I'm 27w4d PG with twins, they will be my 3rd and 4th child, and I am freaking out. I dont freak out. No matter how sick I was with my 2nd, I handled it all. Now with this pregnancy I am just a ball of anxiety. I can't even get my thoughts out on this post. We planned for another child, but not for two more. Yes, we are blessed and in retrospect I will know that but right now I just have this scary image of delivering in the OR and being badgered with doctors and nurses.
My 2nd child was also born in the hospital, but in the most home-like environment. The midwife and nurse stood by and said nothing while my doula and husband helped me deliver my son. It was all too amazing and 20 hours later we were home. WOW!
Now I am being told, I need to have a epidural line in, the lights cant be off, I have to have an 8 person staff for each baby born in the room, and only two people can be in the OR.
Can I have my babies cord pulse out before it is cut? No.
Can I have my first baby latch on while I am delivering my second? No.
Can I be in any position I want for the delivery? No.
I understand there are risks for delivering multiples but why does it feel like I have to plan for the worst?
Why can't I be given hope and plan to have this be an amazing experience? I have tried to be in control of my own emotions but seem to feel overwhelmed with dealing with it all.
Am I over reacting? Maybe? Probably.
I just know what it's like to have a scary hospital birth, where my wishes were blatantly ignored and I was disrespected as If I was a danger to my child and needed to be "controlled." I do not want that delivery again.
I have a lot of anxiety about this, to the point of me losing sleep or having some really scary dreams.
Then the postpartum anxiety is starting to creep in my mind. How will I feed two? WillI have enough milk? Will I be pumping and feeding non-stop and the rest of my life fall apart? My business is finally taking off the ground and my kids need me. Will shit get done if Im not fully around to manage it? How about those super scary and painful post-partum contractions? With my second it was so bad I felt like I was in active labor any time they were happening.
I have a very supportive family, that loves me a lot, but they are all no nonsense people dont always consider the emotional side of things. (I'm guilty of this too)
I'm scared. I dont really want people to tell me that everything will be ok. I am looking for other moms that delivered their twins in a hospital that had a great experience that they can share. Any doulas that assisted in a twin hospital birth?
Thank you for reading and I'm sorry about the bitchfest. I wanted to get this out.
Lovemyfam -- I am so sorry for all the frustration and anxiety you are feeling. When I found out we were having twins, I mourned for the home birth I so desperately wanted. It can be very difficult to find an OB willing to support your birthing choices. Are you interested or able to change doctors or hospitals? At this point you still have time to do so. I'm 35 weeks with my twins and finally settled on my 4th doctor. If there are specific points, like birth position and cord cutting, that you disagree on can your OB explain why he/she has a certain policy. I feel like my doc and I have both made compromises to reach a comfortable middle ground for expectations. With twins it just seems like the variables are more than double. It seems that the type of twins you are expecting makes a huge difference in hospital policy and the doctors confidence. My girls are Di/Di and both vertex with baby B ever so slightly smaller. All things considered I am in the perfect position to try for a vaginal birth. Of course it makes me more nervous than ever to be so close because everything can change at the last minute. Now that we are doing weekly visits I feel like every conversation with my doc is about building trust with one another and sharing where we might be coming from different directions based on our personal knowledge. As far as delivering in the OR goes, I'm trying to incorporate a room full of strangers into my labor visualizations. Maybe this will prepare me for the presence of all that extra staff. I really hope you have a positive birth experience. It sounds like your husband will be great support and if you can get a good doula that would probably ease the stress for you when the time comes.
Wild crazy in love with DF . Starting a family together with his pups , my cats and our twin girls, born 3-26-13.
It can be so so hard to deal with the emotional side. Can you find someone who you can talk to about it? Someone who won't tell you to buck up and be positive? At least for a little while. Because you need a chance to mourn the experience you were hoping for. And it is horrible horrible feeling so out of control and I had a lot of dark nights, and other people don't understand.
That said, there can be positive hospital births. They don't have to be negative and confrontational. Talk to your providers, your doula (if you have one), your partner. Fight to make the space for birth, even if it's in an OR. I was lucky enough to have an unmedicated (but for the epidural line they placed) birth in a bright room on my back, but with my doctor and doula and partner there supporting me. It can happen.
I wish I could come up with just the right thing to say. But I will say that I went through similar worry and misery and you're not alone.
What state did you birth in?
Has anyone birthed in Southern California?
You are right, I do need to mourn the experience I was looking for and reset my expectations from my last delivery. There can be a positive experience in this and I am just blind right now.
What kind of questions can I ask my doctor to get what I am looking for? The epi line has to be in, no negotiations. The lights can be dimmed as far as they feel safe for delivery.
What happened when the first twin arrived? Did they pull out the placenta or birth the second baby?
