Part 6 – Comparing a twin pregnancy to a singleton

At 31 weeks pregnant I turn heads, it looks like standing up might break my waters – so my answer to the question, “how long do you have left?” is commonly met with an “oh” and silence as they try to process how another six weeks could be possible. This usually leaves me feeling like a freak-show so I follow up with, “it’s twins”.

People are fascinated by twins. It’s hard to avoid the extra questions and curiosity,

“Wow! Double trouble.”
“Twins! My mum’s cousin has a friend who’s a twin!”
“A friend of mine knew a lady who had triplets.”

It’s small talk, and I’m okay with that mostly, but it’s constant and I do get ‘pregnant chat fatigue’. Just smile and nod. One thing I get asked about from friends is how different this pregnancy is from my first. People instinctively imagine the kicking of two babies as being the major difference, but that barely registers, at least in my case – so far.

I’ve been blessed with a relatively healthy and straightforward pregnancy. Twin pregnancies can come with far more complications (especially if they share a placenta or sac), increased chance of gestational diabetes, cholestasis, preeclampsia, preterm labour, early bed rest etc. Even the SPD (pelvic girdle pain) I was experiencing for weeks disappeared over night (and hasn’t come back!) after my husband prayed for me – thank goodness because that was agony!

How is it different?

  • Heaviness: It’s like I skipped second trimester and launched straight into a 5 month third trimester. This pregnancy is by far ‘heavier’ and from much earlier on, yes there are two babies, but there’s also two placentas, two sacs and amniotic fluid.
  • The discomfort begins much earlier: All those 35 week symptoms you get with a single pregnancy started for me around 24 weeks.
  • Sleep: It’s so hard to get comfortable. If I lie on one side for two long my whole hip and thigh cramps up, usually by 2am I’m counting down the hours until morning, come morning all I want to do is sleep – but I have to pee again…and make porridge for Miss four.
  • SO THIRSTY!
  • Uselessness: My single pregnancies, I could still lift things, squat, walk, garden. By now I get tired from standing in the kitchen and chopping potatoes.
  • Heartburn, Reflux, Indigestion: I never know which one to call it…but without medication this is constant. I mean, I’ll have heartburn standing up-right in the morning before I’ve even eaten breakfast.
  • Fear: When everything starts so early in the pregnancy it’s hard not to wonder how the body is going to cope until full term, throw in the doom and gloom from other mums of twins about the craziness of the newborn phase and I start thinking it might be better waiting even longer to have these babies out anyway.
  • Ultrasounds: There’s more, and they’re longer. BUT, seeing TWO babies in there pushing and kicking each other really is amazing!

And honestly – spare a thought for those with extra complications, I think I’ve gotten off easy.

So there it is, the different between my singletons and this pregnancy. If you have any questions feel free to comment below!

 

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