I have been meaning to do a follow-up for ages now and never got around to it. The kids are outside happily playing with my little PNG "mother's helper" keeping an eye on them, so we'll try to get this done as quickly as possible. :)
So, the first thing I wasn't happy about was having to gain 80 pounds by eating 5000 calories a day. Neither one of those things happened. The closest I got was 60 pounds, and I never managed to consume that many calories (without throwing up, anyway). Along with that, reality concern number four never materialized: My stomach never grew to the size it "should" have because I had the babies much earlier than I had hoped and prayed for. Therefore, I did not need a tummy tuck, which I thought was going to be absolutely necessary to repair separated abdominal muscles. My stomach went back to normal, minus the c-section scar (which in my case runs vertically almost up to my belly button; that's always how emergency C-sections are done, I'm told). I don't even have stretch marks except a few tiny ones around my belly button. I have recently found out that lots of people here at Ukarumpa just assumed I got the tummy tuck since I had said I would need one (when I knew nothing yet about God's timing for my pregnancy and our kids!). While I WISH I could have carried the babies a lot longer, since I didn't have any choice in the matter I do thank God for good genes that allowed my body to bounce back quickly. That made it SO much easier to care for 5 preemies in the NICU!
The second thing, even more a concern for me, was having to feed preemies every two hours around the clock. First off, turns out I was wrong. It's every 3 hours. Secondly, while some people had already volunteered to help, little did I know how MANY people would join our army of volunteers! What a stupid waste of worry energy that was. I got up less with the quints than I did with my single baby, Isaac. I got up a lot to pump, but that's different somehow.
The third thing was fear that I wouldn't bond with the quints because they would be in the NICU for so long and there would be so many of them. WRONG AGAIN. I bonded immediately with my babies, with a lioness's protectiveness and a tenderness that overwhelmed me. I actually bonded much quicker with them than with Isaac because of the postpartum depression I experienced after his birth. (Poor little guy. I've sure bonded with him since! I remember thinking no one could love a child as much as I loved him as soon as I got over the postpartum.)
The fourth "reality" - nasty extra tummy skin and stretch marks - I addressed in the first paragraph since they kind of go hand in hand (just in case you skimmed and missed it).
Bottom line: None of the "realities" I was dreading ever materialized. None. Note to self: worry is a waste! Trust God! It won't be easy, but He's faithful. Always.
|The kids on Sunday after church in front of our tiny Christmas tree. I love how Marcie and Gracie are holding hands. Seth was trying to hold Marcie's hand. They were all so happy! Sorry for the light glare between Gracie and Will.|