I too have gone through some mourning of my hopes for a simple, singleton birth and the one newborn at a time maternity leave and also that I am gong to have 3 children now when we originally had planned for 2. It isn't that I am unhappy about having twins, I really am thrilled, but it has thrown all my plans out of whack and while I'm gaining something awesome, I've also lost something too and it is ok to mourn that. And I too am nervous about handling two newborns. I'm lining up the help I can now as I know I'm going to need some help for sure! I have talked to other twin moms who BF their twins no problem (including 3 of my aunts), so I know it can be done.
For your birth, can you switch OBs/hopsitals? Would it matter if these are more hospital policies than OB policies? I'm still talking to my OB about certain things, but she's been very open to things I've suggested so far and I'm willing to compromise on certain things as I think that is my best bet. For birth, it will go Twin A, Twin B, then the placenta(s) since you asked about that. I've mostly been talking to my doctor in an open-ended way, asking her how she pictures the birth going, explaining how my previous birth went and asking how this one will be different, etc. That will help you to see what expectations your doctor has and where you may need to push harder or have more leeway.
Katie - Married to Mike 06/02/01, Mom to Sydney Anne born 11/21/09 and Alice Maeryn & Oliver Thomas born 04/24/13
The twins were born in Northern California.
You can ask about when the epi line needs to go in. You can ask about laboring in a L&D room (and going in to the operating room only for the delivery). You can ask about periodic external monitoring (so you can walk and labor in different positions). Ask about showering during labor. Ask about laboring positions (as opposed to birthing)
Ask about letting the cord pulse for twin B. Ask about immediate skin-to-skin contact when both babies have been born.
Ask about having your doula with you.
Ask about rooming-in after the birth.
Ask about breastfeeding support.
Ask about induction.You don't want to be surprised.
The placenta(s) will come after both babies. Often there will be a break between the two babies. (though in our case there was not)
You asked for stories of good hospital birth experiences, so I thought I'd share mine of a couple weeks ago (my girls were born Feb. 17th)--perhaps it can give you some hope, even if it didn't go exactly as I had planned!
Our twins were my second pregnancy, and I had hoped to birth at a birthing center, but couldn't when we found out it was twins (illegal in AZ). The birthing center referred me to a doctor who is more naturally minded and will deliver twins vaginally. She turned out to be wonderful--supportive of my wishes, clear about what might not work, and willing to fight for me against hospital policies (within reason) if need be. My girls were mono-di, but thankfully A turned vertex and stayed that way throughout the third trimester. B was a bit smaller and regularly moved from vertex to transverse to breech and back and forth. In the end, she settled in a transverse/oblique position. My OB was happy to deliver her breech and really didn't make me fear I'd need a c-section based on B's position.
So the birth itself: my OB wanted to induce at 39 weeks because of medical studies that show better outcomes for mono-di twins delivered a little earlier. I wasn't entirely sure about this, but at 38 weeks I was already 4 cm dilated, and by 38+4 I was 5 cm dilated. It seemed like labor would be quick once it started. I agreed to have my membranes stripped at my appointment at 38+4 and then again the next day, hoping that would kick me into labor before the induction date. It didn't. So we scheduled induction for 38+6 (a Sunday, when the hospital would be less crazy and my OB would have more time to just spend with us).
We arrived in the morning and were blessed with a wonderful L&D nurse, who had already read our birth plan (forwarded over with my papers from my OB's office). (My OB had said she'd hand-pick the nurse if possible, but it turned out we were assigned the one she would have picked. :)) I had agreed to a heplock, but wanted to delay placement of the epidural port as long as possible. Both nurse and OB were fine with this, and my OB had even given me hope that I could avoid the epidural port entirely if I dilated fairly quickly to a 10. I could labor in the tub as long as I didn't have the epidural port, and everyone was fine with intermittent monitoring (though I ended up being on the monitors a bit longer than I liked). Overall, our plan was to labor in the L&D room as long as possible and then, as per hospital policy, move to the OR for pushing and delivery.
My OB broke my water after we arrived and got settled at the hospital. My membranes were still pretty thick, apparently, and she didn't break through all of them on the first try. I'd certainly forgo the couple attempts to break the water if I had to do it again! Based on how dilated I was, my OB expected breaking my water would start labor pretty quickly. Well, my cervix was still pretty high, and while my BH contractions picked up a little and got a little crampy, nothing else happened. We spent a pretty boring 4 hours using the tub, labor ball, moving around the room, etc. trying to get labor to start. Then they wanted to start me on pitocin--which I knew was a possibility, but I was hoping to avoid it. My OB and nurse gave us (my husband and my mom were with me) time to discuss, they answered any questions, and really weren't pushy. In the end, we agreed to start pitocin on the lowest dose and not up it unless we were consulted again. That "little bit" of pitocin worked wonders and kicked me into transition within 20-30 minutes. Unfortunately I had to be hooked up to the monitors constantly and, of course, had an IV in, so I couldn't move around as freely or labor in the tub. The nurse did try to accommodate me with some moving around/different positions, but pretty soon I had contractions one on top of the other and felt like I couldn't move.
