Friday, July 29, 2011

My Journey

On April 1st I had my first ultrasound at Sherman Hospital for my first pregnancy.  I took Petey along with me for my first appointment. I had a younger nurse named Vicki. When she put the wand on my belly, she noticed something was different right away. I was laying there looking up at the screen thinking there is two heads... Petey knew right away there were two babies on the screen. The nurse told me I'm having twins! I was so excited and thrilled!! But I didn’t believe her at first. I kept asking her Are you sure? So we had a second opinion from another doctor in radiology. Petey was in total shock. I kept thinking two babies, I am the luckiest mom in the world!! When I was a child growing up I always said I wanted twin girls!! I can;t believe I'm being blessed with two beautiful baby girls. I really wanted a picture to show everyone the big surprise but the nurse told us we couldn’t have one.I kept telling Petey the babies looked like they were hugging each other it was so cute! I was only 13 weeks, so the babies were really tiny!

We told my parents on April 2nd because no one believed us the day before on April Fools Day that we were having twins! I was the happiest person! I couldn't wait to go back to the doctor to see my babies again. I did a lot of research that night about twins, and found out I was having identical twins because they are in the same sac.  That also meant that I'm at high risk pregnancy. The internet said there is a chance of conjoined twins when twins are shared in the same sac.

That night I had an urgent call to see my doctor first thing Monday morning. The doctor said she needed to go over the results from the ultrasound. On Monday morning around 9:00 I went to the appointment by myself not thinking anything was wrong. To my surprise I was in for an roller coaster ride. I found out I was having conjoined twins! The doctor stated, I'm sorry you are carrying conjoined twins that share the same malformed heart. The doctor said the babies wont make it to birth and termination is the best option. I couldn't believe some person could sit there and tell me to end my babies lives. Who am I? I'm not God. I should have no control over choosing to kill my baby. I got really sick to my stomach. I was sitting there alone in the room on the floor crying. When she told me the news I broke down, I wasn't thinking about abortion. I was thinking will they survive, not I want them to die! She told me to have another ultrasound done with Dr. Duval at Sherman because he is a really good doctor. I became very depressed and felt very alone.

I never returned back to her office.

After a couple days of staying home from work, I had to get out of my house. I felt so depressed and sad all the time.  I remember wanting to talk to people because I was so lonely and sad. Some people were really supportive and thought I was doing the right thing by carrying on with the pregnancy while others not so much. Couple of my so called friends told me to listen to the doctor and terminate the pregnancy even some family members. I couldn't believe it. I felt as if everyone was turning against me, like I was the bad guy for wanting to keep my children alive!

I went through a tough time because I would tell people about my situation and they would say things like "the kids would suffer"  They say that I'm selfish if I keep the babies because of how short their life span is." "Don't let my kids know your pregnant, they are way to young to handle death because they're just going to die anyways" "Were you drinking when you got pregnant?" All the things people said really hurt me a lot. "Your babies are going to look weird." They would even blame me. I remember thinking - I hope I didn’t cause this to happen to them. I remember feeling the lowest in my life. I wish there was something I could do to change or help my babies in any way possible. I want nothing but the best for my children.

It’s so rare to have conjoined twins. Only 30 conjoined twins are born in the world every year. Doctors keep telling me they aren't going to survive much longer. So every day I would wake up in the morning thinking is today their last day. Every appointment got worse, and we received more bad news. The lungs aren't fully developed (so they only have 2 good working lungs) they share only two legs, which one is clubbed. They share the same heart and liver. They only have two kidneys. The list kept getting worse as the test results would come back. I felt so alone and helpless. I wanted to go back in time and stop all this from happening! I was so angry that I couldn't help my girls. I wish I could give them my heart. I wished...on a lot of things.

One of my doctor's said that I would most likely have a miscarriage and he told me all the signs to look out for. He said that by the looks of the ultrasound the girls will not make it past 28 weeks. And if for some chance I make it to full term that they would not live long after delivery. He said the babies will come out from a complex c-section and let us hold them until they pass away. I was very upset and I cried my eyes out. That sounded so hopeless! No one wants to hear that their child will die right in your arms after they are born. That was one of the hardest things to hear. But now I have so much hope and faith that they will survive and will a long life together as one.

This one Wednesday morning I was feeling horrible and very depressed, so I decided to go to church. I prayed for least an hour, crying and praying to God. I swear he heard my prayer because afterwards I felt so at peace with the situation.  It was like he told me not to worry and leave everything up to him to handle. He was saying I will carry your cross Amanda.  After that day I told myself I am never giving up Hope and Faith! Every time I go to an ultrasound, I pray before I go that a miracle will happen and they will be two separate girls. I always say God please perform this miracle! I know you have the power to do anything!! If you do this everyone will believe that you are real and you will have so many people wanting to follow this faith.

I am so comforted in knowing that God is in control, it's in his hands. I am fully trusting in the Lord, he is our hope, he can make anything happen. Creating these beautiful conjoined twin girls Faith and Hope was not a surprise to him, he allowed this to happen and I am so thankful that the Lord has choosen me to be their mommy!

As I got farther into my pregnancy I hid my pregnancy from everyone, I didn't want to hear more hurtful things. But hiding them made it worse, it made it feel as if they aren't real. But they are real. And will be here on earth before we know it. I came to a conclusion that many people are evil and they will always say evil things and I can't stop them. I need to ignore the rude and focus on the good. Knowing I'm following my heart and knowing that I am doing the right thing by cherishing, loving, and adoring my beautiful children. Is it a sin to love your children? No! So I believe I'm doing what is right.

So finally here I am now sharing my story of my two beautiful babies that I love with all of my heart and soul! I have so much hope for them! I'm trying to also spread the word of Love! Meaning, love your children no matter what! I love mine I couldn't have imagined if I would have ended their life because some one told me that their life was going to be cut short. Look how far we've come. I love that my girls are proving everyone wrong and putting up a fight.

So, please hug your child a little longer tonight, tell them that you love them a little too much, and believe in miracles!