Thursday, July 30, 2015

Stretch Marks

When I was pregnant with the girls I somehow managed to avoid strech marks for most of my pregnancy. I remember waking up one morning to discover them and feeling so disappointed and upset. I have no idea where I got the idea I'd make it through a twin pregnancy without them, but it was upsetting to me when they did appear. 

As if it wasn't bad enough that I had a bruised up belly from Lovenox shots, now it had strech marks all over it too. It didn't look beautiful to me. 

I noticed the other day that I have a single new stretch mark. It extends from my other ones but is fresh, redder, and higher than all the others. 

The truth is? I love it! I love that this baby girl will leave her own impressions and marks on my body as a reminder that I also carried her. It's a reminder of growing my baby girl big and strong, and I embrace these lasting marks she will leave on me. 

I now know that these marks fade. They don't stay red forever and they really aren't very noticeable. 

I'm so proud of my body for providing for another life, and all the changes that accompany that. 

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Babies!

Yesterday morning my "little sister" Andrea had her twins. She was back in the hospital last Friday after her blood pressure was high at her OB appointment. On Saturday morning they sent her home. Sunday she attended her nephew's baptism, and that night she was back in the hospital. At this point, they were having a hard time controlling her blood pressure and they started magnesium sulfate. Monday morning they started an induction with cytotec, a pill that is supposed to help dilate the cervix. All day monday she went from 1-2 cm dilated. I figured it was going to be a long road with a possible c section at the end. 

When I woke up to pee around 3 AM I saw she had texted about an hour earlier saying they had broken her water and started Pitcoin. Up again around 6:30 AM I saw a text saying she was fully dilated and they were taking her to the OR to push. At 7:11 and 7:31 Abigail and Caleb were born weighing 4.8 and 4.15. I guess she was able to hold both of them briefly before they were taken to the NICU. 

I went to visit Andrea last night a little after W got home. She seemed to be doing okay, but was still on Magnesium so was not able to see or visit the babies. I asked the nurse for a pump and kit for her and got her started pumping. The nurse was so clueless, yet felt the need to "teach" her how to use the pump. It's hard to hear advice like, just pump 10-15 minutes every 4 hours or so. What?! She also didn't know how to operate the pump. I'm not an expert with the hospital pump since I only used it a few weeks, but I tried to stand back and bite my tongue while the nurse was there. Once she left I felt more comfortable giving her advice. Her first pumping session she got a bit of colustrum. It took me quite a while before I got that much so I was glad I was helping her get started so soon (I ended up waiting at least 24 hours before I started pumping). I'm sure having a vaginal birth will help her milk to come in more quickly too. 

I had stopped at Target on the way for a few nursing tank tops and also found two super cute preemie outfits. I know she didn't have much small stuff (newborn) so I figured she could use a few preemie things. I know they won't fit into them long, but preemie clothes are teeny tiny and adorable! I had a lot of fun buying them. 

She was able to see the babies this morning and hold the baby girl. They started the boy on antibiotics and had to put him on a ventilator this afternoon. She's doing well considering, but I know the scary feelings of having babies in the NICU. Please keep Andrea and her babies in your thoughts! 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Decisions Moving Forward

After reading and educating myself more, I decided I'm not going to take the 3 hour test. Drinking 100 grams of super processed sugar and sitting around for three hours is not a reflection of my diet or lifestyle. Just because my body can't process sugar like that doesn't mean I have diabetes. I don't ever take in that much sugar at once, especially without anything else.  The problem is, it's not going to just be that easy. 

The nurse I've spoken to about the testing and results has been extremely rude and unpleasant to me. I'm starting to think that switching to this office was a bad idea. I know I'm just going based off of her, but she's the person they have chosen to call people with test results and discuss them. She's representing their office. 

