That’s the age of these here twins. It’s crazy. They’re crazy. I’m crazy.
And at the moment, I have teething twins, which logic states is infinitely harder than just regular plain old twins, and so I think a little trip down romanticized memory lane is in order.
It was this time last year that Caleb and I figured out I was pregnant. I remember it fondly, those early days of keeping that happy bubbly secret just to ourselves. I prayed for an easy pregnancy, though almost anything felt easier than what we went through with Arbor and Lucy and our lost ones. The 7-week mark hit; then 8, 9, and 10 weeks. I was exhausted beyond anything I’d ever experienced, but who wouldn’t be with four other children to drive around and chase after?
I booked an emergency appointment with my OB on a Wednesday morning after waking up to slight spotting. I begged Mia to cover for me in the VBS class I was helping in. Caleb and I dropped the oldest three kids off at the church, and took off to the doctor’s office with Lucy in tow.
We were quickly assured that all was well after an uneventful exam conducted by my doctor (Caleb, jokingly: “hardy har har, you sure it’s not twins? She’s already so huge.” Doctor, with a groan: “It’s not twins, Caleb, geez. Calm down. It definitely only feels like just one baby.”) (After multiple, multiple pregnancies with a doctor, you get comfortable enough to make bad jokes with them that require an eye roll response.)
With that information, I felt reassured enough to already be salivating over the Chic-fil-A sandwich Caleb didn’t know he was gonna buy me, but just before we walked out the door, the doctor said “Well, since you’re 10 weeks, let’s just go ahead and do an ultrasound today. Since you’re already here.”
This is where things went a little haywire, because that first ultrasound is always such an emotional moment for me. My head geared up for all the serious feels. The room at the end of the hall was quiet and softly lit. Caleb, Lucy, and I waited only a couple minutes before the technician bounced in: “Let’s see your baby!”
“Babies,” Caleb corrected her. “It’s totally twins.”
“Caleb shut UP,” I said, and then apologetically, “My husband’s got jokes.”
The technician giggled and moved the wand into position.
For exactly one second and one second only, the screen lit up with the image of what was inside my tummy, before the technician quickly yanked the wand back.
“Oh my God!” She gasped.
(WHICH IS OF COURSE WHAT EVERY PREGNANT WOMAN LONGS TO HEAR AT A FIRST ULTRASOUND BECAUSE IT IS NOT AN ALARMING THING TO SAY AT ALL.)
She put the wand back on my belly. “Oh my goddd!” She squealed. “Do you see that?”
And I looked.
And Caleb looked.
And Lucy drooled in Caleb’s arms.
On the big flat-screen tv in front of me stared what looked like 2 owl eyes. 2 blobs within 2 circles. And my heart knew and my brain knew and then my inner circuit board had a massive malfunction and all I could do was stare right back.
“Is that…twins?” Caleb was already smiling and I could sense his excitement radiating from him and building by the second.
“IS THAT TWINS???!!!!” This time it was less of a question and more of a proclamation.
And that’s when I pretty much blacked out and tried not to throw up. I remember crying, like hard, and I remember Caleb kissing me and jumping up and down, and running out in the hallway to tell the doctor and the nurses that we’d just been with, while I asked for a trash can to hug.
I don’t think I’ve ever been more scared of anything in my life. I’ve never been that woman to want twins, or say “Twins would be so cool, you could knock out two kids at once!” No. I’m more of the mindset of “Twin babies is quite possibly the most nightmarish scenario I could imagine. Woe to the woman who has twins. I would rather set myself on fire.”
All I could think about was Lucy–she wasn’t even one year old yet! And Arbor, who wasn’t even 4. How could I take care of twins and not completely neglect my little girls? Poor Lucy! How could I take care of four little ones and keep everyone else alive and fed and clean? How would I ever sleep? How can we afford two babies?
My thoughts spiraled downward from there: What if I’m on bed rest again like I was with Arbor and Lucy? What if they don’t develop properly because I’m old and can’t get them all their nutrients? What if I lose one of the babies like I lost my other ones? Would I fight for months to keep them alive and growing only to lose them both?
I went to some very dark places in a matter of three minutes and y’all, I worked myself smooth into a full-blown panic attack while Caleb joyfully shouted out news from all the proverbial rooftops.
Praise God for husbands like him.
I calmed down enough to not vomit, and Caleb took the rest of the day off. We told the kids that very afternoon; their reaction was to jump up and down screaming with amazement and glee.
I saw that ultrasound tech multiple times over the next six months and she says that my appointment was one of her most favorite finding-out-about-twins sesh.
And God was merciful, because I did carry these two sweethearts to term; both healthy, perfectly lovely little babies. Calm and happy most of the time; the missing pieces to our family.
And I never had to set myself on fire. Turns out, I really do love having twins.