The OB arrived about 45 min. into the pitocin and they turned it off, seeing that I was in serious labor. She wanted to check me but I kept saying "no," thinking I had hours to go (based on my first labor) and feeling like I couldn't stand a cervical check with the contractions. She told me to tell her when I felt any pressure. I didn't--and then I moved, and suddenly I had to push (about 1.5 hours after the initial start of the pitocin). Baby A crowned so fast that we didn't have time to move to the OR (yay!). My OB was great and stayed cheerful and in control as she orchestrated everything for the quick birth right there in L&D. Our Lydia was born with about three pushes and they put her right on my chest. We had to cut the cord (which was pretty short) before it stopped pulsating, but I did get to try to nurse her a little before my OB broke my water for Baby B. She tried to turn B vertex externally, but it didn't work--little B stuck her foot out. So the OB delivered her breech, feet first, reaching in to pull out legs and arms and pull her chin down. I didn't get the hard pushing contractions with B, so pushing was harder, but B (Abby) was born nine minutes after A (Lydia) and it really wasn't terrible. I never lost confidence in my OB's expertise in delivering breech--it just seemed normal for B to come that way, since we had talked much about this possibility beforehand. Baby B (Abby) was a little limper when she came out, but she pinked up and cried pretty quickly, and they placed her on my chest, too.
The nurse turned the pitocin back on to help me deliver the placenta and help the uterus contract down--those after-birth contractions weren't so fun. I tore a little and needed a couple stitches, but I've healed up much more quickly than after my first (singleton) birth. We got to stay in L&D for several hours (with my son it seemed like they rushed us out of there and into a tiny recovery room as soon as they could--different hospital, though). Because my "real" labor was only about 1.5-2 hours long, and the pushing was so short, I felt pretty good overall. I wanted to take a shower a couple hours later, but the new nurse didn't want to let me. :) Both girls latched well right away and started nursing, and we really haven't had trouble with nursing since (they're two weeks old now).
Whew--sorry that got so long! In summary, I think these are the really important things that made the birth go so well overall, despite the fact that it deviated a bit from my ideal:
-God was in control the whole time!
-I trusted my OB and she supported my wishes (after the birth she said, "You got what you wanted--you didn't have to go to the OR!" I think she was secretly pretty happy we didn't make it there, too:))
-My OB was competent and handled the hospital staff well
-Our L&D nurse was calm, kind, informed of our wishes, and just great overall--I think the nurse you get makes a big difference in the experience. (I'm so glad our OB was willing to pick a nurse for us, if need be.)
-We had a clear birth plan, and I had two advocates for me (my mom and my husband) who were great at supporting me in labor, too
-We were willing to deal with needed changes to our birth plan as long as we could talk them through, ask questions, etc.
Anyway, all that is to say, I got the unmedicated, vaginal delivery I wanted--with a couple interventions I didn't exactly want--but overall, my hospital birth experience with twins was a good one.
I don't have much time to respond since my twins are three weeks old, but wanted to put in another vote for "yes, it's possible to have a relatively natural twin birth". My family practice doctor didn't require an epidural or delivery in the OR, but she would have preferred those things. Part of what made it possible to deliver in the L&D room was that it was a very small hospital - it seems like the bigger ones are less flexible and you may be farther from the OR in case of emergency.
My labor was a little intense with lots of internal version and a little vacuum assist at the end, but I was able to do it totally naturally and the babies were both super healthy and alert afterwards. My baby A went to my DH for skin-to-skin at first, but I did get to have her on me and have her latch on a few minutes later - which made the internal version a lot easier to take! And Baby B went straight on my chest and was able to have her cord pulse. It was super important to us that the babies didn't have to go to a warmer, and that worked out well.
Work at home, homesteading mom sharing child care 50/50 with my wonderful WAH DH. DD1 born Jan. 2010. March '12. DD2 & DD3 (twins) born Feb. 2013
imbegliniel -- great story! Thanks for sharing. Would you mind PMing me the name of your OB and hospital? I'm in AZ also. Although I feel good about my OB and my twins are due anytime now, I'm always looking for more info and support. Realistically, I'm hoping this birth goes something like yours.
Wild crazy in love with DF . Starting a family together with his pups , my cats and our twin girls, born 3-26-13.
Lovemyfam, I was curious if you had resolved any of these issues or if you are still plagued by the anxiety? After I found out I was having twins (when I was 24 weeks along) I was super anxious for about 4 weeks. I was pretty sure my water was going to break at any time b/c I was having problems with BV and yeast infections. Also had no idea what I could reasonably expect from a hospital birth. But now that I'm further along and have spoken with the OB I feel much better. It helped to read tons of twin birth stories so I would have a clearer picture of what most hospitals' policies are and how other moms have dealt with them. I am sure everything will work out well in the end. I wish you lots of luck!