They’re here!!

On Sunday, July 14th at 10:06 pm, Bennett Weldon (on the left) arrived at 5 lbs 6 oz, while his sister Charlotte Gene came in at 4 lbs 8 oz, both by c-section. We are totally in love!

The birth story is kind of crazy. It’s true that nothing ever goes the way you think it will! In addition, I was so determined to make it to 35 weeks – and I was 2 hours short! So you know what – I’m just telling people they were born at 35 weeks. Close enough.

Here’s the short version of the birth story, and I may or may not go into more detail at a further time. As you know, I had been on hospital bed rest for 3 weeks, hanging out at 5 cm dilated and 100% effaced. So it was no big deal to me when I was having a few more contractions than normal. It had happened many times. I also had a total meltdown the day before when a young resident came and woke me up at 5:30 am to let me know that they would like me to get to 38 weeks. After 11 weeks on bed rest. I cried for 3 straight hours. Anyway, it didn’t happen and it all is trivial now.

So around 8:30 pm a nurse came and checked on me and I was telling her I had 5 contractions in the last hour, felt kind of off, etc. when all of a sudden I felt a huge “kick” where Bug’s head was. It was very painful. It also came with a pop and I felt leakage. It wasn’t the whole “soda bottle on the floor” thing, more a decent trickle, but yes, my water broke in bed as I was talking to the nurse.

That was 8:30. What ensued between then and 10:06 were increasingly painful contractions. And I was already 5 cm so I didn’t have too far to go. Everyone was kind of taking their time and I knew this needed to go fast. It was so painful!

Long story short, they finally realized I needed this to be on an emergency level. By the time I was sitting up on the OR table to get my spinal, I was ready to push. I had gone to 10 cm immediately. A nurse later told us that while she was rushing to get the catheter in, she saw Bug’s head crowning. I didn’t even have time to put a gown on or change from my old clothes. At the same time, doctors were also considering putting me completely under because I had eaten a meal only a few hours prior. So really, it could have been any type of birthing experience. And while all get you to the end result, we weren’t prepared at all for any type other than a c-section.

Thankfully, this happened at night and my husband was with me because I don’t know if he could have made it here in time. The whole thing was so fast.

3 days later and we are all hanging in there. Neither Bennett nor Charlotte needed any assistance breathing or eating, which was great. Since it was late at night they kept them in the NICU to assess, and Bennett joined us in our hospital room the very next day. Charlotte is still in the NICU but not for any serious long term reason. She was small and because of that she’s not quite eating as much as they want her to, and likewise with keeping her temp up. Once she’s done that she’s good to go. I expect and hope it’s no longer than a few more days. I’m in some serious c section pain but hoping it gets better every day. Because of this pain, I can’t get up and change diapers, feed, etc. I’m attempting breastfeeding, especially with Bennett, but the milk isn’t in yet. My husband has learned how to take care of a newborn very quickly, since I can’t do much, and he’s done amazingly. He did already get both peed and pooped on, but that’s part of the experience! I’m looking forward to being able to help him, especially when Charlotte joins us!

At this point I am transitioning to my new blog, which will take the form of updating about babies more than anything else. It’s been a long road to get here.

You can find the new blog at twolittlechamps.wordpress.com.

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34 weeks!

As I was getting my blood drawn this morning in my bed at 7 am and the nurse stuck the arm I don’t normally use, I thought about how good the vein on my other arm is. It never hurts and getting blood from there is a smooth process. Then I thought about the fact that I know this information because I have been stuck with a needle in that spot, gosh, hundreds of times. Do I still remember going through IVF last November? Having three IUI’s before that, and six rounds of Clomid before that? Being bitter and cranky over two years of infertility – one year of medical treatments and one year of autoimmune thyroid issues and crazy hives and not being able to do a thing until it was under control?

I do remember, but maybe I should think of it more often because I am ready to no longer be pregnant, mentally. I feel a little guilty about this. Then again, it’s not like those trying two years led to a walk in the park pregnancy. The best part of the whole thing, and that of which I’ll forever be grateful, was being able to get pregnant, for both embryos to take, and for us to be having a boy and a girl. So I mean, that was the overall goal and I shouldn’t take it for granted.

