There he or she was - our tiny 8 week old fetus. Not much more than a little bean at this point, but implanted firmly, measuring the appropriate size, and with a strong heartbeat - everything we had hoped to hear. Knowing the history of our previous loss, the doctor explained to us that while it was too early for any diagnosis of the baby's health, it was definitely a viable pregnancy. We were smiling from ear to ear and brimming with optimism for the first time in months. I took some deep breaths as the nerves subsided.
As the ultrasound was ending, the doctor suddenly said "Uh oh". Uh oh? Not the words you ever want to hear in a prenatal ultrasound. But she started to chuckle as I looked at her and then at the screen. "Do you see what I'm seeing?" she asked tentatively. "Two??" I replied in total disbelief.
Of course we had made jokes about twins. Doesn't everyone nervously joke about twins before an ultrasound? You make a couple "what if" comments, but you never really think the universe is listening. Besides, there weren't twins in our families and we didn't use fertility treatments, so what were the chances? Apparently our chances were better than we realized because there was no denying there were somehow TWO babies on the screen. A second ago, there was only one and now there were two! Where did that second baby come from? Not only on the screen, but in general. How on earth were there two babies?!
We walked out of her office in a haze, alternating between hysterical laughter and stunned silence. I shed a couple of tears, the only tears I cried, worried that I was not a good enough mom to have two babies at the same time. But that passed more quickly than it came when I realized I had no choice but to be. And then the laughter started again.
Somehow we managed to pull it together for long enough to decide we should go for coffee. Jacking yourself up on caffeine when you've just found out the most shocking news of your life seemed as good a thing to do as any. We sat and stared at each other trying to process it all, shaking our heads, still laughing. The world stopped spinning - or maybe it started spinning in the opposite direction. There was no question that this was an absolute blessing but our heads were dizzy with endless questions. How were we going to afford this? How were we going to manage life with two newborns, not to mention the 18 years following? How was our daughter going to react to not one, but two new siblings? How was my body going to fit them both? How was our car going to....oh my GOD we needed a minivan...