My experience being pregnant with twins was not a pleasant one at first. As a first time mom I had no idea what to expect from a pregnancy, let alone a twin pregnancy. There are twins in my family but none in recent years and I had no one I could ask for advice or to know what to expect.
My first trimester was when we found out I was having twins, because of that I not only had to see an OB but also a high risk doctor that’s called Maternal Fetal Medicine. So from 8 weeks until my third trimester I had doctor visits every 2 weeks. My first trimester also brought terrible morning sickness. I had to go to the emergency room twice for dehydration and was given different nausea medications to find something that could help. I ended up losing a little more than 15 pounds in my first trimester due to the morning sickness.
My doctors had told me that my morning sickness might get better or go away in the second trimester, I thought there was no way it was going away. I was on Zofran in my second trimester and by 15 weeks I felt so much better. I no longer had to rely on my medication to feel better. My second trimester was the best. I started feeling little flutters that felt like little butterflies in my stomach. Despite going to a doctor every 2 weeks I didn’t find out the genders of my twins until we did a gender reveal after the 20 week anatomy scan. We were so excited when we found out it was two boys. I also was happy because I passed the glucose test, which to me was not too bad.
My third trimester things started to get worse. I had so much heart burn every day. My boys were getting so big and were breech, they were kicking all over my stomach. It was getting very uncomfortable all the time. Then during one regular checkup around 32 weeks my blood pressure was elevated, I had the beginning of preeclampsia. Being later in my pregnancy they wanted to send me to the hospital to do further testing. I was hooked up to two heart beat monitors, one contraction monitor, and a blood pressure cuff. They sent me home to do a 24 hour urine collection, which was as gross as it sounds, and had to come back 24 hours later so they could get an accurate measurement of how much protein was in my urine. I was admitted and stayed overnight to get two rounds of steroid injections to boost the lung development of my boys and had to do a long ultrasound to make sure the boys were not in distress. During the ultrasound they had to count the amount of kicks the boys did within a 30 minute period. We saw my Baby A kick a little and then fall asleep, great timing Theo. After a little wiggling we did get him to wake back up and kick enough to show they were still okay for now.
After my steroid shots I had to monitor my blood pressure every day and go back to do nonstress tests, the heart rate and contraction monitors, 3 times a week. By 33 weeks the doctors told me I would have a C-section before 36 weeks. We had our last OB appointment July 5th, we were going to schedule my c-section that day. I had to have a C-section since my boys were both breech. They took my blood pressure and that was it, the OB came into the room and said it was very high and since I had already had steroid shots they didn’t want to postpone anymore. She said my boys were either going to be born that day or the following day, and she had already called the hospital to set up a bed and the on call OB was on his way. At the hospital they immediately started setting me up for a C-section.
My boys were born that day, July 5th 2019 at 3:16 and 3:17 pm.
Finding balance has probably been one of the most difficult parts of being a twin mom. Not only balance between taking care of one baby and then the other, but also balance between being a mom and being myself.
A question I get often about being a twin mom is how do I take care of two babies at once? That part is easy to me because I was a first time mom to two boys and I don’t know what it would be like to only have one. We have a pretty good routine where they eat and nap at pretty much the same time as each other so it works for us. Getting your babies on the same schedule as each other is probably one of the biggest pieces of advice that I would give a new twin mom. It might not work for you but it has seriously helped me.
In the beginning my boys were not on the same eating and sleeping schedule so to me it seemed like my entire day was taking care of one and then the other. Now I feed them at the same time, change their diapers one after the other, and hold them so they can go to sleep at the same time. While they are awake and playing I now have a little free time for myself, and that is so important for me personally.
For awhile I felt as though I was only a mom and not myself anymore. It took me months to figure out how to balance being a full time stay at home mom and also the person I was before I was a mom. Now that my boys can play with each other for awhile I have some time that I have realized I could use to focus a little on myself. I got back into some old hobbies and found some new ones. I never used to write before but now I am sitting here writing a blog while my twins play. Finding even a small amount of time for myself helps me remember I am a person too, not just a mom.
Being a twin mom and a stay at home mom can be difficult at times. One of my babies is definitely needier than the other but I try to make sure I pay attention to and play with both equally. Every day is a little different but it is what works for us.
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.
Everyone has a different experience being a NICU parent, this is my own personal experience.
My twin boys were born at 34 weeks and 4 days. I had a sudden onset of preeclampsia but thankfully was able to get two rounds of steroid shots before they were born. My first twin stayed in the NICU for 18 days and my second born twin stayed in for 13 days.
They were born by an emergency c-section and there were two teams of NICU nurses for each baby. After they were examined and had measurements taken I was able to hold them for a brief moment before they were taken to the NICU.
