- Women's Health
Journal of a Twin Pregnancy
My True Life Journal Entries During a Twin Pregnancy
When my son was 2 years old, I had a miscarriage that was devastating to me. I had wished so badly for my son to have a sibling, and my hopes and dreams were crushed with the miscarriage. I was concerned that I may not be able to carry a healthy baby to term again, and felt selfish at the same time because I knew many women have trouble conceiving the first time, and I already had one beautiful, healthy child. After waiting the recommended amount of time to let my body heal after the miscarriage and D and C, I hoped I would be able to get pregnant again and be able to provide a sibling for my son to share his life with. I started a journal on the day I thought I might be pregnant. It's really interesting that I started it before I knew I was having twins so I write about my joy when I found out. Here are the entries, as I wrote them...
January 28, 1994
I think I am pregnant! I am going to use this journal to write down my blessings and to keep track of how this pregnancy goes if I am indeed pregnant. After wondering for the past few weeks whether or not I would get pregnant again, I am euphoric...to think there's a good possibility I might be pregnant right now. The thought that maybe I wouldn't get pregnant has helped me set aside fears of a second miscarriage because I am so relieved that I probably was able to get pregnant again. My concern over having a second miscarriage is not because I doubt God could give us another child, but maybe that it just was not part of His plan that we have a second child. I want a second child so badly, but what I want most of all is for God's plan for our lives.
January 31st, 1994
I'm pregnant!!! I went to the doctor today for a pregnancy test - October 6th is my due date. I'm so grateful God is giving us another chance. I am excited but also a little apprehensive. I switched OB groups because the last one I had gone to does abortions and after having the D & C after the miscarriage, it bothered me so much that women do that on purpose to abort their babies, that I knew this time I needed to switch to a group that doesn't do abortions. I felt a real peace about it when I called to make the appointment, but today in the parking lot, I felt fear and apprehension about switching to strangers. They were really nice once I got inside and I have another appointment set up for February 18th which seems so far away. I feel a little numb about this pregnancy, like maybe it's too good to be true.
February 1st, 1994
I can't believe I am pregnant. I feel so blessed and grateful for this gift. I will try to appreciate every day of this pregnancy, and every day of this child's life. I'm still numb. I have been dreaming of this pregnancy for six months and now it's hard to believe it's actually here and I am pregnant again. I am blessed.
February 2nd, 1994
I think I have finally figured out why it's so hard for me to believe I am pregnant. Since the miscarriage 6 months ago, I've been phrasing everything in my head as, "When I'm pregnant again" or "in my next pregnancy" and now here it is. It's still so hard to believe and I am grateful to God. I have cancelled all my outside commitments so I can just stay home at night and rest now after doing daycare at home all day, and it feels good.
February 3rd, 1994
I am so excited to be pregnant again. And also so grateful for the news that I am pregnant just before the due date of the last baby that I miscarried. Today is the day that baby was due. It's hard, but I feel very blessed that I am pregnant and I just need to concentrate on that. I am hopeful that the new doctors will help me to feel good about this pregnancy and will give me a lot of support since I am nervous about this pregnancy after miscarrying last time.
February 7th, 1994
I'm so happy to be pregnant. I am very queasy this time. More than with my first pregnancy with Matt or my second pregnancy. I have heard that the more symptoms of pregnancy you have, the healthier the pregnancy is, so being extra queasy is a good sign. I am happy about it!
February 15th, 1994
Today the tiredness has caught up with me. I need a nap now that the daycare kids are down for theirs. I hope God keeps the baby safe since I just got over that cold I got from the daycare kids. I am so excited about what it will mean to Matt to be a big brother.
February 21st, 1994
I have a lot of nausea every day now. The doctor says that means my hormone level is high, which is a good thing I guess. Matt's grandparents took him for a few hours this morning since it's not a daycare day. I had some time to take it easy, and that was nice.
February 24th, 1994
We found out today that we are having twins! I am so grateful to God for that. I have always wanted twins but how often in life do you get what you want? I started crying when the ultrasound tech asked if twins ran in the family. Now I feel more blessed than ever. Jack ( my husband, but not his real name) is in shock. Both grandmothers are really happy.
March 1st, 1994
I'm so excited and still can't believe I am having twins. I will do everything I can to keep them safe and healthy and strong. I worry now when I pick the baby up on daycare days. I feel my back and abdomen start to hurt a bit and that concerns me. She is a big baby. I'm still having nausea daily but I can handle it.I will need God's help to be the best mother possible to these 2 babies and my son. I am grateful with all my heart.
