Twins Update (Days 1-3)
I am not really sure how to go about writing this, but want to keep friends and family posted on the status of our little family.
On November 13 at 9:00 a.m. Kyle and I were at our 20 week U/S. We were so excited to finally be finding out the gender of our little Twinners. During the ultrasound we were able to see all parts of our healthy little twins, they all had all of their limbs, organs, and were growing at the correct rate (they both weighed around 12 ounces). Then the tech said that she thought the doctor might want to take an extra look at my cervix with a vaginal U/S. Having never been pregnant before, I thought this might be a routine part of the visit and wasn’t terribly concerned. The doctor came in and said she was worried that my cervix might be beginning to open. This didn’t sound good, but again, I didn’t know how big of a deal it was, I thought maybe I would just have to take it easy for the rest of the pregnancy. We asked what this meant, and she said she wanted to confirm with the vaginal U/S, the tech did the U/S and everything from there feels like a whirlwind. The doctor explained that my cervix had begun to dilate. Because I hadn’t felt any pain, contractions, had any bleeding or leaking, the doctor was fairly certain I had something called an incompetent cervix. She explained that treatment for this condition is very difficult, and even more difficult with twins, and that the twins do not have a reasonable chance of survival until at least 24 weeks. At this point I was sobbing and don’t remember much else she said and the next thing I know I am being rushed up to be admitted to the hospital.
It was very strange being admitted to the hospital, because I didn’t feel ill at all. I was planning on working that day and had absolutely no discomfort of any kind. I felt extremely guilty because I hadn’t noticed any warning signs and didn’t know this was happening (although, there were really no warning signs to be had). I didn’t want to look at the pictures of our babies that I had loved just minutes before. I was angry that they had told me that our twins were a boy and a girl because it made them so much more real. As I laid in bed I felt the babies kick and my heart broke a little more. I also heard all of the new babies being born in rooms around me take their first breaths and start to cry and felt sad that I might never get to hear that sound for the babies that I was carrying.
Another doctor came in shortly after and checked my cervix, we knew I was dilated but we didn’t know how much. She said I was dilated to a 3, and that the sac of waters was beginning to move into the vagina. I was terrified thinking about friends/family who were within a week of labor and only dilated to a 1. They said the plan was to keep me on bedrest, and if I was still pregnant in the morning they would send me to McKay Dee for an emergency procedure (called a cerclage) that might be able to stop the babies from coming, at least for 4-5 more weeks where they would have a reasonable chance of survival. She said if I delivered now they wouldn’t even try to save the babies. I asked if this was my fault, if I had been too active and not careful enough. She reassured me that this isn’t something that they normally catch and there was nothing I could have done differently.
She left and Kyle and I cried some more. We have done more crying in the past few days than I can ever remember crying before. It’s amazing how much you can love someone (or someones) so much when you have never even met them. We started telling family which is a really hard experience telling them something when there is so little they can do. We were so grateful for the love of support of so many people. Our first visitors were Kyle’s grandparents, Gaylen and Elaine Ashcroft. I started sobbing as soon as I saw them. It was so good to see familiar faces that we loved. They have been so helpful to Kyle and I as our relatives who live the closest. I am so amazed at their example of service. When they came I teased them that we were supposed to be serving them as our elders. I hope I didn’t hurt their feelings, it was meant to be a compliment that as they get older they just serve more and more. Grandpa Ashcroft said we are all here to help each other in their times of need. Kyle and Grandpa were able to give me a blessing which brought some needed comfort.
The rest of the day was just waiting til morning to see if I was still pregnant. They hooked me up to a contractions monitor and luckily we saw no activity. I was able to have my sister and mom and dad come visit which helped keep my mind off of things.
I awoke and the doctor came in and said that my cervix looked better. I was still dilated, but the waters weren’t coming down as much as they had before. I forgot to mention that they had me on bedrest with my feet elevated to try to conquer gravity. Not a pleasant position, but I will do anything to try to get these babies here safely. Because things were looking so good, they set up the ambulance to send me to McKay Dee. The ambulance ride was quite bumpy, but the drive went by fast and it was time for a new hospital.
I got up to my room and then waited for the doctor. If i’ve learned anything in the past few days it’s that time in a hospital requires a lot of patience and waiting. They hooked me up to another contraction monitor and I was a little concern because I could see a lot more activity. I still wasn’t feeling anything, but when the nurse came in she said it looked like I was having contractions. About a half an hour later I started to feel them. They weren’t painful, but I could definitely feel my uterus tightening and loosening. I knew this wasn’t good. The doctor came in and decided to wait on the procedure to see if I was really in labor or if this was just a weird thing. The contractions were all over the place. Sometimes they were very rhythmic and regular which was scary, and then they were all over the place, only to become rhythmic again.
The doctor came back in to check on me and this time I had a fever. This was really not a good thing. The doctor feared that my waters could already be infected which essentially meant they couldn’t do the surgery. At this point I was so emotionally exhausted and hungry because I had been fasting for surgery since the night before. The doctor finally decided to let me eat and watch me through the night. This option was scary but I was so happy I got to eat. We also had many visitors this day. Mckay Dee is closer to home which is good for visitors. We saw my Mom, Dad, brother, sister, grandma, grandpa, Kyle’s Grandma Spackman and aunt and Uncle’s Glen and MaryEllen, and Kyle’s parents and brother Brian. I was very happy to see everyone that came. It was especially good for Kyle to see his family, he is trying so hard to be strong for me and he is having to take care of all of the things at home like school, classes, cancelling all of our commitments, making sure everyone is informed. I could tell Kyle felt relieved to have his family there to support him. His dad and brother were able to give him a lovely priesthood blessing.
The night was pretty uneventful, the best part was somehow my contractions stopped all on their own. I spent most of the afternoon and all night without them. It’s very difficult for me as I try not to get my hopes up too high only to have them crushed again, but to remain optimistic enough that I stay upbeat and positive. Overall, we are so happy for all of the prayers and thoughts being sent our way. I have felt the power of the atonement of Jesus Christ stronger than ever before. I know that the Lord is aware of us and because so many prayers are being sent our way things will turn out as they are supposed to. Sadly, I don’t know if that means I’m going to be able to experience motherhood at this time, but I do know that things will turn out the way they are supposed to.
One quick note, many people have asked what they can do, and while we need a LOT of help, right now we really need prayers and support. Please continue to pray and think about our family. Secondly, we love to hear from you. We may not be great at responding but emails/texts/messages letting us know you are thinking about us mean a lot. As things progress I am sure we will be requesting help in other ways.
We will try to keep this updated so people can remain informed and Kyle can have a little break from communication.
One more note to those who are not of the LDS faith, this post is filled with religious references, if you don’t understand feel free to visit lds.org for clarification of terms you do not understand!
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