Saturday, February 16, 2013

I'm that lady.

I have become one of those bloggers.
Where the babies come and I have fallen off the face of the earth. 
I swore I would stay on top of things and not forget this little old guy.


This twin thing is crazy.
Like no-time-to-shower-for-days crazy.
Wear-the-same-thing-day-after-day crazy
(who cares if there's spit-up on it?  I'll just get more on it anyways).

There is so much to talk about, right?
I mean, they are 2 months tomorrow and I haven't posted once.
Where do I start?
The delivery?
Our stay in the hospital?
Their first month?
The second month?
Their eating/sleeping/whatever habits?
What I've learned?
What I've done to survive?
How much I love them to pieces?

Where do I start?

Yes, I know it's sideways.  It looked normal when I uploaded it.  And, really, I'm not going to take the time to figure out how to flip it around. 
At this point, it is easier for you to turn your head or turn your computer.  Cause like that one lady says, "I ain't got time for that."

But, aren't they precious?  Heartbreaking? Perfect?
And completely time consuming.
Precious babies trump blogging.
Every time.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Joy Comes in the Morning

My heart is full and my cup runneth over.

Introducing my beautiful children.
Who have captured my heart
and shown me that joy does come in the morning.
I can never express my gratitude,
and complete, never-ending, heart-filling love
that I feel for these two little chipmunks.

Andrew William
Born on December 17, 2012 at 8:20 am
6 pounds 7 ounces, 19 inches long

Annalise Marie
Born on December 17, 2012 at 8:21 am
5 pounds 4 ounces, 18 inches long

Joy does come in the morning.  At 8:20 and 8:21.

Everyone is healthy and doing well.  

Saturday, December 8, 2012

What Pregnancy Has Taught Me

I swore if I was ever pregnant again, I would never complain.
I would appreciate every little ache and pain.
I would revel in the beauty of my ever-expanding belly.
Well folks, I have tried not to complain.
I've worked really, really hard.
I know there are bucket-fulls of women who would pay and do a lot to be in my position.
I was one of them.
I got annoyed when I read and heard about women complaining about how
awful they felt.
But, I have learned over the past few months that
my complaining does not mean that I don't want this.
Or I would rather not be in this position.
Rather, my complaining is more because I am ready to meet them.
And have them here.

So, I am writing this in the spirit of "what I have learned through pregnancy"
rather than "I am complaining about pregnancy."

What I have learned:

  • God has a giant sense of humor.  Just when I think that my belly has reached its max limit, it grows a little bit more.  I'm pretty sure that if we kept this up, my skin could be see through. And I could watch Herbie and Puckett like I used to watch the polar bears through the glass window at the zoo.  And, there will be no skin pictures on this blog.  This wonderful miracle of growing babies is not always a beautiful miracle.  
  • As I have mentioned before, karma is one nasty lady.  The cankles continue to grow and, just to be funny, I suppose, my feet only fit in Crocs.  Which is unfortunate in itself.  Cankles would be one thing.  Adding Crocs to the mix just makes it oh-so-much-more-humbling.
  • There are some kids that know a lot about pregnancy and babies (others don't know a lot at all).  Questions that have been asked (males and females):  How do you think nursing will go?  Are you going to have a c-section? Did you know if you push hard enough that you poop? Are you going to keep their umbilical cords? 
  • I haven't quite learned why other things need to accompany pregnancy- such as other changes to the body that I will not mention.  Some things don't seem completely necessary.  They are just big pains in the butt.  Literally.
  • My husband is wonderful.  He has now taken over all of the household chores, such as hand washing all the floors every weekend, vacuuming, washing the dishes, doing the laundry, cleaning the showers, etc.  I haven't done any of these things for a long time.  And I am very appreciative.  And I am not really looking forward to the time when I get to do some of these things again.
  • My belly is a perfect level to knock little kindergartners in the face.  It's also a perfect level for them to stare at. And they are not subtle.

Baby and such update

How Far Along: 36 weeks and 3 days.  Yes, that 3 days is important.