I explained what happened last time with the testing. How I took the 3 hour test twice, failing the first time just barely and by quite a bit the second time. My reasoning for this is the second time I had changed my diet to a diabetic diet. The drink was that much more of a shock to me because I wasn't processing those amounts of highly processed sugar. The nurse, however, told me the reason I failed by so much the second time was "because you had diabetes and it had gotten worse in that timeframe." So why were my blood sugar levels always fine then? Why did my last practice not even ever label me with GD? I honestly felt like I was a teenager arguing with my mom. She thought she knew everything, yet I have a good understanding of my own body and needs. She didn't want to listen to me or hear what I had to say. It didn't matter, she knew everything. 

I called again yesterday to ask about my options if I don't take the 3 hour. Once again, she was pretty rude and condescending. I explained that my levels were fine last time. I told her I'm happy to test my levels for a few weeks, but I don't want to be labeled as GD just because I refused the test. She told me I needed to wait for my next appointment to talk to my provider. She also said based on which provider I saw in the practice, I may or may not automatically get the label for skipping the test. Like I said, I'm okay with testing for a little bit to show my levels are fine, I'm just not okay with pricking myself four times a day for the next 11 weeks. I'm on blood thinners. This means each little prick results in bleeding that's hard to stop at times. I'm not able to just squeeze one drop of blood out and move on. When I mentioned to her that my levels were fine last time she was insistent it was because I was on Metformin. I failed the tests on Metformin, so obviously it wasn't helping me that much. I also was not on it for diabetes. It's not like they started me on the medication to manage the diabetes. She insisted it was this diabetic drug that what made the difference, not the slight alterations I made to my diet. 

Last time I tested twice a day for a few weeks. After that, my dr had decided things looked fine and I just tested periodically. They were so much more relaxed about things. 

I honestly feel like I'm being bullied by this nurse. She think she knows everything and is giving me a really bad feeling about moving forward with this practice. I don't like the way I'm being treated. I like being treated like an active participant in my own healthcare and want to be treated with respect. I'm not an idiot. 

So, I have to wait until next Friday to speak with the Dr. I'm just not willing to accept that label because with it comes an increase in possible interventions and monitoring. I hate that I'm being treated more high risk this time around than last time. 

At my last appointment they also gave me a chart and told me to track the first 10 movements that baby makes every day. I'm supposed to count those movements and then write down the time of the 10th movement. Honestly, this is just stressing me out more. As if I don't have enough on my plate trying to take care of toddler twins, now I'm supposed to count and track movements in the morning? I know that baby is moving around just fine. I'm not worried about any lack of movement and know if I do then I should call. 

It's weird to me that the practice that is so well known for their VBAC success is also extremely conservative about things. I'm hoping I can reason with the Dr next week and we can make a plan we are both happy about moving forward with. 

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Failed

Early Friday morning I got the call I was dreading. I was a nurse at my drs office calling to "discuss some lab results". I knew it didn't mean good things.  

She first told me the "good news". My platelets continue to remain low, but they haven't changed. The fact that they're staying stable is good. Apparently being below 100,000 may mean I can't have an epidural if I so decide. Mine have been staying around 125,000 and hopefully will continue to. Being on blood thinners is not helping to improve this. 

The "bad news" was that I failed my 1 hour glucose test. I wasn't surprised, just super disappointed. 

The cutoff at my old drs office was 140. My new office has a much lower cutoff of 130. I got a 145 on the test. 

The nurse gave me two options: take the three hour test, or start testing my blood sugar levels four times a day. 

I had gestational diabetes with my last pregnancy so I wouldn't be surprised if I failed the three hour test. In all fairness though, I think I had a false positive on the test. My blood sugar levels were a never high when I was eating a somewhat altered diet. I don't think they were ever above 130 and that's after a pasta dinner. 

As of right now I'm scheduled to take the test on Thursday. I'm planning to take it locally where I know I can at least walk between the hours. It's just so unrealistic and feels like it's setting me up for failure. Who really wakes up and drinks 100 grams of super processed sugar and then sits around for three hours? I know I pretty much never get the chance to sit for three hours. 

I still haven't completely decided, but all of it is stressing me out big time. I'm debating cleaning up my diet and asking to retake the 1 hour test. That was what my chiropractor/nutritionist recommended. My diet really isn't too bad but I need to be better about more protein and less sugar. Either way, I obviously need to make those changes. Wish me luck! 


