Whew, it’s been a while since I left you with the news that we were pregnant with quadruplets. No, that wasn’t a typo and your eyes weren’t deceiving you. I WAS pregnant with quadruplets. We skipped ahead in the story to update you on my hospital stay and the loss of my grandma. Now we rewind back to continue the story. The last story was, “Sit back and watch God work.” If you haven’t read it, go back now, refresh, and then continue with this story. The time frame is somewhere between late February and early March. Enjoy!
And then there were three….
In the two weeks after learning about our Quads, life sort of went back to normal. We went back to work, I came home and put my feet up. Morning sickness and other hormonal changes slowly began to seep in. I also learned I had a cold virus and that took me out for a day or so. I thank God for my crockpot and homemade turkey noodle soup with LOTS of ginger. I ate it for breakfast, lunch and dinner! It settled my stomach and satisfied my taste buds… and the ginger helped with the smells that were taking over my nose. --Side note: Turkey is always a good alternative to chicken, and I began making mine with turkey some time ago, now I love it; plus the turkey thighs supplied a better portion of meat.-- Of course, being new to pregnancy, a cold virus meant I was very limited on what I could and couldn’t take for a remedy. I remember feeling impressed that my doctor took my call so quickly after hours. In fact, I spoke to him directly! He advised me that tylenol was my best option to keep my fever down, as a fever could pose a threat to the babies. And of course, drink lots of fluids.
One day, about a week later, towards the end of a long day at work, I went to the bathroom and discovered some light pinkish/brownish discharge when I wiped. That really freaked me out, so when the day was out, I cleared my afternoon schedule and ran home. Straight to the bathroom I went and discovered more. Nothing heavy. Nothing bright red. But it WAS something. I notified David (yes, I tell him everything), step mom and mother-in-law and I immediately went to rest on the sofa. I then began to pray. I mean… the Lord and I had a deep, real and serious TALK. I pray daily, don’t get me wrong, maybe not like the prayers you hear in church. I believe in praying like I’m having a conversation with the Lord right there in my room. My prayer that day was so full of raw emotion. Here I was, fearful of something that I didn’t understand, pregnant with 4 babies, and I didn’t know what was happening. And I felt guilty and convicted for that fear… like, didn’t God just give us this miracle? Are you doubting now? How could you after all he’s taken you through? So I prayed and cried about my fear, prayed and cried about my guilt, and prayed and cried for protection over my babies, myself, and my husband. I CRIED. The discharge continued into the next day, so I called the doctor’s office and shared what was happening. They assured me that everything was probably fine, but as long as I didn’t have any heavy bleeding and such, that there was nothing I could do. My appointment was approaching in a few days, and I was directed to continue to drink plenty of water, rest, avoid exercise, heavy lifting and anything that lead to pelvic pressure.
At our appointment, here we were again. In the room, lights out, David to my left holding my hand, and I am staring at the ceiling. This time David understands what he may or may not see on the ultrasound screen. At the end of the examination, the lights stayed off, the doctor turned the screen so I could view, and he had a different response. “There are now three babies”. Before we could utter a word in disbelief, he then showed us a little flicker of light. That light on each tiny baby was their heartbeat. “Would you like to hear their heartbeats?”. We then proceeded to listen into each heart beat; loud and strong. I smiled in amazement, David choked up a bit. Those were our babies. And although they were itty bitty, teeny tiny beings on screen… they were so full of life. Yes we were told they were there, and we had faith. But there is something comforting in seeing them on screen, it renews your faith and gives you hope.
As we exited the doctor’s office that day, we didn’t cry about our loss. We actually had a peace over us, that we knew was nothing but God. And we prayed. We prayed for that fourth baby, wherever it went, and we prayed for the 3 that were hanging on strong. We were still expecting 3 little miracles, and we couldn’t stress or cry over our loss; because they depended on us. Our next appointment was critical, because that would confirm our 3 viable babies and release us back to my ob gyn. And as the doctor stated, every week in the first trimester is critical to their survival, so it was important for us to follow his orders and take it easy. Somehow those directions were much easier to follow this time around. We continued on with our journey, much quieter than before, and much humbler. Triplets, we’re having triplets.
I want you to try and imagine what was running through my mind in the days that followed. After years of trying for a baby, we never miscarried. So…. was this a miscarriage? Was it a “vanishing twin”-- a phrase that we’ve heard about before? Did my body just absorb what was supposed to be a baby but never truly developed into one? And the even deeper question….one I never spoke out loud… Did I cause this? I mean afterall, I do work hard and i’m on my feet most of the day. I can’t just go on leave in the first trimester. It leaves you a little helpless, and the burden was on me. Or so I thought. I was the incubator, I was the one being asked to sit, slow down, stand up and not bend over, wear comfortable shoes, and follow every other old wives tale that was thrown at me.
Those who know me well know that I can be a busy body. I am practically on skates at work with all of the running I do, picking up students here and there. Then I come home, work my private job 2 days per week, and try to cook and keep my home tidy. I am NOT superwoman, however, being a wife is a full time job. And, I enjoy cooking, so I try to do so at least a few times per week. I love the preparation of fresh ingredients, rocking out to my music, watching all of the ingredients come together and sharing my creation with my husband. And dog, lol. I’ve been this way since I was old enough to cook. Cleaning is a different story, I can’t get to it all each day… but I do tidy daily and keep things in order as time is available. So imagine the shock mentally I felt when I had to sit my rump down. It’s easy to say, but difficult to do. Add in exhaustion and sickness and it would seem even easier, but the guilt of not performing your normal duties (slacking), can weigh on you like a boulder. And the big one… how do you keep a smile on your face when your husband walks in, so he doesn’t come home to ratty hair, old sweats, sleeping on the couch, a dirty home and no dinner? I know I probably sound like I’m crazy or from the 1940’s… after all, I AM carrying 3 babies... but these are things I like to do in my home, and I’m not sorry for it.
David and our family assured me that it was okay, and that I had to rest as the doctor said… and my body was telling me to sit down, but I was dealing with an internal battle. It took some time, but I then gave in to the sickness and just sat, even when I wanted to do more. The nausea and vomiting took over and I was strapped to the trash or an emergency barf bag. Not exactly the sexiest. Some days I could only eat between 9am-6pm, before a sickness came over me that left me feeling terrible. I called it twilight time because my morning sickness became worse at night. David had to then verbally force me to eat because I just couldn’t do it. Everything smelled to me, everything tasted terrible, and the thought of opening my mouth to put more than a few spoonfuls of food in was not working. So I stayed curled up on the couch like a sad sack of suds. Suddenly I lost 8 pounds and was the lowest I had been in 3 years. I finally discovered my secret to weight loss--pregnancy! I kid. Sitting and resting were the new directions daily, especially at work. I would sit whenever I could, and rest my head, because I was just too tired to do anything else. I thank God I completed the bulk of my teacher performance review in the first half of the year, because I knew it was impacting me professionally. I’m still trying to figure out how some teachers go the entire school year pregnant… I was struggling and it was just the 2.5 months!
Anything for our babies because I can never forget, God remembered us.