|Oscar is baby A. Owen is baby B. Can you kind of see it?|
Last week, I got a two letters from readers who just found out their pregnant with identical twins. What are the chances? One reader already has three kids, the other reader has an 18th month old daughter.
Now stop reading scary internet stories about identical twins!
While there are a ton of risks, there's also the chance you can have a boring smooth pregnancy. I was lucky to have one! Here's my story.
I was 25 years old, and Ella was 18th months old. I decided to stop breast feeding her at that time. A month later I got pregnant. Whoops.
The biggest challenge I had early on (before I knew I had twins) was that I was really tired. I slept around 12 hrs a day. I was working from home full-time, and had the luxury to quit when I became absolutely useless. Not only was I tired, but my brain stopped functioning. Writing a simple email took all my concentration. My husband thought I might have depression, but I assured him it wasn't. I was happy, tired and dumb!
I should have known something might be up. I was able to work full-time when I was pregnant with Ella, so I was confused why this one felt so different. That, and I was HUGE. I remember going to a baby shower when I was 18 weeks pregnant and sitting in between two women that were due in a few weeks. My belly was as big as theirs. I didn't think much of that either. I thought I was having one of those warped body image issues people tend to have.
When I got home, I asked Rob, "No, really, don't I look big?" I turned from the front, then the side pushing my belly out really far. Talk about a tough spot for a husband. He surprisingly handled himself really well. Instead of being his overly honest self, he convinced me I looked great and not to worry about it. Ha!
Confession: I didn't go to the doctor until I was 14 weeks pregnant, and I didn't find out I had twins until I was 20 weeks pregnant. Rob was transitioning to a new job and I didn't want to get trapped filling out paperwork twice. Looking back, I shouldn't have been so lazy, but it felt right at the time. Other than being tired and stupid, the pregnancy felt normal to me.
I like to think that for the most part, things usually end up on the majority. Most pregnancies aren't twins. Most pregnancies for healthy 25 year-old-woman are smooth. Most of the time, the things I worry about, never end up happening. So I coasted right through the first 14 weeks.
As soon as my doctor heard a heartbeat at my 14 week check-up, she moved on to other patients. I guess it's not in their job requirement to look for more. Noted. My next appointment was for my 20-week ultra sound at another office. We couldn't wait to see if we were having a boy or a girl! I had a feeling I was having a boy. I would have been shocked if my prediction was wrong.
It was a Friday afternoon. Ella and Rob came with me to the appointment. The technician put the jelly on my belly, then placed the transducer (the camera thing) right in middle of my stomach. As soon as he put it on, he looked at the monitor and pulled the transducer off my belly. It was as if he had seen Bigfoot. He waited a second, looked over the notes, then asked:
"Have you guys had an ultrasound yet?"
"So you guys don't know anything about this pregnancy?"
"Nooo, why?" Scared.
"Oh, you're having twins!"
That's when I had a moment of hysterics. Laughing, crying, calm, the whole bit. Part of me felt peace of mind for quiting my job. Even up until this point, I had felt like such a loser! I couldn't wait to email my old boss! Also, I was grateful I found out so late because I had less time to worry about all the potential risks.
The technician observed that Oscar had slightly more fluid than Owen. This happens a lot with identical twins--one of the babes starts taking up all of the fluid. It's not good. I worried all weekend about it. On Monday morning I called and made an appointment with a twin specialist to give it another look. I needed to know. He took another look that day and assured me everything looked fine and not to worry.
From then on I had an ultrasound every week. I think. During the last few weeks, the twin specialist called me a Baby Making Machine. I was so flattered.
|Look! Accidental Chevron Stripes! I was sooo ahead of the times.|
They were huge--Oscar was 6 pounds 6 ounces, and Owen was 6 pounds 3 ounces. Even being 4 weeks early, they didn't spend anytime in NICU. We went home with them easily from the hospital. Here's a cheesy and overly sentimental movie Rob and I made of their birth. Enjoy!
Thanks to my two readers for inspiring me to remember this crazy time of my life. Good luck!
FYI: We're done growing our family. It feels good to move to the next phase of our life.
Here's a picture I took of my belly the night before I had the boys. My face says it all. After the jump.