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

22 Months

 I have no idea how time is passing so fast, but I can't believe that in 2 short months Lucy and Clara will be two years old! About a month after that they will become big sisters and we will become a family of 5!



Funny faces in the tub.
Standing on the puzzle we had just completed 
Riding on Togie

Play date with friends
Pool party with more friends
Lunch break
Crossing the street with Pop Pop

Checking out the penguins at the zoo
First boat ride of the year
W's Father's Day gift

Starting to see a theme yet?
Visiting family in NJ

It's hard to tell from this picture, but this is them telling each other "I love you" in sign language. They've been doing it with us for a while but just started with each other. So sweet!
Lucy- You are such a busy little girl. You are so active and have no fear. You love to be pushed on the swing as high and as fast as possible. You slide down the slide head first for pop-pop and love to run laps around the house. I often look over to find you sitting on top of our dog Togie or hugging a Sesame Street doll. You are able to recognize pink and purple and request them first always when coloring. You love playing with your baby doll stroller and coloring. You are doing a lot more pretend play with baby dolls or stuffed animals. You love carrots, applesauce, yogurt, and meatballs. You are still willing to try new foods most times and generally eat well. You have decided you love juice and smoothies. I have smoothies for breakfast most mornings and you love having some of your own. You are trying so hard to go pee on the potty but still haven't succeeded. We have a book that you quote while sitting on the potty. You say, "sit, sit, try, try...go" because the book says "You'll sit and you'll sit and you'll try and you'll try and soon you will go". I can't believe how much you're talking. I would almost say you're using words more than signs or gestures at this point. A lot of your words sound the same so people unfamiliar with your speech don't always know what you're saying, but that's to be expected. You've started to be more kind and thoughtful about your sister. You'll bring her things or act upset when she is. It's nice to see the relationship become a little more two-sided. You have a new canine tooth on the top and are working on the other top one. You have so many teeth now! I can't believe how smart you are and how many concepts and words you seem to understand. You're still our tiny little peanut who thinks she's mama's "baby".




Clara- I'm so amazed by how much your speech has exploded this past month. You are talking so much all of a sudden and are so proud of yourself. You're pretend play skill have also taken off. You use the kitchen set and pretend to cook, feed and kiss your babies, and play with little people and furniture with a little house we have. You don't like to walk as much as your sister and prefer to be carried. I really hope you change your tune on that soon as it's exhausting carrying you everywhere. You've recently decided your Sesame Street dolls have to go everywhere with you. You're not great about trying new foods, but seem to eat a wider variety more consistently than your sister. You also love yogurt and applesauce, but love fruit a lot too. You love peas and pasta and will often let your sister feed you. It's so cute how you pat each other's backs when you're coughing. You have such a kind heart and are always thinking of others. You are so kind to your sister and often will give up the more desirable item for her. You got a new canine tooth on the bottom. The canines have been really tough for you. You went weeks with having both hands almost constantly in your mouth while drool poured out the sides of your mouth. It was no surprise to me when you came down with a cold. Your doctor also thinks you may have gotten a bladder infection as you started acting really sensitive about diaper changes and going on the potty. Unfortunately we've seen some regression with the potty, but that's okay. We just started antibiotics so hopefully should see some improvement soon. You're turning into such a big girl before my eyes. You're so smart, caring, and fiercely opinionated when you want to be. I love you so, so much Miss Clara! 



Clara looks so much like my mom as a baby

The girls are really starting to play more with each other. It's not uncommon to hear them giggling while playing together. They still have their moments, but they seem to be enjoying each other much more. They will often feed each other at dinner and pat one another's back if one is coughing. That often leads to fake coughing for more back patting. They are sharing their toys better and learning empathy for each other. It's so amazing to watch them learn and grow, side by side. 


Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Updates on my "Little Sister"

If you remember, my local mom's of multiples group has a "big sister" program. This matches a current (and interested) mom up with an expecting mom of twins. They serve as a resource and mentor during pregnancy and for the first 6 months of the babies lives. My little sister is named Andrea and also happens to live 4 doors up from me. She is currently 31 weeks pregnant with b/g twins.   

