By: Jennifer Murray

Multiple Pregnancy: Expecting the Unexpected

"Behind every baby is an unbelievable story."  Discovery Health is revealing the stories behind some unbelievable pregnancies and births during Baby Week, premiering Sunday-Friday, June 14-19 at 8P e/p on Discovery Health. Programs included in the week’s lineup: Twins By Surprise; Little Parents, Big Pregnancy; Births Beyond Belief; Obese & Pregnant, and others that are sure to peak your interest. You’ll find a video preview of the episodes here.

Our own story of four brothers born on the same day, is nothing short of astounding, so Discovery Health along with BlogHer decided to highlight our blog on the Baby Week website. Many of you faithful "Quad Addicts" have been following our story for some time, and many of you are hooked on my Keepin’ It Real Rewind Series, in which I’m slowly documenting our infertility and pregnancy journey. However, there’s an "inside" story that I’ve yet to share with you, that I’ve decided to disclose for this post. 

After our battle with infertility, we knew our chances for twins were elevated due to hormone treatments for my Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and a family history of twins, but we had no way to prepare for the shock of quadruplets.  In fact, we could hardly wrap our minds around the idea of "triplets" when we learned in the 8th week of pregnancy, that our 3 were in fact FOUR!  Each doctor’s appointment seemed to up the ante, so much that I feared each appointment would be reveal yet another heartbeat and yet another multiple pregnancy term ending in "-let" (quintuplet, sextuplet, etc).  

23wkultrasound

I was terrified, purely terrified by the thought of quintuplets!  You might think after four, what’s one or two more, but in my mind it was drastically different. I had 2 arms; Brad had 2 arms.  That was one arm for each baby.  We could somehow "handle" that.  Four car seats would fit in our minivan, four cribs could cram into one nursery, four boy colors (blue, green, yellow, and red) could be used to color code their feeding charts; but throwing another baby in the mix would breakdown my entire game plan.

Each doctor’s appointment that passed without any more surprises, calmed my heart into believing that there truly were only four.  It wasn’t until I was hospitalized at 28 weeks into the pregnancy, that the numbers fear became once again unnerving. Similar to the deliveries featured on Twins by Surprise, our hospital had a surprise multiple birth of its own, several years prior to our delivery. However, many of the nurses who were present at that particular delivery, in which an expected quintuplet birth became a sextuplet birth, were assigned to my care.  Repeatedly I heard about this mother’s caesarian delivery, and the shock of the doctors finding another sac, just as they were starting to sew up her incision. Usually the story would end with a, "Can you imagine?" "What if you really have 5 instead of 4?" "Wouldn’t that be something?"

My daily ultrasounds were less than reassuring, as body parts were crammed and tangled inside my stretched to the max belly. It was nearly impossible for our ultrasound tech to distinguish who was who, and even though I trusted her with my life, I couldn’t help but question if somehow one could be hiding somewhere.

31wks

After 32 LONG weeks my body was rejecting the pregnancy.  High protein levels, hyper-reflex problems, and severe swelling signaled a dangerous condition known as preeclampsia had taken over. The highly anticipated birth day had finally arrived! As they prepped me for surgery, I felt a peace and calmness that I know HAD to be from God. Although I knew there was MUCH uncertainty in the hours and days ahead, I was eager to leave the extreme high risk pregnancy days behind, and meet these little ones who’s lives I had been fighting for so long.

Immediately following the intense pulling, ripping, and yanking of my body, I heard the words, "The first one is out!" With each little life taken out of me, I could breath easier than I had for months.  Minutes later, (which flew like seconds) four tiny, yet perfect little bodies entered the world.   It was over…or was it?  I had just taken a huge breath of relief when my doctor in his dry wit yells, "Here’s another one!" "Here’s another one!" My heart stopped right there on the operating table. I’m sure alarms must have sounded to alert the anasethiologist that he had indeed lost me, but it couldn’t be heard over the roar of laughter that filled the room. I was officially the mother of quadruplets!

birth

The final "quint scare" took place in the resuscitation room, where the boys were cared for immediately following delivery. In the emotion and excitement of the moment, Brad lost count  and thought there were five babies.  Here’s the video proof:

I am sure God would have shown Himself faithful if He would have given us another blessing in the bunch, but we were overwhelmingly satisfied with just four. Our hands are full with multiple miracles!

16 Responses to “Multiple Pregnancy: Expecting the Unexpected”

  1. Following HIM
    June 11, 2009 at 7:08 pm #

    COOL…I will definatly have to check out the discovery website!
    ~Elyse

  2. Andy and Lisa
    June 11, 2009 at 8:17 pm #

    I've been reading your blog for a few weeks now, but I don't think I've commented. We're currently at 22 weeks expecting quads, and the first thing I told the ultrasound tech at my high risk doctor was — whatever you do please just don't find baby E. Now I'm sitting here thinking oh my…what if they found an extra one in there. 😉

  3. Jamie
    June 11, 2009 at 10:39 pm #

    I'm glad I checked back tonight! That was hilarious, but probably heart stopping for Brad:) I love the little 4 across pics all in a row. An amazing 2 year journey so far!

  4. Jenny B
    June 11, 2009 at 10:47 pm #

    LOVE it Jen:) i had that same fear–of the stowaway. Thankfully just 4:) Have an AWESOME weekend!!:) we'll talk soon!:)

    love ya
    Jenny B

  5. Julie
    June 11, 2009 at 11:36 pm #

    I don't think I've ever posted a comment on your blog, but I am a follower and think that your family is just amazing and I'm so in love with your adorable little boys. Thanks so much for sharing your family with the world!

  6. Hilary
    June 12, 2009 at 8:26 am #

    Aww that was a great post! Loved it! the viedo was great too 🙂 they were so sweet little peanuts 🙂

  7. jenijen
    June 12, 2009 at 3:56 pm #

    The video IS great! Thank you so much for the amazing story 🙂

  8. FireMom
    June 12, 2009 at 8:21 pm #

    🙂 What a lovely story. 4-tunate indeed.

  9. Jac Tubre
    June 13, 2009 at 9:50 am #

    GREAT post Murray…as always.

    Oh and I would like to point out that not only is LSU great at basketball (as they proved by whoopin your boys awhile back), we are awesome at baseball too…Omaha baby…Omaha!

    LOVE you,
    Jac

  10. Kelly
    June 13, 2009 at 11:19 am #

    I love how you say JUSt four! You are amazing!

  11. messy mom
    September 6, 2010 at 12:56 am #

    Super mom. To be honest I can’t even imagine twins. That’s awesome! The video looks like everyone is having so much fun 🙂

    • QuatroMama
      September 6, 2010 at 11:30 pm #

      It was surreal. Unfortunately, they didn’t do so well after the first 1/2 of their first day on earth. 2 were on ventilators by morning, but I’m so thankful they had a safe delivery and now are healthy thriving 3 year old boys!

  12. Rebekah
    September 6, 2010 at 10:30 am #

    I found your story off of Amy’s Finer Things. Thank you so much for sharing it! What an amazing day for you!

    • QuatroMama
      September 6, 2010 at 11:28 pm #

      It was an amazing day. Still can’t believe it happened to me, and that they made a healthy entrance into our world. So glad you found us! Keep in touch, Rebekah! Checking out your blog too! =)

  13. Carrie
    September 7, 2010 at 12:08 am #

    What an amazing and beautiful story! Thanks for sharing it.

    • QuatroMama
      September 7, 2010 at 3:30 pm #

      Thanks, Carrie, for reading! It’s been quite a ride and an unmeasurable blessing!

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