Soon after the COVID-19 pandemic started, Kellee Briggs learned she was pregnant. Her first ultrasound showed she was carrying triplets but two had died. She successfully delivered son Chase on September 24, 2020.
Then, 10 months later, she discovered she was pregnant again — with triplets — and delivered two boys and a girl.
“They said that sometimes older women are more likely to have more eggs dropped every cycle because you’re getting closer to menopause,” Briggs, 37, of Ankeny, Iowa said. “That’s their best guess. But they said I could have been dropping eggs like that all along.”Pregnancy and pregnancy loss at once
During that first pregnancy, the 10-week ultrasound was a shock.
The tech finally revealed that Briggs had three amniotic sacs, which meant that she was pregnant with triplets. But only one baby remained.
“The one baby, Chase, which is our survivor, you’d see him fully formed but the other two sacs just looked like empty holes,” she said. “I’ve lost two babies and it was a lot of emotions all flooding in at the same time.”
The couple always wanted two children but their second pregnancy was a surprise.
“We’re both helping our son get ready for daycare and I instantly got really sick to my stomach,” she said. “(My doctor) ran the blood test to see if I was pregnant and when it came back the levels were so high that they said that I was several weeks pregnant, which was further than where I should have been based on timing. So I had a gut feeling.”
Briggs thought this time she was pregnant with twins.
“We looked at each other right away and we knew exactly what it looked like having the multiple sacs,” Nick Briggs, 34 said. “We said to the tech, ‘There’s multiples aren’t there?’ and she looks and she’s like, ‘Yep.’”
The couple thought the tech looked nervous that she’d have to tell them they were having triplets.
“We just knew instantly and we started laughing. It was like, ‘Oh my gosh I can’t believe this happened again,’” Kellee said.
Luckily, Kellee Briggs was able to work from home, which allowed her to rest. She developed gestational diabetes and preeclampsia. While she shared with friends and family that she was pregnant with triplets, she didn’t pick out names because she felt nervous.
When Kellee Briggs hit 32 weeks, she was ready to deliver. Her health and the babies’ were deteriorating.
“I started having a lot of problems. I was having really high blood pressure.”
The babies’ cord blood pressure was elevated so they conducted a C-section delivery. The Briggs welcomed Aiden, 3 lbs., 15 oz., Isaac, 3 lbs., 12 oz. and Addalyn, 3 lbs. 7 oz.
After Kellee went home, she developed Bell’s palsy, a paralysis that is common with moms and multiples.
She has since recovered. While the babies stayed in the neonatal intensive care between 30 and 55 days.
“They came home in the order that they were born,” Kellee Briggs said. “It was nice to get adjusted.”
The mom and dad of four try to stick to a schedule with feedings, but learned early on that they should expect the unexpected.