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Is it Good Things or Bad Things that Come in Threes? - Karen's Musings
Random Rambling
estherchaya
estherchaya
Is it Good Things or Bad Things that Come in Threes?
I remember always hearing that things come in threes. Some peeople believe GOOD things come in threes. Some people believe that BAD things come in threes. Certainly if you look hard enough you can find enough things that can be lumped into multiples of threes, both good and bad. Certainly I can think of a lot of good things that come in threes... Larry, Curly & Moe. The Three Tenors. Sex, Drugs, and Rock N' Roll (okay, just kidding).

While I admit that there are plenty of good things that don't come in threes and that it's a construct we create for ourselves when we say things happen in threes... I sure do hope that good things do, in fact, come in threes.

Because apparently(G-d Willing) I'm going to have a lot of things in threes soon... three months of bed rest, three high chairs, three car seats, three cribs, three babies...

Yep. I'm pregnant with triplets. I tried to hide it for a while, but as osewalrus noted to his brother and sister-in-law yesterday, I'm not hiding it so well. Apparently, if you're pregnant with triplets, things grow three times as fast in the beginning, so yeah. Not so much with hiding it. Since most of the people I see on a regular basis are fully aware of the current State of the Cohens, it made sense to out myself on LJ.

So, today I went in for a super-duper-ultra-awesome ultrasound to check and see if there seemed to be any possible indicators that we should consider further invasive chromosomal testing. But everything looked great. The little parasites are all growing perfectly. They all have strong heartbeats. They're already exhibiting personalities (the troublemakers, babies A and C, clearly take after their father... the cooperative, perfect baby B clearly takes after me). So no further testing needed at this time.

You probably have some questions and here are a couple of the most common ones answered for your convenience:

Was this "natural" or IVF/IUI/Fertility Treatments?
The real answer to that question is that it's none of anyone's business. I certainly haven't asked anyone what position they were in when they conceived their child, and asking me a question like that is pretty much the same as asking about my sex life. However, given that I've not been terribly closed-mouthed about the need to have some assistance in that realm, and given that I do know some folks read this blog who might (unfortunately) need such information or support, I will say that while I believe that ALL pregnancies are "natural", yes, we did seek fertility treatment.

OMG! How could you have been so irresponsible? Didn't you know it's dumb to put that many eggs back?
Why yes, I did know that if I'd been doing IVF considering my specific issues it would have been inadvisable to transfer 3 embryos. But if you're asking a question like that, you've clearly not been down this road before. Everyone's situation is different. Everyone has different choices to make based on their own history and circumstances. In our case, we did not do IVF, we did IUI. I was very carefully monitored, a judgment call was made by a team of truly excellent doctors, and it turned out to be the wrong side of the gamble. So here I am.

Why are you telling people? Aren't you worried you'll jinx it?
At this point, I'm in my second trimester. Things are looking as good as they're going to. Everything is terrific. Yes, I could still have a loss. I could lose one or all of them. I firmly believe that if such a loss is going to happen, it's going to happen, regardless of how many people know. I also firmly believe that if I have a loss, what I'm going to want is the support of my friends and family. I'd much rather have that support than suffer alone because I told no one.

When are you due?
This is basically irrelevant, since I'll never make it that far. Suffice it to say, assuming all goes well, the babies will come out in September sometime.

Why don't you just reduce?
Because it's just not that simple. Aside from the halachic issues (halacha is the body of Jewish law), there are medical issues to consider as well. When you look at reduction from quads, quints, sextuplets and more, medically speaking, the answer is clear. But the risk/benefit ratio with triplet reduction is less clear. Yes, I will have a high risk pregnancy (though I should note that even twin pregnancies are considered high risk pregnancies). But we've very carefully weighed our options with our doctors (we have many now), our rabbi, and some close friends. It's a very difficult issue to consider and I hope that none of you ever have to consider it. That being said, our decision is not up for debate, nor will I listen to people telling me that it was morally or ethically wrong to have considered it in the first place. I have some very specific medical conditions that made it prudent to consider reduction among our options, and our rabbi agreed with us. If any of you find you have need (or even dire curiosity) for more details on what went into our decision-making process, I'll be happy to discuss it in detail privately.

