Darien and Grace Oborn

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Day 5 - The Architect Pays Us a Visit

Tonight we received a visit from Dr. David Richards, the infertility doctor who created our two little babies in the lab. He is a very fun person to be around and he shared with our family some of the things he looks for in an embryo (oxygen level, cell alignment, etc.) I am very happy to know that Darien and Grace have the best possible DNA from both Debbie and I, as they were chosen from over a dozen other possibilities. Dr. Richards is an expert in giving people like us the best chance to conceive, and we'll be forever grateful for his talent and knowledge.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Day 4 - A Few Bumps in the Road

Day 4 started out with a doctors appointment, which seemed innocent enough. What I didn't know going in is that the babies blood was cleaned in-utero by the placenta and now both of my babies livers needed to 'jump start'. One sign that their little livers aren't keeping up with demand is a build up of bilirubin that causes their skin to turn yellow. Both Grace and Darien began to pick up a yellowish tint and the pediatrician sent us straight to the hopsital for blood work. The results showed that Grace was high, but not in danger. Darien on the other hand did have high amounts of bilirubin and was prescribed 24 hours in the 'light box'.

He spent the next 24 hours in the light box, only coming out for food and diaper changes. He was visibly uncomfortable and I laid by him the entire night, trying to readjust the cloth that kept the light out of his eyes. The night was very long and very stressful. I did all I could to keep him in there as long as possible so that the light could work through his skin to break down the bilirubin and get it to a level that his liver could support.

The next day Darien was tested and his level came down from 13.8 to 11.9, well within the 'safe' range for his age (still measured in hours). I was relieved, but it was very difficult forcing my son to be in so much discomfort. Only the knowledge that it was for his own good and the love that I have for him allowed me to keep him in there all those hours without taking him out - which would have been the path of least resistance I assure you. I learned a vital lesson of being a father and what it is like to see your kids in pain. My own life now is far less valuable to me than that of my kids - there is no sacrifice too great or too costly that I would be happy to do for them both.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Day 3 - The Training Wheels Come Off

Day 3 - Time to take the babies home! Debbie and I were really excited to finally get out of the hospital and to take the babies home. (We've been 'padding the nest' for the past 3 months and were very anxoius to introduce the babies to their new home). No more nurses to help us, to take the babies so we can sleep at night, it's all on us now.

Debbie and I learned a lot in the first few hours home. First we learned that our old used Acura Integra would not fit the car seats, and unless we purchases a new car with more space, we'd have to borrow a truck/van/suv from someone in order to take our babies anywhere (including the pediatrician). We also learned that the babies needed to be fed and changed every 3 hours (including the night time). Day 3 ended in utter exhaustion.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Day 2 - Crash Course in Baby Care

The second day of fatherhood proved to be the real test. Prior to this I had limited to NO experience caring for infant children. I watched intently as the nurses fed, changed, burped, and dressed my two little ones and recorded their every move in my photographic memory. Gradually, the nurses came around less often and Debbie and I started taking over some of the parenting responsibilities (above and beyond just taking pictures of my cute kids!)

Today we also had many visitors; Kent Oborn (grandpa "papa"), Sharyl Oborn (grandma), Gale Oborn Johnson (Aunt Gale), Spencer Oborn (Uncle Spencer), Adam Edwards, Misha Edwards, Ron Dyer (grandpa Dyer), Myrna Dyer (grandma Dyer), Brett Twiggs (uncle Brett), Linda Twiggs (aunt Lindy), Nathan Twiggs (cousin), Brianna Twiggs (cousin and future babysitter).

Friday, October 21, 2005

The Journey Officially Begins

Day 1 - October 21, 2005

Today started out like any other day. The sun was out, not a cloud in the sky. Debbie and I made our way to the hospital where she was admitted and hooked up to a pitocin drip to help her contractions along. 10 hours later, at 6:06 PM, Darien was born, with a full head of dark, curly, hair and he topped the scales at 6 lbs 10 oz. 10 minutes later, at 6:16 PM Grace made her grand appearance. She was visibly smaller than Darien, weighing in a just 5 lbs 11 oz. Debbie gave birth in the Operating Room, which is standard proceedure for multiple births. We were all dressed in clean room gowns, which I haven't worn since my days in the BYU computer chip clean room. Below is a picture of me holding up Darien who is a whole 8 minutes old.

Within the span on 10 minutes, I was the father of two. When they first came out I was faced with the early dilema of twins: which one do I bond with first? I took time to bond with Darien while the nurses cleaned up Grace and then they were both wheeled out of the operating room destined for the nursery.

At this point, I shed a few tears (under my face cover) of joy and relief that Debbie and the twins did so well during the whole ordeal. I was especially impressed at the strength and resiliency of Debbie during the last few minutes of 'pushing'. Despite being nauseous from the epidural, she fought through and pushed like an Olympic weight lifter going after the gold medal.

The idea that two new precious souls were under by stewardship quickly began to sink in. A feeling of humility, fear, and gratitude came over me as I made my way down to the nursery to see how my two new angels were doing. Debbie's parents, my mom, and my friend Adam Edwards met me down in the nursery where the nurses observed the twins for any irregularities and bathed them for the first time.

Soon the babies were given the green light to join up with their mom for the very first time, and boy was Debbie excited to see them! All the hard work, the infertility treatments (including shots with huge needles!); it was all well worth it!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

T-Minus 14 Hours and Counting

Tonight (October 20, 2005) Debbie and I received a call from the hospital letting us know that our doctor had scheduled us to come down and check in to the hospital tomorrow at 11 AM. All of the waiting, wondering, its all coming to an end. The time is near. Anticipation and worry are starting to build up. My every thought is on Darien and Grace, willing them to the safety of the delivery doctor's steady hands.

From this point forward, my life will never be the same. Yet, knowing that doesn't make that much difference. Having just turned 33, I've had over 11 years to wonder if I've got what it takes ... if I am truly "ready" for the responsibility. I may be wrong, but right now I firmly believe that there are only two necessary requirements to be a good parent, desire and time. I say desire because you have to want to be an all-star parent, but time is so often the thing that keeps parents from achieving that objective. I've worked exceeding hard with my best friend Adam Edwards to build a business that would allow us both the time we need to spend with our children.

Every day that I work, I work to free up future time with my kids. They'll never know about my time at BYU, working as a research and teaching assistant in the electrical engineering department, taking year-around school to finish the 5 year program in 3, the Masters Thesis which had to be written and rewritten 5 times. They won't have any remembrance of my first engineering job in Los Angeles, living in my parents' house, commuting to work at 4:30 AM. They also won't remember the time when I saved up every penny I had to buy our first house in Chino Hills - and when I was a few thousand short I invested my lives savings on DELL stock, which went up 10 points the next week and allowed us to get the house! They won't remember the time when I worked 50 hours a week for Cognigen, or 60 hours a week for eMaxDirect, or 70 hours a week for Telarus. They won't know that I risked everything and spent my life savings starting Telarus, which turned a profit just 1 month ahead of the time when Adam and my savings accounts would run dry. They won't even know that their mom worked as a Physical Therapist for 5 years before they were born. All of it will be a mystery to them - all they will know is that their mom and dad are always there for them, and that money just always seems to be there.

I can't wait to see them for the first time; to hold them, look into their eyes and see into their pure spirits. My parents worked very hard to put me in a situation where I could succeed. I likewise have worked very hard so that they can have all of the opportunities to do even better than me one day. The love of a father is something that can only be experienced, and now I am beginning to understand. 33 years and I have never felt like this before; scared, proud, full of love, protective, excited. Most of all, I'm excited that I'll have the time to share my life with my two angels.