Thursday, August 16, 2012

Tomorrow's The Big Day

Tomorrow is the big day. The day we have been waiting for since December 16 when I got a positive pregnancy test. Tomorrow I will be holding my twins and swaddling them and comforting their cries. Tomorrow will be a day of mixed emotion as I think about me and Nolan, Georgia, and sweet little Violet. I hope that she knows she is a big sister too and that we want the twins to know all about her and how special she is to us.

Georgia is a little nervous. Today when I picked her up from school she told me that she didn't want me to go back to the hospital. I asked her why and she said she didn't know. Then I asked her if it was because of what happened the last time, when Violet died. She said yes. Sometimes, you just don't realize how much things effect these little ones. And the entire time we were mourning for Violet, Georgia kept telling us that she "wasn't sad." She might not have been sad, but she associates going to the hospital with Violet's death and she knows that made Mommy and Daddy very sad. And I know that she was very disappointed that Violet is in heaven and not living with us at our house. I am sure that she doesn't want any of that to happen again and this is what is making her nervous. And frankly, I'm a little nervous too. I am trusting that everything is going to be just fine and we will walk out of the hospital Sunday with two baby girls to bring home, but there are always those thoughts that linger in the back of your mind.....those what ifs.

Tonight Georgia and Herbie are spending the night at my parent's house. Georgia will come up to the hospital after school tomorrow. She had the choice of coming with us or going to school. She wants to go to school. And really, that is probably the best thing. That way she will be distracted and have something fun to do while babies are being born. She doesn't care much about what happens before, she just wants to see them after they are born. When we left, she gave me a hug and kiss and then gave my belly one last hug and two last kisses. She said, "see you tomorrow, you two." I'm going to miss those sweet little belly hugs!

And so, while we are all a little nervous and Nolan and I still can't believe this is happening to us, we are ready and waiting to meet our dear little ones. And I can't believe that this is my last pregnancy blog. I will probably keep you all up to date about the delivery, but after that there will be no more pregnancy talk. Weird. It seems that this pregnancy has gone very fast, except for the last few weeks that have been moving at a snail's pace.

So, I bid you all a farewell until I find time to blog again.....and really, who knows when that will be. It might be while I'm in the hospital or it might be 3 months from now. Right now I'm praying for a fast, peaceful, and healthy delivery for my twins, so please keep that in your prayers too. Good night!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

ToT-Nicknames

This week's topic for ToT is nicknames. Did you have one growing up? Where did it come from? Who gave it to you? Is there a meaning behind it?

I did have a few nicknames growing up. Mostly they were based off of my name. Nothing too surprising there. I actually enjoy it when people have nicknames. I love hearing the stories behind the nickname. I love the endearment that comes with having a nickname. It seems when people give you a nickname, they really like you. I like to be liked! Well, here are my nicknames...prepare to be amazed.

Nancy Girl-my Mom and Dad were the ones to call me this most of the time. I believe that it came from my Grandpa's cousin, who I visited on several occasions with my parents. Somehow she started calling me Nancy Girl and it just stuck with my parents. Every once in a while, they still call me that. I think it's cute.

Nanny Goat-Pretty much hate that one. So, my good friend and fellow ToT blogger, Sarah called me that one day in Kindergarten. I've hated it ever since. I think that I told her to stop calling me that. I know that she meant no harm in it, even then I knew that she wasn't being mean.....it's just not my thing. But this is kind of how I remember Sarah and I becoming such good friends. Her mom is named Nancy and I believe that she was called Nanny Goat....and the rest is history!

Nanners-This was another one I had in high school. I believe that another friend named Sarah started calling me this. And it hung around for a few people in college too.

Fletch-My youth pastor, Pastor Bob, started this. I loved the nickname Fletch. Its a cool nickname, if nicknames can be cool. He even made me watch one of the Fletch movies with Chevy Chase. Several of my friends started calling me Fletch during high school as well, especially those I went to church with.

Rooski-Tobin and Shannon, am I spelling this correctly? This is what you call me right? Or is it Nanc-A-Rooski? Hmmm, I'm not sure. See Tobin and Shannon are my in laws. They are fun loving people and love to hand out a nickname. I learned about this nickname when we were bowling one time. I was surprised to learn that I had been given a nickname by them. I had no idea....they never called me that in person, but I guess when they talk about Nolan and Nancy, they use Nol-Dog and Rooski. Again, fun and I feel a term of endearment! If they only knew what we call them! Eh, it's just Tobin and Shannon....we have no creative nicknames. Sorry guys. We love you anyway.

Last but not least.....the most common of all my nicknames.....

Nan-Everyone calls me Nan....my parents, my brother, my in laws, my hubby, my friends. I believe that is my preferred name. I don't mind Nancy. I've come to like my name (that wasn't always the case), but I really like to be called Nan.

So I guess I have a lot of nicknames. They were all given to me by special people and I love them all in their own way. Do you have a nickname?

38 Weeks-Part Deux

Today I had my final OB appointment. No more ultrasounds. No more NST. No more waiting at the OB office for hours to see my doctor. It's such a good feeling. So here's the good word on what happened today.