That's enough for now, I think. It's pretty nifty, overall, but unbelievably terrifying. It took us weeks upon weeks to come to terms with the fact that this isn't just a cruel joke and I really am pregnant. With triplets. Seriously.
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Comments
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cahwyguy From: cahwyguy Date: May 4th, 2007 02:21 am (UTC) (Link)
I'll keep thinking positive thoughts, and keep watching for good news. Life is always an adventure, but (usually) we're given challenges that G-d thinks we can handle and will lead us to grow.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. We can handle it, we just haven't worked out the details yet! We're pretty excited though.
magid From: magid Date: May 4th, 2007 02:23 am (UTC) (Link)
B'shaa tova! B'shaa tova! B'shaa tova!

Wowie zowie! When you do something, you go all the way!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
yeah no kidding! This certainly wasn't part of the original plan, but there you go. Man plans and G-d laughs...heartily. Well, I guess we're just making up for lost time. :)
farfalla_dolce From: farfalla_dolce Date: May 4th, 2007 02:30 am (UTC) (Link)
I hope that no one questions your decisions or gives you any added stress. You have been through a great deal, and I am so truly happy for you. If there is anything I can do at all, please let me know.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
People are always going to question our decisions, and that's okay, as long as they respect that they were our decisions to make. It certainly wasn't easy to get to this point, and I don't expect it to be easy beyond this point, but at least we know that our choices were sound and based on the most objective evidence possible under the circumstances.

Thanks so much for your support.
gnomi From: gnomi Date: May 4th, 2007 02:32 am (UTC) (Link)
B'sha'ah tovah!!!

(three exclamation points -- one for each of them)

::ponders knitting in threes::
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 10:43 am (UTC) (Link)
I was thinking you needed to come visit in early June to re-teach me how to knit during my agonizingly boring THREE MONTHS on bedrest. Because your little duck outfits (I think that was you) for babies are TOO CUTE!
either_or From: either_or Date: May 4th, 2007 02:34 am (UTC) (Link)
haha, FAQ...that's awesome.

this is very exciting!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 01:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
I could have done more but I realized I was getting snarky in my answers, even for the legitimate questions, so it was time to stop!
leahmiriam From: leahmiriam Date: May 4th, 2007 02:35 am (UTC) (Link)
You know I think it is way cool, but then I am not carrying triplets so I am free to feel this way. It couldn't happen to nicer folks. You both will rise to the challengs and reap all the joy times three!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 10:41 am (UTC) (Link)
now that we've gotten over the initial shock (that lasted about 6 weeks), I think we're on to thinking it's pretty cool, if a little bit, um, terrifying.
ichur72 From: ichur72 Date: May 4th, 2007 02:39 am (UTC) (Link)
OMG OMG OMG! Wow! Very exciting news!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 01:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
yeah... it's... well, definitely exciting! (and a little terrifying!)
indigodove From: indigodove Date: May 4th, 2007 02:39 am (UTC) (Link)
Wow, what wonderful news, although I'm sure it's a little overwhelming. I wish you, Seth and your family all the best!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 01:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
definitely overwhelming, but we ARE getting excited. :)
dear_jellybean From: dear_jellybean Date: May 4th, 2007 02:44 am (UTC) (Link)
As always, I think nothing but good thoughts for you.

And a FAQ - that's priceless. You should print it out and just hand it to people at parties, LOL. Sometimes I feel like that would be the best solution - to have cards that say "yes we've been married for almost two years now, yes we want children, and it's up to Hashem".

I hope you don't mind but I've shared your post/news with Bernard, who says "I wish her health and strength and I admire her honesty and hope that others learn from her example."

estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 10:40 am (UTC) (Link)
I don't mind you sharing with B. This was a public post, of course, but beyond that, I always sort of expect that spouses will tell each other things (except in one case where I forbade my friend J to tell her husband C, but she knew from Day One what was going on and we were completely freaked out).

It's all good though.

(and if B admires my honestly, I really should share with him my initial posts of "OMG WHY IS THIS HAPPENING TO ME!?" from my other blog. Heh heh. Please tell him I said thank you.)
From: gingy Date: May 4th, 2007 02:47 am (UTC) (Link)
I am so unbelievably happy for you guys.

