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When you find out you are expecting twins

Twin pregnancy scan

I wrote this post on 17 October 2018 – the day we found out we were having twins. I was supposed to be working but unsurprisingly couldn’t concentrate on anything else. I wrote down my thoughts as a way of processing the news.

For various reasons it has taken me almost a year to publish it, but I am sharing it now, virtually unedited, because I am sure that other, ‘soon to be twin parents’ will relate.

 

It turns out there’s two in there!

I realise that it’s been a long time since I wrote a personal post on here. I’ve always put that down to not having enough time. With balancing three jobs over two days, a toddler and a house that needs a lot of work, I’ve become very good at making my blog a low priority, and I guess the reality is that it is. But today I’ve found a new reason to worry about not having enough time; which made me realise that right now I have all the time in the world, I just need to use it more constructively.

So, I have news. I’m pregnant. And this time round it’s not, Oh my god I’m growing a human, it’s an Oh my god, I’m growing two humans and I already have one to look after. This wasn’t supposed to happen. The plan was to give Tall Boy a playmate and life long companion, not to turn his world upside down by crashing in to it with two siblings at once.

How on earth has this come about? Well, apparently the rate of twin pregnancies is increasing due to women being older when they conceive. As you get older it’s more likely that you will produce two eggs, and I guess when there’s two eggs available an extra sperm gets an opportunity to shine. And shine it has done.

Before you ask, no there isn’t any history of twins in my family, but that said, I have had a niggling feeling that meant today’s scan was not a total surprise. My morning sickness was much earlier and much more noticeable than with Tall Boy, although fortunately only nausea, which is bad enough but I feel so relieved I’ve not had to deal with actual sickness. And, my bump popped out at around eight weeks. Lots of people have told me that it’s common with second babies, but I am probably already the size I was at about 20 weeks with Tall Boy, and I had a ginormous bump then – you’ve seen the photos! Those closest to us have been joking that there may be two in there, about needing to buy a new car, about needing more space etc, etc, but it has been joking. No-one can quite believe it’s real, least of all us.

I went to my scan this morning a little nervous. After all, this is the first time I’ve made it to a 12 week scan in four pregnancies. With Tall Boy we were allowed an early scan at eight weeks because of my two previous miscarriages and my two earlier pregnancies didn’t get to that stage. I’d said that my first concern was that everything was OK, and then how many babies there were in there. Turns out I was right to be worried.

As soon as the technician put the probe on my tummy we could see two little sacs. I couldn’t help but say uh-oh. Once she’d moved the probe to get a clearer picture it was abundantly obvious. There is not one, but two babies vying for space inside my uterus. No wonder my bump is big.

Happily, so far everything seems to be OK…with the babies.

But what is it going to mean for the rest of us?

Well, the honest answer at this stage is, I haven’t a clue. Once the nervous laughter subsided our first thoughts have been along the lines of; we’re going to need a new car, we thought we had everything but now we need two of everything. Then it’s become; Can I carry two babies? (I’d envisioned putting baby two in a sling and chasing round after Tall Boy pretty much as normal), Will I be able to breastfeed two babies and for how long? How are we going to ever leave the house again? (it took long enough to get out of the door with Tall Boy, who would always poo and then need a feed before going anywhere in the car), we’re going to need a new buggy, How will labour be different with two? Will I need more medical intervention? And so it continues.

My overriding fear at the moment, on the first day of learning this news, is what will it mean for Tall Boy. Although I’ve always pictured us with two children (me probably more than Tall Dad here), after having one I’ve always felt like number two was more about Tall Boy and about the bigger picture of having someone he can play with so we won’t need to be his sole entertainment centre. Now, for the immediate future at least, all I can think about is how much it’s going to change his life. How is he going to get enough mummy and daddy time? How will he cope with always having to wait for the babies before he can do anything?

Luckily we have a strong support network around us, who have already promised to help as much as they can, and believe me I know that I am going to accept whatever help is on offer.

But, when it comes down to it, it’s up to Tall Dad and me to figure this out. To make it as easy on Tall Boy as we can, and to well, survive it I guess.

After having Tall Boy I have low expectations of what we’ll be able to achieve in the first year. Maybe the key is expecting to get nothing done and then rejoicing in the small triumphs. Oh, and lots of cake. Always cake.

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Becci Johnson

Hi, I’m an almost 6 ft, thirty-something living in Manchester. Writer, blogger & first time mum.

  • Carol Johnson

    A great and truthful account, as always well written.

    30th September 2019 at 1:14 pm Reply

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