Friday, February 25, 2011

BitterSweet BirthDay

February 23rd
I was at 32 weeks 6 day shy of 33 weeks!  I had two appointments to go to.  My ultrasound at 8:30 and my OB at 10:45.  At this point it is amazing that I'm still pregnant but I felt that even though I wasn't feeling any contractions or potential labor signs, that we should go to my appointments with our bags packed in case my doctor said we needed to go to the hospital for bed rest.  So we packed the night before and headed out early to our appointment. At the ultrasound appointment the measurements of two of the babies were going great.  Then the tech got to the third and had the doctor come in to watch......all I heard from the doctor was "where's the fluid?"...."fetal demise".  Our day changed at that very moment.  They stopped the ultrasound and said to go to my OB appointment as scheduled.  They could not verify which baby was still alive, baby girl or baby C boy.   We had about an hour until my OB appointment to sit in the car and think about this horrible news we just heard.  We are such an emotional mess and of course we are super worried about the other two.  Ryan and I were trying to comprehend the news we just got and how we were going to handle the rest of the pregnancy knowing one of our sweet babies was no longer living.  Dr. Thomas (my OB) was surprised my body hadn't gone into labor on its own yet.  He said I needed to have stress tests done on the babies every other day.  He sent us to Labor and Delivery at the hospital, for some blood work and to do a stress tests on the two babies to make sure they were still handling the pregnancy okay and that the fetal demise wasn't affecting them.  We got to L&D at 1:30.  I was put on the monitor and within 10 minutes one of the babies heartbeats was at a decelerated rate for too long.
  The next 35 minutes was a whirlwind.  I met the hospitalist OB, my nurse, the anesthesiologist, the pediatrician, Ryan barely had enough time to run to the car to get the camera (we thankfully had packed!) And while running to the car, call our parents to let them know I was going into surgery.  At this point Ryan and I still didn't know if we were going to have two boys OR one boy and one girl.  I was in the operating room getting prepped, while Ryan put on all of his scrub gear outside.  I was ready for surgery and felt them start before Ryan was even in the room!!  He made it in just in time to take a picture of our first baby being pulled out.  By 2:15 the babies were born.  I heard baby number 1....."it's a boy!" Here comes baby #2...."It's another boy!"  At the same moment of realizing that it was our baby girl we had lost,  I heard the cries of our two precious boys.  So many mixed emotions, it's hard to express in words.

Baby A: Vincent Ryan 4 lbs 15 oz
Baby B: Karissa Marie 2 lbs 14 oz (our angel baby)
Baby C: Landen James 3 lbs 7 oz

Ryan was able to go take pictures with the boys right away.
Vincent Ryan
Landen James
Vincent wasn't breathing well from the very beginning so they were taking him straight to the NICU, but Landen was stable enough to come see me in the operating room while I was being stitched up.

Two things that I will always remember about this moment,
1. How cute and small his face was
2. How warm his cheek was when I kissed it
Our 1st  picture with Landen
After the surgery I was wheeled into a recovery room.  The nurses got Karissa all cleaned up and dressed in a cute outfit and then brought her in the room with us.  Ryan and I were able to hold her and take pictures with her and say our goodbyes.  She was so tiny and precious.  It was hard to see her but it was good for us to be able to say our good byes.  She will always be a part of our family and her brothers will hear about their sister Karissa who is in heaven.

The hospital put together this memory box of Karissa
And the nurses all signed this card for us.
We will miss you forever Karissa Marie Holguin

Thursday was a great day for the boys.  They had been put on CPAPs immediately after birth, to help them breathe and by 10:00 Thursday morning, the boys were doing so well that they were able to come off the oxygen completely. They still had a feeding tube in their mouth but the nurses were saying that wasn't enough food for them, they seemed to be hungry all the time.  So Thursday afternoon they had their feeding tubes out and were eating out of the bottle. They started out with 2 mls of formula which wasn't satisfying them enough so they were then given 5 mls (they get their feeding every 3 hours).  

Friday the 25th the nurses were no longer measuring out amounts for them, they just let them eat as much as they wanted within a 30 minute period.  Both boys were up to 30 mls by the afternoon!!!  At this point they are doing so well, they are going to be moving to a less critical NICU room Saturday morning and they are now considered to be at the "feed and go stage".  Since they are breathing on their own, they just have to maintain their eating amounts, gain some weight (really only Landen has some weight to go yet, Vincent is already close to 5 pounds!)  And they have to maintain their body temperature outside the incubator.  The boys will be co-bedded sometime on saturday.  I can't wait!!! We will be able to get pictures of the boys together for the first time.

Here are some pictures of our precious boys:

Vincent Ryan (he looks alot like Ryan!! Living up to his name)

They have the NICU signs I made for them on their incubators, and
the blankets and beanies my grandma knitted for them.

little mini Ryan

Landen James (Ryan says he looks like me.  He has lighter hair than Vincent. But they definitely look like brothers!)

So warm and cozy

I guess I couldn't get him to smile for the picture. haha

Ryan and I are so blessed with these two little guys. And we are so Thankful for everyone praying for us.  We are surrounded by so many people who love us and who have been praying for us during this whole pregnancy and we really are grateful for the kind words during this hard, yet happy time.  We know the Lord is taking care of sweet Karissa and has entrusted us to take care of Vincent and Landen.
We are looking forward to the the fun times ahead with our twin boys! 


  1. Heidi, everything about this blog is absolutely precious! I can't believe you are able to post so soon! I love the pics of you and Ryan with those tiny little babes! I was truly blessed by your words of courage and faith about Karissa. I am so glad the hospital was able to give you time to meet her and put together a memory box for you and the boys in your life. May you continue to heal and embrace all of the "first" life moments x2!!

  2. Heidi, what a strong and faithful mother you already are to your children. I am so sorry for your loss. I am glad that your two boys are doing so well. Please know I keep you and your family in my prayers. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you and your family, or if you ever have any questions about anything. Your babies are so lucky to have you as their mom!

  3. Heidi and Ryan, your faithfulness through the loss of your sweet baby girl and gratefulness for the special blessings of your boys is awe inspiring. So many times throughout your pregnancy I know you were reminded that the Lord only gives triplets to amazing people. It takes even an even more amazing couple to go through the heartache and equally joyful time you're being given now. Your little family will remain in our prayers. The Boumas

  4. Heidi - I can't believe what a strong and wonderful mother you already are. Congratulations again on your wonderful boys. May God bless and continue to love and care for Karissa. I've so enjoyed reading your blog - and following your amazing experience. Congratulations :)

  5. WOW!!! First of all Congrats Heidi....and Ryan!! Heidi....I just was reading about your experience, and I totally cant believe ur a mom! Its very hard to understand why things happen the way they do, but let me tell you 1st hand, having gone threw ALOT of ups and downs myself, i have realized that EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON!!!!..This has truly been my motto the past 5 years!..Eventually somewere down the road u will see why god intended for things to happen the way they did!....Heidi cant express how happy I am for you!..I know you will be a wonderfull mother!..Use this experience to grow spiritually and as a person!...CONGRATS TO THE BOTH OF U!!!( hey and by the way Target has the cheapest and best prices on diapers!)..LOL!!

  6. I cried reading this, will keep you and your family in my prayers.