Thursday, July 30, 2009

1 Week or Less!

We had our weekly appointment with Dr. Weisert yesterday.  She looked me over and checked everything.  Turns out I am now 3 cm dilated (up from 1 cm a week ago).  I also had gained 6 lbs. in the last week!  Since I have only gained 15 lbs. this whole pregnancy, up until yesterday, we were all a little surprised by this.  The Dr. says its from the swelling in my legs and lower belly.

Then, she looked through all my charts and test results and said "Well, do you want to stay pregnant?"

How do you answer that question?  I said that I just want what's best for the babies.  The Dr. explained that she wants what's best for the babies too, which is why she wanted the amniocentesis, but at this point the boys will be fine whether they spend a few days in the NICU or not.  

She's more concerned about me getting sick.  I have several of the early signs of preeclampsia without actually having it yet, then there's still the whole uterine rupture concern.  

So, we went ahead and scheduled our c-section for August 6th which is a week from today at 7:30 AM.  So, by this time next week, we'll have two babies to cuddle!

That is of course if I don't go into labor between now and then, which will probably happen because my doctor is out of town for the weekend!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Oops... False Alarm

Dr. Weisert called last night to check-in and also to ask me to get to the hospital a half-hour early this morning to check my blood.  Apparently, my platelets are a little low (which can cause problems with blood not clotting) and she wanted to make sure that they hadn't dropped anymore.  If they had, we might be able to skip the whole amniocentesis and go ahead and deliver the babies.  If they hadn't, we would do the amnio. and then based on the results, possibly deliver the babies.

Knowing that delivery was probably eminent, we packed our bags, finished a few last minute things around the house, spent some time together as a family, cried a little, laughed a little prayed a little and went to bed.  I got up at 11:45 to eat and drink before the midnight cut-off and also took some pain pills.  All things considered, I think we slept pretty well.

Scott and I got up early, dropped Seth off at Gwen and Mike's, picked up Gwen and headed to the hospital at 8:15 this morning.  When we got there, they were all ready for us.  

They took us back to one of the delivery rooms where I changed into a hospital gown then they put the babies on the monitors and drew blood and started an IV.  We waited about 45 minutes or so for the labs to come back.  The good news was that my platelets have held steady, so they called the on-call neonatologist (Dr. Maciulla for those of you who know Ami and the triplets) to come down for the amniocentesis.  

While we were waiting, someone found out and called Dr. Weisert to let her know that my insurance, Blue Cross/Blue Shield apparently doesn't pay for amniocentesis.  Why this wasn't known before we were in the hospital, hooked up to an IV, with the specialist on his way down, we still don't know. Dr. Weisert called me in the room to let me know.  We talked about our options at that point.  We could pay for the test ourselves, but no one knew what we were looking at, probably thousands of dollars, or we could wait another week and a half and just schedule the c-section.  Scott and I discussed paying for the procedure, but we realized that even if we paid for the test, it might come back that the boys lungs aren't ready and we'd be looking at waiting anyway!  

Our nurse Darcy and Dr. Weisert spent some time on the phone talking about all the other options, the platelet count, the babies heartbeats, the contractions, dilation, possibility of uterine rupture, etc.  They seemed to really want to do this today, but just couldn't find a reason strong enough to justify it.  So, they removed my IV, brought me something to eat and drink, I got dressed and they discharged me.

I have mixed feelings about all of this.  I was scared about the test itself, but really getting excited to possibly meet the boys today.  I am in a lot of discomfort, but I do have pain pills that help.  I'll make it another week or so as long as I can take them and take it easy.  At least they'll have another week to develop those lungs. 

We'll keep you posted if something changes! 

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Top 10 Things it's Nearly Impossible to Do When 35 Weeks Pregnant with Twins

So, I've noticed lately that it is getting harder and harder for me to do some things that most of us take for granted.  I've come up with a list:

The Top 10 Things It's Nearly Impossible to Do When 35 Weeks Pregnant with Twins

10.  Sit like (or walk like) a lady.  It's all about the sprawl and the waddle.

9.  Get dressed.  Not only is it impossible to find clothes that fit, once you do, it's like running a marathon to get them on!

8.  Any sort of housework.  Yes, I know I'm not supposed to do housework, but even when I try to sneak doing a load of laundry, I can't reach into the washing machine because my belly's in the way!

7. Get up off the couch... or the bed... or a chair... or in and out of a car... or out of the shower... or out of the pool... or... you get the idea.

6.  Pick anything up off of the floor.  If anything falls on the floor it is going to stay there!  It's dead to me.

5.  Drive.  Not only is there the whole getting in and out of the car thing, but then there's the fact that by the time I get the seat adjusted so that my belly isn't touching the steering wheel, I can no longer reach the pedals (this might not be an issue if you're taller than 5 feet).

4.  Hug your 2 and a half year old.  Poor Seth.  He comes running to hug me only to quite literally bounce and ricochet off of my tummy!  If we want to snuggle we have to do it on the couch where he can sit next to me. 