March 7th, 1994
I am doing my best to have a healthy pregnancy for these babies. I feel guilty sometimes because I have doubts about whether this pregnancy will make it because of what happened last time. I am already a week past where I miscarried last time. It seems like it would be such a miracle to have even one baby make it out healthy this time, never mind two! I have to keep putting my trust in God that it will be alright. I feel pretty good today. We have decided that after the babies come, I will take some time off from doing daycare. Maybe one year, but I will miss being able to bring at least some money in for the family. I am going to try to take a quick nap now.
March 14th, 1994
I had a very strange dream last night about being back in college. I was in the dorm, but everyone left, and I was alone. I woke up feeling abandoned. I hope that doesn't mean something happened to one of the babies. It's probably just my sub-conscious worrying again! I had a dream last week that we lost the babies in July ( the month I lost the last baby). In the dream, no one was upset about losing the babies but me! That didn't make any sense to me.
March 17th, 1994
I had another terrible dream last night about losing the babies to a miscarriage.In the dream, I was bleeding a lot and couldn't get to the doctor. My next appointment with the doctor isn't until March 28th but I was so upset about this dream that i called the doctor's office today and they fit me in for March 23rd. Not a big difference, but it feels better to me. I am 11 weeks along now. One more week and I will be through the first trimester, the one most likely to have a miscarriage in.
March 22nd, 1994
I do not have any more bad dreams now because every night I pray and ask God to keep me safe from those dreams, and I haven't had one since. Matt is going through a terribly whiny stage now, and since I am in need of a nap every day now, and more tired, it's really hard to deal with his behavior. I am excited about my doctor's appointment tomorrow.
March 23rd, 1994
I went to the doctor today and heard two heartbeats! What a blessing that was. The doctor said after 30 weeks, which will be mid-July that they will want me to get as much bed rest as possible. I decided I will stop doing daycare on July 1st. I hope Jack can be supportive of the bed rest idea. It will be hard to stick to that with a three-year-old unless I have some help.
March 31st, 1994
I am so tired now. I need a nap every day. I lose my temper a lot with Matt and feel bad about it. I am praying that I can be a better mother to him even when I am tired. Still no bad dreams anymore because I am praying not to have any each night before I go to sleep, and it's working.
April 13th, 1994
I went to a La Leche meeting last night with my friend Holly. I really liked it. Everyone seems so supportive and not uncomfortable at all about breastfeeding during the meeting. Honestly, that was a bit odd for me. They are all really into being natural moms though and it made me look forward to being just a mom for awhile, with no daycare kids to worry about. I can feel the babies moving now. It is so neat!
April 20th, 1994
No more bad dreams. What a relief. I pray each night now that there are no more bad dreams and that God keeps the babies safe and I feel better about everything. I took Matt and the daycare kids to Harkness Park today with a teenager from the neighborhood. It was really fun to be outside in the beautiful weather with the kids, but I am exhausted.
April 22nd, 1994
I am still in awe that I am pregnant with twins and that God has chosen me to be their mother. I am feeling really tired lately so it makes me more stressed with the kids. I don't know if I will be able to stick out doing daycare until July 1st especially because I went to the doctor and he said I should start laying on my left side each day now, 90 minutes in the a.m. and 90 minutes in the afternoon. The afternoon is no problem because the kids nap, but I may have to recruit some friends and relatives to watch them in the morning for me for 90 minutes so I can lay on my left side. I have to lay on that side because it helps the babies get oxygen.
May 2nd, 1994
I went to the doctor today to make sure I am not developing asthma-like I did when I was pregnant with Matt. My allergies are acting up, and I am having trouble breathing. I developed asthma when I was pregnant with Matt in the Spring. The doctor said my asthma is fine, but the trouble breathing is due to the babies. At 4 1/2 months with twins, my uterus is the size it would be at seven months with a single pregnancy. Wow, and I am only halfway to nine months. This is fun and exciting!
May 3rd, 1994
I had to drive an hour today to go to the prenatal care unit in Hartford to have a special ultrasound. The doctor there said the babies are both healthy, AND they are girls!!! I am SO surprised. I have had a lot of kids in daycare, and they are almost always boys, so I have seen myself as a mother of boys. What will I do with girls? I will need all new clothes this time.