Also, I'm shocked that people would dare to tell you it's irresponsible to carry three babies at once.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 10:21 am (UTC) (Link)
A triplet pregnancy is an extremely high-risk pregnancy. 80% of triplet pregnancies result in pre-term labor. There are a lot of people who believe that fertility treatment as a whole is irresponsible, or at least that people make irresponsible decisions with fertility treatment, because of the increased risk of higher order multiples (anything over twins). Many people right about the "twin epidemic" in this country. Admittedly, the goal of any self-respecting reproductive endocrinologist is to achieve a healthy SINGLETON pregnancy. That was certainly our goal, and we did everything we could to avoid having any other scenario.

There ARE a lot of people (and, unfortunately) doctors who are irresponsible in the fertility choices they make. For example, if a woman over-responds to ovarian stimulation in an IUI cycle and gets, say 7 mature eggs, MOST clinics would advise her and her husband to cancel the IUI and to abstain from intercourse for a period of time until well-past the ovulation point. However, I've known of many women who take that as their opportunity to ignore their doctor in HOPES of having higher order multiples. In another case, my perinatologist told me of a woman who came to him pregnant with sextuplets after an IVF cycle. They were all fraternal, so no mono-zygotic twinning occurred. The fertility clinic had transferred SIX eggs, which is disgustingly irresponsible.
mscongeniality From: mscongeniality Date: May 4th, 2007 02:51 am (UTC) (Link)
Congratulations!

I'm not sure what it says about me that my first thought was 'wow, that's great' and my second was 'well, that explains the minivan!' ;-)
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 10:46 am (UTC) (Link)
I almost posted the minivan question as an FAQ! :)

We almost didn't buy the minivan because Seth's car died the same week I found out I had triplets (the week before they told me I had twins). We felt like it might be jinxing the whole thing (at that point I really DIDN'T want triplets anyway, but I wanted at least ONE of them to survive!). But on the other hand, even if I weren't pregnant at that point, we probably would have seriously considered a minivan anyway, knowing full well that I was in the midst of fertility treatment and knowing that we weren't going to want to buy a car and then have to turn around and buy a van if I got pregnant.
hannahsarah From: hannahsarah Date: May 4th, 2007 02:58 am (UTC) (Link)
*ZOMG jawdrop* Sheesh, some people. Can I be your designated smacker? I could just follow you around and smack anyone who dares say anything like that to you.

I think it's wonderful. I wish you a healthy, easy, wonderful pregnancy and delivery, free from idiots who ask stupid questions.

{{{ extra wide hug }}}
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Not all the questions are stupid. And there's a difference between a friend who KNOWS our history asking me if there was fertility treatment involved and a vague acquaintance asking me. (I do understand that it's a very natural question for people to ask, but I do wish people realized that it really is akin to asking me about my sex life) Most people in REAL life do not accuse me of having been irresponsible, but it's happened.

Most people have been very supportive, to be fair. Thank you for the well-wishes. We're going to need them!
lec210 From: lec210 Date: May 4th, 2007 03:04 am (UTC) (Link)
YAY YAY YAY! This is wonderful news!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
Now I agree with you. Six weeks ago...? Let's just say we were overwhelmed.
torahumaddachic From: torahumaddachic Date: May 4th, 2007 03:31 am (UTC) (Link)
OMGOMGOMGOMGOGMOGM
BSHAAA TOVA!!!!!!!!!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. It's quite... an adventure. :)
kitsunebeast From: kitsunebeast Date: May 4th, 2007 03:36 am (UTC) (Link)
Huge congrats! I'm so glad that everything is looking so good on the Super UltraSound.

You are both already wonderful parents, and I can;t wait to meet the new additions to the family (you know, when you feel like flying across the country with 4 kids under 5). ;P

estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: May 4th, 2007 12:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
Everything looked absolutely perfect. The nuchal fold measurements were all at exactly the middle of the expected range. Couldn't have been more perfect, really. It's really quite unbelievable! I suspect it will be some time before I'm willing to bring all the monsters on a plane, but definitely, if we make it to the West Coast anytime soon, you're at the top of our list of folks to visit!
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