1:30-I arrived at my OB office and up first was my ultrasound. Vicki took me back and she was shocked that I had not had my babies yet. She said that she saw my name on the schedule and thought it had to be some sort of mistake. She was certain that I had delivered by now. But no, I had not delivered and there I was waiting for my ultrasound.
Everything looked great. Baby A, still head down, heartbeat was a 140, and her estimated weight is 6lbs 13oz. She did her breathing exercises and wiggled around enough to get a perfect score on her biophysical profile.
Baby B. Well, sweet little Baby B. She has wiggled herself into a new position once again. She is laying under Baby A in kind of a diagonal way. She is still mostly head down but also a little bit transverse. But more importantly, she did all the things that she needed to do and also passed her biophysical profile. Her estimated weight is 7lbs 2oz and her heartbeat was at 143.
Now many of you might be saying at this point, "Holy crap, that's a lot of baby in there." Well yes there is a lot of baby in there. But here is what Vicki had to say about their estimated weight....they get this estimation by measuring the femur bone. So, it's not the most accurate way to measure the weight, but really there isn't a better way to do it. Vicki said that she didn't think that Baby B was really going to be 7lbs+. She said that both babies are probably well into the 6lb range, but not 7lbs or more. That was a bit of relief. I mean, I want the babies to be as big as possible, but I am also hoping for quick delivery on both babies and not much damage to my girl parts (sorry if that was TMI).

2:30-Time for my NST. Beatrice once again took me back. I'm pretty sure that she is the only person who does the NSTs. I keep telling her that one day she will not see me, and yet, I keep showing up for these appointments. She's going to think that I'm lying to her!
Anyway, she got both babies hooked up and the contraction monitor hooked up and left me to rest while listening to Baby B's glorious heartbeat! I was keeping an eye on the contraction monitor and at one point it was even at 0, meaning NOTHING was going on. Well, my irritated uterus must have sensed that I was getting a bit irritated because all of the sudden I started having contractions. At first they weren't any big deal, just a little bit uncomfortable. Then at one point the monitor shot up to 100 (that's as high as it goes). Still I really didn't feel too much because that one really didn't last too long. But there were several contractions noted while I was hooked up to the machine and they were more intense than they have been before. During one, I was breathing heavy and sweating a little bit because it was relentless. Usually I can deal with the pain because it doesn't last too long, but this one was pretty uncomfortable and lasted for some time.
Anyway, both babies passed their last NST. YEA!

Sometime after 4-Nolan showed up to see the OB with me. Before too long she was in the room. It had been 6 weeks since I had last seen her. She went over the results of the ultrasound and NST. She was very pleased with the babies and with me (my BP and weight are all really good). She did an exam and not only am I dilated 3cm, but she could also feel Baby A's head. She thinks that once labor starts, it's going to go very quickly, especially for Baby A since she is so low. Nolan told her that sometimes I feel like this baby is going to fall right out. She said that she could completely understand why I felt that way, because her head is so low. So sorry again about the TMI....I suppose I should warn you before hand. Well, you are reading a blog entry about pregnancy so, maybe you should know that I'm going to be mentioning all of this.
The doc wanted to set me up with a date to induce. She said sometime next week. WHAT? That's not what the other OB or the NP said on my last two visits. They said sometime between 38 and 39 weeks. Well, Dr Voelkel said that she waits until 39 weeks. I informed her that I will be 39 weeks on Friday and she said, "lets do it!"
So here's the deal, if labor has not started by Friday, I will go into the hospital to be induced. She said that she could either start pitocin right away and then get an epidural and THEN have my water broken or I could have my water broken first. I'm leaning towards breaking my water first. Dr Voelkel is really worried that she will not get there in time to deliver Baby A because she has a surgery scheduled that morning as well. So we are waiting on the office to get back with  us about a time. I told her that I really didn't care who delivered my babies at this point....I would love for it to be her, but I just need someone who knows what they are doing down there to catch them. I'll take care of the rest.
As we were getting ready to leave, Dr Voelkel did say that she would be surprised if I make it to Friday considering the contractions I'm having and that I'm already dilated and Baby A is so low. So, we will see. I have been having contractions since we left the office. Nothing major, nothing to make me think that I'm going into labor right now, but just enough that I know things are working down there.

So it sounds like before the week is over Nolan and I will be welcoming two more daughters into our family. It's such an exciting time, but it's also pretty nerve racking. At least we have wonderful family and friends to help us along the way. It really does take a village and we will be using that village! We will keep you posted ever faithful readers!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

38 Weeks-Wishing and Hoping and Thinking and Praying....

38 weeks people.Actually, 38 weeks and 2 days.  Right now, as I'm sitting here typing this blog, I feel like labor is never going to start. I have been having all kinds of aches and pains that have made me think that labor will happen anytime, but it hasn't. I even told Nolan weeks ago that I thought things were winding down for sure. I didn't even have these aches and pains before Georgia was born and I went into labor naturally with her. Right now, I'm a woman with little patience.

Last week I did go back to the OB office for another NST (that was the second one of the week). Everything once again looked great. Both babies have strong heartbeats and they were going up and down like they are supposed to at this point. Also the babies had great movement. Baby A had to be stirred up a little bit with the horn, but once that woke her up, she was wiggling around just like her sister.

Another thing that I kept my eye on was the contraction monitor. When I was in earlier in the week, I had 3 or 4 contractions in the 45 minutes that I was hooked up to the machine. AWESOME!!!! This time, I asked about the contractions and I was told that I didn't have any this time (I was only there for about 30 minutes since both babies did such a good job), but it did show that my uterus was irritated. FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC! My uterus is not the only thing that's irritated, I can tell you that much. Beatrice went on to explain that I probably am having more contractions throughout the day, but I just didn't have any during the 30 minutes that I was hooked up to the machine. Eh, that didn't really make me feel better, but whatever. I guess I'll take what I can get. At least the babies are doing well in their crammed quarters.

So I go back to the OB office on Tuesday IF I have not gone into labor by then. I have my usual ultrasound (they will be doing measurements this time), NST and then seeing my OB (as long as she doesn't have to leave right before my appointment for an emergency). And as I mentioned in my week 37 blog, we are going to talk about inducing. I really want these babies to come on their own, but I'm also tired and I hurt and I'm grouchy and I'm anxious and I'm uncomfortable and I've been pregnant FOREVER! I know that when you are induced you carrying a higher risk of having the dreaded C section. I had medication to help with my labor with Georgia and I had to be induced with Violet, so I don't think that it will cause me to need a C section. AND to put it bluntly, Baby A is like ready to fall out. I have no idea how she has not caused labor to start. Seriously, when labor does start, I don't think it will take very long for her to make her way out. It seems like a couple of good pushes and she will be here.

