A twin pregnancy is NOT for the weak. I’ll admit I think I’ve had it easier than many, but still…it is significantly different than a singleton pregnancy from what I’ve heard (and felt). First major difference? No third trimester.
In a singleton pregnancy your third trimester starts around 28 weeks; however with twins the doctors start monitoring you for preterm labor around 22-24 weeks and tells you to be ready for babies anytime between 28-36 weeks. Notice I didn’t say 40 weeks? That’s because 40 weeks with twins is damn near unheard of. In fact, full term with twins is between 35-37 weeks (again, this varies by doctor), but even still, you lose about a month of your pregnancy if you go to “term”.
Here’s the twin pregnancy timeline:
6 weeks: confirm pregnancy
7-9 weeks: Puke up everything but your toenails
Weeks 10-20: Sleep, nap, sleep, nap
Aha, the doctors finally figure out that you need a SIGNIFICANT increase in iron because your parasites, ahem, I mean…twins, are taking all of your iron stores, which is why you’re sleeping 15 hours a day and walk around like a zombie!
22 weeks: Doctors start checking your cervix and scaring the hell out of you by talking about preterm delivery and months in the NICU. I’ve worked in the NICU and believe me, it is NOT where you want your babies to be. Yes, they take good care of them, but it is a high stress start to life for your newbie.
At about 28 weeks it is recommended to be on “active rest”. This means cut your work hours in half, sit more than stand, avoid stairs when possible, decrease housework, and lay on your side for 2hrs twice a day.
Believe me, by this point with twins, all the mama-to-be wants to do is REST and NEST anyway. I was fortunate enough to be able to stop working altogether around 30 weeks, which I think has greatly helped me get to this point in pregnancy and will hopefully help me make it to my goal of 36 weeks, which should mean NO NICU!
This whole “trimester” I haven’t been able to do much other than read, sleep, watch movies, and eat. Walking is PAINful, but I do force myself to do 1-2 miles a few times a week. Zumba is still fun, but I get really crampy so I took a few weeks off. Yoga feels great on my joints and muscles, but other than that, things are pretty chill ’round the Vail house.
Each day I try to do a little something to prep for these babies. I’ve washed diapers, blankets, and clothes, the nursery gets a little more done each day, and I cook a healthy meal each night. But just that much activity ZAPS my energy. Not to mention my husband literally yells at me everytime I’m out of bed, lol.
At 36 weeks if I still haven’t delivered, I plan to kick my own ass in an effort to get these boys OUT!!!