Size of Babies:  Not sure officially. At my 35 week appointment, boy was weighing in at approximately 5 pounds 8 ounces and girl was weighing 5 pounds 3 ounces. However, this is very approximate and this was a week and a half ago. I have faith that they have gained since then. I would love if they were both over 6 pounds when they are born.

Weight Gain: None ya.  But, I have gained weight.

Belly: It hasn't gotten any smaller.

Go ahead and laugh. Other people do.  And then they realize what they are doing and then feel badly.

Sleep: Same as usual.  Better than when they arrive.

Movement: They are still moving and still definitely trying to find their own little special space there.  However, I think that is impossible.  At 35 weeks, girl was laying diagonally across my belly, with her head under boy's tummy.  This explains why my belly is totally uneven at times.

Latest Doctor's Appointment:

1.  I had a doctor's appointment this past week (36 week appointment).  That was my goal- get to December 5 and I made it.  And, I even made it while teaching full-time.  Bam.

2.  I was about 1 cm dilated and a little effaced- not much of any action. Dr. E thought that there wouldn't be anything happening this week.
3. They passed their BPP tests (movement, tone, fluid, and breathing) and their NST again.
4. I also asked Dr. Eck if I could deliver them on 12-12-12.  I thought I might as well try.  It would be a great birthday because of the obvious reasons and because my nephew's birthday is on the 11th, my coworker's is on the 12th and my dad's is on the 13th.  Unfortunately, she just gave me a smirk that said, "Nice try."  She felt like the 12th was a little early if they are still comfy in there.  Which, I completely understand.  I know that the longer they are in there, the better.  But still.  12-12-12?
5.  We did decide on a date!  Prep for the Twins' first home game will be  Monday, December 17 at 5:30 am.  The game will start at 7:30 am. To say that I am thrilled and excited and terrified is an understatement.  We covet your prayers over the next week or two as we prepare for this--a day we have been waiting and praying for for many years.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

No news is good news.

How Far Along: 34 weeks manana.  How did that happen?

Size of Babies:  Not sure officially. I'm thinking they will get measured this week.  I continue to grow, so I am hoping that that means that they are growing as well.  Babycenter says that at around this stage they are about 18 inches long and weigh about 4.75 pounds (about a cantaloupe).  I'd say it is completely believable that they would be about that same size. It does feel like I am carrying some melons around.  In my belly, that is.

Weight Gain: It fluctuates, but anywhere from 40-50 pounds. (Sidenote: if you're a nurse and are recording weight, please don't tell the patient, "That's okay, honey. You're carrying two."   Just keep your thoughts to yourself.  And tell me I am glowing.  And that I have really skinny ankles.  And only one chin.

Belly: Good golly, Miss Molly.  When I look down, my belly doesn't seem so huge.  But then I look in the mirror.  Or at pictures.  Or when I wear clothes.  Or when I lay down.  Or when I can't breathe. Or walk.  It's then that I realize that my belly keeps getting larger.  It's kind of amazing actually.  Like just when you think, "It can't stretch out anymore.  It's just not possible," God goes ahead and is like, "That's funny. Let me stretch your tummy out a little further.  Just far enough that when you try to squeeze past kids through a door, that you knock them over."  That kind of thing.  So, yeah.  My belly is full of melon-sized babies. The bonus is that I get to rid gansta-style in my car with my seat so far back.  Once again, it would be a lot cooler if I drove like that in a city.  Not through Kansas fields.
I don't know what my actual fundal height is.  Maybe about 2 or 3 yards by now? :)

Sleep: On the left side with intermissions throughout the night to pee and readjust my ear and knees.  It's fine.  I'm at least sleeping throughout most of the night.

Movement: Because baby melons are not able to spread out like they used to and since they are bigger, their movements are becoming painful and much more defined.  I do absolutely love watching my belly form into different 3D shapes (sphere to cube to rectangular prism) when they move their arms and legs.  I love the assurance that they are okay.  But, I will be honest and say that it hurts.

Other things:
1.  I will never make fun of anyone's swollen feet or cankles again.  You know what they say about karma?  Well not only will she come back to get you, she comes back to get you and gives you ginormous Flinstone feet in the process. Lo siento, Min.

