High Order Multiple Pregnancy – My Story from Start to Very Happy Finish

My journey started on a cold Friday in January when my Reproductive Endocrinologist called to tell me that he was canceling my cycle, I had produced too many follicles and the chance for a High Order Multiple pregnancy was higher then expected. I refused to cancel the cycle, after many rounds of treatment where I had not responded at all, both my husband and I where willing to take the chance and we scheduled the insemination for Sunday morning.

When Sunday came around, my husband and I went for a nice early breakfast where we discussed how wonderful it would be to have twins, and I joked about how fun it would be to have triplets and my husband just laughed. We went to the doctor for the insemination and they gave us one more chance to back out, and again we refused. The insemination went off without a hitch.

Ten days after insemination I began to show signs of pregnancy, and being impatient I took a pregnancy test which showed a very dark positive. I was overjoyed and was busting at the seams to tell the world, but I knew better and we decided that we would wait until after my first ultrasound to tell the immediate family. So we scheduled our first ultrasound for my sixth week of pregnancy.

We showed up for the ultrasound, got a quick run down as to what was going to happen and I got up on the table. The doctor started the ultrasound and got very quite, which I thought was a bad sign, and I looked up at my husband who had gone completely pale. At this point I started to cry and demand to know what was going on, to which my husband stammered “I see FOUR beating hearts” and the doctor agreed. I was stunned into silence, but cried tears of joy that there were heartbeats. I don’t think there was another moment in my life where I had every felt so hopeful.

The doctor explained that there where four beating hearts (Babies A, B, C & D, he called them), and a fifth sack with a fetal pole but no heart beat, but that it could have implanted late and been a day behind the others, so we where looking at the possibility of quintuplets. The doctor sat us down and discussed a procedure called “Selective Reduction”, in which they would go in and take the life of two or more babies in order to give my pregnancy a chance, he referred me to a doctor in New York who I went to see to appease my husband, since I had already decided that no one was touching my babies. At the appointment with the doctor in NY we saw that the fifth baby had never developed, and that one of the four heart beats we had seen was still. I jumped off the table and told the world that we where having triplets.

My pregnancy was very difficult from the very start, with vomiting so bad I was hospitalized twice, lots of spotting, bleeding, and cramping and I lived in constant fear of loosing my babies. I was put on bed rest at 16 weeks when I was diagnosed with a full placenta previa and sever dehydration. At 18 weeks Baby A’s water bag ruptured and I started bleeding very heavily, I was transported to the hospital in an ambulance and told when I got there that there was no hope, my babies would be born to early and they would not survive. We where beyond devastated as they moved me to a private room to await the birth of my babies.

By the next morning all the contractions had stopped, and I was no longer leaking water, but still the young resident who was there told me there was no hope. I demanded to see my doctor, who rolled in a few hours later with an ultrasound machine. He took one look at my babies and told me in a stunned voice that Baby A’s sack had sealed itself and was refilling, and that my cervix was still closed! THERE WAS HOPE, and he was sure my babies where going to be ok! He kept me in the hospital for over a week and then sent me home on strict bed rest, where I was monitored three times a day though a home monitor and had a pump in my leg that delivered medication to keep my labor at bay.

At 24 weeks, the age of viability, my husband and I had a party! Our babies COULD live outside the womb, it was an amazing milestone. At 26 weeks, I got a call from the company who was monitoring me, they had registered 10 contractions in over an hour and they wanted me to drink a lot of fluid and lay on my left side with the monitor on. This time they registered 11 contractions, it was time to call my doctor. I called him in a panic, and he said to come to the hospital and to be prepared for a long stay, so we packed all our bags, loaded up the car and off we went, praying that nothing would happen on the hour and a half trip to the hospital.

I was admitted to the hospital that day, and put on a drug called magnesium sulfate, which was the most horrible experience of my life. It made me sick, gave me hot flashes, and required me to be on antibiotics and a catheter which where both very uncomfortable. They also gave me three shots of steroids to make the babies lungs mature faster and changed the medication I was on to control my contractions. I was a very unhappy woman at this point and thought about throwing in the towel and just letting the doctors take my babies via c-section. A young doctor and my husband begged me to reconsider and to just try and last a few more hours while I finished the magnesium sulfate, and I found it in myself to go on for a while longer.

After 12 hours of this, my labor had stopped, and they restarted me on the pump and told me that I was not going to be leaving the hospital until my babies where born, but that it was only a matter of time before they could not stop my labor again. I proved them all wrong by hanging in for almost 7 weeks and my babies where born at 31 weeks, 5 days.

On the day I went into labor, my doctor was not on call, so I told them to up the dose of the medication to stop my contractions and this spaced them out and I was able to hold out until my doctor was on call the next morning. They rolled me into the operating room and my babies where delivered one by one at less then a minute apart. Each one came out with a beautiful cry, and my heart leaped with joy to hear each one. Two beautiful boys and a perfect little girl, I was the luckiest mother in the world at that moment, and I would not have traded it for a perfect pregnancy or a calm nine months. Every trial, tribulation and scare where worth it, just to hear the beautiful noise that filled that operating room as each one of them took their first breath of air and let out a yell.

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