Quick Update

This will be short because I feel miserable. Today’s growth ultrasound has Baby A estimated at 5lbs 13 oz and Baby B at 6lbs. The bad news is that my BP came in high at today’s appointment. It’s been really great before today’s reading. I’m also swollen/puffy and nauseous. So, we are now on pre-eclampsia “watch”. They are having me come back on Friday morning to re-check my BP. If it’s the same, they will let me go home and come back next Monday for my weekly appointment. But if it’s “abnormal”, they will send me to L&D for monitoring. It could be for a few hours or I may not be going home… Of course I tried to get the MFM to give me a BP reading that would mean admission but he laughed at me and said “I’m not telling you the number”…

I’m in a ton of pain and feel like my body is reaching its maximum. Everything hurts in ways I never knew it could and I can’t get comfortable at all. Tomorrow is 36 weeks according to my MFM so anything extra at this point, is extra in my opinion. I know I’ve been very lucky so far with a twin pregnancy and I’m ready for these babies to be born!!!

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Induction Date Has Been Scheduled!!

We have an induction date!!! I’m still hoping the girls will decide to enter the world on their own without an induction but we have a date at the hospital in case they are lazy and comfortable… We will report to the hospital at 4pm on November 19 to start the induction. The medical secretary called me yesterday morning to say I could pick whenever starting November 18 as that is the 38th week according to them. The logical part of me said to just go in for the early morning of November 18 but the crazy part of me doesn’t like the number 19… I’m afraid that if we induce the morning of the 18th, the girls will be born on the 19th (as it would only give me like 17 hours for the birth). So I opted for the 4pm slot on the 19th, betting that they’d arrive on November 20th (or the 21st…). This is 4 weeks from yesterday!! I know it’s best for them to stay in as long as possible but I wouldn’t “mind” if they came out a “little” earlier than the induction date…I know that I’ve been very fortunate with this pregnancy as most of the other twin mamas I know who are/were similarly due have already delivered or are on current bed rest.

I’m hanging in there “ok”. Walking hurts so my outside errands really only consist of one per day. Even getting in and out of the car is proving to be difficult– especially if DH wants to take his Tahoe. It’s a high step up for me to pull myself in! I have a small touch of a cold. DH was a whiny, grumpy boy this weekend and I was afraid I’d catch it. It hasn’t fully set in for me (slight runny, stuffy nose but mostly at night). I “may” have taken Benadryl at night and it was lovely to feel sleepy!! I can’t nap at all and my sleep is pretty much confined to 2am to 5am in the recliner and then 5am to 8am in my bed (with a cat insisting on sleeping on me despite me telling him it hurts.) I’m pretty foggy/tired all day but daytime naps just aren’t happening. I wish I could! I assume this is nature’s way of trying to prepare you a “little” for the sleep deprivation that comes with an infant…

DH and I put together a wardrobe unit from Ikea the other day. It is torturous putting together stuff from that store. It took like 6 hrs… But I just couldn’t justify spending 4x the money on baby furniture that you don’t use for all that long. Only the cribs remain to be assembled. I have started filling the dresser and wardrobe with itty bitty clothing but am holding off on washing the new stuff since I don’t know if we’ll be able to skip over Size “Newborn”( I’ll return stuff if we can so I’m not taking tags off etc). I have a bunch of “hand me downs” from friends so I’ve washed those and will have stuff ready to go in case the girls decide to join us before 28 days. 28 days!!!

I’m still in denial about a vaginal birth. I decided that I’m not going to read/research this. I don’t want to know at this point as it will just freak me out.

I guess that is it for now. Next BPP is 10/27…

Ps: Today is the one year anniversary for this blog!! Holy crap. Who would have thought that I’d have an induction date scheduled when I wrote my first post last year.

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33 Weeks and Counting…

Just so you know, I often write posts in my head while stuff is happening but then just “never” type them out…. Anyway, I’m 33weeks 1 day with the online calculators and 33 + 2 per my MFM. Whatever at this point. I’ll back up to last Monday–October 6th. I had a growth ultrasound and Baby A was estimated at 4lbs 5 oz and Baby B at 3lbs 14 oz. So 8 lbs 3 oz of babies and that was a day or two shy of 32 weeks. The girls are growing well and no issues with me. Great!! Then I go see the MFM. He now changes the delivery from 37 weeks to 38 weeks. That’s just mean to add a week now when I’m waddling around. But the scarier part is he says “we’ll induce at 38 weeks”. Ummmm, what??? At my very first appointment in May, he said it would be a csection unless both are head down. While I know it can change, Baby B has never been head down so I’ve been “assuming” we’d have a scheduled csection. Guess we all know what happens when you “assume”, right? The MFM says he doesn’t know why he would have said that as they do breech extractions all the time. “We’ll just pull her out by her feet. You don’t want just anyone doing it but we’re very skilled at it here”. Cue my freak out. I’m envisioning 15 lbs of babies by then. Or a failed induction after a long labor that still ends with a csection. I’ve done ZERO research or reading on a vag delivery. I’m not one to have a birth plan other than give me drugs and let’s do this quickly. Growl!

