Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Francisco Peninsula
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My recollection, which is not super clear, is that I held Zoe briefly. Then my husband held her while Skye was being born three minutes later (I think the doctor used amniohook to break Skye's water and that is why she came so fast). However, when they were born the doctor suctioned their noses and the nurses managed to jump right in there and wash their faces before my husband could do anything. Also, sometime in the first few minutes both were weighed and wrapped in a blanket and hat.
I did start nursing in the OR. I originally was planning a homebirth with a midwife and doula. Ended up in the hospital only due to twins, since I could not find a midwife in the area to do homebirth with twins. But my midwife and doula were both in the OR with me. That helped tremendously with the nursing. I have a picture showing Zoe and Skye nursing in the OR and I can see lots of hands helping out. Also, for the most part I think when I and my husband were not holding them, either my midwife or doula was, so the hospital staff weren't given that many opportunities to do much extra.
The hardest part was getting past the nursery. Even though our doctor and nurse at the delivery knew we did not want the babies in the nursery, I guess the head nurse never got the information. She was really upset when we didn't surrender our babies to her. Eventually my husband went back to talk to her to smooth things out. We didn't want our babies washed and they weren't. Also no vitamin K shots or eye drops or whatever else.
We had our own pediatrician, who is not affiliated with the hospital, come to check the babies out. This was to ensure the staff would not find some dubious reason to try to make us stay longer.
Later, the next day, we did let them do an hearing test in the hospital room. I regret that a little because Zoe's test took a long time in particular and she cried the whole time. I couldn't even hold or comfort her during it.
The nursing staff also didn't realize I hadn't had an epidural, so came in and told me that I needed to get up and pee at one point. I tried and passed out. If they hadn't done that I think I would have had enough confidence to head home that day. As it was, I stayed the night and we headed home in the morning.
So basically, I think what actually occured was nose suctioning, face washing (with who knows what chem/antibiotic soap, could have also been just water for all I know or even a dry cloth), weighing, wrapping in blanket and hat, and ear test.
Oh, also apgars. But I think those are pretty much done visually and take all of about 5 seconds right after birth and five minutes or so later.
Hope this helps!