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July 02, 2018

Going Forth Into Motherhood... With Triplets

megan_rolland_goforth.pngYou may recognize Megan Rolland as a boss steepler, in which case you would be right, BUT she is also going to be a mom to triplets!!! Congrats Megan and Steph!

BY: MEGAN ROLLAND

I am sitting on a stool in a small darkened room holding Steph's hand who is lying on the exam table sobbing. Big, gasping sobs punctuated every few seconds by a choice curse word. I'm gripping her hand so hard my knuckles are white. I am speechless and keep looking back and forth between Steph and our ultrasound nurse who delivered the news. Triplets. 

Let's back up a year. Steph, my wife, and I decided we were going to try and start that family we had been scheming about for a long time. She is 6 years older and wanted to give it a go before she felt it was too late. Being as we are both female and lacking certain required components to make a baby, we enlisted some help. We have a wonderful male friend who offered his goods and we were off and running - or more like lying down with the hips elevated for 30 minutes. After about 6 months of trying at home without success we went to a fertility clinic for some assistance. At this point, it actually became cheaper to use a sperm donor from a bank instead of our known donor so we opted for that choice. Let me tell you, catalog shopping males off the internet is exhausting work. After many glasses of wine consumed and hours of reading 40 page profiles we had our winner! 

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The clinic categorized Steph as “advanced maternal age” because at the ripe old age of 35 people start worrying your shriveled up eggs won't do a good enough job on their own. Because of that, she was placed on a small amount of fertility medication to help spruce up her ovaries to those of a 20 year old. A lot of people ask us how we got pregnant, so here are a few of the medical details. We used a process called IUI (intrauterine insemination). All that means is a nurse takes a long syringe full of sperm up the vagina, bypasses the cervix, and inseminates directly into the uterus. This gives the sperm a little better chance of making it to the actual egg. This is much different and way less expensive than the more commonly known procedure of IVF, in vitro fertilization, where they extract the egg, combine the sperm in a petri dish, and once it is fertilized place it back into the uterus. 

Another common question we get is “did you try for triplets?”. By the way, whoever asks that question automatically gets added to the night shift feeding help because NO! We wanted 1 healthy baby just like most normal, sane parents. Using the clinic and the IUI method along with a little medication did increase our chances of having multiples to 3%. Even if you are not very good at math, you probably understand that 3 is pretty low but 3 happens to be our lucky number because here we are 5 1/2 months later and there are 3 little fetuses in Steph's belly vying for real estate rights. 

What now? We know there is a lot of uncertainty in our future. We worry about complications with our babies, such as prematurity, and a healthy pregnancy for Steph, as well as every other anxiety that comes along with being new parents. Not to mention our sleep deprived zombie states once the babies arrive. I worry about juggling going back to my nursing job full time while having triplets and also maintaining my running fitness because yes, I would still like to run competitively. Ideally, I would love to run through one more Olympic Trials in the steeple in 2020. 

As Steph's belly continues to grow to the size of a small island over the summer, I will continue to train and compete at the NACAC senior championships in August. After that, our hospital bags will be packed and ready to go. All we can do is go forth, embrace the challenges, live in the moment, accept the chaos, keep each other laughing and revel in everything that comes with motherhood. All we know for sure is we are in for one wild ride!

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