Thursday, May 22, 2014

Happy Birth-Day: The Story of My Triplet Pregnancy

Hi! It's Jilly. My babies turned NINE yesterday!! People ask me all the time what it was like to be pregnant with triplets, was the pregnancy hard, etc. I figured today was as good a day as any to tell you all about it!

My Triplet Pregnancy Story - Hi! It's JIlly #triplets #pregnancy

We had been trying to get pregnant for about two years when we finally got pregnant with the triplets. We didn't do IVF, but I was on all the same drugs you would be on if you were doing IVF because my body just wasn't responding. We did IUI/AI. If this last cycle hadn't have worked, IVF would have been our next option.

My ovaries hyper-stimulated, so I couldn't breathe. I was at work and I called my doctor with my symptoms. He said, "Get in here asap!" During that appointment they tested my hCG levels. On day 14 with a normal, single pregnancy the range of your hCG level is between 30-60, but can be up to 100. Those numbers double every other day. When they tested my levels my numbers were around 150(?)...but I was only on day 8 or 9 of pregnancy!! They said, "You're definitely having multiples, we just don't know how many yet." HOW MANY?! WHAT?!?! When they checked again on day 14 my numbers were 350. Yikes!

I was very nauseous throughout the first trimester. I could barely keep anything down and lived on Zofran. I had to get IV fluids and Zofran shots at Urgent Care a couple of times because I was so dehydrated. I was still working, and getting up and going to work was a beast! But, my insurance was the best, so I stuck it out. I kept working until the beginning of my second trimester.

When you're pregnant with triplets they want to keep a close eye on you. I had monthly appointments with my OB and monthly appointments with the perinatologist. They did regular ultrasounds to make sure everything was ok.

At 22 weeks I went in for my regular perinatology appointment. They started the ultrasound, but then the doctor got very quiet. We asked if anything was wrong. He said, "Umm...go empty your bladder so we can make sure what we're seeing is what we're seeing." Hello, cryptic! When I came back the doctor still wasn't saying much. Apparently I was 60% effaced and dilated to a one! They wanted to do a cerclage to help keep those babies in there, but didn't want to do it if I was contracting at all, because that would just rip the stitches. They sent me to another hospital close to my OB's office for a non-stress test. They said the test is usually about half an hour to an hour, then if things looked fine they'd do the cerclage.

We went over to the other hospital. I'd been hooked up to the monitors for about 10 minutes when all these doctors and nurses rush into the room and start running around, acting crazy, and putting an IV in my arm. I was, like, "What is going on?!?!" Finally, a nurse bent down, placed her hand on my arm, and said in a comforting voice, "Honey, you're having contractions every 2 minutes. You're not leaving the hospital until those babies come." Now I understand why everyone was freaking out. I was only at 22 weeks!!

I was in a daze. I was scared, confused, and emotional. The drugs they give you to stop your contractions don't help, either. You feel like you're not yourself, but yet at the same time you are yourself and it just really sucks. Oh, and you are super hot. That's a weird description, but it's the best way I can think of to describe it. Never ever ever take magnesium sulfate if you can avoid it!

They were able to slow down my contractions some, but were unable to stop them. The next day the doctors came in to have "the talk" with us. They told us that if the babies came right now it was very unlikely that they wouldn't have major problems, if they survived at all, and asked us if we wanted them to try and save the babies, or just hold them till they passed. It sounds so awful and terrifying, but it was the reality of the situation. I don't even remember what we told the doctors. It's all just such a blur.

The babies stayed in there, and when I hit 24 weeks they transferred me to another hospital with a Stage III NICU, where they could care for the babies when they came. My room at the next hospital was nice. It had a big window to look out at the mountains.

My Triplet Pregnancy Story - Hi! It's JIlly #triplets #pregnancy

When things were going well I was allowed to go on 30 minute "wheelchair rides" around the hospital. The rest of the time I had to lay down. It wasn't fun, but we tried to make the best of it. We did all kinds of crazy things in the hospital. We had friends come over for movie nights, game nights, and dinner parties- including a murder mystery dinner!

My Triplet Pregnancy Story - Hi! It's JIlly #triplets #pregnancy

I also had three baby showers while I was in the hospital. A couple friends from church had planned a shower for me. We were supposed to have it the weekend after I hit 22 weeks, since that should be "plenty early". Little did we know... So, we just had the showers at the hospital! Our nurses probably thought we were nuts.

My standard day usually consisted of sleeping in till about 10, having breakfast, taking a nap, waking up for lunch, napping again, then waking up for dinner and hanging out till about 1 or 2 in the morning. My sleep was all over the place! Oh! One crazy thing... when I was pregnant they said I needed to be eating 4500-5000 calories at DAY! So, I had to eat all my meals, plus snacks, plus 3 Ensure every day. Yeah. It was nuts.

It seemed like every couple of weeks we had a scare and thought the babies were going to come. One of the scariest times was when I was around 26 or 28 weeks. We thought for sure the babies were going to come then. This post is already super duper long, so I will have to tell you the rest of the story another day!

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Update: Click here to read Part 2!


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