So, Nolan is going to come with me on Tuesday (at least to talk with my OB) and we can figure this out together. He knows that I'm so done. Once we get all the info, we can make a decision. At least, if I haven't gone into labor by Tuesday, I will get to talk to my OB finally.

As a side note, we have been trying to get this labor thing started. I have been working around the house like a busy little bee. Let's see, Wednesday I went walking with Sarah and her sweet boy James (we were doing the same thing last year for her, boy these August babies). I had several contractions while walking, but nothing that lasted after we were finished. Thursday, I stayed up until about 2am finishing the curtain for the nursery because I was sure that labor was going to start this weekend. At least I got the curtain done. Friday, I spent the day relaxing for the most part. I was able to go back to sleep after Nolan left to take Georgia to school (since I had stayed up until 2am the night before) and then I went for a prenatal massage, thanks again Sarah for the gift certificate! That was pretty much great. It had been suggested to us by several friends that we should go out for Mexican food to induce labor. So, we did. The food was good, the service was spacey and I was insulted by a woman sitting in the booth behind us. If you've read Facebook, you know what I'm talking about. So, not a great evening out to dinner, but it would have made it all better if labor had started! Saturday, my mom came over and we cleaned for the afternoon. Again, contractions throughout the day, but nothing that started labor. That night we out for Cajun....I poured the hot sauce on my red beans and rice...then we went walking around the baby store. Again, more contractions that led nowhere. Today, we decided to skip out on church and spend the day as a family. We slept in and then had a late lunch and decided to walk these babies out at the Indiana state fair. We spent about 2 hours walking around the fair. Again more contractions while we were walking around and I've even had some since we've been home, but well....we are still waiting for labor to start. Hmmm.....

I guess there is always tomorrow.......

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The London Games

I've been just slightly obsessed with the Olympics. The TV comes on around 8am and I watch the coverage on The Today Show and stays on until I go to bed. I love watching, pretty much everything. So, I'm stealing an idea from my good friend Rachel at She Thinks. She Says. She made a list about why she is obsessed with the Olympics, so, I thought I would too.



1. It's good family fun. Not only have I been watching non stop coverage, but so has the rest of my household. When we are home, the TV is tuned in to the Olympics. Georgia has been exposed to so many different sports since the summer games started. She's decided that she's going to do synchronized diving and one of the twins will be her partner. We informed her that she is going to have to be OK with putting her head completely under water for this sport. We'll see. 

2. Gymnastics. I've been keeping tabs on both the men's and women's teams. It was thrilling to see all the success, but heartbreaking to watch the disappointment. It's always hard to see someone get upset and know that their dreams have been dashed, but they are so young!!! And those cameras are just shoved in their faces. I don't know how their mothers handle that. But, the highlights for me were of course seeing Gabby win the all around gold medal, watching the women's team get the gold, and seeing Dannell Leyva come back and win the bronze medal in the all around competition. What great strength and determination both teams have, they amaze me. 

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3. Swimming. Really, how could you watch any of these games without hearing about what happened in the pool? It seemed like everyone was talking about Michael Phelps. And really, why shouldn't they? He really is something. And how about that Missy Franklin? She seems like such the girl next door. I'm so glad that they both did well as well as the entire team. It seemed that the USA dominated the pool. 

4. Women's Indoor Volleyball. Man, those girls can play. It's great watching them. It really makes me wish I would have made the team back in the day.....I tried out, but was cut. Boo! I think that it would have been so fun!

5. Women's Beach Volleyball. I have no idea how two people can run around in the sand for that long. I get tired walking in the sand. And then to have both USA teams in the gold medal match AMAZING!

6. Watching Serena Miller's gold medal winning tennis match. She dominated. And, even though she's won so many other matches, you could tell that this was special. 

7. Oscar Pistorius from South Africa. He is absolutely charming and his story is touching. I'm pretty sure that I have a crush on him. 

8. Water Polo. WOW! Seems like they are trying to drown each other out there. I'm pretty sure that I would come up gasping for breath, but it's all in a days work for these men and women. 

9. Diving. How in the world do they dive and make no splash. Blows my mind. 

10. Kirani James from Grenada. What a classy fellow! He had such respect for Pistorius that he exchanged bibs with him at the end of the their heat. And winning Grenada's first gold medal.....amazing. And he wanted to do it for his country and his people, not just for himself. We were able to watch some Grenadians watch the race and they were going nuts over it. NUTS. Can you imagine, that is the ONLY person you have to root for from your country and you get to witness him winning the gold! What a fantastic feeling that must have been for not only him, but for his country. Way to go Kirani!

So the games will end this weekend and that makes me sad. But all good things must come to an end. I don't think that I would love the Olympics as much if they happened every year. When they only come around every 4 years, they keep that special quality. I hope that you all have watched some of the games. If you haven't you better tune in before it's too late. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

16

This weeks ToT post is all about writing a letter to your 16 year old self......


Dear 16 year old Nancy, 

16.....that was 16 years ago. My how your life has turned out. Things have happened that you never dreamed. And you aren't really living the life you thought you would be living. You aren't doing what you thought you would be doing. And really, believe me, that's OK. Life is good, so don't worry about it. 

Just a few pieces of advice......

Listen to your parents more. You can still be who you want to be, but just have more open ears. Consider taking their advice every once in a while. 

Explore your interest in photography before you reach your 30s. Sure it's expensive...but trust me, you're good at it. 

