My son Cory and daughter-in-law Jamie's friends Will and Lindsay have 6 month old twin daughters. When Jamie was in labor, Will and Lindsay came into the labor room to check on Jamie. Jamie told Will and Lindsay she was fine, but wanted to know how their appointment had gone with the doctor to find out if their in-vitro fertilization had worked.
Lindsay said, "We're having twins."
Then, everybody cried.
In today's Beaumont Enterprise on the front of the Lifestyle section, there is a letter from Lindsay to Will as a Father's Day tribute. Get out your Kleenex, folks.
(Photos by Lora Waller)
As this Father's Day approaches, I am reminded where we were a year ago today.
The road has been long, and this letter is my way of honoring you for who you are, and for all you do.
William and I were married in 2005. We began trying for a baby, but month after month brought only failure.
Just prior to Fathers Day 2007, two years after praying for a baby, Will came home from a friend's (expecting father) daddy diaper party, saddened to be in a room surrounded by dads and dads-to-be.
After dozens of tests, we decided to move on to the big league of reproduction - in-vitro fertilization.
Two months after that daddy diaper party, we began the lengthy process. At $20,000 or so a try, this was both a scary and exciting time.
Five days before Fathers Day, 2007, our tiny embryos were conceived by talented embryologists in a sterile dish.
That Father's Day morning, the doctors slipped two embryos into my uterus through a tiny catheter.
I looked over at my husband, who was holding my hand, and whispered "Happy Father's Day."
We had to wait two weeks to see if they implanted.
My husband was a sport at delivering the hormones and medications through the entire process. Who wouldn't want to stick a two-inch needle into the hip of a woman full of hormones?
Before we knew it, two weeks had passed and we got the call.
"You are pregnant."
At the routine six-week ultrasound, we were ready to see our baby's heartbeat for the first time.
The ultrasound technician turned the screen toward us.
"This is the sac, and this is the baby," she said. "This is the other sac, and this is the other baby."
Our eyes filled with tears. We were expecting twins!
The pregnancy did not progress smoothly. Pregnancy-induced hypertension led to light bed rest.
My darling Will was there every step of the way, so proud to have twins on the way.
The due date was the first of March, but on a mid-December night, I woke Will to frightening news. My water had broken. They rushed us by ambulance to Texas Women's Hospital in Houston.
Despite all their efforts, they could not stop my contractions. An emergency c-section was performed on Dec. 16, 2007.
At 1:35 p.m. and 1:36 p.m. our tiny daughters entered the world, born at 28 weeks - more than 11 weeks early. Grace Laurel was born first at 2 pounds 4 ounces, and Isabelle Lane at 2 pounds 12 ounces.
Will was now a dad.
Both girls needed help breathing and were in for a fight for their lives. Will and I battled the ups and downs that any parent faces in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Every day was harder than the next. Our babies looked so frail and helpless.
Were they going to come home?
The girls were dependent on oxygen and a feeding tube for more than a month, but they progressed well.
I remember the first time we held them. Will never looked more proud. Despite the tubes and wires, he thought they were so beautiful. He could not wait to bring his baby girls home.
Seven and a half weeks later our prayers were answered. At 4 and 4½ pounds, our tiny angels were reunited in a single bassinet, and rolled down to our car.
It was the proudest walk of my husband's life. A true glowing father.
Thank goodness Will was the one to drive home from Houston with these tiny babies in the car. I stared at them the entire way.
They both came home on apnea monitors, which they outgrew only a few weeks ago.
How are Daddy and his girls now?
Well Daddy is great. A little exhausted, but that is true of any hands-on-dad, especially one with twins.
Our girls will turn 6 months old tomorrow. They are perfectly healthy and super chunky. We feel blessed every day.
Both weigh in at more than 15 pounds now, and are full of personality and spunk. Grace is curious and nosy, while Isabelle is animated and silly. Both melt their Daddy's heart with big smiles and sweet coos.
Will continues to be an amazing father. He truly was meant to be a dad, and a wonderful husband.
Dreams really do come true.
Happy Father's Day, Will.
I love you.
©The Beaumont Enterprise 2008
Sunday, June 15, 2008
Happy Father's Day to my fabulous son Cory! I'm so proud of you. You're a great dad and we all love you very much.