Thursday, September 29, 2011

Healthy Baby Thoughts

Today we had a 35 week ultrasound, non-stress test and a follow up with our OB.
Our baby boy isn't growing very well. Seems the placenta just isn't getting him enough nutrients. He grew about 5oz in the past 3 weeks and we would have liked to see 5oz per week. He's only measuring about 4lbs and our baby girl about 4lbs 12oz. I'm glad Andrew was with me because it was a little upsetting to hear this news.
The OB explained that at this point it's a matter of balancing the benefits of lung development inside the womb with the better nutrients we could provide outside the womb. We'll go back for another non-stress test and ultrasound on Monday and on Thursday next week. The OB wants to induce labour either next week (at 36 weeks gestation) or the following week depending on how things look.
I'm trying not to worry....trying not to freak out. We did anticipate them being small and I'm incredibly grateful that we've gotten this far so there is a good chance that they will be strong even if they are tiny. But oh the idea of a 4lb baby is pretty intimidating.
So healthy baby thoughts and prayers are very much appreciated.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Maternity Photo Shoot

We received the full album of maternity photos yesterday. These are a few of my favourites.

Although I'm slightly disappointed because my belly is so much more impressive now than it was here at 31 weeks, I'm quite sure I could Not do a photo shoot at this point. Standing for an hour would be too much for me to manage now.





I'm glad I did this. I think I'll love looking at these down the road.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

34.5 Weeks

At 34 weeks exactly I felt pretty aweful so here is 34.5 weeks and 42lbs weight gain.
At my non-stress test on Thursday the nurse remarked, "34 weeks! Aren't you a tight little package." ha haha In any other context or coming from a man, that would have meant something totally different!

In other news, the nursery wall decal is finally done. Very soon we'll have the crib skirts and mattresses sorted out. Since I'm planning to have these two sleep next to me in a co-sleeper in our room, I'm not super anxious about getting the mattresses, sheets, etc sorted. But hopefully next week will bring the finishing touches.

And here are the gorgeous shelves all filled with baby girl and baby boy clothes, all washed and ready for babies!

My 33rd week was really rough. I think it was mostly due to gas, which has no room to go or expand when there are two babies bouncing around and then contractions start. But things are getting better.

Thank goodness for doctors. I've got some sleeping pills and some heartburn pills and am stocked up on good iron supplements.

Here's to making it to 35 weeks!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Scheduling

Andrew has vetoed babies arriving any time prior to Sept 28 due to his work schedule. I am in agreement for them to stay put until at least the 27th, because the 25th is Andrew's CPR/Save a child course and the 26th is our hospital tour. :)

But really, I'm feeling pretty done. I'm feeling stretched and tense and uncomfortable and exhausted. I've taken myself off the roads too. No more driving because I experience too many contractions and random pains that limit my mobility....which could be a really bad thing behind the wheel of a car.

My parents relocate to town on Thursday (staying at a friends place nearby) so I'll have support around for Dr visits and Andrew will get a bit of a break on cooking and grocery shopping.

Life is about to change. This is good but I'm also feeling resistant. I'm ready for the babies. I'm ready to look forward to feeling better and better each week instead of feeling worse. But I also love my life with Andrew and am nervous about it changing dramatically. Although I'm sooo grateful that we will have help from my Mom, I'm also anxious about what that looks like. There are so many unknowns.

More opportunity to learn about surrender. :)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pregnancy Lowlights

Is lowlights a word? Maybe not but that's okay. In the interest of honesty and posterity here are the not so great things about this pregnancy.


1. Pain. I've had a lot of pain from very early on in the pregnancy. Around 3-4 months the ligament and tendons started really complaining about the internal pressure and that didn't let up for about 3 months. Then there was the random belly pain for several months, which came and went with little or no explanation but was daily. The fibroyd pain was nasty for a couple months and was worse the more I moved around. Last trimester is hip pain and now wicked groin pain... like my pubic bone may be breaking. Not good times but not constant either, there has been relief.