I’ve calmed down a bit since last Monday and am just hoping the girls decide they want to come out on their own (and a little earlier than 38 weeks). I’m not interested in an induction if I’m not dilated etc. I’m honestly trying to ignore the whole thing! Very mature, I know. Just trying to get through one day at a time. I’ve been feeling pretty good this week. I’ve done some errands etc. Sleep isn’t great but it is to be expected. I spend part of the night in the recliner in the living room and part in my bed. The best sleep seems to be from 5-8am. I think I’ve seen every Friends episode at 11pm-2am at least twice!

On Tuesday, I had a non-stress test. The girls are happy and it was uneventful. Except that I’d like to complain to the hospital about who thought it was a good idea to have the “high risk clinic” all the way on the 4th floor as far away from the parking garage as possible? Making me walk that far is just mean. I “may” have to start valeting at the front door next week (it’s still a long walk through the maze of hallways up to the correct elevator!)

As for getting things done, my parents put together one of the Ikea dressers we got when they came to “babysit” me the weekend of DH’s cousin’s wedding. It seriously took us 5 hours!! So many parts etc. I warned DH that he needs to set aside proper time to put the rest of the stuff together. We are picking up the car seats from my fellow DE twin mom this weekend. Progress is being made but slowly.

All in all, as uncomfortable as I am, I know I’m doing very well for an old chick with twins!!! I’m so grateful for that.

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A Bunch of a Random Thoughts…

To follow up on my last post, I ended up going to Labor and Delivery last Tuesday. I couldn’t get out of my own way and some of my IF moms encouraged me to call the MFM’s office. They instructed me to go to triage at L&D and that they’d hook me up to the monitors to check things out. The nurse put on the monitor for Baby A first who popped up immediately. Then she looked for Baby B who also popped up immediately. Both had different heartbeats so they knew they weren’t listening to the same baby. I was told we’d run the test for 20 minutes and to relax in the meantime (note that my BP was great at 113/71).

I was on the monitors for way longer than 20 minutes but that was fine with me as I got to listen to the girls for the longest time ever. The heartbeats would speed up at various times and then go back down. The nurse read the graph and said I had “irritable uterus” which is contractions following no pattern. I knew I felt menstrual type cramps randomly but nothing I’d call a contraction. A doctor came to see me and said they’d check my cervix since I was contracting. As long as the cervix was closed, they weren’t worried. She was also going to swab for fibronectic which is a test for preterm labor (if positive, labor is likely in the next few weeks). But she said she wouldn’t even send the sample of my cervix was closed. Not a fun test. Fortunately the cervix is totally closed. They also did an ultrasound. Baby A is head down but Baby B is breech as well as a contortionist. Her feet are up near her head so basically she is playing footsies with her sister and all 4 feet were kicking me in the same place. That’s why I couldn’t differentiate who I was feeling. I was sent home to rest but I was told to come to L&D anytime I felt I needed it– don’t sit at home worrying!

Yesterday was a bittersweet day for me. It was the EDD of the baby we lost in January. While I’ll never know, “if” I’d been put on lovenox for that cycle, maybe that baby would have made it. But then I wouldn’t be having the twins. I strongly doubt that we would have gone back for another transfer in a year or two “if” the January baby had been born. This way, we are getting 2 babies versus 1. It’s a catch 22. I don’t want to forget about January baby but also like to think that things worked out as they were supposed to. I like to think that the January baby is watching over his/her sisters.

We’re making progress at home to get ready for the twins. The sleeper sofa came in early and was delivered today. I’m sitting on it right now. Now that DH has an alternate place to sleep, we can start to set up the nursery. We have bought all the furniture but still have to put it together. We are giving the extra queen bed to DH’s 16 yr old nephew who is like 6’3″ and sleeping in a twin bed!! I figured there was no point to us putting it in storage because I can’t envision that we will have a 5 bedroom house in the future. We have our king bed in storage (sadly doesn’t fit in our room…I miss it desperately), plus the queen bed we currently sleep on..then 2 bedrooms for the girls(they may always want to share..who knows). But my point is I don’t need 2 extra queen beds for the next house we buy.. Nephew is super psyched to be getting the bed this month.

