Friday, November 23, 2007

Three years ago this month


When it gets to be the holiday time of year, I go into a weird state of remembering the last months of my pregnancy with the twins. It was one of the scariest times of my life.

I've mentioned before that we had just accepted J's adoption referral when I realized I was pregnant. It was quite a surprise, but we were thrilled at the idea of a sibling for J.

During the same ultrasound which told us they were twins, we were told they were conjoined.The doctor could see two brains and two hearts, but below that you couldn't tell what was going on. He couldn't get them to move apart. After three weeks of that situation (there are not many support groups for parents of conjoined twins on the internet...it's almost the opposite of the autism situation in that regard) we found out they were not conjoined, but monoamniotic (sharing an amniotic sac and placenta, but with two umbilical cords, which were extremely tangled from the outset).

The ob said, "Don't go looking on the web, because you'll just get worried". When has anyone ever taken that advice, I wonder? The websites we could find all mentioned 50% survival rates for monoamniotic twins. If one twin doesn't make it, the second twin can't survive. There is not much you can do except monitor things, and then deliver the twins as early as is safe. The other parents on the website www.monoamniotic.org probably saved my sanity. There were stories of loss, but also a lot of wonderful stories with happy outcomes.

It was such a strange experience. I didn't feel the twins moving that much, which in a way was a blessing, because when they did move I kept thinking about their umbilical cords, and wondering if they were getting more tangled. On the ultrasounds, B. was very active, and G. seemed to be asleep. I'd have to drink a really sweet drink to get G. moving to the ob's satisfaction. We didn't choose names until right before my c-section, and we didn't decorate their room at all, because we felt superstitious about doing too much preparation.

Once the twins were born, and doing okay in the NICU, we just assumed everything was fine. And it is fine, but a complicated kind of fine, as you all know! But I think this time of year will always have a shadow for me, remembering all the ultrasounds and the waiting and wondering


4 comments:

kristen said...

I'm fairly new to reading your blog, so I didn't know your story. I can understand why the time of year would bring back a lot of those worries and concerns.

It's complicated, yes, but how lucky you are...

Have a wonderful weekend. And thanks for sharing...

burgiboogie said...

Wow, you guys went through so much. It must have been so hard to be in "limbo" like that for so long. I am glad the twins are healthy little boys these days (Autism aside of course.)

KAL said...

Wow, I didn't know your guys were monoamniotic. What a scary time your entire pregnancy must have been. Our doctor thought we were monoamniotic at the beginning until the membrane showed itself at about 10 weeks. I remember those first weeks being fraught. Well... it's important, I think, to remember times like that so that you realize how strong you truly are for having survived it.

Happy Upcoming 3rd Birthday B & G!

angie said...

I just found your blog on ask.com........I have momo boys as well, interestingly enough, the day you posted this bit was their 2nd birthday. If it weren't for the parents on monoamniotic.org, I don't know what I would have done, either. Loved seeing pictures of your twins.