2. Occassional extreme discomfort/pressure....like they are trying to escape through my skin and are standing on my intestines for leverage. Intestines that are struggling with iron issues.

3. Iron deficiency. I had no idea what this would do to me. It's an awful feeling.... not just a feeling of being tired but almost flu like: weakness, foggy thinking, inability to cope, just totally wrung out. Luckily the Dr's have been recommending higher and higher doses of iron supplements. So this only happens occassionally or when I've expended too much energy in a day.


4. Sleep ....oh I remember sleep, vaguely. For months now I've only slept 2 hours at a stretch. This is a good night. A bad night happens when I'm awake for hours unable to sleep with restless legs, pain, contractions, really strong baby movements, heartburn, etc. I usually just get up and eat and eventually I'll tire out enough to sleep.


5. Worry! There was lots of time to worry as I counted the weeks, praying we'd make it till the babies are big enough to be born safely. Needless to say I'm incredibly grateful to be writing this in the past tense.


6. Physical restrictions. I've written a lot about how frustrating it can be to be stuck on the couch unable to do the things I want to do to prepare for this major life change.

For a twin pregnancy I've been lucky. Looking at this list actually makes me feel pretty grateful.

S

Friday, September 16, 2011

33 Week Photo

33 Weeks and 40lbs weight gain! Baby boy should be about 4lbs now and baby girl should be around 4lb 5oz if they're continuing the way they have been.

My weight gain slowed down the past two weeks so I'm thinking my body has just about had enough. I'm grateful for the cooler weather and I'm grateful that I haven't experienced any of the swelling that most women with twins experience. I do kind of wonder at how much of this weight is in my belly because I'm amazed that I weigh this much and yet can still see my ribs.

In other news, the house is back in one piece and sealed for the winter!! Woohoo. We just need deck rails and then phase one of deck replacement will be complete. Phase two is for next summer. Here's the hubby putting the house back together again.
And the shelves.....they are done and beautiful! They are filled with clean baby clothes, ready for the twins to arrive. YAY!! Pics to come.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Pregnancy Highlights

There are a lot of ups and downs to this pregnancy. On the bad days I struggle to remember the good stuff and when this is over I want to remember both.

So here is the good stuff:

1. I've never been so confident and comfortable with my body image. When I notice people looking at me, in the past I wondered what they saw, why they were looking. Now I think I know what they see and I am so happy with the miracle of being pregnant that I can't even conceive of there being a negative reason for the looks. They're looking because it's amazing, because I'm cute waddling around, because my belly is so perfectly round and protruding, because the promise of life is amazing. I love being out of the house where people can see this amazing thing my body is doing.

2. Baby movements are awesome! I never tire of wondering and hypothesizing about what baby part is making that particular movement and whether it's him or her. Was that an elbow or a knee? Is she turning or are they both moving together to do this? Is that her head or her back? Oh, he must have the hiccups because that is so rhythmic! It's fun and makes me feel like I know them both a little bit. She's a very energetic baby. He's more layed back.

3. Strangers are nice and strike up conversations about my favourite topic - the babies. Unless I'm having a really bad day, I'll tell anyone that we're expecting twins and that it's a boy and a girl and answer any questions they ask. It's fun. I feel special. The world feels like a very friendly place.

4. Lots of quiet time to myself to rest and read and think and dream and plan and hope and pray about these little ones.

5. Every week is an accomplishment even if I haven't done anything that I previously would have considered an accomplishment. My main goal is to take care of myself.... not a bad way to spend a few months.

6. At 33 weeks, no stretch marks yet! Whoohoo! AND no swelling, no uncontrollable nausea, no wierd skin issues. In fact I've had very clear skin with the exception of eczema.

7. Very few food issues and no worries about weight gain. So I eat good food all day and don't hesitate to have dessert.

If I think of more, I'll add to this post because the good stuff is important.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

33 Weeks

It's nearly unbelievable to me that we are here at 33 weeks. If we make it to 36, I'm going to be shocked. If we go straight to 38, it will be nothing short of a miracle. My body is carrying 8lbs of baby, that's already much bigger than my family usually carries.

