white cap and it was hard to believe I was finally meeting her.
James (I think) is born!
Here I am holding Julia moments after birth.
I was surprised we met the second-to-arrive twin first, but Twin A was grunting (a respiratory issue) so he joined us about 15 minutes later. (I later found out their Apgar scores for the first minute were a 4 for Twin A and a 9 for Twin B; both scored a 9 after five minutes.) Twin A stayed in the NICU the first two days until he stopped grunting, but I was generally very fortunate that neither baby was in the NICU longer, especially Twin B who was born so little and managed to escape the NICU altogether.
Mark with Julia and James just outside the delivery room.
I'm holding the twins with what appears to be a ridiculously oversized left hand.
Without further ado, meet...
James Benjamin Pilloff
5 lbs., 9 oz.
17.8 in. (45.1 cm)
Julia Elizabeth Pilloff
4 lbs., 9 oz.
18.1 in. (46 cm)
(She's a pound lighter but a centimeter longer!)
I think the previous picture of Julia resembles the Mother Teresa "Nun Bun."
My precious Julia and James and their giant diapers.