Also known as the least restful rest ever possibly imagined.
To be honest, I have been dreading writing about this time in my pregnancy because I want those who come to The Twin Source seeking great advice and comfort to find just that—words of encouragement and excitement for the blessing that has been bestowed upon you.
From the moment I found out I was carrying twins, the babies have been without a doubt the most wonderful gift of my life.
The bed rest portion of my pregnancy, however, was like an inferno I had to pass through to get to the joy I have today. At times it will feel like hell, but it is well worth it and absolutely crucial that you follow your doctor’s instructions if he or she recommends bed rest.
Whatever the complication or reason, bed rest can be a safe way to continue for several weeks a pregnancy that might not otherwise have had such an outcome. I think most twin mothers would agree that keeping those babies inside and getting as close to your due date as possible is the ultimate goal.
It is one of the critical ways to help make your babies stronger and healthier as they begin their life.
As I mentioned in my profile, I was placed on bed rest at week 24 and was on it until the babies were born 11 weeks later. I took it very seriously. As the doctor instructed, I only went up and down the stairs once a day (unless I had to leave for a scheduled doctor’s appointment). I created my own little world on the third level of our tiny townhome.
I slept (if you can call it that) in our bed every night. In the morning, I moved into our study and rested on our pullout couch (we added a nice thick featherbed on top of it!). In the study, I also had my laptop, a television, snacks, and lots and lots of water. This change of scenery, though just a short distance from my bedroom, helped me psychologically not feel confined to one room. It gave me more of a push to get up in the morning.
That being said, it was still tough never leaving the house. Friends would visit, but it was sporadic at best. Perhaps I should have reached out more, but anyone who knows me knows that I am a stubborn, independent woman who has a hard time asking to borrow a pen much less asking people to visit and chat with me.
In hindsight, I should have reached out. Reach out if you need to. Definitely reach out.
I was lucky in that during the day I had my pug, Ruby, to keep me company and my job to keep me busy. I was able to do my work via my laptop. But it was still hard psychologically at times.
It was no doubt also hard on my husband, Andy. He was already faced with the pressure of becoming a first-time father with two babies on the way and all the home projects that come with that. Then his wife was required to be horizontal 24 hours a day. He became a personal chef, errand runner, dog walker, at times even a psychologist (though I never took his advice!)—all while also going to work every day.
He was my rock. And I don’t think I ever thanked him enough for it. Twin parenting is a team effort, and it starts way, way before the babies are born.
Advice to Women on Bed Rest
As I mentioned earlier, bed rest can be a very bleak time. Here are my tips for making it through:
- If possible, give yourself a change of scenery every day. Move from your bedroom to a different room.
- Start off each morning as you would if you were leaving your house. Shower, do your hair, etc. Take a bit of time for yourself and for your beauty regimen; this will help psychologically.
- Think of projects you can get done. For example, write thank-you notes or organize old photo albums.
- Call friends and catch up while you can. For the first 90 days after the babies come home, you’ll be so busy you won’t know what time it is much less how your old college roommate is doing.
- Catch up on books and movies. Again, you won’t have much time for such simple luxuries after the munchkins come home.
Two days prior to delivering the twins, Andy and my sister suggested I get outside just for five minutes. It was a beautiful October day, and I had not really been out of the house much since August. Eventually, I gave in and took a walk with them to the corner of my street and back. The air was crisp, and the leaves had changed colors. It was a moment I will never forget.
Andy took the photo of me above.
I look huge and miserable. But it was one of the happiest moments of my life, as I knew I was going to meet my babies soon and I had given them the best shot I possibly could.
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Please Note: The information contained on The Twin Source is not intended for medical diagnosis. Any medical information found on this site should be discussed with your health care professional. Always consult your doctor for any medical advice.