2.  I had a doctor's appointment yesterday.  I will not mention that I was there for 2 and 1/2 hours.  Or that I was admitted to the hospital.  Because those weren't the main events.  (Seriously, I was admitted to the hospital but it was because I went there for my ultrasound and non-stress test.  And I guess they have to admit you for anything.  I was even asked if I would like visitors.).
  • I am not dilated at all.  Which means, hopefully, I still have several weeks to go before delivery.
  • I do have some swelling in my feet and ankles.  I knew this already from the elephant feet I have attached to my tree-trunk calves.
  • Both babies passed their BPP ultrasound tests again (8 out of 8 points!).  Of course, they did it on their time schedules, not mine.  They still have great movement and tone, lots of fluid around them, and both performed their breathing exercises.  
  • We got to see Puckett sucking on her umbilical cord.  Which is really cute.  Until you think about it.  And then it's gross.  But then, whatever.  She'll probably eat poop sometime in her life.  So an umbilical cord is not a big deal.
  • I don't know about how I/they did on the NST.  They were moving like mad but because of that it was difficult to consistently monitor their heartbeats.  
  • Both babies are now head down.
  • A date has not been chosen. A method has not been chosen.  The method I pick is the one where they are are born alive and screaming and healthy. 
  • My goal is to make it to December 5 and not go past December 19. Anything in between is fine. Especially 12.12.12.  Because that would be rad to have that birthday.  And my nephew's birthday is the day before, my friend's is the 12th and my dad's is the 13th.  But seriously. I don't care.
3.  After my appointment I had nursing class.  Since all the appointments took me forever, Dave had run and gotten me dinner.  So, I was that pregnant lady in class with a thing of fries.  And, Dave gets extra points for husband of the year award since he went with me to breastfeeding class.  Thankfully, he was not the guy hiding his face or playing on his phone the whole time. That was another dude.

4. We had our first shower this past weekend which was hosted by D's work peeps.  It was great fun to see and chat with people and eat delicious snacks and watch people drink delicious drinks.  We also got some wonderful things for the twerps.

5.  I also got this great, fantastic, beautiful, perfect diaper bag from my aunt (and uncle). She is an expert bag maker and she made this one for Dave and me.  I know she probably didn't even notice, but I noticed her fabric choice:  

On this side, two deer (for the twins) and one baby bird on the orange deer's back.  I thought that was Nugget right away.

On the other side, there is a bigger bird flying, which is obviously Maggie.  Imagine it. I don't have a picture.  And then, the amazing inside of the bag. She even made a wet bag and a changing pad to match.  

6.  And finally, some clothes from my wonderful family in Germany.  They will be the coolest cats in Kansas.  Fergs agrees.

Last thing...
Did you read about this lady? And her triplet boys?  She is a rockstar for sure. Just another reminder that I will get over my weight gain and remind myself that I am doing it for them and their health.  I can't even imagine--20 pounds of baby? 4 gallons of milk? That doesn't even cover placentas, amniotic fluid, Twinkie remnants.  Bless her.  And her husband.  And those little guys.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

I think we've got everything. Except a clue.

I had my first weekly appointment with Dr. Eck this week. It consisted of:

  • An ultrasound with a biophysical profile
  • A doctor's check-up/appointment
  • A non-stress test
And, I will be doing this routine every week until delivery.

The ultrasound was to check the baby's growth and measurements (even though this gets less and less accurate the further along in pregnancy you are).  Boy (A) weighs approximately 3 pounds 13 ounces and Girl (B) weighs about 3 pounds 5 ounces.  Normal measurements since B always tends to be smaller and girls also tend to be smaller as well.

The other part of the ultrasound was the biophysical profile.  The test is checking on 4 things for each baby, which they get 2 points for each thing- his/her body movements, muscle tone (flexing arms/legs or opening and closing a fist), breathing movements, and the amount of amniotic fluid surrounding them.  They both got 8/8.  Their first A+.  Bam.

Right now, Baby A is head down and quickly running out of room.  Baby B is head up and is facing my back with her head tucked up (and slamming into) my ribs.  Her feet are either over her head or slamming into her brother's head (which is below her).  We will continue monitoring which positions they are in as we get closer to delivery time.