However. Crippling nausea that needed medication followed by (after about a month and a half of feeling good) 10 weeks of bed rest that involved me leaving my job in late April. Weeks 9 and 10 of bed rest spent in the hospital. Two trips to labor and delivery for preterm labor, the first at 28 weeks. I’m on week 11 of bed rest, 3 in the hospital.

But! Today is 34 weeks – a hugeeee milestone. There are no other milestones for me, though the later I go the better for the babies. But this was the one that I was shooting for from the beginning. Never thought I’d reach it.

I’ve spent the last two weeks 5 cm dilated and 100% effaced. I’m not on any medication to stop labor. And still my babies cook.

So at this point, I consider any day I’m still pregnant great for babies. Mentally, I’m thrilled I made it here and now….being pregnant isn’t really enjoyable. So I won’t be upset when it ends.

More than the crazy discomfort my small stomach is feeling (I’ve only gained 35 pounds) is my desire to be done with this because I want to move on. I’m ready for the next stage of life. The infertility/pregnancy stage was great and all but it’s coming to a close. Perhaps I would’ve enjoyed pregnancy more had I been allowed off my couch/bed in the last few months. It’s very hard to celebrate a pregnancy by yourself day by day, as you lie there counting contractions and praying your babies make it.

Now, even though at 34 weeks we might be looking at a week or two in the NICU, I finally feel like we made it. And like I said, every day after today is a bonus. 35 weeks would be crazy and 36 is practically full term for twins. We are ready for a new chapter, and eager to close this anxiety-ridden one. So all-in-all, today is a good day, just based on the number of weeks I’ve been pregnant.

On a separate note, in the past week my autoimmune hives have started creeping back. A few on my arm, a small one on my lip, and two nights of a lump in my throat. Yuck. I’ve forgotten all about that. I haven’t had a hive in probably a year. Well I asked for my thyroid to be tested and sure enough, my TSH went up from 0. something to 1.5. Yes, it’s still in the normal range. No, it’s not a good number for me. I knew it went up. I need to be between zero and one, and I’d be curious to see if everything calms down.

What I think I’m going to do is wait until after I give birth and then have it re-checked and adjust my dosage then. It takes 6 weeks for a new dose to kick in and I know my hormones will be wacky in a few weeks anyway. Until then I now have to try and avoid my hive triggers and the biggest one is sugar. It’s pretty hard to be super healthy in a hospital. Just another reason I’m ready to go home and start the next chapter.

33 weeks, a super vent

Holy smokes, I’m very whiny and having a moment. My personal rule is when I’m feeling a good vent coming on, I wait a day to blog, in case I feel better the next day and it was a passing thing. Woke up this morning and nope, it’s still there. Post away.

Google reader is no longer a thing so I might not have a lot of people read this but really, that’s fine with me. When someone whines and complains a lot, it starts to make them look pathetic, which is not my goal. But I can’t go another day without bitching!

Because I’m 5 cm dilated and 100% effaced, I am not allowed to leave this hospital (or even my room) until I give birth. I get that, but I’m barely even contracting. It’s very quiet.

Let me first say that I understand this is a good thing. I’m not in labor, the babies keep cooking, I get that. My brain understands that fact. Don’t remind me. In no way does it change my feelings and emotions about being on hospital bed rest. So I’m not even going there about the babies in this post. I’m grateful they are healthy and continue to cook. But.

I have been on bed rest for 10 weeks. Since the end of April. I have missed – everything. You know what I took for granted? Walking. Having access to more than a couch/bed and a bathroom. Looking and feeling clean, and not itchy. Shaving. Feeling the sun. Driving. Being in a car at all.

But it was somehow being managed until I was put on hospital bed rest and now I feel like I’ve totally lost my mind. I’ve been here a week and a half. In that time, I’ve had bursitis in my hip (thankfully so much better) and spasms in a nerve/ligament in my rib where Goat’s body is. Not sure which was more painful. My rash went away – it was heat rash.

