Friday, February 7, 2014

My {in}Fertility Story (part 3)

If you haven't seen them already, you can read My {in}Fertility Story (part 1) & My {in}Fertility Story (part 2).

After telling me the bright, red blood was not a good sign, my doctor told me to come in on Monday and get checked out. I got off the phone with her calm and collected and after we hung up, I started crying and pleading with my mom and sister. There was absolutely NO WAY I could wait 2 days to figure out what was going on.

Thank God for my mom who was just as distraught as me- "go to the Emergency Room, Jack." Kara came with me and my mom got in touch with Adam who, by the grace of God, was listening to his IPhone for music on his run and was able to answer. My mom told him what had happened and that I was going to the Emergency Room. His response? "I'm going to run there and meet them."

In the meantime, Kara and I got settled in and tried to make light, hoping it was just some fluke thing that I had bled before and had 2 miscarriages and that, this time, it might be OK. It felt like forever before Adam met us and even longer before they FINALLY took us back to the ultrasound room. Kara stayed in the room and Adam headed back with me.

The ultrasound tech was so sweet and she knew we were incredibly nervous. She told us in a dark, warm room, that she wasn't going to be able to tell us much, it wasn't her job, but she could show us the screen and give us a general idea of what we were seeing. I remember, "she has no idea how many ultrasounds of myself I have seen after years of being monitored and looking at 2 non-viable pregnancies on the ultrasound screen. I knew what to look for."

Within seconds of her using the ultrasound wand, Adam and I stared up at the screen; I knew exactly what I was looking at. Thru my tear-blurred eyes, I could make out what I was looking out but couldn't get the words out. My mouth went completely dry and all I could make out was a smile as tears rolled down my cheek. The ultrasound tech moved the wand around and was able to make the 2 circles on the screen bigger. "There are two sacs in there and from what I can see, everything looks perfect."
One of our first ultrasounds!

Adam immediately texted my mom, whom we didn't know had spent this entire time praying on her knees at home that I may be spared from the incredibly pain I had already felt. He sent her a picture of the screen with the 2 sacs.

With huge smiles on our faces and a small amount of relief in our hearts, we were moved back to our room where Kara waited. She greeted us with a huge smile- Adam had sent her the picture too. A nurse came in to give me the doctors report on the ultrasound- all the medical info that I desperately want to hear. I knew now that two sacs meant twins but were they okay? Would they survive? Why was I bleeding?

The nurse looked at my chart, "Twins! I have new twins at home!" She went on to tell me that when pregnant with twins, bleeding is extremely common at the beginning. As she spoke about her experience of bleeding and showing me pictures of her now months old twins, I felt my shoulders began to relax. How amazing that she just happened to be my nurse. The paperwork confirmed what she had said- everything with the 2 babies inside me was perfect. They were formed perfectly and that the bleeding was just a common side effect.

Twins! TWINS! TWINS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I couldn't wrap my head around it. No one had twins in my family, none of my friends had twins, I just couldn't believe it. The 3 of us sat in the emergency room as they discharged me all in a dreamy haze- trying to picture our future. Adam and I with 2 babies, Kara with Quinn having 2 cousins. My mom came to pick the 3 of us up and I think the only word to describe her face and voice was ecstatic! Her prayers had finally been answered.

I can only imagine what the 2 days following I was thinking, but for some reason I can't remember. What I can remember is NEVER letting my guard down. At this point, I was about 70% excited and relieved and 30% anxious that I was certainly not out of the woods yet.

I went to the doctor on Monday and once again everything with the babies was great. But now I had another small medical issue to deal with- hyperstimulation of the ovaries. Because of all the medication I took to not only get pregnant, but that I was currently taking to sustain the pregnancy, my body couldn't handle all of it. My ovaries, which are normally the size of grapes, had swelled to the size of softballs. No wonder I already looked pregnant at 7 weeks! Following doctor's orders, I needed to be on bed rest to that the swelling go down, so I headed to my mom's house for the next few days.

