Pregnant with Quadruplets
By Rebecca Ishum
“Are you serious?!”
I was still trying to process what the sonogram tech had just said when I heard her respond that she wouldn’t joke around about something like this. I was pregnant with quadruplets.
While getting pregnant was something that we had struggled with, the number of little ones on the way was a complete surprise. We had decided to try a basic fertility drug with no history of multiples, but didn’t want to try any of the more intense fertility treatments. If that hadn’t worked after a few months, we would have started looking at adoption.
Like many moms-to-be, my first trimester was difficult. Severe nausea and muscle cramping plagued me every minute of the day and night. I managed to keep working my day job, but found that I could no longer keep up with the tutoring and cake baking that had filled my evenings and weekends. My days consisted of focusing on just making it to the next hour at work and spending the rest of my time lying on the couch.
With average gestation for quadruplets being 28 to 30 weeks, my pregnancy has progressed very rapidly. The muscles and ligaments are moving so quickly that my body sometimes has trouble adjusting. By 6 weeks of pregnancy, I was already showing, and by 10 weeks, I had transitioned completely into maternity clothes. At my 17-week check-up, the doctors said that I was experiencing the aches and pains of a woman in the middle of her third trimester. Now at 20 weeks, I’m already roughly the size of my friend who is 36 weeks along.
The doctors told me not to expect to make it past 16 to 18 weeks before bed rest. I’m grateful to say that at 22 weeks I’m still on my feet even if it is quite a bit slower than my usual pace. We are simply taking it day by day until the doctors tell us it’s time for me to go on bed rest. From what we’ve been told, the hardest part of this pregnancy is in front of us as we do everything possible to prolong it. But it doesn’t matter what is coming. We are excited to welcome our little ones into the world, and until then, do what we can to make sure they have the best chance at being born healthy when they get here.
Rebecca Ishum lives in South Kansas City with her husband, Sean, where she has recently transitioned to being a full-time homemaker in preparation for her children’s arrival.