When Naava and Aminadav were born, I was scared that they might look fetus and alien-like or somehow grotesque. I was afraid that when I looked down, what they actually looked like could never match up to my vision of them, what I dreamed they might look like.
Instead it was the other way around – they were so exquisitely and perfectly formed, my son and daughter, so beautiful and so human, beyond my wildest imagination. They were just miniature. I will never forget those tiny ears. Those tiny ears and their perfect intricate folds.
I remembered them from months before as embryos - blastocysts that looked like the surface of the moon magnified on a microscope screen. "Hey, I remember you!" I wanted to tell them, in awe of how much they had grown. The nurse placed them in a little box side-by-side, so that Naava was curled behind her brother. Yoel filled out the cards with their names for the chevra kadisha, the ritual burial committee, to pick up with their bodies.
I was wheeled down to the operating room for an emergency D&C since Aminadav's placenta didn't come out, and Yoel followed behind the gurney. That was the first and only time we spent with our babies.