Saturday, April 24, 2010

What one month will do

My sister Liz is coming up with her partner Jodi this Thursday. I can't wait to see them. They're going to help me (read: babysit me) while Tom is off graduating at FSU with his Masters in Library Information Science. (Because I'm not going anywhere at this point!)

It just occured to me that the last time Liz saw me I looked like this:
28 weeks

And now I look like this:
32 weeks

Yeah, that's the same outfit. Think she'll notice a difference?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Big girls in there, BIG girl out here!

We had our weekly biophysical profile (BPP) yesterday and an OB appointment. I was 31 weeks and 6 days along, and yet both girls were measuring at 33 weeks 6 days. Nearly two weeks ahead! Figuring in their head circumferences, abdominal circumferences and femur lengths, which were different for each of them, they are estimated to weigh 4lbs 11oz and 4lbs 12oz! So very close! And so very BIG!

Baby B (who we usually refer to as Gabriella) was transverse (side to side) with her spine up and head to my right. She posed for two nice profile shots.

Baby A (who we usually refer to as Lilianna) was not nearly as cooperative. For the last 3 or more weeks she's been head down, face towards my back and feet up by my left ribs. She wasn't going to pose for us, so we have this shot of...well...the back of her head I guess.

Both did all their tricks and scored the full 8/8 on the BPP. Then we headed over to the OB. He increased the insulin to 28 units, but still only once a day. We'll see how that works. My numbers are much better than before, but still could go down more. He also would like me to keep my feet up. They're so swollen! So I'm trying to get approval to work from home starting in May. The request has to get signed by several people though, so hopefully it gets approved, and approved in time! May is just a week away.

Oh, and speaking of May, we scheduled the c-section! If they don't come earlier then the girls will be born on May 28th. I've changed the widget on this page to reflect that date. That's only 5 weeks away!

Think we'll make it that far? Well here are the last two belly pics.

30 weeks:

32 weeks:

And the new comparison pictures:

Can I get any bigger??

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Much ado about nothing... well mostly nothing... ok, well maybe some stuff here and there

Tom's going to go bonkers if I don't update my blog. Sorry about the time lapse since the last post, but between work and the end of the semester crunch I've been constantly on the computer, but not for fun stuff. I'm looking forward to the semester break though. Having some down time will be most welcome.

So what to say? Well, I found an old post I'd started a while back and never finished, so we'll talk about the nursery!

The Golden Butterfly
The Golden Butterfly

This is the inspirational piece for the twins' nursery. It's an adorable print by Mary Baxter St. Clair. I don't think we'll actually buy this piece necessarily, but I really like the look and feel of it.

Other inspirational images are these adorable prints by Cicely Mary Barker:

The Canterbury Bell Fairy
The Canterbury Bell Fairy

The Almond Blossom Fairy
The Almond Blossom Fairy

The Wild Cherry Blossom Fairy
The Wild Cherry Blossom Fairy

The Rose Fairy
The Rose Fairy

The Pear Blossom Fairy
The Pear Blossom Fairy

There are so many of these, and they're all so cute! I'm planning to pick out 6 or so and buy the prints for the nursery. I'm also planning to beg JM to frame them for me. Shh, don't tell her, I haven't actually asked yet!

The fabrics for the room are navy and white with a traditional navy toile and a navy with tiny white polka dots as the two fabrics we have. I think I did a long post about the grand plans we had for window treatments and cribskirts, but while we'd special ordered other fabrics (in February), those never were actually 'ordered' by the store. We found that out, oh about 2 months after placing the special order, so I just asked for my money back. Instead I added navy and white sheets and cribskirts to the baby registries. Either we'll get them or we won't, but navy and/or white should be pretty easy to pick up anywhere. Donna is still working on two fabulous valances and a tuffet in the toile and polka dot fabrics though. And she has a cribskirt pattern so we'll use any leftover polka dot fabric for those too.

Speaking of registering, I finally did register at both and (Those links should take you right to the baby registries.) I just don't have the energy or stamina to do registering in person anywhere, so I had to do it all online.

Basically the registries are just to give folks an idea of the kinds of things we need. The only items I'd really researched and feel particular about are the larger ticket items like the stroller, swing, bouncer and highchairs. Oh, and I suppose we're pretty particularly set on the bottles. We really liked the Playtex original nursers with Nicky, so we're planning to use those. Of course I do hope to breastfeed, but with me going back to work we'll still need bottles anyway no matter how that works out. The important part is that they're the "original" nursers, not the "premium" ones. I read in reviews that the premium ones tend to melt in the bottle warmer. Not good!

