Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Chuck E. Cheese

They say in their ads that Chuck E. Cheese is a place "Where a Kid can be a Kid".  In our case it was a place where parents can be a kid and "Where our Kid can be a Scaredycat".

We took O last week for some pizza and fun and our local establishment and while she said she had fun as we were leaving I really don't think that was true.  She was scared of the noisy games and rides so we didn't even bother taking her over to see the animated Chuck E. Cheese.  She barely even wanted to watch us play the games.
 She seemed to enjoy the pizza though.

So John and I ended up using all the tokens to play and somehow she got to choose all the prizes.  How does that work?!
Hmm, what to pick?
She loves her Nerds.  
Dad's excited!
O shared her Tootsie Pops.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Are you in labor?

The answer is no. 

This is one of the most common questions I get either when I call someone or receive a text.  At 35 weeks along today the boys could really come at any time but from what I can tell they are in there for the long haul.  They are much too comfortable and content to kick both each other and me.

Our NST's continue to go well.  Both usually pass fairly quickly so I can usually get in and out of the hospital in 30-45 minutes.  BPP's are fine too.  Our next one is tomorrow and our next growth ultrasound is next Thursday.  I'm eager to see how big they think they are.

On another note my sister-in-law, Sam, had her two girls today.  She had a scheduled C-section this morning and everything went very well.  She was approximately 38.5 weeks along.  I can't even imagine.  But both girls are very healthy at 7 lbs 4 oz and 6 lbs (either 6 oz or 11 oz - John couldn't remember) with full heads of hair and chubby cheeks.  Sam is doing well too.  She and Adam add them to their two older kids Courtney and Billy.  I am so excited for them and to think that she had almost 14 pounds of baby in there when she delivered is incredible to me.  I've told her that she is my hero.

ETA: The girls were actually 7'2" and 6'14".

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Twins v. Singleton

I have gotten the following questions several times and wanted to address them here:
  • What's it like carrying twins?
  • How is it different from just one baby?
  • Would you rather have had the twins first?
I know many women carrying multiples will have totally different experiences than I do, but this is how it has been for me.  Carrying twins hasn't been that difficult or that much different from my pregnancy with Olivia.  I haven't had any bleeding, cramping or trips to L&D.  Sure, I'm much bigger this time around but I still feel pretty good.  My stretch marks are getting a little bit longer and my belly button has popped this time around.  It would make sense that there is more movement but the boys have not yet woken me up from sleep with their kicking and squirming and O never did either.

I am a lot more tired with this pregnancy and I can't stand or walk for an extended period of time because my back starts to ache.  With Olivia I worked up to the day I was scheduled for an induction.  This time around I am out at about 35 1/2 weeks (one week from Friday!).  I am taking myself out because it is just too much for me and I want to have some "me" time for at least a few days.  I don't remember having many Braxton Hicks contractions with my first pregnancy but this time around they are more prevalent but not frequent.  There is a lot more that goes into doctor's appointments for a twin pregnancy, much of which I have enjoyed.  Yes, I have to go to a lot more appointments - monthly growth ultrasounds, weekly NST's at the hospital started last week, weekly BBP's at the perinatologist started last week too, and weekly OB appointment will start after this week - but it has been nice to hear heartbeats more often and see the boys moving away on a regular basis.  It can be a lot to keep straight but it has worked out so far.

The first trimester of my twin pregnancy was actually easier than the first with my singleton.  I had no morning sickness with the boys.  The only time I had any sort of issue was if I waited too long to eat or if I ate too much.  Then the nausea would hit me.  But I avoided that like the plague and really felt pretty good.  With Olivia I was nauseated every day almost all day long for about 6 weeks between week 6 1/2 and week 12.  It was not fun.  I walked a lot during the first part of this pregnancy but was very careful of any pain that I had because I remembered how bad it got with O and I've been lucky in that the SPD hasn't really reared its ugly head too much.  The emotional side has been the same as well - the insecurity, self-confidence (or lack thereof because of how gigantic I feel that I am), etc.  I remember it from when I was pregnant (and post-partum) with O so I'm hoping I can deal with it a little bit better this time around.

The hardest part with a twin pregnancy, for me at least, has been the unknowns.  I don't know when they are going to come (of course I didn't with O but I really didn't think that she'd come really early), I don't know if I'm going to be able to attempt a vaginal delivery yet, I don't know how I'm going to take care of TWO babies and a toddler, and on and on and on.