3.  Wash your hands or brush your teeth.  I have to turn sideways and do these activities side-saddle to the sink or otherwise I wouldn't be able to reach the faucet.

2.  Avoid the bathroom.  Having two babies right on top of your bladder, plus trying to drink at least a gallon of water a day, I have to go approximately every 3.7 minutes.

And, the number 1 Thing It's Nearly Impossible to Do When 35 Weeks Pregnant With Twins Is:

1.  SLEEP!  The aforementioned bathroom situation, plus the fact that I quite literally can't roll over in bed due to the pressure it exerts on my back, makes for eventful nights.  The way I've learned to cope is that each time I  get up to use the restroom (after Scott either gets up to pull me up, or pushes me out from behind) I make sure to come back and sleep on my other side.

So, there you have it.  I hope some aspect of my misery makes you laugh.  I'm sure I'll laugh about it too... someday...

The Latest News

Sooo... went to the Dr. on Thursday for my 35 week check-up. Broke down in tears because I'm very uncomfortable all the time.  Carrying 12-13 lbs. of baby hurts sometimes.  Dr. Weisert explained that the reason it hurts so bad is because my uterus is over distended from the size of the boys and I of course have my old c-section scars (inside and out) that are being stretched.  

She told me that she could do a c-section sooner than later for the medical reason of fear of my uterus rupturing (very rare) but she would hate to take them out only to find that their little lungs aren't developed.  (By the way, apparently white males are the slowest to develop their lungs.)  So, she recommended that we have an amniocentesis to check on their lungs.  An amniocentesis is where they insert a big ol' needle into my tummy to pull out some amniotic fluid (it won't touch the babies).  Then, they'll test the fluid to check for a hormone that occurs when their lungs are developed.  

I wasn't sure I wanted to do this, so I went home to talk to Scott and think about it for awhile.  We decided that we'll go ahead with the test this Tuesday morning, we are "all the information we can have" kind of people.  From there, we'll decide with the Dr. when we'd like to go ahead.  Could be this week if they're ready!  

I'm really conflicted about whether we should take them now or if I can suck it up for a few more weeks.  The Dr. prescribed pain pills and they really help, but I just don't know if I can do this any more!  I feel like a failure in a way because I wanted to get to 37 or 38 (or 40) weeks or at least go into labor naturally.  

I know that being in me is the best place they can be, but if they're developmentally ready, is it worth stretching my uterus for 2 - 4 more weeks?  What if I did rupture?  That could be fatal for everybody!  These boys are both easily over 6 lbs.  If I wait, I could have two 7 or 8 lb. babies in there.  I don't know if I'm physically able to do that!  

But, at the same time, what if I elect to do this now and then there's something physically wrong with them that could have been avoided if I had just sucked it up?  What if they develop learning delays that have something to do with being premature?  I would feel awful if my being "uncomfortable" had dire consequences.  Blurg.

We'll keep you posted.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Team Mom

My mom and me when I was born:
For those of you who might not be aware, my mom, Margaret Ann Powell Martin, died of cancer when I was 21.  I miss her everyday and especially as I experience large life events like my wedding, the birth of Seth, the day we found out we were having twins, etc.  She was a wonderful woman.  Smart, strong and beautiful.  She was my best friend and we were ripped apart just as I was realizing how important it is to have your mother.  My biggest wish is that she could be here with me as this delivery gets closer and closer.

I also want to tell you about an incredible group of women that I am so blessed to have.  I call them "Team Mom."

Team Mom:  Nancy (Scott's mom), Bambi (my step-mom) and Gwen (my aunt)
The first is Nancy:
Nancy is Scott's Mom.  I have known Nancy since Scott and I first started getting serious.  Nancy has always been open and accepting and a wonderful mother-in-law.  She is always willing to help out in any way that she can and steps right up when something needs to get done, like take care of me while I'm on bed rest (see blog entry below).  Nancy and Steve, Scott's Dad, have also taken us on some incredible trips to Alaska and Colorado.  We were supposed to join them on an amazing trip this summer to the Canadian Rockies, but someone ruined that by getting preggo with twins. ;)  
Nancy and Steve are wonderful, generous people and we are so blessed by their offers of help in every way possible. 

The next is my step-mom Bambi:
When my mom died, my dad was eager to find love again.  He dated a few women pretty quickly and was very enthusiastic about each one of them.  So you can imagine that I wasn't too surprised when he called to tell me about how wonderful this new woman, Bambi, was.  What I was surprised by, was when he asked her to marry him just a few months into their relationship!  But I guess when you meet someone incredible like Bambi, you don't dawdle! You'd better snap her up!  
Bambi has been the most wonderful step-mom I could ever imagine.  She has treated me like one of her daughters since day one without ever trying to replace my mom. She is not only a wonderful role model, but also one of my best friends. Bambi is someone who will do anything to help.  She is kind, outgoing, generous and thoughtful.  She is always thinking of others and has done so much for us.  When Seth was born, she came to help and stayed for several weeks.  She is doing that again with the twins and in fact will be here for a few weeks before (hopefully) they are born to help me as well. 
Bambi and my Dad are so wonderful that when they found out I was pregnant with twins, they decided that we would need all the help we could get and put their house up on the market to move to Tucson.  So, if you know anyone looking for a home in a beautiful retirement community in Phoenix...