My parents are coming in this weekend to “babysit” me. It’s hard to believe but it’s the wedding for DH’s cousin. It’s 2 hrs away from home and I’m not up for it. There’s no NICU nearby and it’s just not a good idea to go at 31/32 weeks with twins. It’s crazy to me that the wedding is here already as this was the catalyst that put us back in treatment last fall. When the engagement was announced, I immediately feared that she’d get pregnant right after the wedding and how on earth would I survive a family pregnancy? I know lots of you have endured that pain. I have been fortunate enough to not have had to deal with family babies simply because all our siblings are older than us and the youngest “baby” is 6 which is before our IF started. But there is a slew of 20-something girls who will start procreating in the coming years. Even at the bride’s shower, I heard one of her friends say “A has to get pregnant right away and move to the burbs with us”. I cringed hearing this but it was far less painful now that I’m 6 weeks away from meeting my girls than it would have been in the past.

I’m excited to hang out with my parents. My dad hasn’t seen my pregnant belly. I went to their house Mother’s Day weekend but I wasn’t showing much at that point (if at all..I already can’t remember!) It will be the last time that I ever hang out with them alone!

I have a growth ultrasound on Monday. I can’t wait to see how big the girls are. DH is 6’5″ so he likes to tell me they will be huge. But I haven’t been gaining any weight so I would like to know they are growing despite the lack of weight gain (I officially gained .4 for the month of September…) I have enough padding on me so I think they will be fine. Eating is a challenge for me. I feel like my stomach must be squished by the girls because every time I eat, it hurts after. I get this big air bubble in my chest/throat every night so I keep trying to eat “dinner” earlier and have no food after 7pm to avoid this massive air bubble. I can’t lay down with the bubble. It’s very uncomfortable. It’s not a burning like acid reflux. It’s literally like I want to burp but can’t. I’m not drinking carbonated liquids so I can’t figure it out..

I hope the girls stay inside until November but I know it’s totally possible that they could decide to come out this month. Welcome to October 🙂 Crazy that they could be born this month.

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Anxiety Is Setting Back In

I’ve been fairly relaxed since we found out the amnio results back in June and had a clear anatomy scan in July. But this week, anxiety is creeping back in. Ok, not creeping. It’s totally back. My last MFM appointment was 3 weeks ago. I’ve been going every 3 weeks so I “should” be going in today except my doctor is out. So my appointment is Friday. Yes, it’s is only 3 days later but those 3 days are killing me right now. I’ve been monitoring the scale vigilantly. I don’t “want” to gain a ton of weight with this pregnancy since I already gained a lot during inferility treatments. I’m up about 23 pounds. I lost weight first trimester and then have been gaining at least a pound a week since the summer. Well, I’m “only” up 2 pounds in the last 3 weeks. Combine that fact with the fact that I cannot feel Twin B move, I’m freaking out. In my IF mind, I can’t feel her because she’s not growing. My last ultrasound was mid-July at the anatomy scan. It was done a few days shy of 21 weeks. Both babies were just short of a pound each. I have 2 anterior placentas which make it harder to feel the babies’ movement. I didn’t feel anything until at least 24 weeks. But I feel Tein A on my left all the time. I’ve never felt Twin B so “not” feeling her isn’t abnormal but combined with only 2 lbs, my mind is going to bad places. I have no idea what her position is since there’s been no ultrasound. She was transverse back in July which me as nothing for where she is now..

At my last appointment, I was told we’d start weekly growth ultrasounds at week 32 because that’s when twins show growth discordance. My actual appointment is October 6, which is a few days short of 32 weeks. But it’s still 2 weeks away!! That’s basically 12 weeks with no ultrasound!!! It doesn’t seem typical from talking to other mamas. My MFM is no nonsense. I’ve mentioned that before. He likes to tell me no. My DH thinks it’s good for me because I’m not used to being told no with this stuff since I like to pretend I’m a doctor… But for a fragile infertility survivor, a little extra hand holding would be nice.. I’m not getting that at all.

Has anyone seen the Lifetime movie “Return to Zero”? It was on the other night. I didn’t watch it but only because DH would have been furious at me and second, shhh…. I’ve already seen it… Maybe just seeing that it was on is why this anxiety is creeping back in? If you don’t know the story, it’s a late term stillbirth movie with Minnie Driver. Awful….

