Author: Belinda Smith
Falling pregnant naturally with identical triplets was of course never part of our plan! We ‘discovered’ our little bundles at the first scan (13 weeks) leaving us very little time to adjust to the news and accept how different our life was about to become. Of course we knew that being triplets they would be born early. However it was still a bit of a shock when they came at 27 weeks.
Pregnant with identical triplets
My pregnancy was actually pretty enjoyable and incident free. I had a bit of nausea in the first trimester and tiredness like I had never experienced before. Once we got to the second trimester I was feeling great. Given the risk factors we were facing the babies were scanned every two weeks from that first scan and they received great reports every time – great length and weights and no signs of Twin to Twin Syndrome.
So when Baby A’s waters broke at 27 weeks and 0 days we weren’t really expecting it. In fact that next week I had plans to pack my hospital bag and get my hair coloured one last time before the babies were born.
Triplets born at 27 weeks
Even though the hospital did everything to stop labour nothing worked and the decision was made to proceed with the caesarean. I remember very clearly the first time I saw each of the boys. We were amazed at how perfect they looked and how pink their skin was. I was expecting it to be much more translucent. They were also all over a kilo born which I remember the doctors saying was great weights for 27 weekers and would serve them well for their early start in life. They spent a total of 13 weeks in the Neonatal Critical Care Unit.
Triplets born at 27 weeks – Our hospital journey
My memories of those early days are of feeling completely overwhelmed with all the information we were given. Things can change very quickly at this stage as the babies adjust to being outside the womb. There was a constant stream of tests and scans and of course the ever present beeping of monitoring machines. Every time an alarm went off I had to walk around and check each of my babies to make sure it wasn’t one of their alarms. One of the nurses joked that I would wear a path in the floor.
I think the hardest thing about this time in hospital is watching your children essentially fight for their life. And not being able to do anything about it. The nurses encourage you to get involved in looking after your baby by changing nappies and taking their temperature. At first it is overwhelming and scary because you don’t want to hurt them and there are so many wires and cords to navigate. Don’t worry though because after a while you will get quite good at it and it will become second nature. As they progress through their time in critical care the medical equipment and intervention becomes less and less and you can become more involved and start to feel like a real Mum!
Triplets born at 27 weeks – Our life today
We are one of the lucky families. Our boys are happy and healthy. They are thriving in their first year of school and are about to turn 6. They have absolutely no ongoing issues from their premature start to life. We were hospitalised a few times over the toddler years with breathing concerns when they battled a cold. The doctors told us they most likely would grow out of this by the time they started school which they have done.
Everyone’s journey through the NICU (or NCCU as it was called at our hospital) will be different. But I think one thing is true for everyone – you will never forget the experience and will be forever grateful for the expertise of the doctors and nurses. We wouldn’t have our beautiful boys if it weren’t for them.
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