March 8th , 1:30pm
They wheeled Tere into the operating room to prep for the c-section. The funny thing is, they didn’t let me go in with her. Instead I was instructed to sit in a chair in the hallway just outside the operating room. I stood there trying to peek in the little window in the door and the nurse gave me a stern look, pointed at the chair and said “sit”. I guess she told me.
Picture me in those oh-so-chic blue scrubs, sitting in a deathly quiet hallway by myself. We’ve spent 35 weeks waiting, praying that today would come; the level of activity had been rising incrementally for days and now I have to sit in this hallway by myself, staring at a blank wall –without my blackberry I might add –for what feels like an eternity. I was completely cut off from everything and everyone, alone in my thoughts. It’s amazing where your mind goes when it’s left alone, under stress. I kept thinking about every decision we had made and worried whether they were right or not. I was petrified that the babies would come out “not right”.
Finally, after what felt like an hour, a nurse came to get me. Come to find out that they actually sort of forgot about me and only realized I was still stuck out in that hallway when Tere suddenly asked where I had gone. I was rushed in to what can only be described as organized chaos – multiple sets of nurses and pediatricians were there to assess and quickly decide what would need to be done for the twins.
Dr. C started the surgery and told me to get the camera ready. I soooo wanted to look over the partition and watch the babies come out but I was told that Dr. C was pretty “old school” about these sorts of things so I kept my butt in the seat, not wanting a repeat of the nurse telling me to “sit”. Soon I was taking my favorite picture ever of our daughter, Isabella — “Izzy”. I like to say she was fresh from the oven with all the goo and everything still on her.
Izzy was quickly moved over to a bassinet-type thing where a team of medical professionals started a battery of tests to make sure she was ok. Her brother Libero “Free” came out so fast right after that I never got that first picture right out of the oven. They were both crying, their skin was pink, and I was busy trying to take a ton of pictures for Tere. I knew she was going to be pretty out of it after all of this.
I’ve watched tons of c-sections on Discovery Health and generally know how it all goes. I know how the surgery works and what they do and in what order. I’m sort of a nerd that way. I noticed the anesthesiologist putting a syringe of some drug into Tere’s IV and although it seemed odd, I chalked it up to a normal “something” and looked back at the babies for a minute. When I turned back to Tere to talk to her, he was now injecting something directly into her upper arm. That didn’t seem like standard operating procedure. A couple more minutes passed in this organized chaos and then the anesthesiologist stood up, leaned over and injected something directly into Tere’s uterus. I was standing up and watched the whole thing. I was shocked because the doctors didn’t appear to be at the stage in the surgery that I expected – putting Tere back together. And something looked very strange – Tere’s uterus seemed unusually large. I looked down at Tere knowing that something was not right. My fears were justified with what Dr. C said next.
“Heather, can you sit down so I can talk to both of you?”