I didn't bother adding toys and books to the registries, but those are always welcome and fun to pick out, so hopefully folks will find things on their own. We did go through Nicky's old toys and kept a few, so we have some things for them, just nothing really new yet.

Well other than that, I'm doing great, the babies are doing great, and things are cranking along nicely. I have still been anemic, in fact 3 weeks AFTER the iron infusion my numbers were actually LOWER than they'd been before the infusion. What is that about? So they went ahead and put me on B12 shots. Those are in addition to the daily insulin shots I'm on for the gestational diabetes. So lots of "poker shots" going on around here. Tom does the shots for me, and Nicky holds my hand. He's so cute and he worries about his momma. He tells me I'm so brave. What a sweetheart!

I'm off to lie down and rest. Been having Braxton Hicks contractions all day today, but the OB on call isn't too worried about it, so I'll just lie down and drink water for a while. I'm so excited about the baby shower they're throwing for me at work tomorrow! So babies, you better stay put tonight! Don't make me go to L&D and miss my shower!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Another visit to Labor and Delivery

Last night I woke up at about 3:13am. I was having a dream that I was showing my sister Liz how you could lie on your side and rub a spot on your leg that would give you hard menstrual cramps. And the cramps were so bad they woke me up...because I was actually having them. Contractions!

I waited a moment and had another at 3:16, and another at 3:19. I got up and went to the bathroom to check things out. Nothing scary there. I brushed my teeth and drank some water. Nothing else happened. I sat on the edge of my bed and wrote a list of things I would need to take to the hospital if we went. (I have yet to actually pack a hospital bag of course.) But still nothing was happening. So I laid back down on my left side, like I'd been before, and tried to relax and stop worrying. At 3:51 I had another contraction. That was enough for me. I got Tom to hand me the phone and called the OB on call. She said to come right in.

It was so early in the morning, and I wasn't willing to wait anyway, so we took Nicky with us. It still took us a good 30 minutes to leave the house, but I was busy getting things ready so didn't notice if I had more contractions or not. We were in the car by 4:20 or so, along with a very sleepy Nicky, my laptop, my cpap machine, the camera, my purse, our phones, and a lunch bag of peanut butter crackers, about 7 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, a juice box for Nicky, water for me and a soda for Tom. I had no idea how long we'd be there, and wanted to make sure we had food, especially for Nicky, but also for us.

On the drive I rested and tried to tell if I was having any more contractions. Because no matter what, I was going to feel really stupid if I'd gotten everyone up for nothing. But I know it would have been my advice to anyone else who'd had at least 4 contractions like that to go to the doctor, so I was trying to take my own advice. Finally, right as we were turning into the hospital parking lot I had another one. They were really strong and unmistakable for anything else. Phew!

We managed to get a handicapped spot (guess getting there before 5am has some perks) and we headed up to L&D. I still hadn't pre-registered at the hospital, but they didn't lecture me this time about it. They got me all hooked up to the monitors and were able to get Baby B's heartbeat right away. But Baby A was very elusive. After just a little while the OB came in and she looked at the readings and said I was definitely contracting. Whew! At least I wasn't in for nothing! She did a pelvic exam and said she would guess 50% effaced which isn't unexpected at 30 weeks. (I'll be 30 weeks Friday.) She also did a Fetal Fibronectin test to help determine if I was possibly in pre-term labor.

With the gestational diabetes the best first step was to try Procardia to see if that would calm things down and stop the contractions. I needed to take 3 pills, 20 minutes apart at first and then we'd see if my regular OB was in and could decide if I should continue with the Procardia every 6 hours or not. They didn't want to have to do the injections as that would require a 2 day stay at the hospital on an insulin drip because of the effect those can have on glucose levels.

They actually put me in a room and Tom took Nicky home where he was going to be able to rest as his Grandma was on her way over. Once I was in the room they started the Procardia, just about 6am at this point. I couldn't sleep because I didn't have my cpap with me. We'd left that and the laptop in the car figuring we'd have them if I was admitted, but not just to carry up for nothing. Boy I was wishing I had my cpap though! I was so tired!