The doctor came in this morning and told me that there’s no reason to plan on a c-section date at this point when I don’t have any infections and the babies are doing well. The plan is to let them cook as long as they can. Again, I understand this and it makes sense. Deep down, I agree. But that means I could be going another month in this room. A month. That would be full term, which would be amazing. But still.

Bed rest really sucks. I can’t believe how long I’ve been on it. But hospital bed rest is a whole other matter. I can’t stand relying on nurses, all 5,000 of them I’ve met. Some are okay and some suck. Asking me questions like I don’t know what a contraction is. Discussing my “bowel movements” like we are discussing the weather. Waiting and watching for me to drink Miralax because they can’t leave drugs with me. Really, Miralax? You’ll be standing there a while because I’m not chugging it.

The food – it’s horrible. I’m still eating gluten free and that little menu has 5 choices on it. I just keep rotating and it’s all disgusting. This one food lady is trying to make me mad. I keep asking for ranch dressing with my little salad and she keeps bringing Italian because she says the ranch isn’t gluten free. But it is gluten free, I read the package myself. She’s mad because the computer doesn’t have me registered as gluten free so she doesn’t understand why I can’t eat off the regular menu, which by the way has foods on it a pregnant person can’t eat, like cold deli meat. Dinner comes at 4:30, and I’m not hungry and I want to wait for my husband. Then someone comes back an hour later and wonders why I have to say I haven’t eaten yet. Every. Day.

I had myself a little breakdown yesterday at lunch because my nasty hamburger came without any condiments. The day before it came with ketchup and mayo. The helplessness I felt, not having access to ketchup was enough to send me right over the edge. Maybe the woman was trying to piss me off. So I had to call the main desk, have them hunt down the woman. It’s just the most degrading thing. Or when today, after a successful NST in my room, the nurse was just about to unhook me from the monitors when she got called away by a doctor. 45 minutes later and I can’t get up, can’t get my water because I’m still hooked up and helpless. I think she forgot about me. Cue another mini meltdown.

I’ve started grabbing the monitors from the nurses’ hands and putting them on my stomach myself. If I hear that baby voice, “do you happen to know where you think the heartbeats are?” one more time, I swear. You check every few hours and I’m stuffed with babies who won’t be moving much. And we have been doing this for a week and a half. I don’t care that you’re a nurse I haven’t met before. Give me the damn monitors so you don’t spend a half hour trying to find heartbeats covering my whole stomach in gel when I know exactly where they are.

I have a needle permanently taped into my arm, in case I need fluids quickly. My muscles, after 10 weeks, are totally gone. My legs are just bones with the remains of muscles hanging off. They get sore so easily. After birth, I’ll be lucky if I can walk to the mailbox. The recovery is going to suck more than it does for others. No, don’t tell me that I need to savor this quiet time. Who enjoys living in a hospital?? No one. I miss my dogs. Their schedules have been completely disrupted and they might have forgotten about me.

I guess I’m more than whiny. I’m pissed. Mad that the joys of pregnancy have been taken away from me on my first time, making me never want to do this again. Mad that I missed my own shower, that I bought cute maternity clothes I couldn’t wear, and mostly mad that I can’t mentally prepare for babies. See, if I had prepared I probably wouldn’t complain so much right now. I want to be home, folding all the washed baby clothes (that I still need to buy), lounging in someone’s pool, getting my nails done and decorating a nursery (that doesn’t even have carpet yet). Obviously we are going to be exhausted when they are here. Obviously. It won’t be easy. But the transition from hospital bed rest to twins at home is such a major one. It is what it is and there’s nothing I can do about it. I am not mentally ready for this at all. And it’s hard to be in a hospital. I don’t want to read about it or do research. We will somehow figure it out.