This is when I actually can't explain why my body and mind weren't matching up. I had heard of post-partum depression. But, I had never heard of a hormone caused depression while being pregnant! I guess with the hyperstimulation and the overabundance of natural hormones that being pregnant with twins, it was just too much. For a few days, maybe a week, I fell into a depression. I just didn't get it- I knew it didn't make sense and I knew it was caused my hormones, but why I was so depressed. I literally couldn't be excited, couldn't have anyone say congrats to me, I didn't even want to talk about having twins. My mom, the best person in the world, tried to make me feel better. She went out and bought a yellow baby bottle vase filled with 2 roses- one for each baby. This sweet gesture was just too much. I had my mom drop me off at the train station and had Adam pick me up. I cried in the car no understanding why I was so sad, but he reassured it me it was normal and that it would subside. And a few days later, it did! I could finally feel so excited about the 2 little babies growing inside me.

A few days later, I faced my next hurdle. Adam and I were headed to St. Croix for a vacation/trip for Adam to do his 2nd 1/2 Ironman there. I was torn about not going- flying seemed like a scary idea- and being away from my now weekly appointments. If the pregnancy continued, I would only have one more week with my fertility doctors before heading into the choppy waters of normal ob/gyn appointments. I decided it was worth it to go and what was meant to be would be.

Adam and I went to St. Croix and had such a fun, relaxing time. The 1/2 Ironman is a LONNNG race, especially for a newly pregnant with twin’s woman sitting outside in the heat for 7+ hours. We went to the local store and bought a comfy beach chair that I could hang out in for the duration of the race. The trip was perfect- we walked romantically along the beach and divulged about our joys and fears about our future with 2 babies, we enjoyed the solitude as we lay at the pool, and we both laughed when I put on a dress that showed my now growing belly.
Glowing at 10 weeks in St. Croix!

When I look back at the pictures, I was literally glowing. I knew it was still too early to tell friends and other family, but with my belly, people at St. Croix could tell I was pregnant. And I LOVED IT! Finally!!!! I had waited soo long to be the pregnant one, the one people let go to the bathroom first, to fawn over and ask the due date and whether were going to find out the sex. And you can't even imagine how much I reveled in the joy on their faces when I told them it was twins- it was truly a dream!

Adam had missed a ton of work and had gone in late so many times that it wasn't feasible for him to continue coming with me to my appointments. Thank God for my mom! She made it to so many appointments- including my final appointment with the fertility doctor. Her eyes were amazed at the growth from our two little ones in just a few short weeks when Adam sent her the ultrasound picture. It made my heart swell with pride and joy when she cried listening to their heartbeats. There was no greater joy to me then seeing her so happy. It was only a couple weeks before when I couldn't speak to her about having the twins and now we were sharing in the excitement of our future.

My mom and I sat with my doctor and I went on and on about how much she meant to me and that she would forever hold a most special part in my heart. She helped give me what I always wanted. She handed my folder over to me and we both hugged. I was so terrified to let go. Letting go of the safety of my weekly visits and the constant reassurance of their heartbeats every visit.

At this point, I was now about 85% excited and about 15% anxious and nervous. I still wasn't out of the first trimester- when most miscarriages occur. I scheduled my appointment with my new ob/gyn and told myself that if everything went okay, I would finally let myself be 95% excited (I knew to never be 100%).

The day before my birthday, Adam and I drove up to Hasbrouck Heights to have the ultrasound done. I couldn't concentrate; I just wanted to feel relieved. If it went well, I would be able to finally announce it as I was out of the first trimester. After a very long, silent ultrasound with an extremely skilled tech, the doctor came in. To him, his words were probably routine, but to us, it was the best news we could have ever heard... "Everything looks great! We'll see you back here in a few weeks."

Adam and I barely made it out of the parking garage and I had already started to announce my TWIN pregnancy from the rooftops (aka facebook!).

My facebook announcement!

***As many of you know this isn't the end of the story. Join me later for a new series documenting our harrowing experience learning that our pregnancy was in extreme danger at 28 weeks pregnant all the way through the 7 weeks we spent in the NICU***

Part 3!

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  1. Jackie, I just read this and my eyes teared up. I'm so happy for you and
    Adam. Wish I could see all those babies sometime.
    kris tholke

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