Letters from the front: Part one.

 

While we’ll be talking a lot about the “twins” part of the equation, there will be little focus on the “zero” aspect. So here’s an effort at equal time.

The following are letters — all right, emails; what is this, the 80s? — that I wrote to our families to keep them up to date on developments. Witness! A woman giving her all for the unborn! Marvel! At siblings so in synch that the freaked out trained medical practitioners! Cringe! At four months of uninterrupted nausea!

 

June 9, 2010

So the second ultrasound was yesterday, where we confirmed that 1) Lara is halfway through her seventh week, giving us a projected due date of January 21, and 2) we’re still having twins! You can see for yourself here: [REDACTED]

The first shot is of the happy couple, but the technician accidentally gave us two close-ups of the one on the right instead of one of each. That could be because she was fixated on the “RT” because there are two yolk sacs in the right gestational sac, but only one baby. That plus a smaller sac of some sort next to the RT (you can see a small part of it on the left side of picture #2) may indicate that the duo started out as a trio. Imagine that if you will.

Both babies have the same strong heartbeat (167 bpm), and the thick-ish membrane between them indicates fraternal instead of identical twins. As for “Vanishing Twin Syndrome,” the technician was very confident in saying that the two strong heartbeats mean that is now out of the picture. While there are obviously no guarantees, we are cautiously optimistic that both are going to stick around.

We were told that everything seems to be going “beautifully,” so, all in all, it was a very good, encouraging visit. We have a doctor’s appointment on Monday, and the next ultrasound is on July 6, which will also be pretty much the end of the first trimester.

Lara’s constant nausea continues to make her life hell, and we’re praying that it’s not like this all the way through the next four weeks. But our spirits are up after this recent news, and we are grateful that’s it’s gone OK thus far.

 

July 19, 2010

So today’s doctor visit gave us a chance to hear the babies’ beating hearts. Or at least one of them. Maybe both? The bpm for the two have been so similar in the ultrasounds that the doctor wasn’t able to definitively determine that we were hearing both hearts. She described her attempt to isolate one from the other as ‘trying to catch two goldfish swimming in a fish bowl.” Nevertheless, it was a very joyous moment, even if the weird, techno noises coming from the machine made it sound as if we’re going to be the proud parents of cyborgs.

Everything continues to go well. We got the first chromosomal screening test results and all looks good. Great, even. Unfortunately, the ultrasound shots from the last visit look like they were made during the moon landing, so there’s nothing much to share. The next one should be more exciting; we may find out the sexes. Or maybe that’s the one after. We get confused because it feels like the pregnancy has been going on forever. We mentioned it to the doctor, and she said it was because most people don’t find out that they’re pregnant five seconds after it happens like we did.

Lara’s nausea is finally starting to subside. A little. She has a few good moments mixed in with the bad instead of the constant agony of the last six weeks. We’re told the symptoms are hitting her harder because it’s twins and that they should start going away now that she’s officially out of the first trimester. God, let’s hope so.

 

August 11, 2010

So we had the latest ultrasound yesterday, and the results are in.

Looks like you’ll be having a grandson and granddaughter (or niece and nephew, as the case may be)!

Baby A is a lock as a boy, and the technician said she was “99% certain” that Baby B is a girl, even though there are less…uh, prominent indications for females.

You can see them for yourself at [REDACTED]. The quality is still a little “face on Mars,” but I think the resemblance to their father is clear.

We are thrilled and feel very lucky that things have gone so well so far. The adventure continues!

 

September 10, 2010

So we had the Level 2 ultrasound yesterday where they look at each baby in detail to make sure they have all the appropriate parts. It’s also when they scrutinize each one for hard and soft markers for birth defects. I’m happy to say that all parts were present and all markers were not. This was a big milestone, and we are both very relieved by the results.

Though the constant claims of how perfect everything is going makes us nervous. Apparently, my wife, son, and daughter are all in synch. From the readings taken yesterday, the twins are exactly the same gestational age, which aligns precisely with the projected due date. We were told that this never happens and that we should go play the lottery (we did).

The girl is still in the boy’s face (literally judging from the picture of their skulls pressed together). When he pulled away, we saw her reach out her tiny hands to touch his head. Although they currently look like The Crypt Keeper and Skeletor, I have never seen anything cuter in my life.

We’ve got another ultrasound in two weeks, and then we go back to the four week schedule. We’ll keep you apprised of the latest details, especially if we hit the Powerball.

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