This is Emily’s story. Beautiful mother of four, wife, entrepreneur, photographer, and writer of Zee + three . We previously asked her to share some of her experiences to shed some light on her multiple pregnancy, and now life with newborn triplets, Daniel, Summer, and Taylor! xx Sabina & Valerie
Would you mind telling us a little about the birth?
Sure! From the first moment we met with our OB (he’s a specialist in multiple births and high risk pregnancies), we had a goal of making it to 34 weeks. He said that this would be the best outcome for me and the babies if we could make it this far, so I was determined to get there. As we drew closer to the date, he booked us in for a ceserean at 34+1 which was a Tuesday. However, on Sunday night, the babies had other plans. I went into labour on Sunday night, however the contractions were really far apart, so I stayed at home until morning. Then our OB said to come in and have the babies straight away. The operating theatre was very busy and a little overwhelming – but the team were amazing and helped me feel comfortable …. There must have been 15 people in the room, not including me and my husband. It was all pretty quick once it started… I think once we got into theatre, we had our first baby (Summer) within half an hour, our second (Taylor) a minute later and our third (Daniel) a minute after that! I got to hold all three of them for a couple of minutes before they were taken to the Special Care nursery and I was taken to recovery. The whole experience was pretty surreal but I do remember feeling weightless after the operation and the babies had been take out… I was so big in my pregnancy, and there was a lot of pressure on all my internal organs – I remember feeling like I could breath again.
Are you getting any sleep?
Well, if you had asked me this last week I would have said, Sleep – what’s that? But in all seriousness, we have been pretty blessed with very settled babies. Usually they sleep for 3 – 4 hour blocks at a time, but now that they’re 14 weeks old, I have started trying some sleep training techniques. Now, instead of waking them for their dream feed at 11pm, I’m letting them sleep until they wake naturally. Now instead of feeding them at 11pm and 3 am, we’re putting them to bed at 8pm, they’re waking at around 2am, and then again around 6.30am – which means Im getting a bit more sleep this week. I probably average around 6 – 7 hours of broken sleep a night. Hopefully by 6 months we can drop the 2am feed – but for now, it’s manageable!
How many times a night are you getting up?
It’s so much easier now… A few weeks ago I would have said up to 10 times a night. But now, apart from the 2 am feed, I sometimes have to get up once or twice to get one of the babies back to sleep. The boys both take pacifiers when they’re trying to get to sleep, but Summer isn’t a fan! She needs a little more help getting to sleep that the boys. I probably get up anywhere between 2 and 4 times a night, but they’re pretty easy to settle at this stage, so apart from the 2am feed which can take up to an hour, the other times I’m usually back in bed in 10 minutes.
How are you managing their feeding schedule?
They have been on a 4-hourly feeding schedule since they came home from the hospital 10 weeks ago, so feeding times have been at 3am, 7am, 11am, 3pm, 7pm and 11pm. Now we’re trying to drop one of the night feeds that schedule is changing a little. In the beginning, the babies were not able to breastfeed as they were 6 weeks prem. We fed them through a gastric nasal tube for the first 3 weeks, and then started introducing expressed breast milk and formula. Then we started breastfeeding them when they were strong enough. Now we do a combination of breastfeeding, expressed breast milk and formula as I can’t produce enough to feed them exclusively. This combination works really well for us and I hope to continue doing this as long as I can.
How are you feeding them – one at a time? Two? Is your husband helping?
It depends on how tired I am, and if I’m breastfeeding or bottle feeding. Sometimes I will bottle feed two at once but I can only do that with Summer and Daniel, as Taylor needs to be burped multiple times during a feed otherwise we have projectile reflux issues!! I tried tandem breastfeeding, but it wasn’t really my thing, so even though it takes longer, I prefer to feed them one at a time. My husband helps in the morning before work, and then most of the feeds at night too, however some nights I try and feed them without waking him so he can get through the next day at work without falling asleep in a meeting!
Describe an outing with the family – what does it look like? What does it involve? ( lots of preparation, we imagine! 🙂 )
My favourite family outing is on a Saturday or Sunday. Every weekend we will try and get all the kids out for a walk to the park (and a detour via the coffee shop for mummy!) We have to plan it so that Zee (our 2 year old) is fed and changed, the babies are fed and changed – then we have a 3 hour window before we have to be home again for feeding & nap time! We take the triplet pram (which I push) and then hubby pushes Zee in his Red Bike, and walks River (our Golden Retriever ) We look like we have our hands full and we do get lots of looks by passing traffic and usually get chatting to people at the park who are a bit surprised that they’re all ours!
How long does it take to get out the door?
We have to aim to leave an hour before we really need to leave so we can get out the door, and even then we’re usually late! We’re getting better though. We probably only go out as a family once or twice a week, its a bit of mission. Yesterday we went to our nephews 5th birthday party, and it took about an hour and a half to get ready, which wasn’t bad considering!
How is your little man feeling about it?
Zee has been an amazing big brother since the very first moment he met them. He had been practicing their names over and over again from when they were still in my tummy. A couple of days after they were born, my husband brought him in and he ran in to the Special Care Nursery and said “Summer, Taylor, Daniel, I love you!” He still tells them everyday and showers them with kisses. He definitely has his moments of jealousy, but that’s directed at me, not at the babies…. But we’re working on special things I can do with him when the babies are napping during the day so he feels special.
How are you feeling? 🙂
I’m actually feeling really good – especially now that the babies are starting to sleep for longer than a few hours. Its amazing what a little sleep will do for you! I’m starting to enjoy it more now too that we’re starting to get smiles and interaction from the babies. They make me laugh, I just love how Daniel and Taylor can be lying there crying and Summer will look at them and start giggling, or if Taylor is hungry, he’ll slide over to Daniel and start sucking on his forehead. It cracks me up!
For more adorable photos and to follow Emily’s journey check out her Instagram account here – zee_plus_three
Any questions for Emily? Ask below and we will forward them to her!!
Newborn photography session by: Sugar Images
Other images: Emily / Zee + three