After the first pill I was still having contractions. After the second pill, I was having a headache and dizziness, and the contractions were definitely milder. After the third pill I had no more contractions. My headache subsided some too. I was able to see my own OB around 8:30 or so. He wanted to get me in to see the diabetes education people before I went home and start on insulin today, so they kept me till he could arrange that. I called Tom to come back (he'd been catching a little sleep in the meantime) and he arrived after a bit. We both tried to doze a little. No more contractions were happening so that was good.

Finally at about 10am I was released to go up to my OB's office. They couldn't get the diabetes people on the phone, so they gave me a briefing on how to do the insulin, which I'm so glad I have Tom to do the injections! I'm to do 20 units at night after I do my glucose test after dinner. It's a slow acting insulin, so shouldn't make me crash. After a few days I'll email my glucose levels to my OB and we'll adjust as necessary.

He's also going to call the hematologist to see what's going on with my anemia. Sounds like I'll be seeing them again sooner.

I'm also to start doing biophysical profile ultrasounds every week and seeing the OB every week too. We even set up all the appointments between now and the due date.

Tomorrow I go to rerun the titers for Fifth's Disease. My first results showed that I'm not immune, but also no evidence of recent exposure. It's been 2 weeks, so time to run them again just to make sure of the results.

When we left the OB we went straight to pre-register at the hospital. It took a while and we were both exhausted, but better to have that DONE! Now at least we won't have to worry about that anymore.

We finally made it home right about 12pm. Luckily Grandma had taken Nicky to school, so we were able to pretty much have lunch and fall into bed. I just woke up when Tom brought Nicky home from school at 5:30. I could have slept much later, but figured better to get up and sleep well (I hope!) tonight.

No real noises about bed-rest which was both surprising and welcome! I need a little more time at least to make sure I have everything prepared for my leave at work. That's definitely going to be a priority though! This was quite a wake-up call.

I also have a presentation, quiz and group project all due tomorrow. I will be so glad when this semester is DONE!

Monday, April 05, 2010

Results- It's all not so good

So all good news on Wednesday. But we didn't have the bloodwork results from last week yet.

I called Thursday to ask if they'd gotten the results yet. On Wednesday the nurse had thought they should be ready and so she was going to call the lab and see if they were. Sure enough she called me back with what she had.

First, I failed the Glucose Tolerance Test. I'm not actually surprised as that morning I'd asked Tom to take my fasting blood glucose and it was 185. Granted I had gotten up at 5am to eat something, but it had been 3 hours since then and it should not have been that high.

Second, they did check my iron on that blood draw and my iron levels were just about where she'd tested them during the appointment (hematocrit of 28) so I AM still horribly anemic, which is just freaking disturbing!

Third, she didn't know how to interpret the titers for Fifth's Disease, but she did say the IGG was negative. That's the one that tells you if you have immunity. So I am not immune to Fifth's. She didn't say what the IGM was though, and that's the one that tells you if you've had a recent exposure/infection. So either I do have it or I don't. Not the best news to hang my hat on.

My OB is out of the office till next Wednesday, but the nurse messaged him with the lab results. I figure we'll see what he says to do next.

My guesses are:

On the Gestational Diabetes, I think doing the 3 hour test is useless. We tested my sugar again this morning and it was 170 after not having eaten since midnight. Still way high. And I've been on 1000mg of metformin this whole pregnancy. We might first try increasing my dosage of the met and see what that does, or we might move straight to insulin. I'm not sure.

On the anemia I took the initiative Friday to call the hematologist's office. I'd never gotten the results of the B12 levels so I thought maybe those were low and while I have the iron I maybe still can't make blood cells yet. Turns out they apparently haven't gotten the results yet from the lab. We'd assumed the results were fine since they hadn't called. Apparently that was a mistake. Should have called them before. Anyway, it was only the receptionist I spoke to, and she could see where they'd sent it to the lab, but not the results. She said it might just be that she's not able to see them, so she left a message for the nurse. I called back today, but the only news was that the info was forwarded to the lab manager. Hopefully I'll hear more tomorrow.

So maybe I'll have to do the B12 shots, or maybe more iron, or maybe it's something entirely different. I just don't know.

The weird thing was I thought I was feeling better. I figured the anemia was surely starting to resolve. Now it appears that's not the only thing wrong with me though.