May 10th, 1994
We are discussing names now for girls. The top 3 are Morgan, Katherine ( Katy) and Danielle. Matt would like to name them Ambulance and Firetruck. Hmm, I don't think the girls would like those names very much. I have nicknames for them: Zoe and Chloe. Zoe means full of life, and the one on the bottom I call Zoe because that baby kicks like there is no tomorrow. And of course it's always in my bladder. Chloe doesn't seem to move as much. I like the names Zoe and Chloe actually, but Jack doesn't want us to actually name them that. I was having cramps today and was worried that it was premature labor. I called the doctor and we figured out it was just gas cramps. That was really embarrassing.
May 17th, 1994
My last daycare kids are going to be leaving earlier than I thought because their new daycare provider wants to start them at the beginning of June. That's so good because I get really tired now, and the time in the morning that I am supposed to be laying down, I bring a quilt outside and lay on my left side while I supervise outside playtime, but I always have to have another adult present in case they run out toward the street. It will be good to be just with Matt before the babies come.
June 11th, 1994
Now that daycare is done for me for awhile, we decided to take Matt to Sesame Place in Pennsylvania because once the twins are born, we probably won't be taking vacation anytime soon. I am pretty sure we will be overwhelmed for awhile. It was a 4 1/2 hour drive but we made it fine. We had a great time at Sesame Place, and Matt loved meeting the Sesame Street characters and the water park. It's a great place to go with young children. I was even able to find a bench so I could lay on my left side both in the morning and the afternoon. I brought a book and Matt and his dad went to the water park area while I rested. The next day we took him to the Philadelphia Zoo, which he really enjoyed as well. I guess being creative really helps. I will have to remember that when the twins come so I can still do things that Matt will enjoy even though there will be 2 new babies in the family.
June 15th, 1994
I went to the doctor today. I have gained 6 pounds, but the doctor said that's okay. I am still in awe that we are having twins and that we have been blessed not once but twice with this pregnancy.
July 23rd, 1994
I haven't kept up with this journal very well. I have been busy enjoying my time with Matt. I am 30 weeks pregnant now. I still can't get over the fact that there are twin babies inside me. Such a blessing and I don't feel like I deserve it. But I will try to be the best mom ever to these babies and Matt. God has given me the desires of my heart and for that I am so very grateful. And I know God won't give me more than I can handle, so I am trusting in Him that everything will be fine once they arrive. In 4 days I am taking Matt to the sibling class at Backus Hospital. I can't wait. I think he will really enjoy it. At 28 weeks I had gained 31 pounds.
July 25th, 1994
Sometimes I get nervous that these babies will come early and have to stay in the hospital for awhile. I read that it happens in a lot of twin pregnancies. I don't want to have a C section, but that happens a lot too. I bought a small book about c-sections so I will be prepared just in case. It will be harder to nurse twins after having a C section because they may need to lie across the wound area, but I am trying not to jump ahead and be concerned about that until I have to, IF I even have to. My idea of a perfect birth is that they will come at 38 or 39 weeks, and be delivered without a c-section, and without medication, if I can handle that. But I will leave that up to God.
July 28th, 1994
I took Matt to the sibling class yesterday. I think I cared about it more than he did. I went in to see the nursing consultant as well. Her office is right in the hospital. She thought Matt was adorable and that I will have my hands full when the twins come. How encouraging! That's not exactly what I wanted to hear. I was most concerned about if I have a c-section, could I still nurse. She assured me that I could, but that it might be more painful than if I didn't have one. That's not something to look forward to. She looked at my size and said she didn't think I would be able to go full term with them because I am already so big. Unfortunately that is not what I wanted to hear either. I wish our visit was a bit more encouraging all around. She did encourage me about nursing twins and told me about a 1/2 circle pillow that I can put around my waist and nurse both babies at the same time using the football hold. I never liked that hold with Matt but I am willing to try it with twins.
August 6th, 1994
I forgot to mention that I had gained 33 lbs. at 30 weeks. I went for an ultrasound yesterday, and the babies now weigh 3 lbs. 15 oz. (Zoe) and 4 lbs. 3 oz.(Chloe) at 31 weeks. That is amazing to me. I am glad God is helping me take such good care of these babies.
