Friday, June 18, 2010

First baths



Thursday, June 17, 2010

Leah & Natalie's Birth Story

Our journey to the birth of our girls began on Wednesday June 9th with our amniocentesis. Since we had a scheduled c-section at 37 weeks my doctors required this to ensure their lungs were mature prior to delivery. We arrived at the hospital at 10:30 a half an hour before the appointment as we were instructed. We checked and sat in the waiting room for a bit before we were called back to the exam room. We were brought back to the same room we brought to when I was checked into the hospital a few weeks ago with my fever. Greg and I made a couple jokes about the memories and how far we've come.

The first thing the nurse did was a quick ultrasound to double check the position of the babies while she waited on the amnio kit to come from the office. Sure enough little Leah was still breech and Natalie was still transverse which we'd discovered in the ultrasound the day before. The nurse found a couple of good pockets of fluid to recommend to the doctor and a few seconds later he came in. The doctor that did the amnio was actually one of the maternal fetal medicine doctors I'd seen at the hospital after I was transferred for the fever. He remembered us and we also joked about how I was still pregnant. I was a little nervous about the procedure but he put my mind at ease. It is done without an anesthetic because once the needle gets to the fluid there is cramping regardless. When the amnio kit finally arrived he proceeded to make a couple jokes about how he didn't need the instructions and the needle not being long enough. Greg came to my side and held my hand and put his other hand in front of my eyes so I didn't have to see the procedure.

He then did another ultrasound to find the right location to put the needle. He found a spot in Baby A's (Leah's) sack and stuck the needle in and he was right initially it stung a bit but was not so bad. When he got to the fluid little Leah decided to move around and cut him off from the spot and I started to have a contraction, which the doctor pointed out to which I responded with an I know! He ended up pulling the needle out because he could not access the pocket of fluid any longer and started looking for another spot. He ended up finding a better spot in Baby B's (Natalie's) sack and apologized and stuck the needle in again. I watched on the screen as he hit the pocket of fluid. All of a sudden Greg's hand dropped down and I could see him pulling the fluid out of my belly and I thought that is pretty darn cool! This was until I looked up at Greg who looked awfully woozy and fell over on me and passed out. It turned out he'd decided to look to see what was taking so long and the sight of the needle sticking out of my belly was too much for him. The nurse caught wind of what was going on and sat Greg down in a chair with his head between his legs and I kept asking if he was ok. I was laughing and panicking at the same time because the last thing I'd expected was for him to pass out.

The doctor then told a story about how he'd passed out in the first surgery he sat in on after he was accepted into med school and told Greg not to worry about it. He also commented on the fluid and said it looked nice and cloudy and said it was a good indicator of lung maturity. He told us we should have the results sometime that afternoon and to call my doctor's office if I haven't heard anything by three. We then had a non-stress test and monitored the babies for 30 minutes before we were sent home to wait.

We ran out for a quick bite to eat and then headed home where I decided to take a nap to pass the time while we waited to get the results. I waited until around 3:30 and called the doctor's office and as I was waiting the call waiting went off and the scheduler let me know that their lungs were mature and we were good to go. Greg and I were so excited. We sat out on the porch that evening with the dog and enjoyed our last evening without children.

The next morning we were up at 4:30 since we had to be at the hospital at 6 am to prepare for the surgery. We arrived at the Family Birth Center for the last time as expectant parents (for this pregnancy) and were excited and nervous about how this was all going to work out. I was taken back to a room and Greg was sent down to the cafeteria for breakfast (good thing - I was worried he was going to pass out again!). I changed into a gown and the nurse began to prep me for the surgery by drawing blood and putting my IV line in. They finally brought Greg in as they tried to get the babies on the monitor and get a strip before the c-section. This was all rather humorous because the girls must have known something was up because they would not stay still for the strip. I had 5-6 nurses attempt to get them on the monitor and it was just simply not happening. Even my doctor came in and tried to get them on the monitor and could not get them both to stay on at the same time. Throughout this process they asked me what the girls names were and I told them and was very specific to point out that I needed to know which baby came out first because each girl had her name based on position. Even the doctor got in on it and told me he would let me know! Finally, he gave up on getting them on the monitor and said it was time to get in for the surgery and we were wheeled to the operating room.

