Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Other Side of the Curtain

(This is slightly overdue - seeing as the girls are already over three weeks old! But better late than never, right?)

One of Kris' co-workers gave me some pre-csection advice: stay on my side of the curtain. He urged me to just keep focused on Kris and keep my eyes away from the nitty gritty (aka bloody) parts on the other side of the sheet. I kept thinking about that as I sat in the little chair outside the OR, waiting for a nurse to come bring me in. Kris was getting her spinal put in and I was told to sit in a strange office chair that was positioned awkwardly outside the mechanical doors that led to the surgical suite. Up until that point I had been with Kris every step of the way, so it felt really odd to be left out there, swiveling back and forth with anxious energy.

My version of the rest of the day really doesn't vary too much from the story that has already been posted. Once I was led into the OR, they were just about ready to start. It felt like only minutes went by before they were showing us Grace over the curtain and laughing about how she really did come into this world pooping. I popped out of my seat and followed the nurses over to the warmer where they started checking her out. Before I knew it, Zoe was squirming around in the warmer just next to her. I didn't know what to do, so I just kept going back and forth, snapping photos and trying to soak it all in. Everything went by in such a blur - one minute Kris and I were a family of two, and the next we were a beautiful family of four. 

Once the babies were checked and cleaned by the doctor in the OR, I was able to follow them back to the nursery where they were weighed, wrapped and tagged (literally!). They were wiggly and crying and nearly every picture I took was blurry, but I am still glad I captured as much as I could. I really wanted Kris to have something to look at so she wouldn't miss a thing. As the nurses worked to get the girls ready, I couldn't help but be anxious about Kris. I needed to know she was okay. I needed to be sure that my new family was still intact. Knowing that she had made it to the recovery room was music to my ears. Now we could start going through this journey together. Up until that point the burden (for lack of a better word) was on Kris. It was her body that was being put through so much to get these babies here safe and sound. Now that they had arrived, she and I could share the responsibility. It felt good to know that I could do more - for Kris, and for the girls.

Kris pretty much summed up excitement of the afternoon - her blood loss, the chaos of a room filled with so many medical personnel, the doctor throwing around the words "surgery" and "hysterectomy" as though they were things that we should just accept. It was scary. Watching my wife turn so pale just made my heart sink. I was sitting there holding my daughter and I couldn't do anything to help Kris. I had to put my trust in the doctor and nurses and just tell myself that they will help her get through this. And they did. It took time, but she made it through to the other side of that crazy day. 

And now we have two daughters.  Two perfect, tiny humans to call our own.  I am one very lucky lady, because not only do I have these two amazing kids, I also have an incredible wife to share them with.


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