Week 25

Our scars make us know that our past was for real. – Pride and Prejudice.

One year ago, today – February 13th, my water broke. I was 28 weeks pregnant with my boys. Which, in the world of pProm and high-risk pregnancy, is actually a pretty good number…

Today is a day I will never forget – one that plays on repeat in my head.

If you’d like to relive this day with me – reread about it here: pProm with Twins.

Thinking back, there’s so much more I’m wishing I would have taken note of, in the fog that was trying to stay pregnant with my babies…

I wish I could remember names.

The name of my favourite nurse who would sit with me and tell me her stories about non-stress tests gone wrong, and her theories about chinooks and ruptured membranes…

The name of the nurse who was working non-stop to get me home to Calgary from Regina as soon as she could… And sought me out in labour and delivery just so she could put a face to my name…

The names of the 3 other ladies flown out of province on Feb. 14th, out of which I was the only one who stayed pregnant and returned to Calgary pregnant… We could have totally started a support group for ourselves – I picture us getting together once a year for coffee to reminisce on our experience – something that will never really happen… But I will dream about every year.

The names of my roommates – I had two during my stay… And both for less than 24 hours each:

The first, when I was admitted on Feb. 13, a mom from 2 hours south of Calgary, flown out of her home with preeclampsia… She had two little girls at home missing her. I was lucky enough to reunite with her in the NICU. She delivered her boy 4 days after I flew to Regina. She was 24 weeks pregnant.

The second, when I had returned to Calgary from Regina, a first-time mom from 2 hours north of Calgary. I know so much less about her… She had our room full of family for a few hours that day. It seemed only moments after they left that she was buzzing the nurse… practically delivering her baby boy as they tried to transport her to labour and delivery… She was only 22 weeks. They had admitted her this time after sending her home a week earlier… What I wouldn’t give to know her baby was ok… I held my belly for a long time after she left. What I wouldn’t give to hold my belly one more time…

I wish I could let all of these women know what they meant to me, how they’ve unknowingly changed me, shaped me as a mother and a woman.

Instead, I’ll settle for carrying them with me as scars on my heart.

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The World of Antepartum and pPROM

February 13th, 2014 – My water broke while I was in the staff room at work. I was casually “pinning” some Valentine’s Day activities to do with my kindergarteners the next day and – well, there was a gush. I maintained this unusual sense of calm as I explained to my boss what was happening and my coworkers started frantically running around me collecting my things. This sense of calm lasted me several hours – until my husband arrived at the hospital, my rock, and I could stop being strong, and cry. I was 28 weeks along. I didn’t know what this meant at the time – the only numbers I had really given any thought to were 37 and 40. 40 being the number of weeks I carried my two singletons, and 37 being the number of weeks I had expected to carry these twin boys. 28 seemed very far away from the 37 I had been expecting.

My doctor came and spoke to me – I had just seen her a few days earlier as I had had a routine ultrasound. She looked at me and said, “you’re not supposed to be here”. My pregnancy had been textbook. Although I was ultimately considered high-risk because I was carrying multiples, I was the lowest risk of all the high-risk. My babies were nestled in the safety of their own sac and had access to their own placenta. That was huge. Both were beautifully positioned with their heads down and, along with the fact that I had delivered my two singletons naturally, the doctor was favourable to a natural delivery for these twins. My biggest issue up until this point had been the waddle I had developed and the pressure that came along with having two heads lodged in my pelvis. I had just struggled with putting my notice in for my maternity leave as I was nowhere near ready to say goodbye to my kindergarteners.

Now – things were different. They diagnosed me with pPROM – which is a fancy short form for “preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes“. They did figure out that only one baby had ruptured (our Henry), meaning the other baby was perfectly content in his safety net of fluid. The doctor explained to me that they could ultimately let me go on like this until I reached 32 weeks gestation, or until my body went into labour on its own (which – could have been days, weeks or hours… they didn’t know). I had to face the reality that no matter what, I was going to have two premature babies.

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