I’ve had more mini meltdowns here in a week and a half than I did at home in 8 weeks. I’m totally feeling sorry for myself. But I have to make it quick because a nurse will walk in and that’s embarrassing, crying by myself. One nurse keeps wanting to get me “art therapy”. I’m not kidding. I’m fine, I just can’t believe this is still going on.

So here’s what I’m thankful for. One – I have my own room. I can’t even fathom the nightmare that is sharing a room. Two – my mother has been keeping my dogs, which, after my house, is their second favorite place. And my mom isn’t a dog person (thanks!). It’s one less thing to worry about. Three – I have healthy babies. A boy and a girl. After two years of infertility. That I’m even in this position. And four – my husband. I can’t brag about him enough. You’d think this would all be another test, a hurdle for us but it’s been the opposite. He’s been sleeping on a chair for a week and a half without complaints. He helps me with every single thing. He makes me laugh, and our “bonding moment” of each night is a head scratch/rub for him. He’s going to work during the day if I feel okay, which makes it lonely but I understand. But if I’m having a rough day he can stay and work from his laptop. He’s excited for these babies and he’s still running home on the weekends to finish our house construction. One month tops to finish it. He has been so amazing, it just solidifies and strengthens how I feel about him. I’m very lucky.

Okay. That’s about it for now. I know it’s temporary, I know how lucky I am for healthy babies, and I know I’m kind of almost there. What I am most looking forward to is seeing those babies with my husband and being able to say to him, “This was all worth it.”

32.5 weeks

It’s been almost a week in the hospital. Still no babies!

My hip pain turned out to be bursitis of the hip, this little fluid filled sac that hurts like hell when I move in certain positions or lay on that side. However, it’s been much better yesterday and today and I need much less help getting up and walking. Though they got me a walker as if I didn’t feel old and feeble already.

Thank you guys for all the nice comments! This has been one long ass journey.

Yesterday brought a little normalcy though – we still had our previously scheduled ultrasound to check on babies’ growth. Getting there via stretcher wasn’t normal and I was dirty… Like really dirty. Oh well. Anyway, both babies continue to look great. They are over the 4 pound mark, both already have hair apparently, and we got a nice shot of Goat, the first good one we have.

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So cute! Bug is so far down and ready to make his exit that they couldn’t even measure his head, not to mention get a picture. There will be no more scheduled ultrasounds. Everyone, doctors included, are just waiting.

I’m still torn between wanting them to cook longer and wanting this to be over, stat. But I guess I have no say in the matter anyway.

By the way, for those who asked for my new blog’s link, I’m still getting it together but will post it once here when the babies make their debut.

Which will hopefully be soon…. But not too soon!

32 weeks and in the hospital….

…until the babies are born. Here’s the short version because I don’t have the energy to go into all the details.

Went to l and d on Saturday night at 11:00pm. Was having increasing contractions, couldn’t get comfortable and something just didn’t feel right. Still couldn’t make the decision though and felt bad it was that late.

By the time I was looked at, contractions were 2-3 mins apart and painful, I was 80% effaced and 4-5 cm dilated. Three weeks prior when I was there I was 60-70% effaced and 2-3 cm dilated.

Anyway, they did not want to give me Procardia to stop contractions. It was down to more mag sulfate (probably 24 hrs) or the terb shot. Terb… Something. They decided on the shot. It worked. Practically stopped contractions. They were debating sending me home even though it was 3:00 in the morning. Doctor decided she wanted me to stay.

In the morning, everything changed. All of a sudden I was 100% effaced, 6 cm dilated, etc. Everyone was preparing for labor. Contractions got really painful, more than they ever had been. We prepared for labor too, mentally.

I got the epidural, which was the plan all along in case baby b needed to be a c section. Ahh, epidurals really help. A catheter was also put in.

We all waited for dilation to increase and to be sent to the OR. I told many people we would have babies by the end of the day. We waited, and waited….and waited.

Labor stopped. Went back to 4 cm dilated, contractions spaced out and the ones I did have weren’t changing my cervix. They left everything as is one more night (epidural and catheter) and would decide yesterday, Tuesday what to do.