As far as having twins or a single baby first I really can't decide.  Having had Olivia first it really will help in knowing what the hell I am doing with a newborn.  I've had some practice and have more confidence in my abilities to take care of a newborn.  Of course I know that having two is going to be a lot more work but maybe with my experience it'll make it a bit easier.  On the other hand if I had had the twins first I wouldn't have had any idea what I was in for.  This being my second pregnancy I know how difficult it is going to be taking care of one baby, let alone two.  They say ignorance is bliss and I was totally ignorant before Olivia was born.  Not so much this time and it makes me a little bit (okay, a lot) nervous.

At the end of the day it doesn't really matter to me how alike or different the pregnancies were (though I have to say it has been nice that this one has been so "easy") as long as there are two healthy babies born at the end.  My goal is to make it to 36 weeks at a minimum.  That would be January 26.  Of course 38 would be more ideal but I'm going to be interested to see if I still feel that way when 38 weeks actually rolls around.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Week 32/33 Update

I am 33 weeks along today and am still not seeing any end in sight although I know delivery day is just around the corner.  But whether that corner is just down the block or a mile away I'm still not sure.  I have been having some Braxton-Hicks contractions.  They are not painful but the tightening is uncomfortable.  Luckily they don't usually last any longer than 30 seconds or so.

I am sort of nesting.  I'm not in the "I HAVE to get this cleaned/done/disinfected/organized" phase but I am feeling the need to at least get started on completing everything that needs to be completed.  Yesterday I worked from home and during breaks I vacuumed and washed floors and baseboards (yes, Mom, baseboards - aren't you proud?).  I was only able to do the bathrooms, babies' room and kitchen though which really bothered me because normally I'd be able to do the whole house.  It really hit me that I really can't do as much as I used to and I DID NOT like it.  It is hard for me to turn over some of the control of things like cleaning (unless my mom is doing it for me - she's so good!).  John has told me he'd help me and I know he will but most of you will agree that things don't always get done the way you want them to unless you do it yourself.  But I am going to let him help me and do it his way.  I will do the dusting but I'll probably let him vacuum since standing for a long time is not something I'm able to do.  I think we'll split the floor washing.  Once I'm on the ground it is easier for me to stay down so floor washing is not something that is tough.  It's the getting up after the floor washing that will pose a problem.

The babies' room is ready for the most part after a very successful trip to Babies R Us (successful for BRU considering they took all our money).  We are waiting on one more mattress and then I'll have both cribs ready to go.  It is as organized as I'm going to get it and there are a couple of more things that need to be purchased or hung on the wall but we are set on diapers/wipes (thanks to our diaper dinner held by Me Too and her husband - thank you!), clothes (again, thank you to everyone who has sent us stuff, we really haven't had to buy anything), sheets, etc.

The boys are big.  At my ultrasound last Thursday (32 weeks, 1 day) Baby A was measuring 5 lbs and Baby B was 4 lbs 6 oz.  That's almost 9 1/2 pounds!  It's also about a pound and a half more than Olivia was when she was born.  I knew I was big at 32 weeks but I was honestly surprised to find out that I had that much more baby weight inside me.  This week I started my weekly NST's (non-stress tests - at the hospital) and BPP's (bio-physical profiles - at the perinatologist's office).  These are on different days and I'll soon start my weekly OB appointments so I am in and out of the office a lot more these days.  NST's are to check for fetal heart rate and movement.  They just hook up the heart rate monitors around the stomach and find the heartbeats that way.  It checks to make sure that neurologically the heart is working correctly and responding to the brain's signals.  For example, when we move around and get more active our heart rates go up.  At this point in pregnancy a baby's heart should do the same.  NST's check to make sure that they do.  Both boys, once we were able to get them to cooperate, were fine.  They were not at all interested in staying where they should have once we got their heart on the monitor.  BPP's, on the other hand, are ultrasounds that measure four different things:

1. Fetal movement
2. Fetal tone
3. Fetal breathing
4. Amniotic fluid volume

Babies can score up to 2 points on each for a total of 8 points in any given BPP.  The boys both scored 8 out of 8 on Monday (I got an extra BPP this week - the next one is tomorrow).  They have to live up to the perfect score every time now.  My little overachievers!

My next OB appointment is on January 14 and I am going to talk to him about stopping work.  I'm thinking that either the 21st or 28th will be my last day but we'll see.  I don't want to go out way before the boys are born but I would like to have a week or so to relax before they arrive.

Below are my most recent belly shots.  The clothes are starting to become repetitive because I really don't fit into a whole lot anymore so I end up wearing the same stuff every week and John's shirts on weekends.

Week 29
Week 30
Week 31 (I am smiling big in this one because John was laughing at how big I was and I was laughing at him.  Thanks, honey.)
Week 32
Also week 32, from Olivia's angle.  Nice and flattering, right?