Friday, June 27, 2008

We definitely have movement!

Over the past 4 weeks or so I have been feeling some slight movement. It was ever so slight to the point that I really wasn't convinced it was the babies and figured I was just gassy. Too much information?? Oh, you'll live. And actually, over the last 2 weeks, it has become much more regular and has felt more like little taps and bumps than little butterflies or gas bubbles.

Well, as of about 3:45 this morning, there is absolutely NO denying that the babies are having themselves a little party in there. I couldn't sleep (no surprise there), so I went to get the computer to play solitaire and try to find some soothing music to put in the babies' bedroom. As I was listening to some classical music, Baby A (the one on the left) went absolutely crazy. I put my hand on my belly and could feel tons of kicks and rolls and head butts. And what shocked me the most, is that when I took my hand off, I kept staring at that area of my belly...and wouldn't you know it, my belly moved! Not just a little and not just one time either! He/she was going nuts rolling around. I told Nate this morning that Baby A will be his little classical music baby because Nate absolutely loves classical music.

Baby B remained fairly quiet the whole time Baby A was dancing up a storm. But of course the minute I turned off the computer to try to get some more sleep, Baby B decided it was time to be wide awake. The kicks and jabs weren't quite as strong as Baby A, but enough to keep me from falling asleep for another 30 minutes or so!

I did have my ultrasound on Tuesday. They looked at my liver, gall bladder, and kidneys. About 5 minutes into it, the ultrasound tech said "well, I'm pretty sure I know what your problem is." Immediately I said "so I'm not imagining things?" And she said "no, you're not crazy." Of course she couldn't tell me what she thinks it is because the radiologist has to look at it. But she did assure me that it would not threaten the pregnancy and I am not going to die. Good to know! So I will just wait to get my results on Tuesday from my OB. I'm not in any hurry. I could call to find out sooner...but what are they going to do for me anyway? So I'm content to just wait until my appointment.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

First trip to L&D

So I ended up in L&D last night -- not by choice. I was at work which always seems to make my Braxton Hicks contractions occur more frequently. So I was just writing them down to make sure I really didn't have more than 6 in an hour for a couple of hours in a row. And I didn't. But right toward the end of my shift, I had similar pain to the pain I had on Sunday and Monday, but not quite as severe. I didn't say anything to anybody, but the nurses suspected something wasn't right. Two of them asked me if I was feeling okay because I "didn't look good" and I guess I appeared to be clammy and pale. So I told them that I was in some pain but I'm sure it would go away soon.

They told me I needed to call the doctor and when I insisted that the pain was not as bad as it was several days ago, they paged the doctor instead. The doctor told them to have me check into L&D to monitor the babies.

So, downstairs I went -- escorted by one of my coworkers because they probably thought I was some type of flight risk!! Once there, they listened to both babies for about 15 minutes. Both were so active that they kept kicking at and punching the doppler machine. Heart rates were in the 140's. Then they attached me to the ToCo monitor which watches for contractions. I was on that machine for about an hour and a half. I only had a few contractions during that time, which didn't surprise me at all because I was lying down!! I know that when I rest, the contractions tend to go away.

The pain ended up subsiding quicker than it did on Sunday and Monday. It probably took about 30 minutes after I laid down for it to let up a bit. I will still be having an ultrasound on Tuesday to look at my gallbladder, appendix and probably my ovaries. There is still question as to whether I may have pulled a deep muscle in my abdomen which would definitely cause quite a bit of pain!!

Anyway. The babies and I checked out just fine as I thought we would. I mean, I WAS a little worried. But I had a gut feeling that if I just laid down for 15 minutes, the pain and contractions would subside. I actually wanted to lay down before jumping the gun and going to L&D, but when you work with a bunch of Mother Hens, they get nervous and concerned about you too!! As I was leaving L&D, I told the nurses that I don't intend on seeing them again for another 15 weeks!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Appointment day and shocking news

So let's start with the numbers. I am 20 1/2 weeks pregnant. Though Dr. L measured my uterus today, and it is measuring as if I am already 25 weeks pregnant (if I was carrying 1 baby). When they measure the uterus, they measure it in centimeters. And the number of centimeters should correspond to how many weeks pregnant you are. So being that I am 20 1/2 weeks along, the measurement should have been about 20-21cm. But of course with two babies in there, I am going to be measuring larger. By the time I am 32 weeks, I could very well be measuring as if I was 40 weeks pregnant!!!