I'm trying not to dwell on it and have a pity party, but it was so disappointing to get all this not-so-good news on the heels of such a great OB appointment. Wednesday still seems a long way away. And part of me thinks that this news is going to be the thing that makes my OB say that enough is enough and I need to stop working. That's going to be a really hard thing to do. But I'm really throwing myself into getting things settled and getting replacements set up for my duties at work, just in case.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Easter Eggs

Today is the day before Easter and so Nicky and I spent the morning dying Easter eggs. We'd gotten this neat new kind of egg-dying kit that could make speckled eggs. Basically it was straight food coloring in packets. There's a little tray so you can have one color in each compartment, and then you use these little sponges, the size of fingertip, to pounce the color onto the eggs. Nicky much preferred to smear the color all over the eggs though. Much more gratifying.

The eggs are beautiful!
Our beautiful eggs

I couldn't get a photo of our hands right afterward because they were covered in dye. Nicky's were practically black with it. We washed our hands a few times, and then I put Nicky in a bubble bath to soak while I looked up on the internet how to get food dye off skin.

After much soap and water we were down to this:
Nicky Before

I couldn't picture getting him to sit still with lemon juice, vinegar or bleach solution on his fingers, and those sounded pretty harsh too. So I went with the idea of washing our hands with shaving cream. Ideally it sounded like you should let the shaving cream sit for 5 minutes though. So I had Nicky paint with shaving cream on the walls of the tub.

Painting with shaving cream

After the shaving cream treatment I'm not sure it made much difference. Maybe because it was shaving cream for sensitive skin or something.

Nicky After

Guess we'll have colorful fingertips for a while. Aw well, it's for a good cause.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Doctor's appointments- It's all good

So Wednesday was our day of appointments.

First Nicky's 4 year old checkup. He's 42.5 inches high and 41 pounds. (He's already wearing the 5T jeans that Gayle and Colin brought for him at his party!) I swear he shot up a good 2 inches in the last few weeks since his birthday. Everything checked out great, and he's been declared a healthy boy! She was very pleased. Only suggestion is to have him follow up with his allergist before the babies come.

Then we went to the ultrasound. Nana was with us, but she took Nicky down to feed the ducks and have some lunch since the ultrasound rooms are tiny. We were able to see both babies. Baby A was kind of diagonal with her head right down near the exit and her feet up on my left side. Baby B was side to side (transverse) with her head to my left and her feet to my right.

She was able to get all the measurements on Baby B, but only the abdominal circumference and femur length on Baby A. But even without the head circumferance on Baby A they are both measuring right about 30 weeks. Since I was only 28 weeks 5 days, that's pretty good! They are both measuring at over 3 pounds each already. Both still have room to move and plenty of fluid too. All good news there!

Then we headed down the hall to the OB appointment. While we were waiting, Nana and Nicky came back from lunch. Nicky had gotten to feed the ducks and even saw a bunch of baby ducks. Very exciting stuff! He flirted with a little girl in the waiting room, playing peek-a-boo and telling her all about transformers (which is his latest thing).

When it was our turn we went back and the three of them waited in the doctor's office for me to do my thing. I've gained 60 lbs. (Well technically 59, but close enough.) I considered being upset, but it's really just a number right now. It's all for the babies and I know I can lose it all over again on weight-watchers when this is all done and my healthy girls are here. My blood pressure was a little high for me, but still fine. But when I had her check my iron (which was 10.2 if you recall before the iron infusion, exactly 2 weeks before) it was 9.7! Even lower! The nurse said that couldn't possibly be accurate, and later the doctor agreed that there must be an issue with either the machine or it's just not as accurate as a bloodtest would show.

Then we went and talked with the doctor. He's happy with the babies' growth, and with how I'm holding up. No more noises about bedrest, so that was good. I reported what the pulmonologist said about the asthma not being bad and it being a combo of the anemia, babies and asthma. I ran the inhaled steroid medication and dosage by him and he was fine with that. And he said I can go back on Prilosec OTC. (Which I have starting that day and it's helping so much!) So all good news there too! Nana asked how far along we could expect me to get before the babies have to come out, and he said with their growth, he would say 36-37 would be great. 38 if I can get there, but he sees no reason I can't get to 36-37 weeks at least. Excellent!

So Wednesday we rode a high and enjoyed a day's worth of good medical news.

I'll leave you on that happy note for today.