August 8th, 1994
I am overwhelmed and words cannot express my feelings about being Matthew's mother. My heart is filled to overflowing that God chose me to be that sweet, smart, loving little boy's mom. It is such an honor, and one I don't take lightly. I peeked in on him tonight and tears filled my eyes as I was overcome with love for him. And as far as the twins, I am still in awe that first God saw me through the miscarriage which was so hard to go through, and now has blessed me with twins. I don't know what I did to deserve such an honor, but I am very grateful. I have always wanted 3 children, and twins, and to have that come true is a miracle to me.
August 10th, 1994
Some days I am weary now. My stomach is getting so big, it is often hard to get up from a laying down position. I don't have much energy these days. I don't do well in the heat anyway so it's just harder now. But it is an honor to carry these babies and I keep reminding myself of that. When I get nervous about the twins coming early, I just keep reminding myself that it's all in God's hands, and He knows when the right time will be for them to be born. As far as a C-section goes, He knows all about that as well. Each day when I wake up, I am thankful that they are still inside me and growing instead of out here in the world too early and struggling. In 2 days, I will be 32 weeks, and that is great news.
August 19th, 1994
Well, I just got out of the hospital where I was for 2 days because of premature labor. It was a very scary time for me because 33 weeks was too early for them to come. They told me if the contractions didn't stop, I would have gone into premature labor, but fortunately the medication they gave me stopped the contractions. I knew it could be worse, and that this could have happened at 28 or 30 weeks, but I just want these babies to have every opportunity to grow before they are born. The doctor gave us a target date of September 7th. He said if they are born after that date, which will be 36 weeks, then they should be fine. I am actually hoping it's not until September 15th because that will be 37 weeks and considered full term for twins. Because they are girls, their lungs develop faster than if they were boys, so that's good too. I am on medication daily now to keep the contractions at bay. And also they put me on bed rest for one month, after which point they can arrive safely. This should be interesting with a 3 year old. Fortunately my father in law will take Matt during the day, and his Dad can take care of him at night when he gets home from work.
August 21st, 1994
Well, I am happy to say I am another week along and the babies are still tucked away safely. I have the hardest time at night when the contractions start and I am all alone because everyone is sleeping, even people I could just talk to by phone. One morning around 6 a.m. I woke up with fairly strong contractions. Tears were leaking out of my eyes although I was trying to be strong. I waited till 7 a.m. then called my pastor and he prayed with me over the phone, which helped me feel a lot better. I am only allowed to get up to go to the bathroom, or to get something to eat quickly, but when I have been having contractions, I stay put till they slow down or get weaker. The strong ones go on for 5 to 10 minutes, then subside. I have been fortunate that my father in law picks Matt up every weekday at 10 a.m. and brings him back at 4. He takes a nap with me for a bit, then his dad gets home around 6:30 and has him for the rest of the night. My mom stops by almost every day when she can, and I have some friends, and my mom who bring us food since I can't stand to prepare meals. They are all a blessing to our family.
August 23rd, 1994
Each day that goes by I am feeling more and more confident about the health of the babies. Sometimes I feel sorry for myself, having to just lay here on my left side all day, but then I realize I could have a fatal disease like cancer, and this would be how I would have to spend the last weeks or days of my life, and it helps me keep things in perspective. Plus, four weeks out of a pregnancy to be on bed rest is not that much.
August 27th, 1994
I am trying to make good use of this bed rest, so since I had already bought our family Christmas cards after Christmas last year, I am addressing all of them, and signing them from Jack, Karen, Matt and the twins...you never know, one could actually come out and be a boy so I don't want to jump the gun on that and call them "the girls". Once they are born, I want to take their picture and include it in the Christmas cards. But all I will have to do is put a picture in each card, seal it and put them in the mail. I have also been reading a lot, and borrowing movies from friends. I am trying to appreciate this time I have to rest because I will probably never have it again.
September 8th, 1994
I was in the hospital again over Labor Day weekend. I was sure I was going to go into full-fledged labor and how ironic that would be because of "Labor" Day! But I didn't. I was 35 weeks, and although the doctor said it would have probably have been okay if they came early, he wanted to see if he could stop the labor so they would still have more time in utero. It worked. At 35 weeks, he thought they were both around 5 lbs. 11oz. which is a nice healthy weight. I am 36 weeks today.
September 9th, 1994
I woke up this morning thinking that the babies got one more day and I am grateful. I am on Terbutaline, and when I go off it next week, I am pretty sure the babies will come right away. I am preparing myself for that. I guess they aren't going to make it to their due date of October 6th, but as long as they are healthy, that's most important.