My blood pressure looked good again today. It was 104/68. The results of the big ultrasound are officially normal. The ultrasound tech had told us that everything looked good, but that the radiologist still needed to read the measurements and I would get the results from the doctor. So I am happy to report that both babies are right on target. The kidneys, spines, brains, bladders, limb lengths, etc. all look really good and there were no abnormalities present. Yay!

I am scheduled to have an ultrasound of my gallbladder next week. Dr. L also wants them to take a look at my appendix. I have been in constant pain for the past 4 weeks. But, the past two days have had me doubled over in pain to the point that Nate wanted to take me to the which I graciously declined. Both incidences lasted about 3-4 hours and then seemed to let up. Well, back to the constant semi-manageable pain I have been having for the last month. But at least it wasn't a stabbing/knifing, make me want to vomit pain!! She did check me for hernias today. That was negative. Though I now have clear instructions from Dr. L to come to the clinic ASAP if I experience that pain again because she wants to see me. And if the clinic is closed, I am to immediately go to L&D (Labor and Delivery) to have it checked out. I'm just praying that I don't have another episode. I can live with this chronic pain, but that other pain...eeeek. Not so much! So anyway, ultrasound scheduled next Tuesday just to look at my gallbladder and appendix -- no views of the babies that day!!

And finally, the shocking news. I was told that I have ketones in my urine. Apparently, when the body begins to break down fat for energy, you will often end up with ketones. Ummmm, what? How can my body be breaking down fat?! I have gained 8 pounds in the last 4 I am averaging a healthy 2 pounds per week. I am now up to about 12 pounds gained in the entire pregnancy. But the fact that there are ketones present still means that I am NOT eating enough. Despite the healthy weight gain track I am on, my body still feels like it is not getting enough and is therefore, breaking down fat stores!! So guess what this means -- I have to eat EVEN MORE!!! I am already stuffed to the gills, so this should be interesting. But, I will try to do what I need to do for the babies. Good golly, they better appreciate me when they get older!! Haha.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Photo-op with the babies!

The big ultrasound was today. We came away with an astounding 24 pictures of the kiddos. TWENTY-FOUR!! We are going to have to invest in a baby book just to hold all of our ultrasound pictures. Our tech was fabulous and told us that we can request her when we set up our next ultrasound. You can bet that we will be asking for Paula!

The babies are fantastic. Both babies were actually head down at this visit, whereas at my appointment last week with Dr. L, one was head down while the other was head up. So one baby flipped in the last week and a half. And they will continue to flip back and forth until about 30-32 weeks or so when they will simply run out of room. Hopefully by then they will both decide to be head down.

Anyway, Baby A was pretty active in the beginning but then got tired and fell asleep on us. Baby A is on my left side and is the gatekeeper of the entrance out! And speaking of the entrance out, my cervix is holding up just fine. We want it to remain long and closed. And because I have been having a lot of Braxton Hicks contractions in the last 2 weeks, I was a little worried that they might be shortening my cervix. But it is still measuring a long and strong 4cm. Baby A's placenta is posterior, meaning it is attached in the back closer to my spine.

Baby B was a little fart once again. This kid is very hyperactive! The tech had a hard time getting him/her to sit still to take good measurements. She had to chase Baby B all over the place! Baby B's placenta is anterior, which means that it is attached in the front closer to my belly. So yes, there are definitely 2 placentas.

So here are the babies and their 2nd internet appearance. Sorry about the quality -- our scanner isn't working, so I had to take pictures of the pictures. At times they are kind of blurry, but they will have to make due.

In the left corner, we have Baby A --
Measuring exactly 20 weeks (1 day ahead of schedule)
Weighing in at 12oz (3/4 of a pound!)
Heartrate is 147bpm

We have a little baby butt!

And a right foot.

And a left arm and fist (Baby A is facing away from the camera)

Finally, a precious little face.
Another profile picture with a hand up by the mouth.

In the right corner, we have Baby B --
Measuring exactly 20 weeks (like his/her sibling)
Weighing in at 12oz (again, like his/her sibling)
With a squirrely heartrate of 153bpm (UNLIKE his/her sibling)

We have a baby foot and thigh.

And a perfectly shaped spine (head on right, butt on left, legs tucked underneath).

And another little baby bottom. The baby is looking away from us. If you look closely at the head (on the right) you can see a little ear.

A beautiful baby face.

Another profile picture -- this time the baby has its chin to its chest with its hands positioned like he/she is playing the clarinet!

