“I’m sorry did you, did you say, errr twins?” Was the bewildered cry from my husband when the nurse announced the two heartbeats belongs to twins.
Five weeks earlier my husband and I had our early reassurance scan which you have when conceiving through IVF and were totally overjoyed to see a teeny heartbeat and a little “blob” that was our baby, the baby we had been trying five years for. Having been diagnosed with endometriosis aged 23 and polycystic ovarian syndrome we were unable to have a baby naturally and needed a little help, we were eligible for IVF. We went through two years of IVF and finally had made it to the egg transfer where only one embryo was placed back in. We had our first scan at seven weeks and came away completely in love with this one little “blob” and our scan picture was proudly shown to anyone that would look! We started to fantasize about our single baby, was it boy or girl, pink or blue? What pram would we buy? Excitedly looking on Pintrest every night, pinning a million nursery inspo ideas.
Fast forward five weeks, I’m laying on the couch in the hospital all excited to see how much our little “blob” has grown, husband eagerly sat by my side. The nurse starts scanning and confirms the pregnancy, “everything looks perfect” she says reassuringly “I will start measuring once I have traced the heartbeats”. Sounds normal to me (obviously I have no idea this is our first pregnancy) so the nurse proceeded to trace the heartbeats. “The heartbeats sound perfect, good and strong”
Heartbeats? Heartbeats as in plural, meaning more than one heartbeat? I lay there while the nurse continued to scan for what felt like an eternity, she was chatting away and still to this day I have no idea what she was saying to me. Instead I was lying there having a conversation with myself in my head! “Did she say two heartbeats? Clearly that means my heartbeat and the baby’s heartbeat. There was only one baby five weeks ago so she must mean my heartbeat and the baby’s. No Nicola you’re been totally stupid don’t ask you will look a fool. Well I kinda need to know I should really ask what she means by two heartbeats”. Meanwhile my husband is sat watching the screen having all the same thoughts as me totally confused. So I plucked up the courage and asked “so you know when your say two heartbeats is that my heartbeat and the baby’s heartbeat?” This was met with a laugh, like a laugh of total disbelief that I had even asked that question (my Friends moment for the Friends fans out there) and then the nurse replied “no the twins heartbeats!”
Queue my husband stumbling over his words like a man with a stammer interrogating the nurse “twins sorry did you say twins?” Both of us sat there in complete shock. The nurse replied with a shocked response “what you didn’t know?” NO WE DID NOT KNOW! That’s when the scan descended into a blur; the nurse was completely bamboozled telling us she had never in her career had this happen to her. I started to tell her that there was definitely only one baby, one! At the seven week scan and that there was only one embryo put in so where the hell has this other baby come from? How could this happen? Hubby by this time had gone all hot and flush, had lost the ability to talk and actually needed water off one of the zillion nurses that had been rushed into the room. I on the other hand was in a fit of hysterical nervous laughter, laughing so hard my belly was wobbling and the nurse couldn’t continue scanning.
A consultant was brought in to double-check as the nurse pronounced “right lets all calm down read your notes from the seven week scan and I will get a consultant to scan you to check I’m not seeing things” The consultant scanned and confirmed, yes two heartbeats, yes two babies. Two freaking babies in my belly? Holy smokes. All our notes were checked and the previous scan confirmed only one baby so how had this happened? Well after a two-hour scan it became clear that the single embryo from seven weeks, had decided that it didn’t much like been alone and well kinda decided to split extremely late to form an identical sibling. So our babies were sitting there in my belly, sharing a placenta 100% identical. A rare type of twins called MCDA that would put us all at high risk throughout the pregnancy both the consultant and various nurses had never seen it happen before so we were like a walking freak show.
After hours of being scanned and checked my hubby and I left the scan room completely in shock. It didn’t feel real I honestly felt like Ant and Dec were going to come out and it had all been a hoax but the scan pictures in my hand were proof YES I was having twin babies. I just couldn’t wait to tell family and friends but no one believed us. After telling family we were pregnant and having one baby to now telling them “oh sorry they got it wrong we are now having twins” you can kinda understand why no one believed us. We couldn’t function for a few hours hubby needed a drink and I, well I took the shock out on the biggest bar of chocolate known to man, in absence of not being allowed wine! So all our plans had changed and after a few days of walking around in a bubble it actually hit me and hubby. And the usual twin parent questions hit us. How are we going to be able to afford it? How are we going to cope? The house isn’t big enough, car…we need a bigger car!
But amidst all the panic I was sitting on cloud nine, I had gone from a failed IVF cycle and thinking I would never have children to been totally blessed to have two little miracles growing inside me. And instantly I loved those two tiny little humans more than I ever knew possible and nothing much else mattered. I was having twins, double trouble, twice the fun and I was ready to take on this role of “twin mumma” with all my energy.