September 12th, 1994
I am almost 37 weeks now. At 36/12 weeks I have gained 47 pounds. I am ready to deal with any kind of birth i have to have to have healthy babies. An acquaintance of mine called me the other day. We were pregnant together and her doctor kept telling her that she was probably going to have a c-section because the baby was breech. She started to pray and asked all her friends and family to pray as well so that she could have a vaginal birth. She told the doctor she was going to have this baby naturally and told him to just wait and see. Well, she went into labor, and he was head down and she was so happy. But she was in labor for a very long time. The doctors wanted to do a c-section and then when she had progressed, use forceps, but she kept insisting they give it more time. When the baby was finally born, he had to be rushed to the nearest hospital with an ICU which was an hour away. She didn't even get to hold him, and she called me when she was still in the hospital. Apparently, his head was really big, so he had trouble coming down the birth canal. The long birth deprived him of oxygen and they thought he had brain damage. I was so sympathetic for her, but it has taught me a lesson...I don't care if I have a c-section or not...as long as they are healthy, that is the most important thing to me now. I go off the medication tomorrow...I am so glad. I think they will come soon.
September 15th, 1994
I went to the doctor today. Even though I went off the medication for contractions three days ago, I haven't gone into labor yet. I am definitely ready for them to come now. They weigh between 61/2 and 7 lbs. now.
September 20, 1994 4:00 a.m.
I have been so uncomfortable ever since yesterday. I have been having painful contractions, but they are very sporadic. When I went to the doctor for my nonstress test yesterday, I was having contractions every 2 - 4 minutes and was only 2 centimeters dilated. The contractions slowed to every 10 minutes, so they sent me home. I was outside in the driveway last night around midnight walking around in circles trying to get the labor going because I have had a bad backache all day. I know God has their birthday already chosen, but I am not sure how much longer I can go on like this.
September 27th, 1994
It is exactly one week now since our babies were born ( September 20th, 1994). Not 5 minutes after I closed this journal after writing the above entry, my water broke! I started to cry because I felt God's immediate response to my prayers I had just said to Him before writing in this journal. I called Jack from where I was laying on the couch and told him it was time. My sister in law came to stay with Matt, and we were on our way to the hospital at 4:23 a.m.! I started having back labor on the way to the hospital and was in some serious pain. It was hard to concentrate on the Lamaze breathing because the pain was so bad. Once I got to the hospital and they checked me in, the doctor saw that "Baby B" had a heart rate that dropped to 60, and he said"Baby B doesn't like it in there very much." The next thing I knew, my bed was being wheeled down the hall to the operating room, and they were putting an oxygen mask over my face. I started to panic and asked if something was wrong, as no one had actually said that. They told me they needed to get the babies out as soon as possible. I breathed in as deeply as I could, so I could go under asap and they could get to the babies. I had tears of shock and panic streaming down the sides of my face and that's the last thing I remember.
When I woke up, I was in the hospital room, and it was 9:00 a.m. Jack and my mom were there, and I immediately asked about the babies. They were absolutely fine, and had been born at 5:16 a.m. and 5:17 a.m. through an emergency C-section because of Baby B's low heart rate. As it turns out, she was squeezing her cord which was what made her heart rate slow. She needed oxygen for 60 seconds and was fine after that.
Baby A, now Michaela was born at 5:16 a.m. weighing 6lbs.10 oz. and was 20 inches long. Baby B, now Morgan, was born at 5:17 a.m. and weighed 7 lbs. 2 oz. and was 20 1/2 inches long. Both are healthy, and I am one grateful mom.
I nursed both girls because nursing was important to me, and I had nursed their brother and wanted to give them the same start in life. I wrote down at the end of the journal:
Total weight gain during this pregnancy: 51 pounds
Baby Weight Loss:
Two days after the birth: 22 pounds
Six days after the birth: 31 pounds
2 1/2 weeks after the birth: 43 pounds
Three months after the birth: ALL 51 POUNDS!!!!
I highly recommend nursing twins if at all possible. It's good both for mom and babies. If you have read this journal to the end, thanks for sharing my special memories of a very special pregnancy!
- At Home Motherhood: Memories of Precious Moments
At home motherhood was my dream. I was blessed to be able to stay home with my kids for 8 years. In this article I share my memories of being an at home mom.
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