Tiny Hands

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twins born at 20 weeks gestation

I wish I could have held those two tiny baby hands forever.  I have been dreading writing this post and looking through pictures because I knew it would be painful, but even though it’s only been two days since I last saw those darling babies I am so happy to have pictures to look back on how beautiful they were.  

On Sunday Morning in the hospital I woke up and just felt melancholy.  I had done a pretty good job of keeping myself in good spirits, but when I awoke that morning something just felt different.  I still wasn’t in any pain, but it’s like I could tell that something was coming. In the early afternoon I started feeling contractions pretty consistently.  They still weren’t very painful, but I could tell there was something different about them.  The nurses kept asking how much pain I was in and even though the contractions were getting a little bit more painful I didn’t want to admit this to the nurses because it was like admitting I was actually in labor.  Eventually the nurses were worried enough that they sent me over to Labor and Delivery.  They checked my cervix again and didn’t really see a difference. The laborist came in and said they would watch my contractions a bit more.  Again, they weren’t SUPER painful and eventually they sent me back to my room. 

By later that evening the contractions were getting really painful and were occurring fairly often.  My mom told me I should time them and I said I didn’t want to because it didn’t matter anyway, if the babies were going to come, they were going to come.  Eventually they were painful enough that we called the nurses back in.  We sat for probably an hour and the contractions were getting progressively worse. 5, 6, 7 on the pain scale.  They said I could have medicine whenever I needed it.  The contractions were getting so painful and I wanted medicine, but again I didn’t want to admit that anything was wrong so I kept trying to hold out.  Finally upon realization that I wasn’t going to get any sleep in the kind of pain I was in I consented to a small dose of morphine for the pain.  I fell almost immediately asleep and it really did help to dull the pain. 

At about 2 a.m. I awoke briefly and the contractions had gotten worse and if there were any lingering affects from the morphine I was DEFINITELY not feeling it.  I tried to sleep for awhile and ended up waking up Kyle and calling the  nurse sometime around 4 in the morning.  The nurse came in and gave me more morphine but this time I didn’t feel a thing.  If it was helping with the contractions I couldn’t tell because I was in more pain than I had ever been in in my life.  I even let out a few blood-curdling screams like in the movies. The nurses then also noticed that I was bleeding.  At this point I knew there was no stopping the babies from coming.  I became a little bit crazy/irrational.  I was in SO much pain emotionally that I couldn’t handle the physical pain anymore.  I was begging for an epidural.  The nurses wheeled me quickly over to labor and delivery and moved me to the labor bed.  I was shaking uncontrollably and don’t know how they managed to get me how they needed me.  They checked my cervix and said I was completely dilated.  The anesthesiologist came in and said that he thought it was pretty silly to give me an epidural at this point because he didn’t think it would work in time.  I was hysterical.  He gave me some other kind of medicine to dull the pain slightly but.  I continued to feel contractions and asked if it was going to help any more than that, because they were still SO PAINFUL.  

The told me to push whenever I felt ready.  I pushed so hard and man did it hurt.  They encouraged me to keep going and that I was almost there.  I pushed one more time and they told me that our son was out.  I immediately felt so much physical relief.  They took Joshua for a minute and then let me hold him.  I was holding him he gasped a little bit.  I was shocked.  I asked why he had breathed and they told me he was still alive.  This sent me into hysterics, I wish they would have warned me before they let me hold him.  I knew  he was too young to live for long but I was upset that my baby was still alive and no one was doing anything to save him.  Kyle got to hold him too and he also felt him breathe and he moved when Kyle touched his little hand.  We don’t know exactly how long he lived but it was probably only a few minutes.  

After delivering Joshua I was SO TIRED, I think all the meds had gotten to me and all I wanted to do was go to sleep.  The doctor had broken Adelaide’s water shortly after Joshua was born, but for some reason my body didn’t respond like it normally does and it’s like it had forgotten there was another baby in there.  The contractions stopped entirely and my cervix had gone back down in size to about a 5. They told me that she had to come out but they were going to wait awhile to see if contractions would start they gave me MORE medicine to make contractions start, but said it was okay to rest for awhile.  I slept for about an hour until the doctor was ready to try again.  Oh, the anesthesiologist also gave me an epidural at this time since she didn’t seem to be coming as quickly.  Man was that like heaven on earth.  I would like to think that with a regular birth I would have been strong enough to handle it without so much medication, but when I knew that I was going through all of that pain only to lose my babies it was too much.  I was grateful for the epidural.  The doctors told me to push if I felt ready, I thought I felt a contraction although it was hard to tell because I was so numb.  I pushed which was also strange because I couldn’t feel myself pushing.  It must have worked though because Adelaide came out with one push.  She was born sleeping, she had likely passed in the womb sometime after her water broke.  It broke my heart that Joshua got to live for just a few short  minutes but she never did.  

We got to spend the rest of the day loving our babies as much as we wanted.  I couldn’t believe how beautiful and perfect they were, 20 perfect fingers and toes.  Joshua had funny toes like mine (the middle toe is longer than the big toe).  My mom thought they both looked like Kyle and I can definitely see his mouth especially in Joshua.  They looked so much alike which was strange because they were a boy and a girl.  We held them and cried over them and took pictures of them.  I will cherish those few short hours that we got with them for the rest of my life. 

