Marque and Andre

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My husband and I were over the moon when we found out that I was pregnant. At 8 weeks I had my first ultrasound and I will never forget the day that I found out I was pregnant with twins. Undoubtedly one of the happiest days of our lives. At around 16 weeks we found out we were having identical twin boys.

My severe morning sickness or should I say ALL DAY sickness started from about 9/10 weeks, I have never been so sick in my entire life. Nothing I ate stayed down, I began losing weight, I was weak, felt like fainting every time I stood up, every type of smell would set me off and I just continuously threw up all day long! I couldn't even go to work as I was that sick, my early pregnancy train rides to work were horrendous, I would literally have to run off the train when it came to my stop. I lost count of how many times I had to go to my Dr. about how sick I was, I was given some anti-nausea medication...tried every type of old wives tale to treat it and tried my hand at ginger but nothing worked! My Dr. explained that because of the twins, my hormones were doubled which is why I was so sick. 5 months later and I was finally over it and able to eat properly and feel myself again!

Having twins sharing one placenta (different sacs), was a high risk so from pretty much the beginning of my pregnancy I was watched closely by the Feto Maternal Unit (FMU) at Liverpool hospital on a fortnightly basis, then from about 20 weeks it became weekly. The reason being that with one placenta there was a chance that I could experience twin to twin transfusion, this is basically when one twin begins to receive more fluid and nutrients from the placenta then the other, making one twin grow rapidly and the other stay small and this could potentially end in the death of both of them. This was monitored by checking both babies’ measurements at each check up through the ultrasound as well as the amount of fluid in each sac. Twin one was always slightly bigger then Twin two, however it was a minimal difference and they were so close together in weight and size my entire pregnancy. The FMU would also always check my cervix as increased pressure with the twin’s weight pushing down could cause my cervix to shorten & therefore increase my chances of premature labour.

February 7th 2011, I was 29 weeks and still working full time from home. I had arranged this through work as I was extremely sick in the beginning and high risk with my pregnancy so I was able to be set up from home. I still had 3 weeks to go until I was on maternity leave. I was feeling better than I had ever felt in my entire pregnancy, I logged off work at 6.30pm, had my dinner, watched TV and headed to bed about 11pm. As I got into bed and lay down I just felt this sudden gush of water and knew right away my water had broken. I called out to my husband and we both were in utter shock, without hesitating he called the ambulance and they were at my door within 5 minutes. I was shaking with fear, I didn't know what was happening or what lay ahead and all I thought about was whether my babies would be ok. I was absolutely mortified and all the things that could go wrong passed my mind in a flash and as if it were on repeat. I have never been more scared!

I was sent straight to birthing unit to be checked and monitored, from what the doctors could see I wasn't dilated and not yet going into labour. The water had only broken for twin 2, twin one still had his water intact. However as there was a risk I could go into labour that night they had to be prepared with 2 NICU beds for the twins. To my horror the Dr came back from checking and advised they were on code red in the NICU and there were not enough beds available. They had called the whole of Sydney and on that particular night there were no hospitals with 2 available NICU beds, the only one was in Canberra. My heart sank and I felt numb, still in shock and shaking with everything that had already happened, I now was to be flown to Canberra!

Initially my husband was told he couldn't come with me so he had to then drive about 5 hours to Canberra to meet me. Meanwhile I was driven to the airport and flown to Royal Canberra Hospital. I thankfully didn't go into labour, I was given a course of steroids and given the medication to stop or slow labour down. I started to get contractions and was in a great deal of pain, but it then stopped and again I hadn't dilated and my cervix hadn't shortened. 2 days later I was flown back to Liverpool hospital, and placed on bed rest. Over the next 7 days I continued to rest and be monitored by Dr's and nurses.

The morning of February 16th 2011, I awoke about 4am and my second water had broken. I felt absolutely fine, I wasn't in any pain at all and this time around I felt a lot more calm. I called for the nurse and a Dr came to examine me, I was attached to the machine to check the heartbeats and everything seemed fine. I had a small ultrasound and they could see twin one was engaged head first. I was sent to the FMU team to be checked that morning through a big ultrasound, the Dr. then advised that my cervix had shortened and I was dilated. Off to the birthing unit I went about 10am. A few hours into it; I was getting contractions and from 3pm was told to start pushing. After 2 hours the Dr's made an executive decision to send me in for an emergency c-section as twin one's heart rate would drop dramatically every time I had a contraction.

My boys were born gestation 30 weeks + 5 days on 16-02-11 at 5.19pm and 5.22pm, Twin one Marques weighing 1.110kg and Twin two Andre weighing 1.164kg. They were both 39cms long. Marques spent 2 hours on CPAP and Andre spent 18 hours on CPAP, after that they could both breathe on their own and as small as they were I saw a lot of strength in them both as they began their journey of life.

They spent a long 6 weeks in the NICU/SCN; there were many ups and downs and it was very much an emotional rollercoaster. Despite what we went through; we are very thankful every day to have them in our lives. They are truly 2 little miracles and we could not be more proud of how far they have come in their short little lives. The only issue we have is with refulx for both of them, as do a lot of other babies (Even full term). Looking at them today you would never even pick that they were premature babies. They are two very healthy and happy babies, getting bigger and chubbier by the day!

 

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