This week had some rough days. Babies were changing positions and the pain had me nearly unable to walk on Saturday. Getting in and out of bed was agony all night long.

Now baby girl is back on top and facing out; all her hands and feet and knee and elbow movements are again visible and very much felt all day. It's a little freaky at times but also reassuring.

Baby boy ... tough to tell. I don't think he's as head down as he was and I only feel a few movements a day that I am sure are him, which is unsettling. Will ask the Dr about that this week.

We had our second last childbirthing class yesterday. We reviewed the stages of labour, saw another video, talked about baby blues and post partum depression. It was good info.... but twins will be pretty different than what the 'norm' is. I think the previous class was the best, informed consent discussion helped me understand what I can ask for regardless of the situation we find ourselves in - c-section, epidural, both, etc.

At the break last night I asked how the other ladies are sleeping. Apparently other people sleep! Grumble! I wake up every hour (2 hrs max) in pain.....either hip agony or a painful contraction. Either way I very gingerly, cautiously, awkwardly roll myself out of bed to pee and have a sip of water. The only good thing is that after months of this I'm totally used to it. Maybe I'll adjust more easily to babies waking me all night long. Here's hoping!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

32 weeks Zoom Zoom

Today we had another ultrasound and the OB is happy. Both babies are a little small but still growing well. Baby boy is now about 3lb 10oz and Baby girl is about 3lb 15oz. And there is nothing to indicate that I won't carry through to 36 or 38 weeks. So there's nothing to worry about but we can expect rather small babies. I'm fine with small as long as they are strong and healthy.


We've made huge progress over the past week. Andrew finished the closet shelves and they are fantastic. They are also now filled with freshly washed newborn clothes. We have diapers and wipes and car seats. We are 'this' close to being ready!

One of the huge TO DOs on our list (an unanticipated big freakin deal) became apparent after we bought the car seats in August. Two car seats fit in the back of my car only if the driver was small.... in other words, the hubby could not comfortably drive us all home from the hospital in the car. Our other option, the truck, would be impossible for me to haul babies in and out of and would probably be very hard to climb in and out of while recovering from birthing two babies!

So, ultimately, we needed a new car! GAAAH! We both hate the idea of shopping for, negotiating over and paying for a vehical - new or used. But the stars aligned and some prayers were answered and on the last day of August, we found ourselves test driving a lovely 2008 Mazda 5. It's got every bell and whistle you can imagine but the important thing is it has sliding rear doors and enough room for the double stroller in the back.

Blah blah negotiation frustration.... blah blah never feel good leaving a car dealership.... blah blah need to write 'dissatisfying experience' letter.

After all is said and done, in the end, we are now the proud new owners of a skookum, gorgeous 2008 Mazda, which we hope to have for many many many years to come. :) So, not only can we have babies but we can transport them safely. YAY!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Sneak peak of photos

We got a sneak peak of some of the photos from the session. Some I love, some not so much. These I love.




I can't wait to see all of them!


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Investing in Memories

I didn't know if I'd ever get the chance to have a baby belly or to have a new born baby. So having this opportunity in life has been a double blessing in many ways and I want to remember so much of it, preserve it for the future.
Therefore, when I saw friends with newborns posting professional photos, I followed up to find out the details. It's expensive. It's really expensive but you do get a lot in the package deals that are available. And hey, this may be my only walk down this particular path.
So I gathered information in June but held off booking anything until the end of August. I just didn't know how far along I'd get and whether babies would be premature or not.
However, by the time I was 30 weeks pregnant I figured I was pregnant enough to 'qualify' for the maternity/belly photos. And whether babies come early or late, I'm confident they'll be healthy and born strong enough to one day do a professional studio shoot.
So tonight is our studio photo session for the baby belly and I'm very excited. I don't think we'll do any totally nude shots but she has some great materials that she can use to strategically drape around the body. Fun times!!