We love their names.  We hadn’t decided on names yet because we barely found out the genders on the day we were admitted to the hospital.  We had talked about it a little bit during our stay but it was a really hard decision since we didn’t know if they would live or not.  Kyle had always wanted to name his firstborn son Joshua Alvin after two of his heroes.  His best friend Joshua passed away at the age of 18 and Kyle looked up to him more than anyone.  Alvin is after Alvin Smith the brother of the prophet Joseph Smith who also passed away.  We hoped to tell our son how special he was because of the two amazing men he was named for, but we hope that even though he is not still with us he still knows how special his name is.  Adelaide has been my favorite name for years and years and I probably even told Kyle when we were dating in high school that I wanted to name my first daughter Adelaide.  I love how beautiful and feminine it is and I know it fit our sweet baby perfectly.  Before they were born, we weren’t sure we wanted to give up these special  names to children who wouldn’t live, but when they were born we both knew without even having to talk to each other that these were their names and even though we wouldn’t get to have them with us in this life they were special enough for our special names.  

Thanks again for the continued prayers, we appreciate them.  We are slowly trying to pick up the pieces and figure out how to live our lives again.  Everything feels the same but different and it will definitely take time, but we are truly so thankful to everyone’s prayers and even though this is a tragic time in our lives, we know they have been answered


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  1. So sorry for your loss. what a amazing story about their names. Hope you find peace and comfort in knowing you will see them again. Thanks for sharing your story… Hugs

  2. Amanda and Kyle, we love you two so much and have been praying so fervently for you. we will continue to do so. We are so sorry for your loss and greive for the pain and anguish you have been asked to bear. We cannot imagine what it must be like but we do know that the Atonement is real and true and that it will help you through this until you see your babies again. It will all be made right through Christ. We love you,
    Taylor and Jessica

  3. Kyle and Amanda we sure love you and are feeling a little of your pain. You are in our thoughts and our prayers each night.

  4. Amanda and Kyle. Even though I just met you because of these 2 sweet babies, I feel so close to you. While reading your blog, I was brought to tears. Thank you for sharing your story. Heavenly Father knows of your pain and suffering.
    Our angel, Elizabeth Capri, also had my perfect name that I had thought up for years before hand. It was so hard to give her that name.
    We were sealed in the temple one month after she was born and it was the most incredible experience. I am so grateful that families are forever.
    Hang in there. If you need anything please let me know. I will continue to pray for you to find peace.

  5. Amanda, you do not know me but I am friends with Janice and Beverly and your family in Puerto Rico. I want to express my condolences to you and Kyle and your family. I know that this is a difficult time for I have been in a similar situation. At this time you need to grief and I know that it is very difficult to imagine but trust me as this grief is intense, equally if not more, will be the joy that awaits you in your life. When I was in a similar situation what helped me when I got home was to kneel down and thank the Lord for trusting me with that experience. I know that it feels like a dream (I remember trying to wake myself up, or hoping the doctor will call and tell me all their machines were wrong and that all was fine when I first learn of my experience, etc…).

    You are a mom now and forever and nobody will replace those tiny angels, it is interesting that this intense grief will refine you and make you an even better person and a very patience mother. I wish there was a shortcut, but trust me the Lord is with you. There will be good days and not so good ones and at one point the grief will diminish. Peace will continue to come to you for I am sure peace has come to you already.

    We are praying for you. With Love, Glory Harris

  6. Jim& I love you & we ache for what you ve been through. We have felt spiritually blessed by the things you have done & said. Please know we will morn with you & rejoice with you in times to come. Uncle Jim & aunt grace

  7. You don’t know me. I am a friend of your sister’s friend, but I just wanted to tell you how sorry I am. On October 26th we lost our little Hyrum (named after Hyrum Smith, my 4th great grandfather) when I was 20 weeks along in my pregnancy. I don’t want to say “I know what you’re going through” because not a single person on this earth has the same feelings as someone else even in similar situations. I do want to say that a lot of what you have shared here on your blog has touched my heart and brought me to tears. There are some phrases you said that I could say I felt that exact thing! I have a hard time putting things into words and I think you do that beautifully. The pain of laboring for a baby, or babies you know will not be with you on this earth is indescribable. I have been in labor with a living child as well as with Hyrum and the emotional pain was just how you described. I also felt embarrassed to be asking for an epidural, but the emotional pain was so bad I wanted to have something to just numb it ALL! It’s amazing how much love I have felt in the past month and I hope you have felt that too. I also agree that although people may see your strength it is not like you are always strong. I think it’s ok to feel horrible sometimes. The pain of “the life you didn’t expect!” is so real, and it will hit you at sudden times. Because we are blessed with a Savior we DON’T have to be strong all the time. The Atonement is there for us when we just CAN’T DO IT! Grieve, cry, pray, feel. That emptiness will always be there but I think, and hope, it will get better. I don’t know you, but I love you and I’m so sorry.

  8. Wow. This is Rachel (you left a comment on my blog a few days ago)…reading your story just brought me back to my days in the hospital when I delivered my 20 week twins. I know you’re probably coming up on their official due date (mine were born in November and due in April), so I know the emotions are still strong and heavy. And that’s OK. I think it’s good for us mommies to feel so strongly about our babies, and to miss them so intensely. It just reminds me how much love I will always have for my babies. Thanks for sharing your experience. I know you will always be able to hold that time near and dear to your heart. I know everyone grieves differently, and you don’t know me, but if you ever need to just express your feelings to someone, feel free to contact me again! It’s always nice to talk about our babies… It keeps their memory alive for me πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Rachel, you are correct, my due date was tomorrow and it’s definitely been a rough couple of weeks. Thanks for your comment your so very sweet! I am looking forward to continuing to follow your blog πŸ™‚

  9. Amanda this is so beautifully written. I don’t know why I’m rereading all this because it’s making me cry, but I won’t ever forget them. Such a beautiful family you all are.

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