This weekend will be the one year anniversary of the day I found out I was pregnant with triplets.
I remember that day clearly. It was beautiful, and I was getting ready for my first pre-natal visit to my new OB on the West side while Greg was getting Hannah ready for an appointment of her own. Greg wouldn’t be with me to hear the big news. We had known I was pregnant for a few weeks. Sickness and migraines had set in almost immediately, unlike my pregnancy with Hannah, which took a little longer to progress. Little had I known, my hormone levels were through the roof (three times the average to be exact), causing the excessive nausea.
I wasn’t exactly excited about being pregnant again. After all, I had a seven-month-old at home. But I had done a lot of thinking those first few weeks and had finally come to a place of acceptance. But that was about to change.
When I went in for the appointment, the first thing they did was an ultrasound. Most OB offices don’t do an ultrasound until 20 weeks, so I consider it providence that I was able to find out early that I was under “special circumstances.”
The technician began the ultrasound and paused. Calmly, she asked, “Are you on any fertility treatments?” I wanted to laugh. Why would I be on fertility treatments when I have a baby at home? But then it dawned on me—why would she be asking me that? She would only be curious about fertility treatments if I was having multiples. Of course, I was aware of the fact that twins run in my family, so I had known that was a possibility. In fact, I remember asking the ultrasound tech “there’s just one in there, right?” when I was pregnant with Hannah.
My heart jumped. “Twins?” I asked. “I see three,” she said.
People ask us all the time – “Were you shocked?” We always have to chuckle at such an obvious question. Yet, I’m not sure “shock” is quite the word to describe what I was feeling. It was like a dream sequence. That feeling when you’re scared, but you know it’s a dream and just keep praying to wake up. That’s what it was like – a dream. “There’s no way this could happen to ME,” I thought. Nothing out of the ordinary ever happens to me….
I’m assuming the ultrasound tech was expecting me to be shocked, but my negative reaction prompted confusion on her face. I quickly explained my situation – the migraines, the sickness, the fact that I had such a young one already at home. She got it, but in the moment, I was upset with her (though, of course, it wasn’t her fault). She could say anything she wanted to me. “It’s going to be ok.” “Congratulations.” “Hang in there.” But at the end of the day, she would get to go home and continue about her life. I, on the other hand, had a lot of work to do.
The rest of the appointment was a blur. I’m sure I was less than cordial to the other nurses and doctors who saw me that day. I kept hearing new words like “spontaneous” and “placenta,” and didn’t understand yet how they applied to my situation.
I went home to an empty house. I had expected to meet Greg and Hannah there, back from their appointment. Instead, they were on their way down to the Southside for a visit with Uncle Ben. “I need you to turn around and come home,” I told Greg on the phone. “Is everything ok? How did the appointment go?” “I’ll tell you when you get here.”
I’m old fashioned when it comes to sharing baby news. Always face-to-face, nothing less. With Hannah, I had even done it in a cute, creative way. But there was no time for that now.
Of course, Greg thought something was wrong with “the baby.” In the near-45 minutes it took him to turn around and get home, I tried to think of the best way to tell him. I tried to imagine what our lives were going to be like. I tried to “wake up.”
Was Greg shocked? Of course. But I’ll never forget the smile and chuckle that registered on his face too – the trademark of his happy-go-lucky nature, which set the precedent for his positive attitude throughout the pregnancy. From there, we got started planning. Greg rushed upstairs to start looking at houses on the South side. We called our parents and told them to come up to the house that Sunday for some important news. We even had plans for friends to come over that night. Of course, there was nothing else on my mind but the triplets, but I had to keep going like everything was the same.
And that’s how I remember it. The day that changed my life forever.
You may sense a negative undertone in my account, and that would be correct. But what’s so great about it being “one year later” is how happy we are now. This morning, I sat in the rocking chair with Hannah in my lap, the triplets on their respective play mats and bouncers, and the sun beaming in while experiencing a feeling of happiness, tranquility, and equilibrium. Time is a funny thing.
In fact, today is the triplets’ six-month birthday.
In that moment of fear and shock when I first found out about the babies, I never could’ve imagined one year later, when the girls would be six months old, eating solid foods, ready to sit up, and squawking up a storm.
Happy six months to my beautiful Alexandra, Lucy, and Nora!! I love you and am honored to be your mother. We’ve been through a lot this past year, but I can’t wait for what’s ahead. You are true miracles!