So my journey to being a twin mum began a few years after my husband and I had what we thought was to be our last child. We started having a family quite young and after having 3 children fairly close together we both felt as though that was it for us. My husband had a vasectomy around 2002 and I contently continued living life with our little family.
By the time I got to my late 20’s and especially into my early 30’s I felt very maternal. It didn’t help with friends and family having little ones and being surrounded by my gorgeous nieces and nephews. Of all the things in my life being a mother was one of the things that I was so sure of and made sense…that along with marrying my husband of now 20 years and my personal faith. I tried going down the career path and even went back to studying and although these things had a certain amount of satisfaction it just didn’t fill the longing for another child.
Fast forward a few years down the track after failed pregnancy attempts since my husbands vasectomy reversal and we then started exploring the IVF option. One thing I have learnt about myself going through this is when I decide I want something I tend to not give up until I explore every possible option (still unsure if this is a blessing or a curse). It is incredible how much a desire can turn into an obsession when it is not fulfilled – at least in my case anyway.
We began with IUI (intrauterine insemination) in the beginning of 2014 and both attempts were unsuccessful. The choice to try IVF wasn’t taken lightly but both myself and my husband felt that it was the best path for us and if it all fails I could be content knowing that we really tried. At the end of 2014 I went in for egg collection and we made the choice to do pre-syngamy due to our faith convictions (another topic for another blog).
Can I just say that the decision to go ahead with ICSI (the option that our fertility specialist recommended) was probably the most challenging thing I have ever been through. For the women out there who have had fertility treatment I have absolute total respect and admiration for what you have gone through. The concoction of hormone drugs along with the anxiety of waiting and the disappointment when it is unsuccessful is SOOO HARD!!
So the first attempt was unsuccessful and I was heart broken. One of my best friends who is also my sister-in-law and two of my other sisters-in-law both fell pregnant within a couple of months of each other right when I was going through the treatment. The funny thing was (although not so funny at the time) one of them wasn’t even trying to fall pregnant and was using ‘protection,’ the other miraculously conceived despite fertility issues and my third sister-in-law was going through her own fertility treatment journey. It took everything in my being to be happy for them all and I had many, many pity-parties and crying out to God….”what about me?!!” I think at this point I felt like I was going to go crazy.
I was incredibly blessed to fall pregnant on our second attempt and almost feel a bit selfish that I felt so sorry for myself considering the many women out there that have had numerous unsuccessful attempts. Our fertility specialist suggested that we consider having two embryos transferred because of my age (late 30’s) which we excitedly agreed to as it still seemed to be unrealistic conceiving twins although we felt as though we were up for the challenge.
February 2015 after the second attempt (successful) of ICSI and waiting for the results was probably the slowest 2 weeks of my life. Initially I honestly had such faith that this time round was going to be a success but near the end of the 2 weeks I had all of the signs of being pre-menstral. I was devastated but decided that I was going to go on and everything was going to be ok. I have 3 beautiful children, a wonderful husband and my whole life ahead of me. I stopped taking the progesterone pessaries as I was convinced that I wasn’t pregnant. The day I got the phone call I will never forget. I braced myself for the ‘negative’ result which I believed was the outcome and when the nurse informed my I was pregnant I challenged her that she got me mixed up with someone else. I literally could not believe it.
You would think at this point I would go on my merry way and enjoy pregnancy bliss. But with those crazy preggas hormones surging through my body (at incredibly high levels with twins which I didn’t know at the time) I was sure that something must be wrong. Even the phlebotomists were concerned with my hormone levels.
My 6 week scan couldn’t come soon enough and to hear the news that I was pregnant with twins still seemed to be such a shock despite the high probability after having 2 embryos transferred. We were both so excited and I would be lying if I didn’t say we were at the very least a little scared.
The 16th October 2015 at just over 37 weeks by elective C-Section we welcomed Ivy Belle (2.5kg) and Scarlett Lilly (2.3kg) into the world.
I thank God for such an incredible blessing and the life of being a twin mum had begun…..