It's hard to post on this blog about my struggles with processing the news that we are pregnant with twins. Because many of the people who read it are still in the IF trenches. Which sucks a lot more than the worry about how I will manage to gestate and care for two babies at the same time. I don't want to sound... ungrateful. Because DEAR LORD am I grateful. There was a time I thought I would never be a mother. Never know what it was like to parent a child with my beloved husband.
Now, God willing, I will hopefully be the mother of three in seven short months.
I even remember those first weeks of pregnancy with Bean. Harboring the secret hope that there would be twins, because HOORAY! we wouldn't have to go through treatment again to reach our goal of having two kids. Literally, two for the price of one. That would be convenient, no?
But in reality, having twins is not just a fun bonus. There are serious risks to my health and the health of the babies. And when they are born -- well, it was hard enough to breastfeed and stay up all night with one infant, I shudder to think about handling two. The sleep deprivation was more horrible than I ever imagined. Worth it? Of course. But not romantic and cute, as it seemed before.
And it's not like I can call my Mom or MIL when I'm feeling stressed. "Hey guys, can one of you hop on a plane and fly across the country to watch the kiddos so I can shower for five minutes? Super thanks, bye!"
After the initial burst of help, I am going to be on my own, all day, alone with three children under the age of two and a half. I worry constantly (day and night) about how I will handle that, and how it will affect my son, who is never happier than when he's snuggled into my arms.
I realize that this is the direct result of choices I made. The choice to begin treatment again so soon. The choice to continue with the IUI, knowing there was a chance for twins or triplets. I accept responsibility. But that doesn't mean it's not difficult.
When I first started thinking about having newborn twins and a two year old, I began second-guessing my decision to try for another child. I mean, we are a happy family right now, the three of us. After overcoming our initial incompetence at parenthood, DH and I made up some ground and have fallen into a great rhythm. It doesn't feel like another child is missing from our lives, that we are incomplete or unfinished.
I had to remind myself why we wanted several children in the first place. Because although right now, at 18 months old, our son needs nothing more than his mommy, daddy, and a big stick to drag around the yard -- he will eventually want more socialization. Unfortunately, with the distance from our families, he will not have cousins to bond with. The people we have met through our various activities are really fantastic, but we think he will benefit from having siblings close in age. I have one brother, and DH has three siblings. We both have wonderful memories of growing up with them, and we want that for Bean, too.
Prior to this round of treatment, DH and I had actually talked about having three kids, revising our initial plan of two once we realized how much our son rocks. I thought DH was just wanting to further postpone getting the big snip-snip (he's not a huge fan of the concept), but he assured me that's not the case. And the big grin he gets when he whispers, "father of three" -- well, that's enough to convince me. We of course hoped to manage this one baby at a time, but beggars can't be choosers. DH's wholehearted excitement over the prospect of twins has helped my own acceptance, I'm just hoping that I am confident enough to calm him when he inevitably gets to his own freak-out stage.
So although I'm fearful that I won't escape the first 12 months with my sanity, there's really so little of it left anyway that it won't be a great loss. We will survive, and seeing how much easier things become as my son learns new
I do, however, reserve the right to completely panic about the twinklets throughout the duration of my pregnancy, and for an indefinite time afterwards. In fact, I plan on it.
But please always know that this infertile is eternally grateful for this opportunity, if scared out of her mind.