Melissa, born 2004
Identical twin sisters - Meredith & Melissa
When we found out that we were having identical twin girls, we were so excited. I did a ton of research and learned that an identical twin pregnancy is totally different than a fraternal twin pregnancy. I knew my pregnancy would be monitored closely but when I went for my level II ultrasound at 18 weeks, I was completely unprepared for what I was about to find out. I was immediately sent to a pediatric cardiologist and I will never forget his words "complex cardiac defects". Twin B has complete cardiac defects. The rest of that day is a complete blur. I never heard of Transposition of the Great Arteries and Dextrocardia. What on earth does all this mean? I remember waking up the next morning wishing and hoping that it was a just a terrible nightmare. But when I looked over at my husband I could tell by the look on his face, it was true. After a few days of denial and crying, I decided that I had to be strong for this baby and for her heart healthy twin sister.
On January 21, 2004 Melissa and Meredith were born. I was told by several doctors that if we didn't know ahead of time about Melissa's CHD, they would've sent her home with me since she was doing so well after her birth. At six days old she had an Arterial Switch operation. Her surgery was more difficult than expected and she spent five weeks in the NICU. We were so unsure of what the future was going to hold for us but apparently there was no turning back for this little girl! From the moment she came home, she has been a complete joy to be around. She has hit all of her developmental milestones right on target and, in fact, she had to be a show off and walk before her sister! Melissa now only goes to the pediatric cardiologist twice a year which I enjoy because I love hearing how amazing she is doing. She truly is amazing!
Melissa and Meredith are the best of friends. Not one day goes by that I don't look at them and remember I am the luckiest mommy in the world!
Story by Melissa mom, Jennifer - New Jersey