Last but not least, we have a couple of pictures with both babies playing nicely in the womb. Actually, they weren't playing so nicely. Baby B punched at Baby A, which made Baby A retaliate by kicking Baby B. There was a whole lot of shoving going on in there!

Baby B's face is on the left underneath Baby A's belly. Baby A's head is on the right "kissing" the top of B's head.

Two round baby heads.

I'm sorry about the pictures galore. But when you are given 24 of them, it is really hard to pick which ones to show off! So all is well. The babies are right on target and so far, are sharing nutrients nicely. I will continue to go in for big ultrasounds once every 4 weeks to measure growth. The babies need to keep weighing approximately the same amount. If there is a weight discordance of 20% or more, they start to worry that one baby is stealing all of the food and not leaving any for the other baby -- which might prompt an early delivery. So in 4 weeks we will have more pictures to share!! I know you're happy...

Monday, June 9, 2008

19+ weeks, over half way there

Saturday marked 19 weeks. So we are officially over half way there!! In some ways, it feels like this pregnancy is flying by. Yet at other times, it feels like the babies will never get here. I continue to get bigger by the day. We have our big ultrasound on Friday. I am hoping the sonographer tells us how big each of the babies is measuring. From the research I have done, each baby should be right around 12 ounces. If that is the case, then I've got 1 1/2 pounds of baby growing in there right now!

As our big ultrasound gets closer and closer, there is a part of me that really wants to know if we are having baby boys or baby girls or both. However, I am pretty sure we will stick to our guns and leave it as a surprise for delivery day. But I think it will definitely be tough at each one of these big ultrasounds to not find out!! Hopefully Nate is feeling stronger in his decision not to know then I am right now!

Otherwise, there really isn't much going on right now. I guess that is a good thing. I would like to keep this pregnancy as uneventful as possible.

Just for fun (and because so many people are asking), here is a belly picture. Taken at exactly 19 weeks. Excuse the tired eyes, I just rolled out of bed!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Update about my appt

I had an appointment with Dr. L yesterday. My blood pressure looks good. It was 102/64. I don't know why I worry about my blood pressure before my appointments -- maybe it's because carrying twins increases the risk of many pregnancy complications. From pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure), to gestational diabetes, to pre-term labor, to lower birth weights (even if born at term). So yes, I worry.

Mom was with me for my appointment. She sat out in the waiting room while the doctor and I talked. When it was time for the ultrasound, my doctor went to get her. Both babies were fairly inactive yesterday. The baby on the right side was head up and feet down, while the baby on the left was feet up and head down. Oh, and I have identified our trouble maker! In case you are wondering, it is the baby on the right. And here is why...

He/she was MOONING his/her sibling! Sitting right on the face of the little baby on the left. Now, if you can use your imagination a little bit, I have drawn a picture to capture the moment from my perspective about what this little circus act looked like. Forgive me for my drawing skills, I am far from being an artist!
You can see that the baby on the right side (left in this picture -- I drew it as though you were looking at my belly), propped its little butt right on top of the other baby's face. the end, I am thinking that this baby MUST be a boy, right? Only boys do stuff like that!

Mom was amazed at everything she saw -- from two strong heartbeats, to one of the baby's ankles being crossed, to another baby having his/her hands up in front of the face, to a small wave from one baby, to the detail of how the spines look. Even I was amazed at how much they have changed in the 5 weeks since I last saw them! Now Nate and I look forward to our big ultrasound on June 13th. Dr. L said that they will look at and measure everything...3 times!! I was told to prepare to be there for about 1 to 2 hours, depending on how well the babies cooperate during the measurements. We should also come away with some higher quality pictures so that I can post them for you to see. I do get pictures during every visit, but they are not the best quality and harder to make out. So stay tuned around June 13th or so! The babies will make their second internet appearance!

So the end result of this appt was more good news. The hearts look very strong, the fluids levels around each baby look really good and appear to be equal, we saw 4 arms, 4 legs, 2 big bellies, and two round heads in fairly good detail and my blood pressure is doing well. Despite all of this good news, I will now be going in for biweekly appointments. I knew it would happen sooner than if I was carrying one baby, but I didn't expect it quite this early. However, Dr. L likes to monitor twins much closer. She's being very pro-active about keeping this pregnancy running smoothly, and I like that!! So every 2 weeks now, I will get to see the babies!! In addition to that, both Nate and I will be able to see the babies on a big ultrasound machine once a month. So 3 times a month we will get a little peak at the munchkins.