The Remus Family
In 2012, we were thrilled to be expecting for the first time. At our first OB appointment we were in for a surprise– I was pregnant with twins! Suddenly, not only were we thrilled, but also nervous and excited too. When we met with my doctor after the ultrasound, the appointment took an unexpected turn when he noticed something about our baby B. There was an excessive amount of fluid surrounding the baby, especially around the head and neck area– which could be a sign of various genetic abnormalities. He referred us onto a high risk physician for a more in-depth ultrasound. They too found reason to believe that baby B might be in danger, and recommended that we focus on saving baby A. In our hearts we knew that this wasn’t the right decision for us, and we opted for a second opinion– a different doctor and having a CVS to check for any genetic abnormalities that baby B might have. Thankfully, these test results came back completely clear.
In early October, about two months before my due date, I started noticing some increasing swelling, lightheadedness, and headaches, but really thought that this was just part of a normal twin pregnancy. On October 9th, I realized that I hadn’t felt the babies move much that day. I called Dr. Hwang, and he wanted me to come to the hospital. Upon arrival, my blood pressure was extremely elevated, and they told me I wasn’t leaving until after I had the babies. I was admitted, and over the next three days I was given two rounds of steroids to help with the babies’ lung development, and put on a magnesium sulfate drip because of the pre-eclampsia that I had. On October 12, my blood pressure still hadn't improved, and I was taken in for a C-section. Our daughter Alyvia was born at 12:50pm weighing 3 lbs., 8 oz., and our son Ayden was born at 12:51pm at 2 lbs., 11 oz. At just 30 weeks gestation, they were whisked away to the NICU. Alyvia and Ayden spent the next weeks in the hospital. They were given surfactant to help their lungs, CPAP oxygen support, NG feeding tubes, and countless other tests and equipment. After 38 days Alyvia was discharged, and Ayden came home 11 days later.
Alyvia has continued to have minimal effects of her early arrival. Ayden did have fluid on his brain while in the NICU, and we have continued to keep close watch on his growth and development. He still sees a neurologist in Iowa City for his hydrocephaly, and we also see a pulmonologist to manage his asthma. Alyvia and Ayden are now 5 years old, and we are so grateful for their continued good health and growth. They are doing great in school!
We are looking forward to serving as the 2018 Quad Cities March for Babies Ambassador Family, and to be giving back to a foundation that has given us so much. Sharing our story will help bring awareness to the importance of the March of Dimes and their mission, while also raising essential funds to support their life-saving research.
Lindsey, John, Alyvia and Ayden Remus