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Keepin’ It Real Rewinds 14 – Finding Out the Gender in a Quad Pregnancy

oh Boy

Picking up from where I left off last Rewind

“But wait, there was another surprise in store for us during the ultrasound.This surprise was responsible for putting the largest smile on my husbands face that I have ever witnessed and nearly gave me a heart attack.  All of this before heading in to a major surgery…”

Our ultrasound technician (who was absolutely fabulous) looked me in the eyes and said, “You want to find out what your having, right?” 

We had been surprised enough already in this pregnancy, YES! of course we wanted to find out! In our minds we were thinking 2 and 2 would be perfect scenario. 1 girl 3 boys perhaps, or maybe the other way around.  I never imagined them being all one sex, although I’m sure Brad silently dreamed of having all 4 boys as the ultimate scenario. 

Honestly, I had always pictured myself as a mother of a daughter.  I babysat most often for girls, I understood “the pink love language”, I cherished my own relationship with my mother, and looked forward to having that closeness with my own daughter. Boys seemed almost foreign to me, even though I had two older brothers. Although I desired to have a son someday, I never imagined I would be a mother of a handful of BOYS. 

What a sense of humor God has!

My 13 week pregnant body lay motionless on the ultrasound table anticipating the news. After completing the heartbeat count, Amberlee began scanning my belly that was just beginning to swell and reveal the life inside of me.

“Baby A is a … BOY.” (Thrilled.)

“Baby D is …looks like… a BOY too.” (Oh wow, 2 boys?)

“Baby B is …” (finding out B’s gender was finding out 2 at once since Baby B and C were identical twins)

A pause followed that seemed longer than a lifetime.

“Baby B is definitely a BOY.”

“Let’s check Baby A again… Yeah…looks to be. It’s still early it could be too soon to know for absolute sure even on a high-resolution machine.” (I think she really wanted to find a girl in there for me!)

Suddenly the room felt like it was spinning.  I felt hot, uncomfortable, and scared to death.  I looked over at Brad for some comfort, and immediately spotted his mile-wide grin.  The man had just won the lottery.  He was beaming, giggling, literally cheering, and just plain giddy.  I smiled sheepishly back at him.

I was about to be prepped for surgery to hopefully allow 4 BOYS a better shot at survival.  Suddenly, the thought of being a mother of all boys took precedence over my fears of the TAC surgery. 

My life had once again taken a completely different turn than I had expected.  I had SONS. Four boys who could live to carry on my husband’s name. 

Four boys for whom I would put my life on the line for…

QuatroMama

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Keepin’ It Real Rewinds 13 – TAC Surgery

My sincere apologies for the extended break I took from the Keepin’ It Real Rewinds series.  Too often I find myself consumed by the present to recollect the past.  However, I am often reminded of the true miracles that surround me daily, and I feel compelled to share the story of God’s grace and goodness with all of you.

Let’s rewind to about week 13 of my quad pregnancy when I was preparing for one of the scariest days of my life…

imageI’ve written before about my prenatal Transabdominal Cerclage Surgery in the past, but without getting too terribly medical, it’s a surgery that involves a c-section incision, momentarily pulling the bladder and uterus outside the body, and placing a band that lassos around the uterus in an effort to keep the babies gestating inside the uterus for as long as possible.  My high risk obstetrician has performed more than anyone in the world and is leading the research field in this procedure significantly decreasing the risks of cervical incompetence and pre-term labor.

We wanted to do anything and everything humanly possible to keep the babies growing inside of me for as long as my body would allow.  Although there was no proof that my cervix wouldn’t be able to hold the pressure of 4 babies, to us it wasn’t worth the risk of finding out through losing the pregnancy before viability.  We talked to several mothers who had lost babies to cervical incompetence, and those who had successful pregnancies post TAC. We carefully weighed the risks and prayed fervently, and in the end felt strongly compelled to go through with this involved procedure.

On Friday September 22, 2006 the morning of my scheduled surgery, I woke up to bleeding, and feeling like I may have been losing one or more of the babies.  We loaded my packed suitcases and headed in for an ultrasound, not knowing what we might find.  Would there be 4 heartbeats?  3? 1?

Please Lord, let there be at least one! 

My desire to be a mother had never been stronger. Although fear surrounded me, there was a sense of peace and calm that surrounded Brad and I the entire day. God’s grace was present once again in our uncertainties.

I laid on the examination table, staring intently at the screen, searching for heartbeats and counting them in my head, and waiting for our ultrasound tech to confirm my untrained eyes.

Baby A. Baby B. Baby C. Baby D.

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Four strong beating heartbeats.  Four little lives that I desperately wanted to do anything in my power to save. Four little beings that represented my own flesh and blood, yet formed by the Creator of the Universe.

But wait, there was another surprise in store for us during the ultrasound.

This surprise was responsible for putting the largest smile on my husbands face that I have ever witnessed and nearly gave me a heart attack. 

All of this before heading in to a major surgery…

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If you would like to read my account of our journey through infertility and an extreme high-risk pregnancy, I’ve linked each post.  I hope that it is an encouragement for any of you who may be experiencing this difficult road. There’s more to come…

The Prequel

KIRR 01: My Heart to Have Children

KIRR 02: Infertility 101

KIRR 03: Infertility 201

KIRR 04: HSG, Hormones, and PCOS Rollercoaster

KIRR 05: BFN (Big Fat Negative)

KIRR 06: BFP (Big Fat Positive)

KIRR 07: Spreading the News

KIRR 08: Just Triplets

KIRR 09: Reserved Excitement

KIRR 10: Raising the Risks – Quadruplets with Mono Mono Twinning

KIRR 11: Questioning Everything

KIRR 12: 1st Trimester

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Keepin’ It Real Rewinds – An End to the Sabbatical?

I know a lot of you have enjoyed my Keepin’ It Real Rewinds Series that I started to chronicle our experience with infertility, and an extreme high-risk pregnancy. It’s been a true privilege to connect to you through them, and to hear your own stories and struggles. It’s also been a true joy to celebrate with you on several occasions and rejoice over the blessing of a new miracle life.

However…

I’ve often put writing them aside, because they are just plain TOUGH to write.

Each paragraph brings back so many emotions from those days.  Days of grief.  Days of heartache. Days of uncertainties, held breaths, questions, difficult decisions, and bad news.

Part of me wants to put it all behind me.

To Let Go.

To Semi-Forget.

To Live Life Completely in the Present.

After all, we’ve been blessed more than we could have asked or imagined.  We are living a miracle. (4 of them, in fact!) We got the best possible scenario.

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However…

I don’t want to forget the miracle. 

I don’t want to forget the obstacles that we’ve all overcome.

I don’t want to miss an opportunity to encourage one of you.

I don’t want to keep from giving God the glory and praise for preserving their lives.

 

So I’m contemplating returning to the series this summer…

QuatroSignature

(You can read the unfinished series if you’d like, while you wait on me to decide.)

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