Last, but certainly not least, there's my Auntie Gwen:
Aunt Gwen, my mom's sister, has been my favorite Aunt since I can remember.  Gwen never had a little girl, so I think we had a strong bond right from the start (especially since she loved to spoil me!).  She was always my friend and my confidant growing up. We were so alike that we actually ended up acting in the same play at the same time, even playing the same character, she in Michigan and me in Arizona! 
About  5 years ago, Gwen and her equally wonderful husband, Uncle Mike, retired here to Tucson.  We could not be more blessed by them.  They live only a half of a mile away and are absolutely incredible to us.  Gwen is not only my Aunt, but she is now one of my best friends and we do practically everything together.  They feed us several nights a week, they babysit (they are one of Seth's sets of grandparents for all intents and purposes), they would quite literally give us the shirts off their backs if we needed them, plus they are just fun to be around! I don't know how we would get along without them.

As you can see, I am so amazingly blessed with these incredible beautiful, smart and strong women.  No one will ever replace my mom, but having all this support is much more than I deserve or can ever repay.  I only hope that maybe someday I can pay it forward. I love you ladies.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Nursery, Finished at Last!

A big thanks to Nancy, Scott, Gwen, Bambi and my Dad for all their help with the nursery over the last month.  It is finally finished and ready for some little guys!  One of the major bummers about being on bed rest is not being able to "nest."  Luckily, I have lots of people who love me and are willing to help.  Everything is now sorted, organized, washed and prepared. 
All we need are two boys!

Two Cribs!  The one on the left was Seth's, the one on the right is the one that Karen and Matt were so generous to give us.  We can't believe how perfectly they match! 

The crib sets were shower gifts from Pat and Dick Carlson which we absolutely love and are just perfect for our children's storybook theme.

We are so blessed!

The reading corner:

My Auntie Gwen made this beautiful Noah's Arc cross-stitch for Seth, but I thought it very appropriate for the twins room.  Get it... two by two?

Here's the beautiful double bassinett and play yard from my parents.


Yesterday marked our 34th week milestone!  This is great news!  With single babies, Dr.'s don't worry too much about you going into labor after 37 weeks, with twins it's 34.  The chance of complications goes down significantly at 34 weeks.  This also means that I am officially off of strict bed rest!  I now move to modified bed rest which means that I still need to lay down a lot, but I can have an activity where I can even leave the house once a day!  Yay!  I'm so proud of my body and these boys!  Here's the latest belly shot.  The other pants no longer fit.  In fact, there isn't a lot that fits these days!  I guess that's to be expected when you're carrying 12 lbs. of baby not to mention amniotic fluid and placentas.  Thank you to everyone for all your support and concern! We're going to be just fine.

33 Week Sono (Whole Lotta Baby in There!)

We went for our latest sonogram this last Monday.  It was really hard to see anything as they are pretty squished!  Here are the two best photos we got.  The first is a profile of Baby A, the second is Baby A looking straight at you and a good shot of Baby B's hair!  Apparently they both have lots of hair.  The technician commented again about how they are probably identical based on placentas and membranes.  

The biggest (pun intended) news of the day was how big they are already!  Baby A (the little one) is 5 lbs. 14 oz. and Baby B is 6 lbs. 4 oz!  Both are "large for gestational age" for single babies, let alone twins!  Baby A is measuring more like 35 weeks and Baby B is measuring like 37 weeks.  For those of you counting, that is over 12 lbs. of baby that I am now carrying.  Who knew that I (being 5 feet tall) could carry that much baby at one time! Whew! No wonder every muscle and joint aches!

Gommie to the Rescue!

Hearing that I had been put on strict bed rest for two weeks, Scott's mom Nancy, a.k.a. Gommie (mommy with a g) offered to fly out from Palo Alto to help.  My first reaction was "No, there's really no need.  It can't be that hard to stay resting and I have lots of people who've volunteered to help."  Well, after about a day and a half trying to stay lying down while a 2 1/2 year old is running around the house, I reconsidered.  

Having Nancy here during these two weeks has been an absolute life-saver!  Not only did Gommie play with and take care of Seth, but she cooked meals, took me to Dr.'s appointments, finished setting up the nursery, lent me a great book (The Sugar Queen) and even scrubbed our bathroom for us! I honestly don't know if I would've made it (still pregnant) through these weeks without her.  Thank you so much Nancy!  We love you and appreciate all you do for us.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Bed Rest Blues

Well, it's official.  I am now on bed-rest.  I went to the Dr. this morning for my 32 week check-up and am apparently 1/2 centimeter dilated, therefore, I will be on bed-rest for the next two weeks until we are past the "critical" period.  If anyone wants to come over and hang out with Seth, I'd love the help.  Blurg.