Work harder on music. Your natural talent will only get you so far. And really, you will find it very disappointing that you didn't work harder. You will never know what could have been. You should believe in yourself more, because you know what....you're pretty darn good. 

Don't decide on a college major right away. Take some general classes and take some time to figure out what you really want to do, it will surprise you what you end up not enjoying anymore. 

Keep up with running. You will run a mini marathon when you are 30....who knew you could do that, huh? Just a little surprise. 

That boy that has the funny laugh....keep your eye on him. He will be the very best thing that happened to you. TRUST ME! No one else holds a candle to him. And you know what, he sure does think that you're all that and a bag of chips.

Work harder at school. Again, you will be disappointed that you didn't. 

All of those little pieces of advice are meant just to help you out a little bit. Don't worry that I think back to what you were like then and turn my head in shame. That is just silly. You are a sweet, caring person. You often put others first. You don't follow the crowd because its the cool thing. You are a good girl and I'm sure your parents are thankful for that. You are genuinely liked by your peers because you are nice to everyone. Keep on being nice. 

And just so you know, your life isn't sunshine and roses. Most of the time, things are great. But there times when things get really bad. You have to endure something that most people will never even think about. It's pretty bad. But, here's the thing, you are so much stronger than you ever knew you were. You get through this and things look good again. You will never be able to forget what happened, but you will be able to move on from it. You will be able to deal with it. And you remember that boy with the funny laugh, he's going to be there with you every step of the way. He's going through this too and your relationship will be stronger than ever afterwards. 

As I end this letter to you, remember the words that I've written to you. Take them to heart and remember that I was there....and in the end, things turn out A-OK!

Love Always,
Your 32 year old self


School Days




I heard this song the night before Georgia started school. She was getting a bath and I was getting her clothes laid out for the next morning and fixing her lunch. As the words played and I listened to them, I began to shed a tear or two (don't ask Nolan how many tears I shed because he might have a different story) as I thought about the journey that she was starting. I met a life long friend in Kindergarten. Maybe she will too. 




We're Going To Be Friends
Fall is here, Hear the yell
Back to school, ring the bell
Brand new shoes, walkin' blues
Climb the fence, books and pens
I can tell that we are going to be friends
Yes, I can tell that we are going to be friends
Walk with me Susie Lee
Through the park and by the tree
We can rest upon the ground 
And look at all the bugs we found
Safely walk to school without a sound
We safely walk to school without a sound
Well here we are no one else
We walk to school all by ourselves
There's dirt on our uniforms
From chasing all the ants and worms
We clean up and now it's time to learn
We clean up and now it's time to learn
Numbers, letters learn to spell
Nouns and books and show n tell
Play time we will throw the ball
Then back to class through the hall
The teacher marks our height against the wall
The teacher marks our height against the wall
And we don't notice any time pass
Because we don't notice anything
And we sit side by side in every class
The teacher thinks that I sound funny
But she likes it when you sing
Tonight I'll dream in my bed
While silly thoughts run through my head
Of the bugs and alphabet
And when I wake tomorrow I'll bet
That you and I will walk together again
Because I can tell that we are going to be friends
I can tell that we are going to be friends

37 weeks-FULL TERM



Really folks, who goes full term with twins? Um, me. My body is made to carry babies. I don't gain a ton of weight, I don't retain water and swell up even when the temperatures reach the high 90s, I don't waddle, I have a cervix of steel, I am able to go full term without an issue.....trust me all of these things and many more have been tested with this twin pregnancy.

Everything I read kept saying, "most twins are born between 32 and 37 weeks." We began preparing for their big arrival about a month ago and nothing! Not that I'm complaining because this means that our baby girls will not have to go to the NICU and will be able to come home with us from the hospital. That is the real blessing. And I'm so happy that I am able to share my body with these two wee lasses.  But now that we've reached this point, I'm ready for them to be out. I'm uncomfortable and I want to be able to reach my toes again. And, I'm carrying over 12lbs of baby....that's a lot. My back hurts, my hips hurt, my belly hurts. And I feel like I've been kicked in the crotch....sorry for the TMI.

Monday I went for my 37 week OB appointment, ultrasound and NST. Everything looked great for all three appointments. Both babies are still head down. Heartbeats were all good. Both babies had good movement and did their breathing exercises. Everything seems to be going well. The NST did show that I was having some mild contractions. It was nothing painful, but I just had a tightening feeling across my belly. I had either 3 or 4 during the 45 minutes that I was having the NST done. So, it seems like things are moving in the right direction. God willing and the creek don't rise (I just love random little sayings like that so I thought I would throw that in for a little flare!)

I met with the NP. She actually voiced some concern about how I haven't seen Dr Voelkel in a really long time and that I won't get to see her until after I hit the 38 week mark....it will have been since 32 weeks that I've seen my OB and talked with her. So the NP explained a little bit more about what happens if I am still pregnant at my 38 week appointment. She said that as long as both babies and myself are doing just fine that I can stay pregnant until 40 weeks (they don't recommend going past that point because of the size of the babies). And if I want to do that, the staff there will fully support that decision. But, if this pregnancy is taking a toll on my body and I'm ready to have these babies, as long as the babies are healthy enough to be born (which they already are) labor can be induced after 38 weeks. She asked if I had any idea of how I was feeling at this point, if I was wanting to wait it out or if I wanted some medical intervention. Right now I'm leaning on the side of taking some meds and getting this thing started. I would love to go into labor naturally and I hope that I do, but if I reach next Tuesday and still am not making much progress towards labor and delivery, I will opt for the meds at that point....I think. For me the discomfort plays a role, but also, I think that I will just feel better when the babies are born. After going through Violet's death, I often wonder about the health of my babies and I think that seeing them and knowing for sure that they are happy and healthy will ease my mind a bit. I just want to see them and hold them and stop all the anxious feelings that I have every time I realize its been an hour or two since I've felt them move.