Of course, we got pictures but little girly wasn't cooperating.   She would rather ram her head into my ribs.  The sonographer popped over to the 3D option (or is it 4D? I never know.) and got a sweet picture of Herbie, though.  He looks like a real freaking human being!!!!  No longer a little seahorse or  a huge headed alien or really gaunt looking baby.  He looks cute (minus the umbilical cord in front of his one eye)!

And then.  Then.  To top it off?  She went ahead and showed us this.

What is this craziness?  The 2 dots in the middle of the picture are blurry arrows pointing to the blurry/cloud poofy things to the left.  But, the amazing thing is that the cloud/blurry things on the left is hair!  That's a head (I forget who owns that one) with little peach fuzzy hair.  And they both had it.  And that, my friends, is the cutest and sweetest thing I have seen in a long time.  Baby fuzzy hair on little noggins.  You can't beat that.

After that I had my doctor's appointment where I got my fundal height measured (don't know what it was), blood pressure, she squeezed my cankles for awhile, and we talked about delivery.  Here's the plan/deal/decisions we need to make:
  • The latest I will go is 38 weeks (that is December 19 I think).
  • If Baby A (boy) stays head down I can opt for a vaginal delivery.  I could deliver him and then she would go in and flip girly girl around (if she is still breech).
  • Of course, there are risks for delivery vaginally, which we discussed (risks that you would have with just one baby two, but also additional ones that come with 2 babies).
  • If I wanted, I could just opt for a C-section.
  • She said that there is more stress on the mother for a c-section (especially the recovery afterwards) and more stress on the babies during a vaginal delivery.
  • In addition, it could happen that I delivery one vaginally and something happens and I have to have a C-section with the other one. Which would be dumb.
  • So, we haven't made any decisions yet.  And, we don't have to at this point--until we get closer to delivery time.
  • I am not one of those people who must have a natural delivery or must deliver vaginally or whatever. I know there are risks with both and that having a c-section is major surgery.  However, my goal is not to win the award for least meds used or most natural delivery. My goal is for my babies to be born-- alive, healthy, screaming, and with the fewest complications and stress on them.  That is my goal. Nothing else.  
I then did my non-stress test. Lay there with a pink and blue tube top around my belly with monitors strapped on my belly for heart rates and contractions.  I then got to press a button whenever I felt movement.  Results from that looked good and normal, too.  But, let me tell you.  If you ever want to relax and almost fall asleep, just have some background noise of listening to heartbeats. It's ridiculously relaxing.

I am feeling okay. I would be lying if I said that I was feeling fantastic.  I am struggling but keep thinking about the outcome and why I am doing this.  I will make it through this- millions of women have done this.  And it ends eventually.  And I don't want to deliver now--they need more time to bake and gain weight.

This last weekend I went to the store and got all of the must-haves before they arrive so that I can start packing my hospital bag.  There were a few things that we still needed and I think we are all set (we will get the rest of the stuff after they are born).  Now, I think the only thing we still need is a clue on what the heck we are doing.  But my sister said you never have a clue as a parent.   

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Week 30. And then some.

You get this again.  Because it is easier.  Paragraphs seem quite overwhelming right now.

1.  I am 30 1/2 weeks.  I have sworn not to complain because I have sent up a gajillion prayers to get to this point and I know how many women would tell me to shut up.  As they should.  So, I won't complain.  Let's just say the X-Large maternity whale shirts that I bought 3-4 weeks ago?  They are not quite covering the belly anymore.

2.  And I refuse to compare myself to full-term singleton pregnant bellies.  Because it makes me feel a bit jealous. Not jealous of the fact that they are losers and are only having one kid.  But because their bellies look like mine did at approximately week 5.  I know I should be huge and chubby.  So, I will not compare. At least not out loud.  Inside my head I am pretty sure I could be giving birth to a T-Rex.

3.  My students have named Herbie and Puckett "Billy" and "Emily."  I am not sure how that got started but it is going to be weird calling them by other names when they are born.

4.  We have cancelled all of our magazine subscriptions in order to save money.  We figured we needed to save the money and we will not have time to read them either.

