Tuesday, August 31, 2010

11 years

11 years ago tonight, I was in active labor with my twin girls, Rachel and Rebecca. I knew that one of them had passed, and with the forced delivery, the other had no chance of survival. I was running a fever, on IV antibiotics, and fluids, and I was in a lot of pain. I thought the pain would come from pushing, so I kept refusing good pain meds. Afterall, my babies were not that big. I was on demerol, and i remember sleeping while in labor, but waking up in the peak of contractions. I felt sad, and scared and out of control. No one told me what to expect. All i knew is i was going to have my baby girls, and they were going to be dead. I remember my heart was broken. I remember my mom trying to help me, but she didnt have the words to take away my pain. No one did. I remember the room was dark, when i started to feel pressure. I remember panicking and my mom telling me to gain control, and then i told her i didnt have any control over this. Afterall, if i had control, i would be sitting in the house we just bought a couple weeks prior, very pregnant and reading my twin books. Instead, my babies were victims of Twin to Twin Tranfusion Syndrome.
When they were born, shortly after midnight, on September 1, i was so scared. I didnt want to look at them, but after Phil saw them, he urged me to look. I am glad he did. they were beautiful. perfect, tiny bodies. I didnt hold them. I didnt know how to react.
when i went home the next day, i was so sad. I just sat on my couch and cried. my heart was broken, my arms were empty, and i was filled with regret for not holding them. For not giving them names. They didnt have names for a week after they were born. I didnt know i wanted to name them. there was no service for them. No grave for me to visit. no proof my babies existed.
over the next few years, i dealt with a lot of regret. I hated that i never had a service for them. I still have not had a service for them, and i am still bothered by it. I also regret that i didnt feel that i should pay for a funeral for them. a plot, and grave marker. There was nothing with their names on it, for the world to see, until after Brock died. I feel like i let them down.
Now, it has been11 years. I sit here tonight, thinking about my girls. Wondering what it would be like to have 11 year old twin girls. What would they like to do? What type of music would they like? would they be super close or decide they could not stand each other? Would they like boys? Fight over boys? or think boys have cooties?
I will never know the answers to these questions. Things that parents complain about, ot take for granted. Simple things like favorite colors, or favorite sports. I will never know. I am jsut left with wonder.
It has been 11 years, and not a day goes by that i dont think about them. I miss them. I love them. They are my first born children. They are with 4 of their siblings in Heaven, and watching over 4 of their siblings. The oldest of 10 children.
I dont know details about my girls, but i do know that Rachel and Rebecca have made an amazing difference in my life. I know that my girls would be amazing people. I know that I will see them again someday. And i cannot wait for that reunion. a lifetime seems to long, many days, to be reunited, but i know it is not as long as it seems.

So Happy 11th Birthday to Rachel and Rebecca Andersen. My sweet baby girls. I hope to see you in my dreams tonight.


  1. Hi Melissa,

    I read your story on FOLFOH, and I am so very sorry for your losses. I too am a baby loss mom. My son, Cole, was born too early at 24 wks/2 days and returned to Heaven after fighting for his life for 9 days in the NICU.

    I attend an infant loss support group at Scottsdale Shea Hospital on the first Thursday of every month between 6-8pm. If you are interested in attending, it would be great to meet you. The support group is held by an AMAZING counselor, Dr. Abby Garcia. She just so happens to be a baby loss mom herself so she truly understands what we are going through. A couple of other things the hospital has planned is a Walk to Remember for National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Month on October 9th at 8am. They are also holding a Candelight Remembrance Service on December 4th at 6pm. If you are interested in attending any of these things, please let me know and I can get more information to you. My email address is brandyleethorp@hotmail.com

  2. Thank you so much Brandy, for the invitation. I would love to walk in October. We are getting ready to move to the far east valley, so I wil be taking a break from my support group. I am starting private grief counseling. I might go check out your group in a month or so.
    Thank you, and I am very sorry that your son Cole died!