My pelvis had transitioned so quickly that my body was prepared to deliver at 20 weeks, but the babies were far from ready to meet the world. I heeded my doctor’s orders and tried to take it easy. I haven’t talked to any other mom of HOM who wasn’t sick during the first trimester. The hormone levels reach such a height when you are carrying multiples that it is common to be sick – more grace for our journey.
From this point on, my pregnancy was strangely uneventful. I had to go in to the doctor’s office every Thursday starting at week 16 to receive a very painful injection to prevent preterm labor. I also had a few visits with a Nurse Nutritionist. She taught me about all the vitamins and foods that I needed to consume to help develop different parts of the babies. She also explained how important it was that I didn’t develop gestational diabetes.
Dr. Turnquest and her staff are great. Everyone there was exceptionally friendly and reassuring. Because we were such a high risk case ultrasounds were part of our weekly appointment and it was wonderful. I needed to see the babies with my own two eyes every week to ease my nerves and be sure that they were all still okay. If I could have chosen what number of which sex we would be having I would have picked 3 boys and 2 girls. I had always wanted more boys than girls. But I didn’t want any one child to be all alone. Courtney, the ultrasound technician, performed our ultrasounds most of the time, and at fifteen weeks gestation we went in so she could tell us how many blue blankets and how many pink blankets we would need. I forgot to bring a tape (VHS tapes were the least of my worries!) to record on so she went the extra mile and found a blank one for me. It was amazing to find out what we were having. Baby A was the first one up. A Boy! He was the biggest the entire time which was good because he was on the bottom of the tangle of arms and legs. Baby B was next. A Girl! She was always nestled on my right side, and the most painful at the end of my pregnancy. Baby C was on my left side. Another Boy! Baby D was always right in the middle. I never quite knew where that one was going to be. It was another Boy! I started to get a little concerned at that point because baby B was really outnumbered by the men in the family. Finally, Baby E. A Girl!! I had gotten exactly what I had hoped for. God knew I needed something at that moment to lift my spirits. Courtney froze the pictures and put an arrow to show the sex. She also typed the sex so everyone could see. We took the tape home and watched it over again. That night we took the tape to Rob’s sister’s house for everyone to see. I had everyone guess what they thought it would end up being. Not a single person guessed correctly. It was fun to see everyone’s reaction and share our joy. We repeated our game at Mom and Dad’s too.
Other than my big belly, I didn’t feel pregnant until I started feeling them move at about week twenty-two. The first time I felt one move I was sitting in the movie theatre. I had gone with the women’s group from church to see “The Nativity.” I was just sitting there when I suddenly felt Sydney kick me. She was always at the top of my belly and moved constantly. I put my hand on my belly to see if I could feel it on the outside. There aren’t words to describe my excitement. I grabbed my sister-in-law’s hand and she was the first person to feel their tiny thumps. I was so excited that I didn’t think about waiting to let Rob feel them first. I remember putting my hand on the top of my belly and pushing down lightly. Her head (I think) would go down and float back up. I could feel different body parts all the time. That was a big difference than most singleton pregnancies. I could push on my belly and move the babies because they were packed in like sardines.