The NP explained a little bit more about what would happen if I were to be induced. Next week Dr Voelkel will examine me to see if I have dilated any more and if I've effaced. If you don't know what effacement is, check it out. As of last week, I am 1cm dilated and 40% effaced. So, the process has started, which is great. And since she didn't check me this week, things could be different by now. All of the cramping feelings that I have been having are all working towards dilating and effacing my cervix. So, if for some reason I have not effaced more, I will have to have that terrible medication inserted behind my cervix again....the one that I had to use so Violet could be delivered. If I have to use that again, that might make me want to wait a little while longer....it might feel too much like Violet's delivery.

Anyway, once I've effaced to 100% they will administer Pitocin. I had Pitocin with Georgia and it was terrible. It makes your contractions come stronger and more frequently. And you have to be on fetal monitors, which means that there is no getting up and walking around, you are stuck in bed until after you deliver. The reason I was given Pitocin with Georgia was because I had been in labor for around 24 hours and while I was having strong contractions and they were close together, I was not dilating. The Pitocin worked. But the time that I had between when the pitocin was administered and when I got an epidural almost brought me to my breaking point. The contractions were coming so fast that I could not get any relief. Once the epidural took effect, I was fine. I didn't have so much pain meds that I couldn't feel the contractions, but it was just enough to make it bearable. Now, if I am already fully effaced and dilated 3 or 4cm next Tuesday, the NP said that they can always try to just break my water and see how that goes first before administering any Pitocin.

So, in my ideal world, I would just go into labor on my own and my water would break naturally. Then I could go to the hospital get my epidural and deliver my baby girls. My second best case scenario would be to be fully effaced and dilated to 4cm next Tuesday, then go into the hospital and have them break my water. Hopefully then my labor would progress enough that I wouldn't need any Pitocin. I know that what I want to happen and what will actually happen might be two different things. So, I really need to think about what I want to do if I'm still pregnant next week and if I would need pitocin to start labor. Would I wait it out? Would I go for it? I'm leaning towards going for it, but I still go back and forth.

A few things that I do know about my labor and delivery is that I'm going to have an epidural. There is no way that I'm going to chance the doctors needing to manually turn Baby B (even though she is head down now, she does have room to move) and me not having any pain meds in my body. That might be more painful than delivery. I have heard that they will try to move baby by pushing on your abdomen or they will just reach inside and get the baby....either way, it does NOT sound like something that should be done with out some pain medication. So, no one talk to me about natural child birth. It will fall on deaf ears. And all of you know that I am going to have a vaginal delivery unless something goes terribly wrong....which it won't so lets not even have that as an option.

So, there is a bit of insight into what we are up to now that we have reached 37 weeks. We'll see what the next few days hold. Right now, I'm trying to walk and do as much housework as possible. I do feel contractions when I'm up and moving around, so I'm just hoping that one of these times they will just keep going. Keep us in your thoughts and prayers as our time as a family of three draws closer to an end.



Friday, August 3, 2012

Dear Baby Girls-A Letter To My Twins

Dear Baby A and Baby B,

Soon we won't be calling you Baby A and Baby B, we will be calling you by your names. I feel a little weird calling you by your name right now. I don't want to jinx anything. I mean, what if I call you by your name and then one of you is a boy instead of a girl? I would feel a little bit bad about that. Now that doesn't mean that I think that there is the possibility that one of you could be a boy, we've had so many ultrasounds, by so many different ultrasound techs and they all say two girls. But....Mommy likes to play it safe.

Right now you guys are wiggling around. I can see elbows, heels and little rear ends poking out. I'm so glad that you are both wiggly gals. I know that I can usually just put my hand on my tummy and feel at least one of you moving. It's just a bit of reassurance and Mommy needs that every now and then. And Daddy and Georgia like to feel you move and watch my belly go up and down with your little dances too.

I have so many hopes and dreams for you both. I hope you arrive here safely. That's #1 on my list right now because that should be coming any day now. Our family is just waiting for you to get here. We are excited. We are nervous. We are scared. Taking care of twins is going to be wonderful and exhausting. Our emotions  are on both ends of the spectrum. At least these are things that Daddy and I are feeling. Georgia is just so excited to become your big sister. That is why she can't wait for you to get here!

Other hopes and dreams I have for you are for when you grow up. I hope that you love being apart of our family. I want you to love our craziness as much as I do. We like to be together, we are a close knit group. I hope that you enjoy that.
I hope that you both look up to Georgia. She's one amazing little girl who has brought so much happiness and joy into our lives. I think that you will find her smart, funny, energetic, and full of love for you both.
I hope that you feel loved everyday of your life. Always know that Daddy and I will love you both forever. But I hope that as you grow into adulthood, you find someone that loves, respects and honors you as much as Daddy does me. It is such a blessing to have him as my lifelong companion.
I hope that you are kind to one another. Please don't fight, at least not too much. And don't say something that you will regret and want to take back later. Words hurt, and sometimes those wounds take longer to heal.
I hope you use your talents. Don't be afraid because something seems hard, go for it and you never know, you might just make it!

I have so many hopes and dreams for you, but most of all I want you to be my daughters. I want you to be Georgia's sisters. I want us to love each other and be happy. I want to make memories with you. I want your childhood to be filled good times that you can look back on fondly.
So my darlings....I'll leave you with this famous quote from A.A. Milne, "Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."

Love,
Mama

PS I can't wait to meet you!!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

10 Things NEVER To Say To A Pregnant Woman

So, this week's ToT post was either a free for all or blog about the Chick-Fil-A drama or the shootings in Colorado. And right now, I'm just not at a point where I want to think about heavy stuff like Chick-Fil-A or the shootings. So, I'm going to vent about something near and dear to my heart right now, things NEVER to say to a pregnancy woman.

