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17 – 20 Weeks. Pregnant with Triplets:
If I’m really honest with you the days possibly week or longer after getting out of the hospital passed in a bit of a blur. I had friends offering to come and see me and help out around the house and just pop in to lift my spirits but I closed myself off. I am usually the first person to engage in a bit of mindless gossip and I don’t even usually need an excuse to catch up with my friends but I just couldn’t face anyone, my head was a mess and as hard as Martin tried to keep me positive the only thing I could keep in my mind was what the consultant had said…. “A baby that far behind in size at this stage doesn’t usually stand much chance of survival”
Writing this I’m still crying my eyes out, I’ve never met these little babies growing inside of me but I already love them so much. I sit and I day dream about what they will look like, having them at home and just holding all of them, seeing their first little smiles, smelling their heads and just taking in that baby smell of milk, bubble bath, baby creams, such a beautiful smell that I’m sure all mums and dads any anyone who has held a baby has smelt but then bam it hits me. What if after all of this I don’t get any of that? What happens if I never get to see them, cuddle them or be a mum to them?
As days and days go by Martin and Tia and my friends started to lift my spirits, Martin is probably the most positive person I have ever known and he would give me little inspirational chats about how we are fighters and the chances are we have made 3 other little fighters and oh my days if they are anything like Tia they will stop at nothing! Trust me when Tia wants something she has determination, even if it requires going through every emotion known to man until we give in to her! At the age of about 8 Tia was obsessed with those small Capuchin monkeys, she went on and on and on about getting one for months, she googled them obsessively, she was always showing me adverts, looked up care plans, she done her research to build a case to get one! Obviously I was against it but she didn’t give in! I woke up one morning checked my emails and there in my inbox was an invoice for a Capuchin Monkey she had ordered online, all the invoice required me to do was pay the deposit and when the Monkey was born pay the remainder of the bill! I nearly fell out of bed! I never bought the monkey but it still leaves me wondering to this day if she had access to my bank card or paypal account would we have a Capuchin monkey right now?
I have just received a massive bit of good news and this really does lift my spirits, my little sister Racheal found out she is pregnant and attended her first scan, she was so excited on the days leading to the scan, we talked loads and I kept mocking her telling her her first baby wouldn’t just be 1, I actually thought she was going to trump me and have quads! I kept telling her she would be having twins or triplets, she kept telling me to shut up but it turns out her fiancé had been saying the same to her as well! The day of her scan I sat by my phone eagerly awaiting the news! 45 minutes after the start time of her appointment and my phone rings….eeeeekkkk it’s Rach! “OMG Melanie!! Its……… TWINS” I done to her exactly what everyone had done to me when I told them our news…. “Is this a wind up Rach? I want to see pictures!!” While we were still talking she messaged the pictures over to me, I couldn’t help but laugh my head off! I am so happy for her but I am also so happy for me. My sister lives in Berkshire and because of our age gap we weren’t as close as we used to be, she is at that age were clubbing isn’t an issue, I’m starting to feel like if I go clubbing then I best book a week off work to recover! But sharing multiple pregnancies is great, we talk endlessly about our pregnancies and the feelings we are getting, I can reassure her about the symptoms I’ve had that she’s now getting and we can talk about the struggle of getting more than 1 of everything! I really can’t think of anyone better to go through the same experience with and not only that it has been bringing us closer and closer together. I’ve got new focus, I’ve got more positivity and I will fight on!
There is a documentary currently being made on multiple births in the UK, the documentary company are following a few expectant mothers of triplets and twins, although I can’t go into mass amount of detail about the show can say it is being made for ITV and will probably go out in the new year, they do follow us to hospital appointments and other days out (they aren’t here all of the time). This is something we volunteered to do and don’t get paid for, the reason I really wanted to do this initially was to capture my pregnancy, back when I was naive and thought this would be a breeze! By doing this I really wanted to capture all of my scans on film, capture the joys, the highs and most of all see the birth, there is no chance Martin will look when they cut me open and I won’t be able to see a thing because they put a curtain/divider just below my chest. When I had Tia (VBAC) I was offered a mirror but I was young and very stupid my first reaction was to ask … “why is there something wrong with my face?” when I found out what the mirror was for I declined, I don’t think I was mentally prepared to see a tiny human exiting my vagina! But now older and ever so slightly wiser I am keen to see 3 little babies being lifted out of my belly and have this memory and film to keep forever.
One of the first things the documentary company filmed with us was our 20 week scan, they came around to ours in the morning a couple of hours before the scan and they wanted to film us getting ready (wahoo….. not us getting dressed! No one needs to see that!), to see how we prepared ourselves before each scan, as you can imagine with the news we keep receiving at each scan the build-up is tense and I’m usually fraught with emotion. This particular day I had woke up starving hungry and just as they arrived to start filming Martin was about to make us a cheeky bacon bagel! The smell was enough to make my mouth water I’m sure I even dribbled at one point thinking about putting that bagel in my mouth! If the bacon bagel scene makes it to the final cut of the documentary please look at my face closely I’m sure it turns from pure joy of getting this bagel too…. You keep messing with my bagel I’m going to eat your arm off in a minute! They filmed us taking the bacon off the grill from every possible angle, the bacon was put on and taken off the bagel at least 4 times! Finally when they were happy with that shot we had to leave the kitchen to go sit at the table, again doing this 4 times. Yayyyy my butt is parked in the dining chair and at last I’m about to put this bacon bagel goodness into my mouth, oh the smell, the butter had melted into the bread the hot bacon with crispy bits……CUT!!! What, what what…….! As fun as it is and I am really enjoying being filmed, im loving making a lasting diary of the pregnancy but I’ve learned a valuable lesson…… I won’t be attempting to eat while they are filming again. It took me almost an hour to eat that bagel by which time it was hard and cold!
We all headed off to the scan and as anxious as I was after my time in hospital we didn’t have to wait long at all, the consultant was great, she knew my fears and put the scanner in the area of the small baby first, all I want from the scans is to see 3 healthy heart beats and the small baby is the one I worry about the most. And there it was, one really strong heartbeat and the baby was even bouncing around, I relaxed. She went on to check the identicals and although we saw their heartbeats I didn’t need to because I could see them having a fight! 1 of them had their foot in the other ones mouth – this made us all laugh! After the scan our consultant went through the babies measurements with us and they have all grown. The identicals are pretty much matching in size and still bang on size for their gestation, our little baby is still much smaller but the good news is she is growing continuously on the same percentile as she was previously so she hasn’t had any drops – she is a little fighter!
When a baby is measuring as small as our singleton in many cases this is because of a possible birth defect, her femur bone does measure a lot smaller than it should which could be a marker for downs however the babies size could be a marker for a number of birth defects or the baby could just be well below average and a small baby. The Consultant did talk us through our options which included an amniocentesis however when we looked at the risks it carried for all 3 of them and also the fact that if it was something other than downs we still would be no clearer, we decided against it. Martin and I have decided regardless to what problems she may have it doesn’t matter, she is our baby and we just want her to arrive safely with her sisters …. Our 3 tiny, beautiful baby girls.
For regular updates please look at our Facebook page. www.facebook.com/torbaytriplets
According to the Baby Centre app the average baby at 20 weeks is approximately 26cm long from head to heel and weighs about 300grams.
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