I feel like I have to chronicle this journey though. I don't know why, or what compels me to do so. Maybe Ill be writing through my grief at some point. Maybe Ill be giving others hope. Or a voice. Or a place to know they aren't alone.
Whatever the case, here it goes. Im bringing blogging back ... but not under the funniest of terms.
Allen and returned to Fort Irwin in August as a pit stop to our new life. He had just graduated school and life was good. We decided to take the kids to Disneyland as our joint birthday celebration / farewell to California.
Gabrielle had just weaned, and I knew my cycle would return at some point, though I was quite concerned it had stayed away for a whole year. Baby fever had majorly returned, and we were anxiously awaiting the "green light" from nature to begin trying for our next addition.
Before going to Disney, I got a teasing text from a friend that said "don't bring home any more souvenirs!". We have a strong suspicion that John was our present we brought home from at 2010 trip to Disney world. I laughed and said "whatever, that would be great!". Famous last words.
I know my body and Natural Family Planning enough to know that ovulation was nearing, so I warned my husband that a decision to do those activities would probably lead to a baby. He was on board so we threw caution to the wind and hoped we'd have something to celebrate soon.
Heh. In hindsight, that makes me chuckle.
We arrived at our temporary home (a pit stop before our real move) and to the hotel that would be our home the next three months. Things went quite wrong from the beginning and I felt TERRIBLE. I had felt that way before, but the test was negative so I thought maybe I was just travel lagged. Still, I kept telling Allen that either I was pregnant or crazy. He told me it was crazy and to STOP taking tests. Sure enough, the faintest of lines appeared. I walked out of the bathroom, threw him the test and said "SEE?! Not crazy!". That's the kind of romance you get on kid #3.
The tests got darker over the days, but something felt wrong. I don't know what it was, but I just had an ominous feeling about things. The first scare came when I used those stupid Clearblue weeks estimators and it went from 2-3 to 3+ back to 2-3. We spent one whole weekend waiting for a miscarriage that never came. Finally I took another and it was a solid 3+. Waste of money and time, those things are.
Then the 7 week scan showed a tiny little baby with a heartbeat, but measuring very small. A week behind. I knew the date I got my BFP and that would have made it 4 DPO. If you know anything about NFP, you know that's not remotely possible. So I was sent home with the instructions to wait two weeks and come back for a follow up "viability scan". Most slow growers do not go on past the second trimester. Another two weeks of hell followed, where I kept saying "well, IF the baby survives, which it wont". I had even started to feel like I had grieved the pregnancy and I was ready to move on to the next step.
I feel like I have to put this photo here to show that this is what we saw the whole time. One heartbeat. One little baby. I have since seen the ultrasound on the computer at the OB. There was not a second of that scan where you would ever guess it was not just a small measuring singleton baby.
So I went back two weeks later, so nervous I could throw up. My two girlfriends went with me, even though I said Id be fine and I just wanted to get it over with. Im so glad there were there now.
The tech did an abdominal first. She knew how nervous I was, so she said "see? Baby has grown, heres the heart, great rate ....". I cried so hard I shook the picture on the screen. I couldnt believe I went in thinking I would lose the baby, only to find that s/he was perfect. And they did look perfect and measured right on target (2 days behind this time, but thats fine given I wasn't temping or charting).
So she moves the scanner around for awhile and we see baby, but s/he isnt really moving. In fact, the whole picture looks strange. S/he isn't moving, but it looks like its ... morphing? I thought the picture was just really bad.
The tech asks if she can do a transvaginal. Of course I insist she tell me why and whats wrong but she just said it all is great and she needs to back herself up for her records. I empty my bladder and go back thinking its for sure terrible news. She inserts the wand, we see baby and a heartbeat. I start to joke "hey, how many are in there?!" because even though baby isn't moving much, it looked like it was flipping back and forth. The tech was really quiet. She then went back to abdominal, again saying everything was fine, she just needed to look one more time.
Then I saw what looked like another heartbeat ... but there was already a heartbeat? That didn't make sense. She finally said that she was sure it was fine, but there did look to be two babies (SHOCK!!!!!!)). She called the doctor in and they discussed what could be "machine mirroring" which is where the machine malfunctions and the images mirror one another. They were about to have me come back in two weeks to see what they thought, when the babies very clearly broke apart ... put fluid in between them ... and showed us all that there was no mistake. Baby A and Baby B - measured great, heart rate great .... identical spontaneous twins.
After the initial shock, we were ecstatic. I told my husband in a fun way, and we told our closest friends and family. And then we googled.
Oh dear. Don't ever google, thats what they say. They are right you know.
We found out that not only are our risk factors with identical through the roof, they are even more so with mono/mono twins, which is what we believe we are dealing with since they were practically intertwined the whole time. We have an appointment on Monday for the level II scan to see if they are mono/mono or mono/di. We are praying for mono/di twins, as the risks are slightly lower, but the chances are slim after what we saw.
I want to chronicle this journey because I want my babies to be remembered, no matter how long they are in the world. I fell hopelessly in love with them both the second they broke from their heart shape and showed themselves. I want nothing more than to bring them home, safe, and I will stop at nothing until we do. But I know the reality we are facing .... all I can do is pray.