Last week Andrea had her biweekly ob appointment. When the nurse first took her back her blood pressure was high. They took it again a little while later and it was still high, so they sent her to the hospital. From there they were able to stabilize her blood pressure some. They started her on blood pressure medications and did the 24 hour urine test to test for protein since her dip was negative. She received the first round of steroid shots for the babies lungs on Thursday night. On Friday she found out her urine was positive for protein and she was diagnosed with preeclampsia. 

We are mostly in touch via text but I did go to visit her on Friday. W and I went into Syracuse to visit with some good friends for lunch. We took separate cars and I went to the hospital to visit with Andrea after while W took the girls home to nap. 

She seemed to be doing well and had plenty of visitors. Her blood pressure was pretty stable at that point. 

On Monday she was given the option to go home if she wanted. Her mom and husband thought it was best she stay so she did. Well, today they told her she's good to go home. Her platelets are back in the normal range and her blood pressure has remained stable. She is planning to stay at her parents house since she will have to go for appointments 3 times a week until she delivers and they are much closer to the drs office and hospital. I'm so glad she's doing so much better. 

I think she's been super confident all along that she wasn't going to have any complications and would deliver full term or close to it. She continued to work like crazy and do tons after work every day. Since she's a teacher she recently finished teaching for the school year. She said it was like as soon as she hit 30 weeks her body fell apart. 

I'm so glad she didn't have to deliver her babies at 30 weeks and that she has more time for them to grow and mature. Please keep Andrea and her babies in your thoughts. 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Nursery Progress/Inspiration

We're definitely making progress on the nursery. This past week I went to the paint store and got paint to match the three shades of coral in the bed skirt in order to paint the dresser drawers. W is making progress with painting the drawers. 

The dresser we got off Craigslist. 
Inspiration for painting. 

Crib skirt


I also went Hobby Lobby after yoga for my first experience. I bought knobs for the dresser and 3 pieces of wall art.

Gold glass knobs
 I want to do a gallery wall, so will need more, but it's a start. I was only ably to buy 2 knobs because that's all they had, but I can order more online. There was a mirror I really liked but it wasn't on sale so I decided to wait. 
Wall art 
I received a fabric swatch and ordered 2 yards of the fabric. I probably bought too much, but better too much than too little since it wasn't easy to find. Im going to order a crib sheet and changing pad cover in this print as well. That's on back order until the end of August. 
Fabric
We're still unsure on what color to paint the wall. The room itself still needs a lot of work, but it's nice to be making decisions and moving forward with planning a room for our newest little girl. We managed to clean out the closet this weekend so that's huge progress as well.
The room with the contents of the closet being organized. It didn't normally look like this, it was only temporary. 

After the organizing. Now to pick a paint color....

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Our First Night Away

Last Saturday W and I left the girls overnight for the first time. They were with my inlaws while we went to a concert. I think W was more nervous about leaving them than me, but we all survived. 

The girls slept all night from 8-7 and spent most of the morning with their grandparents. W and I couldn't believe how quiet the house was in the morning when we woke up (much later than usual). It was extra quiet since my inlaws also took the dogs. 

The concert was fun. We were able to meet up with some friends there. In a sense it made me feel really old and pregnant because the crowd was definitely partying it up. I guess I haven't been around that many wasted people in a while. 

Leaving the girls is an important first step for us. It makes me feel more confident about bringing another baby into our family as I know the girls will be well taken care of during that process. 

We celebrated fathers day with my in laws at their lake house. Although it wasn't very nice weather we still took the girls on their first boat ride of the year. They loved the bumps, going fast, and honking the horn. Unfortunately W's present arrived a day late, but I still love the shirts I got him and the girls. Unfortunately I wasn't able to make anything for him with the girls since I've been working like crazy. I've already done 8 evaluations this month. A typical month I do 2-3. 

Life is busy these days, but also great! I've officially switched ob's, hired a doula, and am feeling more comfortable with things. We just got a crib yesterday so hopefully we'll start to make some nursery progress soon. I can't believe it's almost July!