Harper & Holland are ONE!


This last week has been a consistent rollercoaster of emotions. The memories that have flooded in thinking of where we were a year ago along with the immense joy that I feel every time I look at my sweet girls has me a little bit of an emotional mess. I finally took a minute to sit down and write a little bit about the day these girls were born. For a while it was hard to write down the memories, because it brought them back and sometimes they were almost a little too real and painful. But to see how far we have come and to be able to look back on all that has happened, I don't ever want to forget the incredible moments that have brought us to today.

One year ago today...
 I was in one of our bi weekly apts with our MFM specialist, when she said it was time. Holland hadn't been growing (since supposedly 29 weeks) and was measuring small enough that they knew she was struggling to get the nutrients she needed. She was what they called IUGR and was growth restricted (something we were told during our TTTS surgery apt) and something we knew could be an issue in the long run. Fortunately, we had made it to 34 week (on the day!) and it was safe to deliver the girls.

I remember it like it was yesterday.
It was also Olivia's first day of school but we assumed our apt would be quick. After hearing that they wanted to induce me THAT DAY, I asked if I could at least go drop my baby off for her first day of school. This day was supposed to be special for her and "the babies" had already taken up so much of our time at this point I didn't want to take away from her day. I was told I could drop her off, go home, pack a bag, and come back to check in. 
From that point on it was all the fun induction goodness. Pills to soften the cervix, pills to start contractions, and then the rest seems like a blur from there on...
Except, it's not. 
I feel like there are so many blurry moments, but then I remember them each as if I was standing there, right now, reliving every moment. I remember every fearful, stressful, moment. 
Being wheeled into the OR. All the scary talk about a potential C-section. Kimball suiting up from head to toe to go in with me. Knowing Baby B (Holland) was under stress. The fact that I was about to deliver TWO BABIES. Early. One with definite heart concerns, the other barely weighing over two pounds. 
So many fears. So many "what if's". So much faith. So much hope. So many prayers. 
After it was decided that I wanted to try to deliver both babies to avoid a c section, it was "time". Only a push or two and Baby A was out. Once Harper was born I just stared. She was so tiny, but so perfect. Crying away and breathing!
She was immediately whisked away. No skin to skin. I barely was able to see her, but Kimball did get to cut the cord. All I knew was that she was here and breathing. Then it was time to do it all over again! 
In the middle of a little chaos (9 nurses and 3 doctors, not to mention the bright lights, NICU nurses ready and waiting) and seeing how tiny Harper was, Kimball got a little overwhelmed. Fortunately, he didn't pass out, but he still remembers thinking how tiny Harper was and getting so nervous. We knew that she was the "bigger one" compared to her sister, so he says he got incredibly nervous to see how tiny Holland would be.
I must have been a little 'caught up' in what I was doing at the moment or just far enough away, because I don't remember that quite as much. 
All I remember is Holland came fast with barely a two minute gap between them. In one push she was out and it was immediate that the fear set it. 
No crying. She looked limp and I remember feeling my heart drop for what felt like minutes, when it was merely seconds, and then she started to cry!
I had never, so badly in my life, wanted to hear a baby cry before. 
She was so small. So small I couldn't quite understand how it would be possible for her to be just fine, but I remember feeling peaceful. 
We had done all that we could to this point, and now it was their turn to fight. We knew they were strong girls, but wow!
We were in one of the special OR rooms with pass through windows straight to the NICU so no time was lost in getting them both immediately checked, resuscitated, and on their machines to begin the next steps. I was taken back to my room and had to wait a good few hours before I was able to be wheeled down to finally meet my girls. 
Being able to finally see them for the first time was beyond wonderful, but also one of the most foreign and scary things I've ever experienced.
Those precious, tiny bodies, with more tubes and monitoring devices than I could count. Their skin so fragile and thin, their little little isolate beds that would be their homes for the next six weeks. It was all so surreal. Yes, they were here, but would they stay here with us? Would they be okay? Would they struggle in this life if they did stay? 
So many questions, none of which could be answered. 
I was again, for what seemed like the 900 millionth time, faced with only being able to handle my situation with faith. Faith that my Heavenly Father knew them. That He knew me. That He knew what was best for all of us and that He wouldn't lead us astray.  

Fighters. Miracles. Luckiest girls around.
Call them whatever you want. I get to call them mine. This may not be a typical "Happy Birthday" post. But it's the happiest one I've ever been able to write.
Happy birthday to my real life miracles. 
If anyone deserves the happiest of birthdays today, it's you two! We love you Harper & Holland! More than you'll ever know ❤️

Having these photos of them in the NICU and looking at them now had me in tears during their photoshoot. It was such a special thing to capture and Mary Horne Photography did such an incredible job! These photos are some I will forever treasure ❤️
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