Mom to Antton David and Rayland Joseph

Lost September 6, 2012

Burlington Junction, Missouri

We found out in July that we were expecting “momo” twins. This was quite a shock. I went to the ER because I thought I was starting to miscarry. They couldn’t find the heart beat and sent me down for an ultrasound. The tech found the heart beat immediately. Such a relief, but then she moved to get a better picture of our baby and found there were two and only one placenta and one sac. This is what they call monochromic/monoamnionic twins. We were so excited. At the time I was around 14 weeks. Our girls, ages 4, 6, 8 and 10, were happy as well. Our youngest said she wanted baby sisters because little boys are mean, but the other three wanted baby brothers because they just don’t get along with each other and I guess they thought that boys would be more fun or something.

This started a long journey of perinatal visits two hours away from where we lived. I was high risk with just one baby since our girls were all premature and I have had most of my cervix removed due to pre-cancer. We met with one of our five doctors on our first visit on August 23rd at St. Luke’s Hospital. After he confirmed they were momo twins, he told us everything that could possibly go wrong, but these were the things he was going to prevent. Dr. Lu is a wonderful doctor and told us he was going to do everything he could to get us to 28 weeks. They had to talk about a shot called progesterone B-17 (I think that’s what it was called) because it hadn’t been tested in momo moms that already had my history. He also told us we needed to keep our appointments with the regular OB because I needed someone close to home just in case something happened or I had a mild infection or something. He didn’t think we needed to drive two hours for a cold.

After Dr. Lu had a meeting with the other five doctors, he tried to contact me at home. However, this started a round of phone tag. I tried for three days to get a hold of him but, with the work he does I understand how busy he can be. Anyway, on a Saturday when he was out of the office for vacation, he finally got a hold of me. I couldn’t believe he would do this, being it was his day off. He told us that they were going to try these shots. The worst that could happen is they not work. They wouldn’t harm me or my little babies. So, he set it up for our appointment on September 6th that we already had scheduled for the detailed ultrasound.

I had an appointment on September 5th with my regular OB, Dr. Holman. This was the first time I’d gotten to see him since we found out about our second bundle of joy. He took some blood and listened for the heartbeats and found both. Baby A was 138 and Baby B was 142. He didn’t do an exam since I was going to have a transvaginal ultrasound the next day and he knows how sensitive I am in that area.

Later on that night, I started having some cramping in my pelvis and abdomen. I just thought I needed to use the bathroom or something. These pains would come and go, but nothing I was worried about. I could still feel my little ones ball up like they always do and the flutter every now and then. I woke up off and on in the night with the pains, still thinking nothing to worry about, and I was going to Kansas City for my appointment anyways.

September 6th, I woke up around 7:30 to start getting our girls around to go to our cousin’s house so we could go to our appointment. I went into the bathroom did my thing then took a shower…that’s when I knew these pains were something to worry about. I started to bleed again. Not much, but enough to scare me. We took the girls to their cousin’s and left to pick up our friend. He used to live in Kansas City and knows his way around much better than we do. We left at about 9:45am for an appointment that wasn’t until 1:45pm. I thought that if something happened we would be down there…and maybe this bleeding was just going to be like what I had before. We got to Platte City, which is 30-45mins from Kansas City, and I noticed that I could time my pains. I kept quiet because they were still about 10-15min apart and we still had a little ways to go. I didn’t want to worry anyone else; I just thought I was going through what had happened before.

After about 20 minutes of driving, the pains were 5-7 minutes apart and I had to say something. I told my husband to pull over and let his friend drive. We needed to get there. I am not going to say how fast we got there, but we made it safely. I went in and told the lady at the desk that my appointment was until 1:45 but what was going on. It was 11:15 in the morning. She had them take me back to labor and delivery.

Once I was back there I felt like I had to pee so bad, so they gave me a cup for a sample. I went into the bathroom and peed. I went to stand up, and I had to sit right back down…my water broke. That had never happened to me before; I just thought I was still peeing. I told the nurse and she ran and got five more nurses and two doctors. They took me to triage and got me in a gown and up on the bed with my feet in the stirrups. The needed to exam me to see if I had dilated. When you have children your cervix sometimes tilts after delivery, and mine is way back and very hard to get to. They had to give me morphine to be able to do the exam. They finally got to what they wanted and found I was dilated to a 2 already. They did an ultrasound and the doctor said that if I still had some water left, they might be able to do something for me and the babies…but there was none. However, they saw the babies and found they were both still alive. Their heart rates were perfect but they couldn’t tell if they were boys or girls. The doctors said they were going to move me to a delivery room and then we would discuss what was going to happen next.

Once I was in a different bed, one of the many doctors I had seen that day came in. She said that I had to deliver the babies. There was no stopping it. She also informed us that babies this small cannot survive birth or live outside of the womb. This was the most heart breaking news I have ever had. They told me they were going to give me some medicine to speed up the process, but that I would have to deliver them myself. This was at about 2:00pm. They had the anesthesiologist come in to start my epidural. He came in to talk to me, and I kept getting light headed, and my blood pressure wouldn’t stay up. I kept feeling like I still had water coming out. I told the nurse and she checked me…it wasn’t water though…I was starting to bleed, a lot. They told me that I had lost a little over a pint of blood. They told me they had to get the boys out, and save me.

At 4:50pm I started to feel some pressure. Garry (my husband) went and got the nurses. They said they thought it was time. They pulled down the covers and I thought I was just losing more blood or something (I had the epidural so my senses were a little off). I saw my husband start to cry…that’s when I knew they were born. Antton David at 115g and 7 ½ long and Rayland Joseph, 120g and 7in long, were born at 4:55pm at St. Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri on September 6, 2012. Just then is when we found out our little twins were boys.

The hospital gave us little keepsake boxes with teddy bears, blankies for each one and also other things to help us through this time. I was 18 weeks into my pregnancy. We have their pictures, ultrasounds, and footprints in a little book. On Monday we will be making all of the arrangements for their services. The funeral home is working with us so we can give our sons the service they deserve and they will be buried right next to their Great Grandpa Bill and their Aunt Bev, two people our family was really close to and who we lost a few years ago. I know that everything happens for a reason, I will never understand why, though. My husband and I are doing our best to stay strong for our little girls. Their brothers will watch over them from above.

 You can contact Tara at garryembley@gmail.com.

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  1. I am so sorry for your loss. Dr Lu saved my daughter and I’s life. Nothing could be done for her twin, Gideon. Ella is four now and a fighter. But as I come up to the time of his death I can’t help but think and dream of him. As Ella chases her three older siblings sometimes I see him running beside her. I know God blessed us with her beautiful soul and thank him several times a day, but the ache and pain never seems to go away just become easier to bare. Only mothers who have lost know that kind of pain and reading your story makes me ache for you. God will be with you and yours. Love and prayers.

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