This is the story of our journey into parents of twins, James and Alexander. My pregnancy started off like any other – filled with excitement and dreams of a perfect pregnancy. Finding out that I was expecting not only one but two babies was a big, but very welcome, surprise.
I read about all the risk factors but never imagined that I would ever fit into the “high risk pregnancy” category. I had had a very healthy pregnancy (initially) but life threw us a curveball we did NOT expect.
We were living in Cape Town, South Africa at the time and my husband, Stuart, was in the UK as his father was ill. I was 26 weeks pregnant and my “healthy” pregnancy changed dramatically and unexpectedly into a fight for life and death. On this particular day in November 2013 Stuart’s dad passed away. I was alone at home. Within a few hours I was hospitalized for pre-term labour. Everything just spiraled out of control.
I faced potentially delivering our very premature babies while he was away. It was an unimaginable roller coaster, but thankfully medicine intervened. I was given a drug called Tractocile to buy us more time. In order to prepare myself for the inevitable I visited the NICU and saw a twin that weighed a mere 850g. This baby wasn’t much bigger than my boys were in utero so it was a difficult but necessary task.
I then lived in hospital for the next 8 weeks, through Christmas and New Year, while going into labour another 4 times. Every day I lay there was a blessing and meant that my babies would spend one less day in the NICU. It was nothing short of a miracle.
At exactly 34 weeks my waters broke at 12.45am and I naturally birthed two beautiful, healthy boys at 8.01 and 8.22, weighing 2.230kg and 2.280kg. James and Alexander then spent the next 14 days in the NICU and eventually came home 10 weeks after I’d first been admitted. Through the eye of a perfect storm, my boys were the double rainbow at the end of this very emotional and difficult journey.