The experience of being pregnant with twins has opened up a whole new world of experience to me. I simply had no idea what was ahead when I got the exciting news about twins. Obviously my doctor knew what was coming, because he was not very excited at all. He was polite, but in hindsight I realize he was probably thinking more of the hazardous journey ahead.
While I am still very eager to meet these baby girls, and the idea of twins still delights me, I have lost some of my zest thanks to all of the complications that keep popping up. Last night I had my fifth episode of spotting / bleeding, and for the second time (during this pregnancy) I spent the night in the hospital for observation. Fortunately we again received a good report that the babies are fine and healthy and growing wonderfully and developing as they should. During the extensive sonogram last night, the technician delighted in showing us the little hands and feet, the beautiful little faces, and she even exclaimed in joy at the kidneys and bladder. What a great reminder of why we are doing this!
The not-so-good news is that my bleeding condition appears to remain very fragile and delicate, and now instead of only “restricted activity”, I have officially been put on “bed rest”. I’m hoping that sitting in the easy chair in my room counts as “bed rest”, too.
While I was reading a book given to me about twins, I found the following sidebar written by Dr. Connie Agnew. Her comments were particularly encouraging to me since I used to think “bed rest” sounded simply divine. Here is what she said:
To the casual reader, the idea of bed rest might sound great…Write a few letters, plow through the teetering pile of books next to your bed, watch a bunch of movies. But it is actually very hard. Most of us are highly functioning individuals, used to accomplishing a lot each day. And bed rest can go on for anywhere from several days to several months. So recognize that you are making a huge investment in your babies. Every day you gain is another day they might not have to be in the neonatal intensive care unit at your hospital.
I thought we had made it through the most tenuous part of this pregnancy, and I received permission to slowly do a few more things, which I eagerly embraced. Several weeks went by with no negative side effects, and I rejoiced in my newly-regained freedom. We attended the home-school conference, I attended church, and I sang in the choir. I drove the children to piano lessons and occasionally popped into Walmart for a quick stop.
But alas, thanks to a rough week, with an especially scary amount of blood loss yesterday afternoon, I am now facing even more restrictions than before. The encouraging part about this next stage is that it will be over soon. I just need to make it to the middle of June (the end of June would be even better) and then we are “home free”. The babies will likely live if born before then, as we have passed the critical “age of viability” stage. (I’m currently at 25 weeks gestation.) But they would probably have to spend many weeks in Peoria at the Children’s Hospital, and that’s an experience we’d like to avoid if given the choice.
This morning my doctor stood by my hospital bed and sternly told me that if I could not manage to rest at home, he would insist that I stay at the hospital. I told him that I would pass this information on to Michael, because then it would for sure happen that I rest, since Michael would far rather have me at home in bed than in the hospital in bed. The doctor smiled a little and said, “I’m sure.”
On that note, I think I will go take a nap. Sounds like a good idea.