Mom to Alana Monique Rodriguez & Selena Monique Rodriguez
January 31, 2011 to January 31, 2011
Forever in our hearts
It was early October of 2010 when my boyfriend and I found out I was pregnant. We had so many different emotions that day. We had just moved to a new state and were staying with family until we were able to get on our feet. So finding out we were having a baby was a lot to put on us at that time, but of course the feelings of “what are we going to do” went away and on came the pure excitement. We told everyone in the family and they were all supportive. This being my first pregnancy I was very nervous but anxious at the same time.
In December is when we went in for our routine visit as my doctor was doing the ultrasound she told us there were two heart beats! I was then transferred to a different hospital because my doctor didn’t handle high risk pregnancies and they consider any twins high risk. That’s where I met my new doctor, Dr. Guin. A couple weeks later we found out we were having two little girls!
I don’t remember ever feeling as happy as I did the first time I felt my little girls move inside of me. They were a part of me and I couldn’t wait to meet them. We’d talk about names and what they were going to look like. I felt so attached to my girls. I would rub my belly constantly as if I was already holding them in my arms. I remember going to the baby store and laughing with my boyfriend about how we were going to have to buy doubles of everything! How exciting, that I, out of all people, was going to be having twins! I never expected this and for some reason it felt like I was specially chosen to carry two lives.
My boyfriend and I went in to our routine ultrasound to see how our girls were doing and it went just like any other appointment. We were watching TV at home that evening and I received a call from Dr. Guin’s partner. He explained to me that he reviewed my ultrasound and saw what might be the start of Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS). He briefly explained that it was a disease that only identical twins get and it had nothing to do with me our my boyfriend. He told me it meant that basically one of my girls is transferring her oxygen and blood to the other. He asked us to come in the next day to meet with Dr. Guin. At that point I got a little upset, but my boyfriend calmed be down and told me to wait for what Dr. Guin was going to tell us.
The next day we went to our appointment and I was extremely nervous for what we were going to be told. She drew a picture to show us what was happening inside of me so it was easier for us to understand. We asked her a ton of questions and honestly she wasn’t very hopeful or very positive. She gave us all the statistics and gave us different options. One of those options was to terminate the pregnancy, which in my mind was never an option.
From that day on our pregnancy completely changed. We were doing ultrasounds twice a week, Mondays and Fridays. Dr. Guin referred me to a specialist in San Francisco as well as Seattle. I decided since I live in Portland that Seattle would be the best choice for us. We went there and all the doctors were very nice and informative. They also gave us a DVD with our ultra sound on it which I really appreciated. They ended up telling us we were not yet a candidate for surgery and to continue keeping a close eye on the girls.
It was January 24, 2011. We went in to our ultrasound appointment that morning. The ultrasound tech said she wanted Dr. Guin to join us to take a look at the babies. She came in and saw that their fluids were almost equal. Throughout our pregnancy she was very doubtful and basically told us no one makes it out alive with this disease. So she began to tell us how she was wrong and she was very happy with what she was seeing. They joked about how we could relax now and pick names for our girls. Since Dr. Guin said they were doing so well she decided to cancel my Friday appointment and to have me come in that following Monday. So we were very excited and happy with how that appointment went.
That weekend we went to an indoor car show and went on with our everyday lives. While we were there I constantly had to sit down and take breaks. I could feel my girls squirming around constantly, but I assumed they were just getting bigger so these feelings were normal.
The following Monday January 31, 2011 I returned to work and all day I felt a cramping that would come and go. I assumed it was growing pains since I had felt that earlier in my pregnancy. My boyfriend came and ate lunch with me and by then the cramps were more often and a little bit stronger. After lunch I went back to work and decided to call my doctor. I was only able to talk to the nurse, she talked to Dr. Guin and suggested I leave work and lie down and drink lots of water. I followed her instructions and was home lying in bed for about 4 hours. By then the cramps were very often and extremely painful. I was home with my sister in law and my niece. I called the on call doctor and he recommended I come in. So my sister in law drove me to the hospital. On the way there the pain was very intense; I didn’t understand what was happening and why I was in so much pain.
We got to the hospital and I felt the nurses didn’t realize how serious my condition was as they weren’t attending to me as fast as they should have been, just coming in every now and then to say the doctor will be in soon. While waiting for the doctor, I was in excruciating pain. My sister-in-law became upset and ran out of the room to tell them we needed help. Finally they ran in and did an exam and told me she couldn’t feel a cervix at all and that I was fully dilated. My heart sunk and I asked her was there anything that we could do and sadly she told me no. We moved into a delivery room as my sister -in-law called our family as well as my boyfriend and told them all to rush over. Everything after that happened to fast. I couldn’t wrap my head around what was happening. My boyfriend arrived as he saw me on the bed yelling out of pain. The doctor explained to him that the TTTS had picked up and I gained too much fliud which is causing me to go into labor. With a shocked face he said, ”This is bad, huh?” The doctor looked at him and said, “Yes.” I told the nurse I felt them coming, and before I knew it I had given birth to both of my girls. They placed them in my arms as I stared at them and saw all my dreams fade away. The nurse told me they both had heartbeats. So, I held them until their heartbeats drifted away and they passed. By this time my family was all there taking turns holding the girls and saying their goodbyes. My boyfriend’s family was on their way driving up from Reno. The nurses took pictures and also made memory boxes for each of our girls. They told us we could have the girls all night with us if we wanted, but we decided to have them take them a couple hours after. I remember the nurses coming in, wrapping my daughters in two blankets and taking them away. Out of everything that had happened, that was probably the hardest part for me. I felt that they were really gone. I felt like my heart was being physically yanked on. I have never felt so much pain in my life. The next day my boyfriend’s family arrived and they were very supportive and it was nice to see everyone come together when we were in need. I was able to leave the hospital that evening. They brought me downstairs in a wheelchair as I held the two memory boxes in my hands, and I broke down. I never imagined going through all of this and leaving the hospital with only boxes instead of my daughters. I felt mad, jealous, and sad. This wasn’t how it was supposed to go.
Then we had to plan a funeral for our daughters. It was very small and short. We put them to rest and I felt so empty. One minute I had a belly with my two daughters kicking around and the next we were burying them. It wasn’t right.
I am still grieving and I don’t know if I’ll ever be over what happened to us, my family. I miss and love them with every inch of my body. Saying I love them doesn’t even express half of my feelings for Alana and Selena. I will always have a hole in my heart for them. They are now my angels and they will never be forgotten.
You can reach Krystal at firstname.lastname@example.org.