This post has been a long time coming. It has taken a long time for me to accept, and I’m still not sure if I have accepted it.
I am blessed, with three incredible daughters, that I wouldn’t change for the world.
But every mum, has that secret number. The secret number of how many children they’d like… in an ideal world. My number was 5.
The truth is, I’ve been told it would be too dangerous for me to have any more babies.
I had the perfect birth with Bunny. Until the final stage. I could not deliver the placenta, and I had to be rushed to theatre for a manual retrieval operation and I lost a lot of blood.
The twins birth, was HELL on earth. It was HELL because I had HELLP Syndrome, which nearly killed me. I also haemorrhaged numerous times. HELLP Syndrome causes your organs to fail. First kidneys, then liver, then heart, then brain. Thankfully mine didn’t quite get as far as my heart or brain, but there were a few terrifying nights, where I wasn’t sure if I’d survive.
Unfortunately, the horrific double forceps birth and the HELLP Syndrome, weren’t the end of my placental problems. 5 weeks later, I haemorrhaged badly again at home, then again in A&E twenty minutes later. There was still some placenta left inside me and my body was trying desperately to eject it – even if doing so would cause me to bleed to death. I spent another two nights in hospital and had a general anaesthetic and an ERPC (evacuation of retained products of conception) – formerly know as a D&C.
The chances of having HELLP Syndrome are extremely rare, but it can very quickly become fatal – causing both infant and maternal morbidity. The twins and I are so very lucky to be alive.
The chances of developing HELLP Syndrome are dramatically increased for people who have had HELLP Syndrome before, and in twin or multiple pregnancies.
In turn, my chances of conceiving twins again is five fold, because they run in my family, and I have one set of naturally conceived twins already.
So the odds are stacked against me.
I can conceive. And probably very easily too. But I’ve been told I might not survive another pregnancy. Some mums do go on to have a healthy pregnancy after HELLP Syndrome. But if I were to develop HELLP Syndrome again, I might not survive it, or if I did, there’s a chance I could be looking at organ transplant. The risks might be low – they might be high, but it’s not a risk I can take.
I have been given another chance at life, after two Cancers, blood poisoning and HELLP Syndrome. Something is telling me to take responsibility and stop there. It’s a sign. I can’t rely on medical science, or some higher being, to save me every time. One day my luck would run out.
The fact I can’t have any more children, is one of the reasons that it meant SO much to me, to win The Best Baby Blog at the MAD Blog Awards. It’s something, I can never get again and it celebrates such special memories that I’ve recorded here on my blog.
I have three amazing daughters and the thought of leaving them to grow up without me, is incomprehensible. It’s a thought worse than I can bear.
It saddens me to know I’ll never feel a little life growing inside me again. I’ll never have that pretty pregnancy glow, a gorgeous baby bump to moisturise, that overwhelming sense of protection of my own body, or that incredible feeling of a baby moving in my belly. I’ll never have a pregnancy blog again and I’ll never be able to breastfeed again. I’ll never anticipate labour or experience that first time skin to skin contact with a baby I’ve just birthed.
As much as my 5 year old self screams at me “what about the second set of twins, you’ve dreamed of all your life?” I have to smile, and say,
“I have everything I ever dreamed of already - a husband who is there for me, through thick and thin and three incredible children who I worship”.
We are lucky to be alive and to have each other. Every day is like I’m high on life and motherhood alone. My life has taught me to count my blessings.