Well, this is attempt number 2 at this update. My earlier draft apparently did not save.
I thought I should probably write an updated post as a lot has happened since the last time I posted. The biggest update for now is that, as you may have seen from Jason’s post, we are expecting triplets. We are now at 27 weeks along and Mom and babies are doing well, except for their little jail break attempt. Because of that, I’m writing this post from the hospital as they have me on bedrest and monitoring for contractions or other signs that the “lock” we placed on the door is not working. So far, however, the jail break attempt has been foiled, and the babies are growing well and getting stronger every day it seems. There are some contractions, but not enough to be categorized as labor, and they don’t think they will be enough to cause problems. Apparently this is really common with triplet pregnancies as the stretch on the womb is a bit more than usual for a singleton pregnancy.
We have been overwhelmed by the support of family, church family, and friends. So many people have been praying for us, sending us words of encouragement by Facebook, cards, care packages, or stopping by themselves. Many have offered to help us out in whatever way that they can, and some have helped with cleaning, and others with bringing food for Jason while he’s trying to manage work, keeping up with the house, paying bills, taking care of cats and fish. Many of these are things I usually share in, so he’s basically doubling up on his load. We have felt very loved and encouraged in this difficult time. I (Merindy) have particularly noted the help in maintaining a good attitude and not getting too frustrated with the enforced inactivity. Normally I do not do well with this, so it seems that God is definitely working in this regard. We feel very much that the only reason the babies are still inside is due to the prayers and God’s answer to prayers. We have been trying a relatively experimental therapy for here in the States, though it is apparently used more in Europe, and feel that God worked it out for us to be able to get this and that our specialists were all on board with trying it. Altogether, I feel I’ve been privileged to see a very real outworking of the family of God in their care and support of us.
We’ve got about 8- 9 weeks left till the planned C-section, and so we’re continuing to pray that I will be able to grow and stretch enough to accomodate these little ones as they grow and stretch. I’ve been in the hospital for 4 weeks now, and every day of those four weeks has been absolutely critical to our babies development and keeping them from either dying or experiencing the severe complications that can happen to severely premature babies born on the cusp of viability. They have a lot of growing and developing to do before they are out of the woods, but the last four weeks development has increased their chance of survival immeasurably. If they can make it another weeks or two, their risks start to decrease considerably for some of the most severe complications, such as intracerebral hemorrhage (bleeding in the brain), retinopathy of prematurity (partial or complete blindness or severe visual defect), severe and chronic lung disease and life threatening infections of the gastrointestinal tract. Every day they are able to stay inside may save them as many as 2-3 days in the NICU. So we’re praising God for each day, and especially praising him as we reach another week and the milestones of development. It has been very fun to get to feel them kicking and moving and they really seem to be developing little personalities of their own already.
We have been very blessed that we were able to be taken care of by the same specialists to whom we send our high risk patients. It is comforting to know that we are in good hands, and to feel like our doctors for the pregnancy, as well as the doctors who will be taking care of our wee ones when they are born, are really knowledgeable and experienced in providing the care that we need. The doctors, nurses, and all the support staff, from housekeeping, to dietary, to volunteers, have all been very kind and encouraging as well.
I’ve been able to do some crocheting for the babies, take a nap almost every day, and have food provided so I don’t overdo it trying to get up and prepare things. We had a lovely baby shower here a week ago Sunday, connecting by video chat to the one that Mom M and Katie were holding for us in Wisconsin. We even had a few decorations and party favors that Mom M sent from Wisconsin, and our friend and comadre, Elizabeth, brought some balloons and flowers. We combined this with our Easter celebration, and Jason brought up all the stuff to make up Easter baskets and to have an Egg hunt (which I sat in a chair and supervised :-). So, while it’s been hard to be separated from Jason, and I’m missing home and friends and church, God has provided encouragement and strength and most of all safety and development for our babies.
Just 8 weeks old here