I think that I heard more of these things when I was pregnant with Georgia, but that doesn't mean that I haven't heard them this time around too. At no other time do people talk to you about such personal things. It's one thing when a friend asks you, but when complete strangers ask you such personal questions, it makes you a little uncomfortable.

#1. Don't tell say that I look miserable. Come on, really folks! You would never walk up to someone who was over weight and say "Man, you look miserable!" That would just be rude. And you know what, it's rude to say it to pregnant women too. And in some days, I might feel miserable, but I don't need you telling me that.

#2. You're HUGE! Again....rude. I don't talk about your weight, so please don't mention that I'm the size of a whale. I know that I'm huge, but I'm growing two humans.

#3. Are you sure there are only 2 in there? This applies pregnant woman having any number of babies. And to answer your question, yes, I am sure I'm only having 2 babies. Do you want to know why? Because I go to have an ultrasound done EVERY WEEK. I spend hours in the OB office every week and I've only seen two babies and heard two heartbeats. I'm pretty sure.

#4. Don't act shocked when I tell you my due date. I get it, I have a lot of baby belly going on. And you might think that I'm farther along in my pregnancy than I really am, but I'm not. AND, I shouldn't have to tell you that I'm having twins to make you feel better about my pregnancy. And really, what if I was this big and only having one baby, what's it to you?

#5 Don't tell me that you feel sorry for me. Are you kidding? I chose to get pregnant. I didn't just get knocked up. This was all part of the plan. Now, having twins was not part of the plan, but I don't see it as anything to feel sorry about. Yes, it will be hard work. Yes, it will be stressful. Yes, it will cost a lot of money. And yes, having a single baby would be a lot easier. But here's the kicker, I get to do something that a lot of other woman will never have the chance to do. I get to bring two lives into the world at the same time. And I get the beauty of watching them grow...so really you feel sorry for me? Maybe I feel sorry for you because you don't get to do this!

#6. Don't tell me that you feel sorry for my husband. While I don't want you to feel sorry for me, he certainly does not need your pity. I'm the one dealing with all the aches and pains of pregnancy. So what if he has to do a bit more housework. You know, he also wanted this pregnancy. So it's kind of an exchange if you will, I have the ability to birth his children. So what if he has to cook dinner and clean up the dishes afterwards.

#7. Did you use fertility treatments? Um, you wouldn't ask that if I was just having one baby. No, we didn't, we have spontaneous twins. But really, what does it matter? It doesn't make a couple who's twins were the result of fertility treatments any less than mine. Twins are twins, no matter what.

#8. You are having a C section right? Um nope, that's not in the plan. Two babies can come out of my body just fine. I'm positive of that. Yes, it will be hard. Yes, I will be tired. And really, it's not your choice to make and it's a little bit personal. Now, if a friend asks this question, I don't think that it's too personal, but strangers on the street....yea, stay out of my business.

#9. Don't tell me about your horrific labor and delivery stories. You know what....I bet I have you beat on that one....you want me to tell you about my last pregnancy when my baby died? Not to make a joke out of it, but really it's not comforting to hear someone talk about the hours they spent in terrible labor and how long they pushed. I know that strangers don't know about my pregnancy with Violet, but really no pregnant woman needs to hear about how long it took you during your labor and delivery unless she asks for that info.

#10. I think having twins would be so much fun!!! Fun. FUN? Are you kidding me? Sure it's exciting. Sure I'm so glad to be blessed in this way. Sure I'm happy to be having two baby girls. But FUN? How about you come over around 11pm and get up with them every time they cry and let me sleep. How about you change about a million diapers everyday. How about you pay for all of their needs and wants until they can manage on their own. Does any of that sound FUN? Well, not really. But I at least I get where you are coming from with this statement. I get the pleasure of raising twin girls. Not every mom gets that. I get to see them become each other's best friend. I get to see how different they will be from each other. But you make it sound like it will just be fun and games all the time. Not that simple. It will be a lot of hard work. And I'm going to be tired. And I'm going to have bad mom moments because I've let the stress get to me. And there will be times when we can't do something because it costs too much money. Now every single one of those things will be totally worth it and there will be more good times than bad. I really do believe that these babies are a blessing to me and my family, but don't act like it's going to be sunshine and roses all the time. Get real!

So that's just a short little run down of what not to say to a pregnant woman....or at least me. And if you have said one or more of those things, I forgive you. I know that not every comment is meant to be mean spirited. And it's one thing coming from a friend and another thing coming from a stranger. But next time, just remind that pregnant woman that you are talking to how great she looks, how she is going to be a fantastic mother and that you can't wait to meet her baby. Those are things that we want to hear. This is a very special time in our lives, we don't want to be offended or stressed out. We want to be lifted up and made to feel wonderful. And that is what we should be doing as humans lifting each others spirits, and loving and caring for each other.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Deep Freeze

We don't have a large freezer. But I wanted to make up some meals to put in there, you know after these babies come we just aren't going to have time to cook. And I know that friends, family and our beloved church family will bring us meals and we will eat until we pop. Well, at least that is what happened after Violet's death....everyone wanted to make us feel better and making dinner for us was one way they could help. I think we had like 2 or 3 weeks of dinners from the dear souls at church. And we had leftovers that were frozen and we were able to eat on those for the next couple of weeks while I was still having a hard time getting myself off the couch. But you know what, all those lovely delicious meals stop coming at some point and I am hoping that I will find out that it is awful nice to have some dinners tucked away in the freezer for us to chow on while the babies are screaming!

