I always wanted to be a mom and I always wanted to have a large family. My husband and I had decided to start trying to have kids shortly after we started dating . . . not initially realizing all of the fuss that we were going to have to go through to get there. We tried for a year to get pregnant on our own and the next two years I spent taking all different kinds of medications and seeing many different doctors, including fertility specialists. At the end of our last cycle of medications I went in for the pregnancy test and blood work. I received a call later that day with the results. The nurse calling told me that she had good news and that we were pregnant! She mentioned that my blood test results looked normal for early pregnancy and that they didn’t anticipate that I would be pregnant with multiples.
I was ecstatic to be pregnant. I went into the doctor’s office a few weeks later because I was having a reaction to fertility medication. My entire body was swollen; I had gained 30lbs and couldn’t feel my legs. They did an ultrasound and showed my pregnancy on the monitor; one black blob.
The next day, which happened to be our one year wedding anniversary, I went back to the doctor’s office to have a procedure to reduce the swelling and fluid build-up. As the doctor gave me an ultrasound my husband and I joked about how we would someday tell our child about how we spent our first anniversary at the doctor’s office. I wasn’t paying attention until I finally looked over at the doctor and the ultrasound monitor.
There were THREE black blobs on the monitor. THREE healthy heart beats! THREE!! Needless to say we were shocked!
When we left we immediately called our parents. Both of which argued with us thinking that we were just playing a joke on them. We would need three of everything; three cribs, three car seats, and a new car that would be large enough for a triple stroller.
My pregnancy overall was pretty uneventful. I worked full time until 26 weeks when I decided that I was ready to slow down. Two days later at an appointment my cervix started to shorten and my doctor put me on modified bed rest.
One of the great things about having multiples, and being a “high-risk pregnancy” is that I was getting ultrasounds at every appointment so I was able to see my babies growing and having healthy heart beats consistently. At 30 weeks my blood pressure skyrocketed and I was hospitalized for preeclampsia.
I lived at St. Vincent’s for the next five weeks. To keep busy (and my sanity) my friends and family would come and take me out of my room. My doctor gave me permission to leave the floor in a wheelchair, so I would go outside to get fresh air or go have dinner in the cafeteria with my husband. I learned how to crochet, did word-searches, played my husband’s video games and watched movies.
At 35 weeks my doctor decided that we had waited long enough. The babies were at the point that they were not going to be an “automatic NICU admission” so we made all of the phone calls and family came in from hours away. I delivered Jordin Timothy, 4lbs 14oz, Jiovanni Bradley, 4lbs 10oz, and Arriyonnah Margaret, 4lbs 1oz. Arriyonnah was admitted to the NICU for observation because of her weight.
It was one of the strangest feelings I have ever had, to know that I had given birth to three babies but to only be able to see two of them. To not be able to snuggle her and hold her close to me, to not be able to feed her and do what mothers are supposed to do. I was not able to see her until the next morning when I was allowed to get out of bed. My husband was able to spend a lot of time with her and would bring pictures back to me. The boys were healthy and went straight back to our room with us. Less than 24 hours after being born, Arriyonnah was brought back to our room with us and she was doing great.
Two days after giving birth we were all released from the hospital. The hospital gave us one cart for all of our stuff and one cart to roll the babies out on. My parents met us at the hospital and we filled their car with all of our stuff and we filled our car with our new family and home we went. I don’t think that my husband had ever driven so carefully.
Today the “babies” are 2 ½. They are super busy and learn new things every day. It is amazing to see little pieces of ourselves in them. They communicate with each other in their own way; they have opinions about everything and are not afraid to express them. They wake up each morning and hug each other and give kisses. Our struggles are no longer about feeding and schedules but about potty training and finding moments to give them each alone time with mommy and daddy. Our days are filled with joy, love, excitement and chaos . . .
But I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Advice to New MoMs: LAUGH! Sometimes that’s all that you can do!
What do to with an extra hour a day: I would spend it with my husband…just the two of us. Between the kids and both of us working full time we hardly ever get a moment to ourselves.
2011 FHM Secretary
Mommy to Jordin, Jiovanni, & Arriyonnah