I almost lost my twins four times.
But we made it through.
It was 6pm and we were filled with excitement. We were heading down to see our obstetrician for our regular appointment.
See I had been twice as blessed. Twice as sick. Twice as large. Twice as tired.
Twins were different.
The medical community treat you a bit different. More appointments, more scans, more seriousness.
To be honest they always seemed a bit concerned, a bit unsure if we'd all make it through. At this point I wasn't concerned. Later I would be.
I told the doctor about some Braxton hicks I'd been having and asked her if that was a bit early at 17 weeks?
She checked me over and my contractions were fairly strong, but with no changes and nothing getting worse or consistent I was diagnosed with an irritable uterus and told to take it easy; with a one and two year old. Eep!
I got moved to a high-risk doctor and we proceeded with caution. Rest, eat, sleep, repeat. I was scared. Twins were different.
Anne Stephens gave birth to two sets of twins in two years. She tells her story, on Mamamia's I Don't Know How She Does It podcast. Post continues after audio.
Flash to 23 weeks pregnant and I'm in a large cold delivery room. There is no excitement. My contractions are the strongest they've been and fairly consistent at 5 minutes apart.
The neonatal team come to talk to me. They wanted to let me know that at my gestation they would not try to save my babies. That I would be able to hold them as they passed away. And to prepare myself.
There were two tiny cribs. And two tiny incubators. My heart was broken.
I urged my body to stop. I told myself that it was all my fault. I prayed to god. I held Dave as I screamed about how this couldn't be happening about how I couldn't lose my beautiful girls.
And then I screamed at my body to stop again.
It was the scariest night of my life. It was the saddest night of my life. I drifted off to sleep at about 3am. And woke back up at 6am.
There were no more contractions. The babies' heartbeats were strong.
I didn't feel like we were going to make it. I felt like I was leaning on the edge of a tall building and I didn't know when I was going to fall.
Almost four months I spent on bed rest. Scared. Sad. Alone. Dave took leave from work to look after our boys.
And I shuffled from my bed to the toilet and back again. And went a little batshit crazy.
But they stayed in. I don't know why. But I thank god every day that they stayed in. My beautiful, beautiful girls.
I went into false labour at 32 weeks and 35 weeks. And when I finally went into real labour at 37 weeks; I've never felt that way before.
When they were born I cried so hard. I cried in relief; I was emotionally and physically exhausted.
And there they were. Almost 6.3kg of pure bliss. Of pure happiness.
I don't take it for granted. I know some people are not this lucky. But I wanted to share my story with you.
Having twins was different.