On to happier topics: my shower was beautiful!! My sister did a great job. The turnout was incredible. It was a bright sunny day and was at a pretty restaurant. We had the place to ourselves as they only open at dinner time. The food was delicious. Ironically, the restaurant was across the street from the infertility therapist I saw briefly this past winter after miscarriage #2. I just laughed.. I had no idea it was across the street since I had never been to the restaurant before. I only told one friend that as we walked in (my friend from TX who drove me to the shower) We got tons and tons of stuff. I cried reading some very special notes in the cards. My sister–who I don’t usually think of as emotional– started to cry when she gave a speech. My mom is an avid and very talented quilter. She made each baby a gorgeous quilt. It was an amazing day!!

I’ve been nesting and trying to organize all the baby gear. DH and I bought the cribs and dressers last Thursday. We decided to go to Ikea and not spend a fortune on stuff they won’t use for too long. DH has to put everything together but we aren’t doing that until next month. We are still waiting for the sleeper sofa to come in before we can remove the other queen bed that is in the nursery which DH is sleeping in..

A few of you have asked for a bump photo. I really don’t want to post any because I promised a while back there would be no ultrasound photos etc. in case anyone still in treatment was actually reading this. I know I hated seeing that stuff before.

I am definitely slowing down. My belly is really hard and tight. Walking hurts. I need to only do one or two errands per day and not 5. Today’s chore is vacuuming. Anything else is extra. But it’s hard to not do stuff on my list since I know it will just get worse in the next 7 weeks….

ETA: oh yeah, we took an infant care class on Saturday. It was “ok”. Some annoyances: they just assume everyone can breastfeed and there was zero coverage on bottle feeding, the choices of formula etc… Also, it seems the rules change every day. This class said no swaddling at night(huh?), no rectal thermometers, no nasal aspirators and that the babies must sleep in your room for 6 mos. they make you feel like you are killing your baby if you don’t follow these rules… I guess I just need to pick and chose and use my best judgment..

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A Year Ago Today….

A year ago today, I had an emotional breakdown in our basement where I told DH I thought we needed to return to treatment at a better clinic. I needed to know if our prior DE failures were the result of a sub-par clinic’s lab or if it was “us”. This breakdown came on the heels of DH’s cousin’s engagement announcement a few days prior. My first thought when the engagement was announced was “oh shit, she’ll be pregnant soon after they get married and this will set off a wave of babies from a group of 5 20-something cousins”. How was I going to endure that? It brought me to my knees and I was so very upset. We had just moved very close geographically to DH’s family so avoidance (my previous tool) was not going to be as easy as it was in another state. We were organizing the basement (we were still unpacking) and I just started to cry. Much to my surprise, DH said ok to trying again and spending the money for a place like RBA or Shady Grove–somewhere with a guarantee program– because we had just unloaded a large mortgage and he felt comfortable spending the money. While I hate to say this– because of any friends still waiting for their miracles– DH said he was afraid I’d never be “right” if we didn’t try again. I hate the idea that you need a baby to be “right” since I know too many wonderful couples who haven’t be able to get that. But that was DH’s opinion of me. Anyway, I can hardly believe that conversation was a exactly one year ago today and I am just about 28 weeks pregnant with twin girls!! I would never have believed anyone if they told me a year ago that “my” baby shower would be this coming weekend. The old adage of “what a difference a year makes” certainly rings true. It’s simply amazing to me.

A few things to update you on: I passed my glucose test with flying colors. That was a great relief. My ribs are much, much better. I even had the best pregnancy massage last week (I’d like one per week but that’s not in the budget, lol!). My doctor appointments have been uneventful. I got the Tdap shot last week. Other than that, we won’t start growth ultrasounds until October 8 which is 32 weeks. The MFM said that is the time frame when twins start to show weight differences which need to be monitored. So one more month to see them! I haven’t seen the girls since July 21 which seems like a crazy long time in between ultrasounds (about 10 weeks). But I have to trust the MFM… He said there’s been no reason to check anything as I have not had any issues so far (yay). I’ve gained about 20 pounds so far which is fine with me– not too much and not too little. I know the saying goes “everything was fine until it wasn’t” but so far, I’m doing very well with a twin pregnancy at 41! Not too shabby! The usual aches/pains etc but in the scheme of what I know others have endured with a multiple pregnancy, mine is very good. Let’s hope that continues.

Oh yeah, I never updated about that “job”– the one where I said right from the start that I could only do part-time? They totally back-pedaled when I gave them my salary request. I believe the phrase was “your salary request was greater than we are prepared to pay and we really want full time”… Umm, yeah told you that was not possible.. Guess they want to work people 50-60 hrs a week and pay peanuts. No thanks! Frankly, I was relieved because the rib issue arose a few days after the interview and I was so miserable, there was no way I could have worked. I also know I’m entering the stage where twin mamas tell me they slow down a lot (ie one errand a day and not 4). I experienced the slow down myself last week when I walked too much and my left ankle swelled up. (FYI the MFM wasn’t concerned because I am already on lovenox so a blood clot shouldn’t happen and the swelling was gone the next day… I am now splitting up my chores so I don’t over-do it.)

