A Perth mum who is carrying quintuplets is consuming 6,000 calories a day to feed her growing brood. At 29 weeks along, Kim Tucci, 26, is force feeding herself three times the amount of calories one person should eat in a day to reach the recommended intake. Mrs Tucci, who is already a mum to two young girls, fell naturally pregnant with five babies while trying for a boy with her husband and has been documenting the highs and lows of her pregnancy since receiving the news. ‘I’m struggling to eat and force feed myself leaving me with reflux for hours,’ she wrote on her blog Surprised With Five.
‘I can’t tolerate a lot of dairy and I can’t keep protein drinks down, I’m starting to lose weight when I really need to be gaining it.’ Her online posts about dealing with pain, nausea, changes to her body and going to the bathroom 12 times a night, has amassed a following of more than 123,000 people – most of them mums who share their own personal stories. ‘It’s getting harder as each day passes to push through the pain, every part of my body aches and sleeping is becoming very painful,’ she said. ‘No amount of pillows are helping support my back and belly.
Sometime I get so upset that I just want to throw my hands up and give in!’ ‘I have a lot of stretch marks now, dealing with such a huge change in my body is hard. My husband always reminds me I should wear my stripes with pride and that I should be proud of them and what my body has achieved.’ Is it all worth it? ‘Yes!!!! I will keep pushing through,’ Mrs Tucci exclaims. At 24 weeks along, photographer Erin Elizabeth took photos of the expecting mum to commemorate her journey.
The images became a hit on Mrs Tucci’s website and Ms Elizabeth’s social media. Mrs Tucci has been admitted to the hospital on a few occasions for minor issues but all five of the children – four girls and one boy – are healthy. Mrs Tucci and her husband began trying for their third and final child last year with the hope of having a son to complete their family. After finding out in July that Mrs Tucci was pregnant, the couple was ecstatic to be told by their doctor that they were having twins.
‘I WAS SO EXCITED!! TWINS!!! I was excited at the possibility of twins but absolutely nothing on this earth could have prepared me for what happened next,’ Mrs Tucci said. When she asked to use another sonogram machine so she could have a clearer view of the babies, her world was turned upside-down when the doctor found five separate heart beats. ‘My legs start [sic] to shake uncontrollably and all I can do is laugh.. The sonographer then told me the term for 5 is QUINTUPLETS!!’ she continued. ‘I called my husband from the ultrasound room but I don’t think he believed me at first. He quickly drove down.
I could see the excitement in his face he told me ” We can do this”.’ Mrs Tucci said it has started to kick in what a big change this will be for her family. ‘I have only just really embraced this pregnancy and what it will mean for my family, the last few days has been a reality check that it’s all really happening!’ ‘It’s hard to accept life will change forever and my small family will be HUGE all in one hit,’ she said.