I was sitting around my mother's kitchen table just after this latest transfer* discussing the ins and outs** of what had gone on when my mother casually remarked, "Well, multiples run in your family, you know. On both sides."

I turned my hesitant gape into a light-hearted, "Do they?"

"Yes," she said, ignoring my increasingly anxious look. "Two of your great-grandmothers had triplets. Haven't I told you that story?"

"If you have, it's obviously slipped my mind temporarily over the last couple of days," I replied drily, and so she began.

Great Granddaddy was working out in the paddock on the farm when Great Grandma went into labour. The midwife was called for, and after some hours a young child was dispatched with the message: "It's a boy!"

"Good-oh," said Great Granddad, continuing his work.

Some hours later, the messenger-child returned. "Another boy!"

"Well goodness me," said Great Granddad calmly, without pausing from the job at hand. The third time the child returned with the news that another son had been born, Great Granddad paused briefly to reflect, and then put down his tools. "I think," he said slowly, "I'd better come see what's going on in there."

At this point, my mother's hearty chuckle mingled with my rather more nervous titter, but she soon sighed and a wistful look overtook her face. "Great Grandma P's triplets were girls," she continued, "but they all died at birth."

"Great, Mum," I said, rising decisively from the table. "I've really enjoyed this talk."

The truth is, I stopped secretly wanting twins when I was faced with the reality of actually having to choose that risk. Although that's not putting it quite accurately - I still secretly want twins; what I don't want is dead or permanently disabled twins, along with the knowledge that all would have been ok if I'd just been a little more patient and had them one at a time. At present, I remain unconvinced that either, let alone both these babies are going to make it to the point where I need to start worrying, which leaves me in this kind of blissful, yet ignorant stage of emotional limbo, kind of like how you felt when you only just started trying, and it hadn't worked yet, but you thought it probably would sooner or later. But even if they do both continue to develop and we end up facing the possibility of two at once, thanks to my Mum, I'll always know it could look scarier.


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I went back to R.D.A this week. I may be taking on more responsibilities. But that's nothing! Karen has this whole teaching project going for barely literate rural women. And Blondie is doing what she can to make this case into a fair trial.


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*For an individual person, sitting around a table is just as difficult as it sounds.

**Ew.


15 Comments

Jess said...

LMAO...two sets of triplets (and I'm sure natural) are crazy! :)

Glad it's not triplets (though, technically it still could be....I have this friend who had triplets but one of the two had split so they didn't find out at the first few scans)...and hopeful that you end up with a baby or two at the end of this.

After all, if we don't have hope, what DO we have?

serenity said...

Funny, I've often thought the same thing about the phrase "sitting around the table."

Practically speaking, twins have a much better chance of being born normal and healthy than triplets or higher order multiples.

I do understand your fear though- have felt the same way myself when I've thought about being responsible for being pregnant and delivering twins.

Still. I have high hopes for you, Bea. Very high hopes.

*hug*

The Town Criers said...

Wow...Bea's mum...thanks...for that story...

I'm also going to chime in with the "medicine where it is today vs. it great-grandparenthood time..." At least, that's the hope I'm banking on.

Geohde said...

It never ceases to amaze me as to the number of 'helpful' stories out there like that.

I don't really think about twins toomuch, if it happens I will deal with whatever happens. Besides, IVF twins are more likely to be DCDA twins from putting two embryo's back which are less risky gestations than monochorionic twins.

Lut C. said...

Sounds like just the story you'd want to hear right now. Or maybe not.

My Reality said...

Perhaps your mum could find more positive stories to tell you?

Sarah said...

actually i do think it was a great story. the whole post i mean, very well told.

soralis said...

Hang in there, hope all goes well. Sorry your mom had to share the not so positive part of that story. Some people just don't understand what we IF'ers go through.

Wishing you well

Vee said...

Your mum is full of great stories at the moment, I am sure she means well.

You know I am in the hope brigade.

Rachel Inbar said...

The story sounds like something out of an old movie.

People always ask me if multiples run in the family, since I have twins and my brother has 2 sets (obviously it is not related).

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you...

Beagle said...

I'm sure she meant well, but a happier ending might be in order next time Mum!

They didn't have NICU back then, is that any comfort?

blondie said...

Thinking of you... big higs and kisses.

KarenO said...

I'm glad things are still going well with you. Hang in there and hold on, take care of yourself! Thanks for the shout-out too. Somehow it seemed so much bigger and more important when I read your sentence mentioning the project we're working on - thanks for that! :)

Jenna said...

I love your writing. You are always so spot on and clear. Not BS at your blog.


nice story Bea's mum... is she suggesting that your twins are a byproduct of your family genes? This is an interesting take on fertility treatments.

GLouise said...

Love the first story about the boy triplets, and how granddaddy only came in at the birth of #3. Wishing she hadn't told that other triplet story. Ugh. :-)

Holding out high hopes for you.

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