After having my first child, who was a complete surprise, my husband and I decided we would decide when we were going to have our next. So when Jack was 2 years old we decided it was time to try again. It only took about 2 months of “trying” before we tested positive. That was around the middle of November– we were living with my husbands parents at the time and it was really hard to keep it a secret. (Easier for my husband because he was always at work or off building our basement apartment in my parents house.) We decided we would give the secret away as an early Christmas gift and sent my 2 year-old upstairs wearing a shirt that said, “I’m going to be a big brother!”
When I had my first doctor’s appointment they did all the regular stuff. I got to hear a heart beat, got all my tests, and told them when we thought the due date was. Then she measured fundal height and said I was measuring a bit big. I have a history of twins in my family (my mom has identical twins, her only brother has identical twins, and my maternal grandpa was a twin just to name a few. All twin boys) so I should have guessed right away, but I thought I probably was just bigger because I’d already had a baby. We set up the next appointment and went blissfully home. When I told my mom, however, she was convinced it was twins and decided we should go to the mall to a gender ultrasound shop. I was a little leary– I’d be getting an ultra sound at the doctor’s office in a few weeks anyway– but I couldn’t stand not knowing. We went in early January. I even let my twin brothers tag along, even though the entire way there I kept insisting I wasn’t having twins. (It skips a generation, right?) I was called back and the tech put the gel on my stomach. When she put the wand on my belly to spread the gel around the first thing we saw on the moniter was two little heads and she swept it back and two little boys! Within 10 seconds I had answers to both questions.
I’ll skip ahead here. I went to a TON of extra appointments and couldn’t go to the midwives I was planning on, but they actually had a doctor in the midwife clinic for high risk people like me so I still got the midwife like visits. They are 10 times better than a regular OB just in case your wondering. I was told 37 weeks was full term for twins, but since I had to be induced 2 weeks past my due date with my first and my mom went 1 week over with her twins I pretty much just moved my date back to mid August so I wouldn’t be depressed when I didn’t have them sooner.
When I was six months along and out shopping people would stop me and say, “You’re due any day now, huh?” and I’d just laugh and say, “Nope.” It’s really amazing going around talking to people when your going to have twins. Everyone has a story to tell you about so and so and their twins. I went to the zoo when I was 36 weeks and pretty much scared everyone that saw me out of being pregnant ever again. I was that big. (I could put a dinner plate on top of my stomach with room to spare.)
When I was 36 and 3 days pregnant I was out with my family having lunch at my favorite mexican place. At some point during the meal everyone noticed my belly would tighten up at regular intervals. I really hardly felt anything. In fact I would miss most of them if I didn’t have my had resting on my belly. My mom said I should go to the hospital to get checked. I was less enthusiastic to make the journey for them just to send me home. She finally convinced me, but I told her, “I’m not taking my bag, because they’re going to send me home.”
I got to the hospital and did all my pre-check stuff. I wasn’t in any pain so I think they were more humoring me than really believing I would stay. The first nurse to check me decided I was almost a 4. I was shocked! My first was a long hard labor that hurt for hours before getting this far. About twenty minutes later my doctor came in and checked me too. He said I was closer to a 5. I was staying! I sent my mom home with my son to get my hospital bag while my husband and I walked the halls a little. I was floating around so excited! I could feel the contractions now, but still no pain.
We got all set up and the doctor convinced me I should have an epidural– just in case things went south during the delivery. I got scared and said yes. That was the most frightening part of the whole process! Things progressed rapidly after that. My husband got all suited up and we moved to the operating room where they deliver all twin pregnancies. (I totally understand that too because when I got wheeled in there I counted 10 people and that was just the staff on hand for my babies! I had enough feeling to know when to push and if I had been able to push when I was ready I would have had my babies on July 18th– making every 4th day in july a birthday in my family– but I took a little longer because of all the set up so Myles Tavis was born at 12:05 July 19th weighing 6lbs 0oz. and Andrew Thomas weighing 6lbs 6oz at 12:07 (born breech because the doctor just reached in and grabbed his feet and pulled him down.) We found out afterwards that they had experienced a small amount of twin-to-twin transfusion and Andrew’s red blood count was really high. But they were beautiful and so tiny! They lost about a pound in the hospital so when we all left 2 days later they only weighed 5lbs and 5 lbs 6 oz. Considering my first was 8 lbs 10 oz this was TINY! We had to place them in ‘light suitcases’ for their jaundice, but they grew like weeds and nursed like champs! Andrew is now the smaller of the two always trailing his brother by about a pound, but they are both happy and healthy. And we decided we liked surprises rather than planning them out– because planning came with a surprise baby anyway!