While my twins were in the NICU the doctors and nurses were so helpful and explained to me why my boys were there and the requirements they had to meet before they could go home. Every morning at 9 am the doctor would come into to each room and the nurses who worked the night shift would tell everyone there what happened during the night and the day shift nurse would take over after that. It was called the morning rounds and me and my significant other would get to be there and hear the recap of what was going on.
My first born, Theo, couldn’t eat on his own so he had a feeding tube in his nose. We would hear how much he drank by mouth at night and how much went into the ng tube. During the day I was able to try to feed him with the help of a speech therapist who taught me how to feed him properly and what to be on the lookout for.
My other son, Jason, was a fantastic eater but sometimes he would stop breathing and his heart rate and oxygen level would dip. It was scary to witness because the monitor alarms would go off and a nurse would come in to check on him. Every time he had a bradycardia incident he would be put on a five day watch. If he didn’t have an incident for five days it was unlikely that he would have another incident at all. One morning during the rounds the night shift nurse said Jason had a bad apnea/bradycardia incident while he was sleeping and he started to turn blue, she had to stimulate him and he woke up breathing again.
I would visit my boys every day and got to know all of the nurses. The nurses would let us change the diapers and feed them if we wanted or let us have a break as well. It was really emotional to leave my boys behind every day but the nurses always assured me that my boys would be taken care of. I felt guilty even leaving them so I could eat lunch. In the hospital they were at there was a little sitting area in front of the NICU that had a fridge fully stocked with drinks, snacks, and some food. I was so grateful for that so that I wouldn’t have to be too far from my boys.
After Jason’s watch for bradycardia incidents was over he finally was able to the car seat test. He had to sit in a car seat for 30 minutes and not have any incidents. After the 30 minutes was up the nurse came in and said he passed and could go home in the morning! His stay was 13 days and it felt like an eternity at the time.
We still came in every day to visit Theo. He still couldn’t eat very well on his own and would have to have most of his milk put in his ng tube. The doctor would always tell me that one day Theo would get the hang of eating and would be able to go home, too. It’s normal for premature babies to not know what to do.
We always went to every morning round until Jason came home. After having him at home we were still trying to get used to having one with us and one in the NICU. Since we were not there the nurse would call me and have the phone on speaker while going over the recap of what happened overnight. Then the nurse said Theo had been drinking all of his milk by mouth so they took his ng tube out! I was in disbelief, the day before he was still drinking half by mouth and half by feeding tube. It was that fast that he was able to drink by himself. They told me that they were going to do his car seat test after they got off of the phone and if he passed that and kept drinking all of his milk by mouth he would be discharged the following day. He was discharged the next day after 18 days in the NICU.
The NICU is such a hard place. I cried every day that my boys were there. The thing that kept me going is knowing that one day they would come home with me and the NICU wouldn’t last forever. No matter how long a baby is in the NICU it is always hard to deal with.
Thank you for reading about my personal experience being a NICU mom.
I have 11 month old twin sons and one question I often is how did I find out I was having twins and what was my reaction. So I figured I could answer these questions here.
I found out I was having twins in my first trimester. I had severe morning sickness my whole first trimester and at one point I couldn’t keep water down. I knew I was pregnant but I hadn’t had my first ultrasound at that time. Since I was so sick I was worried that I was dehydrated and decided to go to the emergency room to try to get some help. At the same time I was also having some pain in my abdomen, so since I was having pain and hadn’t had an ultrasound they decided to do one in the hospital. I was around 8 weeks at the time and so nervous.
After I was hooked up to a saline drip and was given some medicine to help with my morning sickness I was taken into a room to do the ultrasound. My SO (significant other) could not go into the room with me and I was not able to look at the screen. I was so worried that something was wrong. The technician wasn’t giving me any hints as to if everything was fine or not. I was on the bed for what seemed like a long time as the technician took measurements, a good sign right? After she was done she said I could get up and go back to my room, which was a few doors down, and the doctor would come in with my results. I got up, thanked her, and started to leave. Something made me pause for a moment, I saw a glimpse of the screen. There were two sacs, each with a tiny baby in them. They looked like little gummy bears with the start of formation of arms and legs. It felt like I was in that moment forever, fixated on the screen. Time stood still.
In reality it was only a brief moment as I was on my way out of the room. My mind was racing the whole time as I made my way back to my bed and my SO. What did it mean? Am I having twins? Was it only one baby but the screen was duplicated so I mistakenly thought it was two? I went back in the room and told my SO everything that had happened. He originally didn’t believe me or thought I was joking. It didn’t take long until the doctor came in with the report and some big news. She sat down and said everything looked perfectly fine and that both babies had strong heart beats. We were in shock. What do you mean both heart beats? Two??
It took awhile for the shock to go away but now that my twins are here and I feel incredibly blessed to have two. That is my personal experience having twins. Thank you for taking the time to read it!