Now it’s Wednesday afternoon. They took the epidural and catheter out, moved me to regular maternity, and I’m back to bed rest – except in the hospital this time. I have bathroom and shower privileges and that’s it. I’m actually glad to be here this time. Their prediction is that this will be soon and I’d rather already be here.

But you’d think I’m just hanging out in bed relaxing, watching tv. Ohhh no. No, after the epidural wore off I had a pain in my legs and especially hips that’s only gotten way, way worse. I can’t walk without help and even then it’s a shuffle, I can’t turn over in bed, I can’t get up or sit on my own. It’s up there on the list of the worst pains I’ve ever felt. The doctor think it’s bursitis of the hips, and I’m currently waiting for an orthopedist to come check me out. Until then, I forget all about giving birth soon because this hip pain is unreal.

I’ve decided, very selfishly, that if the babies came now at 32 weeks…..I’d be okay with that. I’m a very miserable person physically and I really don’t have much left in me. Nor do I want to stay in the hospital for another month. I don’t sleep, I can’t really take care of myself. And I think the babies would be fine. That’s what all the doctors are telling me anyway. That said, it’s a selfish thought and if I can hold on to 34 weeks I know that would be a great milestone too. I’d rather be in the hospital a month than the babies.

31.5 weeks

My last post was a bit of a downer. There are good days and bad days when you’re waiting to go into labor anytime over the course of many weeks. I can take the mental ups and downs – it’s the physical changes and threats of preterm labor that get to me. Anyway, today is a better day mostly, with only a couple scattered contractions. The rib pain is all Goat – I feel body parts swimming under my ribs. I spend a decent amount of my day pressing back in hopes that she will move. But with Bug in there too, and my stomach being what I would call really small for twins, I don’t believe that little girl is going anywhere. I’ve now gained about 31 pounds, and I’m 31 weeks. Here’s my gut:

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But my newest ailment is this rash – what the heck?? It started on the tops of my hands, and 3 or 4 days later has spread to my arms, tops of feet, knee caps, and a few other places. The little red bumps have started on my stomach but don’t itch yet. Not to be gross, but this is the back of my arm:

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It doesn’t look really bad but it does itch. My hands itch the most. I called the ob today and I was told that it doesn’t sound pregnancy related so I need to see my primary care physician. First of all, I can’t imagine how it’s NOT pregnancy related. I’ve been on this couch since the end of April. Where would it come from? Also, it’s been so long since I saw my primary care, she’s not even there anymore. The past few years, I’ve needed specialists – for infertility, my thyroid, and my autoimmune hives (no, nothing at all like this itchy rash). I’ve not needed primary care. Anyway, I did call and I am still in their system so I’ll be going this afternoon. Going out into the world is a big deal – I walk like a 95 year old and have contractions in the car. So if I’m told its just eczema – well, that’s irritating because that’s what I think it is. Then again, I’d be glad it wasn’t anything more serious. I’m just wondering what else this pregnancy has in store for me!

Last night my husband and I discussed the fact that though I’d be physically more comfortable after giving birth (well, after recovery), it’s not something we wish for. Right now, these babies are tucked in like sardines and are safe. Once they are out… they’re out. I’ll be empty and no longer their protector. And for whatever reason, that is a scary thought. Especially at this gestation.

I’m still worried about my lack of preparation. Not only do I know nothing about giving birth or breastfeeding, but we have very little clothing for the babies, very few diapers for newborns, and a nursery that currently is painted and that’s it. This is partially due to not having a shower because of bed rest. We still have to order carpet and then all the furniture is either not bought yet (the dresser) or in the garage in boxes. We are not at all ready for this. I know that if they were born now, they’d be in the NICU but if it all goes well, they could come home anytime between 35-38 weeks. And that’s not far away. This whole pregnancy has gone backwards! But the ultimate goal is healthy babies and my hopes for that are high. I may need to buy some clothes, though.

So that’s where I’m at today. I really, really want to make it to Monday. The number 32 sounds so much better than 31.