My plan was set. I confirmed with my mom and my good friend Sarah (who is also a fellow ToT blogger at Just Living Daily) that they could come over on Monday. Then Sunday night I sat down with my computer, a pen and paper and researched some of the freezer meals that I had been pinning on Pinterest. I complied a list that I thought sounded good to me and showed it to Nolan to get his opinion. He picked out a few and I got the ingredients list together. Before I knew it my sister in law, Edith, who just had a baby in May also had a list of freezer friendly recipes and offered to send them my way...heck yeah, bring it on! So I sorted through those and picked out a couple more.

After getting all the ingredients wrote down, Nolan and I settled in the kitchen to see what we had and what we did not have. Actually, I sat at the table and read the list off to him and he searched the kitchen. Most of the time he knew where to look, but a couple of times I had to tell him where something would be if we had it. And then from that I was able to make a grocery list.

The next morning, my mom came over to help me do grocery shopping. It seems to go quicker when someone else is helping me. So my list was made and I had it all mapped out, meat and veggies first, then packaged goods and cheese. It didn't take us too long to pick everything up and head back home. We did make a quick stop at Arby's (Georgia's fast food of choice) and headed home to quickly eat and get ready to tackle these meals.

After lunch I called Sarah and she and her little one James would be over soon to help out. My mom and I got started. We picked a recipe and started with that first. She started out chopping the veggies. I started out labeling some freezer bags with the name of the dish and directions on how to cook it. Some of the recipes were for the crock pot (the ones we put in the freezer bags) and others were casseroles (I bought disposable pans for that....sorry environment, I just don't have enough 9x13 pans to keep some in the freezer too. At least I did get the pans that were made out of recycled material and we will try to recycle them after we polish off the meal.). Anyway, we started with the crock pot meals and so I was labeling the bags. After finishing that, I started putting the veggies that were chopped, seasonings, meat and the packaged or canned ingredients into the bags.

After double checking the first recipe, I sealed the bag and kind of mixed it together. Once it looked mixed I opened the bag and tried to get as much air out as possible, then I resealed it. Each of the crock pot recipes made enough for 2 gallon size bags, so we could get two dinners out of it. We were able to lay them in the freezer and move onto the next one.

When it came time to add cheese to one of the recipes, I realized that I had forgotten to buy any cheese at all. Luckily Sarah was not at my house yet and she was able to swing by the store and pick up some cheese for me. Whew. She saved the day!!!

We were able to continue on and get most of the recipes finished, I have one left to prepare and it's really easy. At the end of the afternoon we had made 9 dinners to go in my freezer! Yea. So that is not only dinners but lunches too!!!

I wish that I would have done this earlier in my pregnancy. It would have been helpful to have those in the freezer since either I was too anemic to cook, was at too many doctor's appointments to cook, or just didn't feel like it since I'm huge and pregnant. We've been eating out a lot lately. And not only is that hurting our pocketbook, but it's really going to have to stop since Georgia will be in school and needs to be in bed around 8. By the time Nolan gets home from work and we go out to dinner, sometimes we don't get home until 8. So we really need to be eating at home more to make sure that she not only gets the rest that she needs, but also the down time of getting a bath, getting ready for bed and reading a story. Routine will be good for all of us!! And I don't see us going out to at much at all after the twins are born. It just seems like too much and it will be easier to eat at home!

So if any of you are thinking about trying some freezer meals, I can let you all know how they turned out. Not only did I get a list from Pinterest and from Edith, but I hit up my friend Amy who made some outstanding freezer meals for us when Violet died and Sarah gave me a few freezer friendly veggie meals (I like to eat vegetarian once a week if possible) and Nolan's Aunt Ester has also offered to send me some veggie friendly freezer meals. Yea! So, I will be doing this more in the future. I might not try to do so many meals in one day, but we will see how things go!


The Light At The End of the Tunnel- 36 weeks

36 weeks. Things are good here, babies are growing just fine, I'm doing A-OK, and our little family is excited to meet these twins.

I like to THINK that we are prepared for this......we have cribs, we have car seats, we have diapers, we even have a double stroller. So yea, as far as stuff goes, we are pretty well prepared. What we are not prepared for are how all of this is going to work. We are going to have to get used to the idea that we are not going to be sleeping much for the first several weeks, we are going to have to get used to the fact that we are not going to be as carefree as we are now, we are going to have to get used to not having as much money as we do now....babies cost a lot and if you remember correctly, we are going to have TWO.

I'm also nervous about nursing twins. I didn't have good luck nursing Georgia. She was tongue-tied (which you can read about here) and had lots of trouble latching on to the breast. Since she couldn't get her tongue clipped until she was around 1 month old and by then she was used to being bottle fed. So, that didn't work out like I wanted it to, but it was fine. We went with it.

This time around, I would really like for breasting feeding to work out. My plan is to nurse them and when they get the hang of it introduce a bottle. I'm hoping, that as long as someone is here to help me, that I can do a combo-bottle feeding and breast feeding. So, hopefully at each feeding I would nurse one baby and the other would be bottle fed at the same time by someone else. And then at the next feeding switch babies. I think that will allow me a little bit more flexibility. And hopefully that will allow us to go out to dinner without me exposing myself to the entire restaurant! We'll see how this works and if for some reason it doesn't work out, then it is what it is. I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

Well, I went for my weekly check up today. From now on my appointments are going to be incredibly long. I will be seeing an OB or an NP in addition to my ultrasounds and NSTs. But, the good thing is there is light at the end of the tunnel...I only have two more appointments scheduled. Yea! Nolan was coming with me today so that we could talk with my OB, ask a few questions and just get some clarification about the way things should go during labor and delivery.

I started off with my ultrasound. Rita took me back to the ultrasound room and we were able to get started. Right away I saw two heads pointing down!! YEA!!! Both babies are head down again. Such a relief. I know that things could still change, Baby B could still flip flop around, but with the space at a premium, it seems like she should stay put.

