Thirty-two years ago today I was hugely pregnant with twins. Within 48 hours, on December 10, my babies would arrive in the world and I would be recovering from a C-section and a broken shoulder joint.
The first months of my pregnancy were normal. The doctor and mid-wife at the birthing center kept telling me I was going to have a BIG baby. But at seven months, an ultrasound revealed that BIG baby was really twins. Exciting and scary news for my husband and I. My normal pregnancy soon began to change and by the time I entered the end of my eighth month, I had developed preeclampsia, a potentially fatal condition for mother and child. I was hospitalized for a week, then released. A day later I was back in the hospital where, within the next 12 hours, my son and daughter were delivered by C-section. During this time I also fractured my shoulder joint. (Twins are often born premature and underweight but mine were born on their due date and had normal birth weights – 8 lbs. 4 oz. and 6 lbs. 13 oz. I was huge. Teenagers laughed at me...)
Three days after their birth the twins went home with my husband, but I remained in the hospital for another two weeks. Two operations and two months later my shoulder joint had finally healed and I was able to hold them without assistance for the first time. Our little family had a bumpy beginning. The help we received from my husband's parents saved us.
Although the birth experience was not what I anticipated, my babies were everything I imagined and hoped for. They were mellow infants and happy children - smart, funny, creative and kind. Their teenage years were bumpy, but we all got through it. After high school they both went on to obtain advance degrees and have successful careers. My son is a wonderful father and I know my daughter will be a great mom if she has children. We're very proud of them.
Like all siblings, Zach and Camas have their prickly moments, but I’m pleased that they are friends and still close. They are probably rolling their eyes by now at my depiction of our family (not as perfect as I have perhaps made it sound). But we do love each other and enjoy spending time together, a sweet blessing.
On Wednesday they will be 32 years old. We won’t be able to celebrate their mid-week birthdays with them in Portland, but we’ll talk by phone. Happy birthday, my sweet babes. You'll always be my super kids!