After signing off my last post on a happy note, just a week later – at the 26 week mark of my pregnancy, our world was yet again thrown into a whirlwind of tumultuous events. It was at my next ultrasound appointment that it became apparent that something was now happening with Twin B, the smaller baby of the two. What I thought would be a very normal appointment after what we had just lived through, became the inciting incident of the next part of our story.
My sister and I were sitting in the private waiting rooms – the rooms where the doctors come to talk to you after each appointment. I remember us thinking that the appointment and the time we spent waiting was running longer than usual, a lot longer than usual, when the doctor finally came in. He spoke to us in a very calm and collected manner, saying that the babies were still growing fine, but there was a concern with Twin B. He had extra fluid in his stomach that should not have been there and the doctor didn’t have a reason as to the cause of it. Immediately following this conversation, we both agreed that the best thing was for him to admit me to the Foothills Hospital for further observations. I would have time to go home and pack and the Labour and Delivery unit would be expecting my arrival.
The Foothills Hospital is a place that shows its experience well. The room that I spent almost an entire week living in was from another era – if only the walls could talk. During that week, I was frequently hooked up to monitors to assess the heart rates and movements of the babies. I quickly became adept at telling which baby was doing the moving. There were daily ultrasounds performed to monitor any changes and I was given steroid shots to support the development of the babies’ lungs in case the decision was made to deliver early. A doctor from the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) came and talked to me about conditions that presented itself like this and again, gave me scenarios with different endings – some only slightly positive and some ending with carefully chosen, but dreadful words like ‘making the baby comfortable.’ At the end of the week I was able to go home as there were no changes in the ultrasounds and as long as the fluid wasn’t increasing or spreading to other parts of Twin B’s body then there was no imminent danger to the baby or the pregnancy.