Baby A's heartbeat was at 140 and Baby B's heartbeat was at 143. Both normal. Both babies did their breathing exercises, although Baby B was a sleeping beauty. She had to be poked and woken up a bit to get moving. That is pretty unusual. Usually it is Baby A who isn't moving much and Baby B is all over the place. Baby A weighs in this week at 6lb 2oz. I know, huge right? Baby B weighs in at 5lbs 14 oz. A little less, but still doing great. All of their measurements were taken and all their little organs were checked out as well.

My NST also went well. Both babies were moving around and their heartbeats were great. During the NST, they look for the baby's heart rate to go up and down. That is normal. It is not normal for their heart rate to stay consistent for a long period of time. Every time a baby moves her heartbeat goes up. So, they were both wiggling and dancing around which made my NST not take nearly as long. Also, it looks to see if I'm having any contractions. There were actually a few small contractions this time. Nothing that was super painful and nothing that caused anyone to think that labor would be happening soon, just a couple small ones.

After my NST I was told that Dr Voelkel had to leave the office and she would not be back for the day. WHAT? Nolan was taking off work early so we could talk to Dr Voelkel. Remember when I said at the beginning of this blog that we had a list of questions that we wanted to ask? Yea, all that stuff. And, if you remember from last week's update, Dr Voelkel is going to be on vacation next week. So, I won't see her until my 38 week appointment. Um, I could totally have babies by then. So, I was a little it frustrated and upset that here I am due pretty much any day and I haven't seen her in weeks.

The staff explained that they wouldn't have to reschedule my appointment and that I would get to see an OB. And that's all fine and good, but it's still not the same as seeing your own OB. It's not like I've got a cold or something, I'm having a baby. And I'm not just having a baby, I'm having twins. And I'm not just having twins, this is the pregnancy after having a baby die. Sometimes my nerves get to me a little bit, so it would have been great to talk with my own OB instead of someone that I don't know.

Nolan was already on his way to my OB office, so there was no point in calling him to let him know the news and decide if he wanted to still come or not. When he got there,I was already in an exam room and Dr Wagner had just walked in the room for my appointment. I felt kind of bad for Dr Wagner, he was just kind of thrown into this and was trying to make sure that he looked at everything from my last ultrasound and this ultrasound. What he found was that Baby B's head measurements were the same as they were last week. That concerned him a bit. At first he just suggested coming back in later in the week for another NST to make sure that the both babies were still doing fine. Then the more he looked at things, he felt like I should go upstairs to Maternal and Fetal Medicine for an ultra sound and to see Dr Dungy.

Dr Wagner got on the phone with Maternal and Fetal Medicine and before we knew it, we had an appointment. We did get to ask Dr Wagner some questions before we left the office. I asked if at this point, I went into labor on my own, would they want to stop it. He said that since I'm over 36 weeks, 37 weeks this Friday, that he would not do anything to stop labor or contractions at this point. Nolan asked that if something in the NST shows that a baby is not doing as well as she could be what would happen. At that point they would induce labor and I would have the babies that day. Dr Wagner did ask if I was planning on having a vaginal delivery. And he said that I have the best chances of having a safe vaginal delivery since both babies are head down and that Baby A is so low. He said that he would let me go for it and the only way they would do a c section is if there were any signs of distress with either me or the babies. Yea! I also wanted to know how this delivery would be different from Georgia's. I guess there could be a lot of extra people in the room. Enough to take care of each baby. So at least two more nurses and he said with multiples, it can get a little crowded in the room.

As we left there to head upstairs, I felt comfortable with Dr Wagner. He made sure to check things out and didn't just walk in the room and tell me that things were fine and send me home on my merry way. And although, I didn't get that warm and fuzzy feeling from him, I also didn't feel uncomfortable or that he was in anyway going to try and push me into something that I don't want to do. Good deal.

We went upstairs and had to wait for a long time for an ultrasound room to become available. Finally one opened up and my name was called. Our ultrasound tech was bubbly and friendly. She was one of those people who really seemed to enjoy her job. It always makes it easier when you are a little bit when you don't really know what is going on, to have someone who makes you feel at ease.

We got all set for the ultrasound and the tech told us that Baby A was head down but Baby B was head up. WHAT? That changed in just a couple of hours? Geez! That was a bit disappointing. Anyway, the tech took the measurements and said that Baby A weighed 6lb 4oz and Baby B weighed 6lbs 7oz. That is a bit of a change from our first ultrasound. Both the tech that I had the first time and the this tech said that it is just so hard to get a good measurement at this stage in pregnancy. So, who knows how accurate any of this is.

Dr Dungy came in to check things out (yes this is former Colts head coach Tony Dungy's sister). She said that the ultrasound photos looked good, but she would take a look just to double check things out. She started the ultrasound and she pointed out Baby A's head down and then Baby B's head right next to Baby A's. WHAT? Ok, lets get this straight, Baby B is head down again in.....she moved again in a matter of minutes? No. What happened is that Baby B is in fact head down...you could see the top of her head. What the second ultrasound tech was seeing was a shot under Baby A and she could see Baby B's profile. That is why she thought that Baby A was head up. So confusing, but I was so glad to hear that she is in fact head DOWN! Dr Dungy said that things looked great and there was no need for concern. Again good news. Dr Dungy said that she would call Dr Wagner and let him know that things were good and I was able to go home.

BUT, before I left I had to go back to my OB's office because Dr Wagner suggested that I come back on Friday for an additional NST....just to make sure that the babies were fine. So I ha d to stop by there and make my appointment. After that was done and I made it back to my car, it was a little after 5. I had been there since 12:30. 4 1/2 hours. Ugh. I will be so glad when all of this is done.

So just to recap...both babies are head down. I am still dilated 1 cm (I don't think I mentioned that), both babies seem to be around 6lbs, and both babies seem to be doing well and we are all ready for them to get here.