5.  I am pretty sure we have picked out names.  This was not fun for me- it felt like a lot of pressure. And Dave hated every name I did or ran it through his "16-year-old-locker-room filter" and decided that certain names just wouldn't work, even if we absolutely loved them.  I don't know if I should be impressed if that filter in D's head still works like it did 15 some-odd years ago.

5.  Pictures from October 15- Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.   Fergs still loves to join in.

6.  My very thoughtful coworker and friend (who serves me ice water every morning) remembered October 15 and brought me flowers.  Amazing woman with an amazing heart and an amazing memory.  Thanks, little one.

7.  I am also trying to get as much Christmas shopping done now as I can. No matter what happens, I will not be going shopping.  I will either be a whale and whales cannot and should not go shopping.  Or I will be home with Herbs and Puckett and I refuse to take them out Christmas shopping.  And I will probably refuse to change out of sweat pants.  So, I won't be going.

8. I got a package in the mail from my old coworker/boss.  She is a woman, I must admit, that I kind of idolize.  She is not only an incredibly talented educator, but she has a heart of gold and a sense of humor that rocks my world.  Thanks for the adorable, onesies, JS.  I especially love the bears brushing their teeth.  And oh look, there's my belly.

9.  My mom's neighbor also visited me at school the other day.  She dropped off a whole slew of gifts for me.  An adorable wall hanging for the nursery and some ear warmers for me that I'll definitely use for recess duty.  But the best part of the gift? Just look at these things! Obviously, her sewing talents are ridiculous.
Square-toed quilted boots for Herbie.
Round-toe quilted books for Puckett.
10.  Another package came this week too.  From Dave's parents and sister and family.  It was a box filled with goodies for us and the babies.  Dave's sister made us yummy bread and cookies. And they also included some baby clothes and blankets that they had acquired through (I am assuming) my other sister-in-law.  Then, also, there was an ear thermometer (that I was too cheap to register for) and some handmade, sewn car seat covers.  I had looked on for some and registered for some, but they were super expensive and a lot more cover than what we need here in Kansas.  She made these and they fit the carseats perfectly--complete with zippers and velcro face cover flap things. I think I should get a job writing product descriptions.

11. No belly pics.  As that requires energy. And a wide-angle lens, which I don't have.

12.  I have another Dr. appointment on Thursday.  I will have an ultrasound, which will include a biophysical profile, meeting with the doctor, and a non-stress test.  I'm pretty sure I'll be there until midnight at this rate, but I don't care.  They are doing everything they can to make sure they are growing the way they should, have the muscle movements that they should, and are practicing breathing as they should.  I'll sit there for days if I need to.

13.  I don't remember the last time I read a book.  That is sad. Maybe that is why I am becoming dumber.

14.  Does Eli Manning look like he is a 13 year old boy?  Like he should be going to a private boarding school for pre-pubescent boys.  No?  Just me?

15.  The baby room is starting to be done.  By that, I mean that if babies came we would be fine.  We just wouldn't be able to walk around that much.  Here's a sneak peak.

One crib came.  Not sure where the other one is.  Stuck somewhere. I need to call but that would require my cell phone to work inside my house.  Ugh.  The cribs we ordered were one of the top five on Consumer Reports for safety, construction, and ease of putting together.  They also convert to toddler beds and full beds.  And, kitty cannot get in it.

The dresser D painted and the frame my sister got my after Maggie died (it has the e.e. cummings quote on it). I'm still not sure what picture to put in it.  Ideas?

The bookshelf on the opposite wall of the dresser.  Momentos and baby books, etc. I've picked up along the way.  The blurred parts are either pictures of inappropriate things. Or the first letters of their names.  You choose.

 One of my favorite parts of the shelf- can't forget my original babies, Maggie and Nugget.  Since no place makes hawk anything, I went with the birds instead.

One of my favorite Curly Girl prints (see up close at the top of this entry and I used it in this post right after Maggie was born) and a bull for D that I spray painted. On the driveway. In a box.  When it was windy.  Wife Fail.

The cribs will eventually go along the right wall under the long, skinny window.  The desk and tubs and piles o' crap will be moved.

16.  I think that is it.  I am full of baby. I love it.  I wish December would be here already.  And they cannot wait to meet everyone.
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