The joy and challenges of a twin or multiples pregnancy: an introduction.

When I was told the wonderful news that I was pregnant with twins, six years ago, I was elated and bursting with excitement. Many emotions ran through me at the same time.

I felt overjoyed, eager, nervous, anxious and scared all in one. The discovery was so shocking that I couldn’t think straight and all I kept asking the doctor is if the babies were okay? and if he was sure there were two. If you are anything like me, the revelation will keep you in between shock and excitement for quite some time. For some women, it might be very scary and emotional leaving them teary-eyed instantly.

Still, others stress about the birth planning, finances and whether there is enough room for two in the house. Yet, the excitement trumps all the other emotions.

However, as a mother of twins, I learned that women who are expecting twins or multiples do experience a different pregnancy than those expecting only one baby. Being pregnant with twins means that you are carrying two are more babies, you also have two or more placentas, two or more cords and a heightened sensitivity due to extra hormones notes Dr Susan Warhus, an obstetrician in Scottsdale, Arizona, and author of Countdown to Baby: Answers to the Top 100 Questions About Pregnancy and Childbirth.

“It’s no wonder that your body undergoes more drastic changes than the singleton pregnant woman.”

When it comes to the hormones, there are a plethora of miserable events the hormones can cause. Even though every pregnancy is different, here are some of the most common things you might experience:

• Hyperemesis

It is not uncommon that pregnant woman experiences constant nausea & vomiting from the get-go. Throughout the first trimester, you might experience difficulty with keeping your food down. In this case, vitamin B injections and anti-nausea medications can do wonders. When expecting more than one baby, “It’s very normal to be sicker and feels queasier than women carrying just one baby, due to higher levels of hormones,” reassures Warhus.

• Mood swings

Feeling like you are on a constant emotional roller coaster? A simple nod, a hi, anything and everything can set you off? Your reactions might drive everyone crazy leaving them wondering what happened to the previously calm and collected you. Heightened mood swings are normal when you are expecting more than one baby. Your emotions will leave you feeling overwhelmed with guilt, joy and sometimes regret but it is important to remember you are not the same person you once were, you are carrying two or more babies, be gentle and patient with yourself. Things will work out the way they need to and your family and friends will understand.

• Oh, the swelling

Women who are expecting more than one baby may experience more swelling due to the extra fluid coursing through their bodies. Woman carrying two or more babies naturally will have a larger uterus. The swellings might give an impression that she is farther along than she really is.  The experience will leave you feeling like you will never get back to your original body but there is hope. healthy eating plans and moderate exercise can assist with changing the mindset towards the weight you have gained.

• Fatigue

Nearly every pregnant woman experiences fatigue to some degree, but it is often more intense in a woman carrying multiples. Exhaustion kicks in without hard work which leaves women in subsequent pregnancies floored by this increased pregnancy-related exhaustion and the exhaustion caused by chasing older kids all day. Rest when you can and understand it is necessary for you to do this.

Final thoughts

As the excitement of the news winds down, I realized that being pregnant with twins or multiples brings its own set of challenges. Let me know in the comments below what your experience was.

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