I finally posted on Facebook at 26 weeks about our miracle girls. I alluded to our years of heartache and treatment but didn’t give specifics. We have a lot of old friends on there who didn’t know and the response was overwhelming. I even got a private message from an old roommate from college who I don’t see other than FB. She lives in another state and we have lost touch over the years except as FB friends. Anyway, her message was one of congratulations and that she was in a similar boat of trying to get pregnant for the past two years with no luck. She is remarried and has a 6 yr old. I told her we did 8 rounds of IVF over 4 years and that we never expected to get twins etc. I did not mention DE in that first conversation. She came back and asked if I had any thoughts on what made the difference this time because she was about to start her fifth round of IVF and that they were going to do PGD to look for normal embryos. At that point, I couldn’t lie. I told her we used donor eggs and I told her my story of high FSH and traveling around for help, how even DE was a tough struggle for us since it took 4 more transfers. I dislike it when others are disingenuous about DE and I didn’t want to perpetuate the myth. It’s hard to get pregnant at 41 for a lot of us (she is 41). She’s lucky in that she makes a boatload of eggs so she has a much better chance of finding a normal embryo than I did. (Her ER was yesterday and they got 19 eggs). She thanked me for sharing my personal story with her.

August was a bad month for several of my longtime IF friends. Cancellations because eggs didn’t grow. BFN on DE cycles after adding in immune treatment. It just sucks and I wish I could say something magical to them but I know there is nothing that helps at that point in time.

My mom is coming in from out of state this weekend (for my shower!). I haven’t seen her since I was about 14 weeks so I’m sure she’ll be shocked to see my belly:-) I haven’t sent her any photos. My friend from Texas is also flying in. My sister told me that she only had 3 people decline the shower invite! That’s crazy!! Usually you can count on a certain percentage of people saying no. I guess people are excited for my babies! So overwhelming. I’m sure I’ll be crying this weekend…. Happy tears!

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Broken Rib Update

DH made me an appointment with his chiropractor last Wednesday. He absolutely loves the guy as he helped him with herniated discs back in 2012. I say that DH has a “bro-mance” with the doctor, lol. I’ve never been to a chiropractor but felt I had nothing to lose. While we can’t do ex-rays while pregnant, the chiropractor’s clinical assessment was that I did break some ribs. He said it was probably stress fractures (not a “break in half” sort of thing) and that it will heal with time. He wanted me to get a surgical binder as the compression will promote healing and it will help with the pain when coughing, sneezing etc. I had to order one from Amazon because the ones in the store aren’t fitting around this belly!! I really can’t wear the binder and “do anything” because it feels like it squishes too many organs. But it is very good for just sitting on the couch or recliner. I was in pain around 4am the other night and couldn’t get comfortable in bed at all. So I moved to DH’s recliner (which I have always made fun of and called it “Frasier’s Father’s chair” even though it isn’t patterned like the one on the tv show). Anyway, with the binder and a pillow tucked in on my side, I happily slept for a few hours and was actually comfortable. My two cats even followed me from my bedroom and slept on my lap (I think they know when I don’t feel good. So adorable).

The change in reflux meds has been amazing. The MFM added omeprazole (which is Prilosec) and said I could still take the ranitidine (which is Zantac). I’m happy to say I don’t need the Zantac at all and just one omeprazole at night has done the trick for relux. No tums at all during the day. Yeah! I also decided to stop the baby aspirin. The MFM had said I didn’t need it at this point (was on it for homozygous MTHFR) and I did find some information online about it contributing to GERD. I’m still on the lovenox so that should be sufficient for avoiding blood clots. I also changed my prenatal vitamin time from bedtime to middle of the day. Maybe it was upsetting my stomach overnight and caused the morning nausea? Not sure but it’s been much better.

I got an email from a good friend who lives in Texas asking when my shower would be because she wanted to try to make it. As only good friends can do, I told her I didn’t have my sister mail an invitation to her because she lives 2000 miles away and I never expected or thought she would be able to come. She joked that she had to invite herself… I told her the date and she booked a plane ticket that same day to come up the weekend of the shower!! I am so overjoyed and so touched that she is traveling all that way to celebrate with us.

Guess I should go do some laundry now…

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