Even after being skunked, my puppies are still cute, even though Riley’s head still smells.

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Riley’s little tongue sticks out when she naps.

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Sadie knows exactly how to pose to get whatever it is that she wants.

31 weeks, 2 months of bedrest

Well, tomorrow actually, but close enough. An accomplishment I suppose.

But can I just whine and complain for a few? Like, for the whole post?

Yesterday I told myself I wouldn’t write a whiny post because I’m not dying or looking for any pity, but today I’ve decided I feel better when I vent, and that’s reason enough.

I’m just saying – I am SO SO uncomfortable. Unbelievably uncomfortable. Some of these things are bed rest related, some because I’m pregnant and showing at about 36-37 weeks, and some because I’m pregnant with twins.

My doctor said yesterday at my quick check-up, people say they want twins and they have no idea what they are getting themselves into. That said, I wanted twins, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I just don’t know if I’d want to go through this again, unless carrying around one baby is drastically different. Anyway, I feel the need to whine in list form.

– Two months of bed rest have ruined my hips and legs. My legs are only held up by bones and walking more than a few feet makes them want to crumple into a pile of bone dust. My hips are really hurting, and when I’m trying to sleep I have to switch from side to side about every half hour because of the pain in my hips. I used to be able to go a few hours before needing to turn and now it’s less than one. No big deal except for how hard it is to turn over. I have to fully sit up, which uses my stomach muscles and that hurts. Not to mention it causes contractions.

– Even if I hadn’t been put on bed rest, I’d probably have no choice, because as I said, I really can’t walk. I’m hunched over, carrying my stomach and everything hurts. And when I have to sit down in a chair (as in at the doctor’s), I can’t just sit. I slump down trying to make it more comfortable, holding myself up with my arms. Of course they don’t have recliners at the doctor’s. So it bugs me when all these other pregnant women come in and walk normally, sit up straight, cross their legs and look totally comfortable. I always am out of breath looking like I’m preparing to give birth right there.

– I’m having awful rib pain. It’s on my right side way up high, and it extends from the front to my side and sometimes to my back. I’ve done my research and know about the gallbladder/liver issue but I don’t think that’s it. I think it’s Goat, breech and throwing some limb underneath my ribs and pushing. I also feel the pain when I have contractions. It can be bad enough to make me totally insane and the only way to get rid of it temporarily is to lay on my side. Which hurts my hips. My doctor said yesterday that there is no room in my uterus. I’m just completely filled. She thinks it’s Goat as well. But it has gotten worse in the last week. I’ve had to stop this post multiple times to push around my ribs and readjust.

– A yeast infection. Horrible symptoms driving me mad. We’ll leave it at that.

– I’ve never even HAD eczema!! Not really anyway. Within the last few days I’ve developed a rash on my hands (not the palms) and it looks like eczema. Itches like crazy and has been getting worse. This morning I’ve noticed it on the tops of my feet. What is going on?? Again, I’ve done my research and it’s not PUPPS – looks nothing like that and no rash on my stomach. And it’s not cholestasis (which could’ve gone with the rib pain as a liver problem), because I do have a rash, and soles of feet and palms of hands are fine. But I’m so itchy! I did show the doctor yesterday and she was no help. She thought it was poison ivy and not related to pregnancy at all. I’d have to highly disagree.

– I have a lot of contractions, more every day. And they hurt.

I think that’s it for my list, at least for now. I can never get comfortable, which isn’t good when you’re on bed rest because I keep moving around and it causes contractions. It’s just been pretty unpleasant recently and every day I wonder if I will have to make a trip to labor and delivery. I’ll complain here and show you that I’m miserable, but if you ask me personally I’ll say “fine”. I don’t want to complain. I am just physically wretched.

The positive is that I’ve done two months of bed rest, I’ve made it this far. Unfortunately, I’m not sure how much longer my body can hold on. I’m trying, but I kind of have a feeling this is almost over, which I don’t want, because these babies will be so small. So that’s a little nerve wracking.