When we got to the operating room they had me sit up on the table while they put my spinal in. I'd been prepped for this by the anesthesiologist while I was in the surgery prep room and I was a bit nervous but knew what to do. It took forever for them to get the spinal in. I was seriously beginning to think there were going to be big problems. It finally went in and I started to feel tingly in my feet and slowly through the lower half of my body. They brought Greg back in the room in his spacesuit type outfit and they began the surgery. I should also mention that there were two neonatologists in the room one for each baby and two nurses for each baby since they were still not considered full term. While they were waiting one of the nurses asked my doctor how big he thought the babies were and said between 6 and 7 pounds each. I was surprised, I knew that was what they'd measured in the ultrasound but had always expected them to be a bit smaller.

Greg sat up by my head and talked to me. I kept telling him how weird my legs felt and all I felt in my abdomen was pushing and pulling but no pain. All of a sudden the room was filled with the screams of the first baby and I heard my doctor say Baby A breech is out and I started to tear up knowing that Leah made it safely into the world. They took her right over to the warmer and began to check her out. Then a minute later I heard Baby B, head down, 8:48. My doctor brought her over and held her up for me to see and I started crying. All the while one of the nurses started taking pictures for us.
While they were closing me up they brought a scale over and weighed each of the babies for us. I have to say I was surprised at Leah's size and how much smaller Natalie was since they'd never shown much discordance. Then one of the neonatologists came over and said they looked great and they would get to go back to my room with me which was the best thing I could hear!

From there we were wheeled back to the recovery area for an hour to be monitored and then to our hospital room. I have a second blog planned about our hospital stay so be on the lookout. Just give me time because I have 2 babies to care for!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

First day home

They really do not like their cute outfits!

Who is this?  I want to say Hi!!!!

Ready to go!

Yesterday, Melissa, Leah, and Natalie were discharged from the hospital.  I drove everyone home (I must say my driving has started to change already because of the new additions to the family) and Melissa went in first to see April.  April was ecstatic and when I brought the girls in she was anxious to see meet them and then the fun began.  We got all the bags from the hospital, luggage, etc into the house and then it was time for a feeding, changing, and napping for the girls.

An hour and a half later :-) I was sent to CVS to get Melissa's pain meds, some other items, and then to Wendy's for dinner.  I drove all the way to CVS and got to the front counter to drop off the Rx and there was no script.  I panicked.  I called Melissa at home, waking her I'm sure and had to drive all the way home to look for myself since she didn't see it anywhere.  I got back to the house and couldn't find it so I had to to call the doctor's office to see if they could write another script for the pain meds (sure this sounded on the up and up :-/). As I am talking to the after hours receptionist explaining why I am calling she is taking all my info to have the OB on call check about writing another script and I said, "Nevermind, I just found the script under some burp cloths and a onesie."   The receptionist laughed and I headed back out to get the items needed. Later on that night, strong storms were headed into the area which made Melissa and I happy since we love good storms, however this one got out of hand!  Around 10:45 PM, the tornado siren, YES THE TORNADO SIREN, went off!!! I grabbed bottles and April, Melissa had the babies, and we headed into the master bathroom which was away from the windows.  We took the computer to see when it would be ok to come back out.  Luckily, the warning expired at 11:05 PM and we were able to head back to "sleep" - (I use the term sleep loosely since any new parents know "sleep" really means "nap") .  It was a jam packed day.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Hospital Photo Shoot

Here are some of the pictures the hospital photographer took. If you'd like to see them all you can access them here.



Thursday, June 10, 2010

Welcome to the world

Greg and I are proud to announce the birth of our daughters:

Leah Katherine, 6 lbs 9 oz, 18.5 inches long born at 8:47 am

Natalie Grace 5 lbs 12 oz, 18.25 inches long born at 8:48 am

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Two days to go (maybe)!!

Today we had what I think will be our last doctor's appointment and ultrasound. Tomorrow is our amnio and if their lungs are ready to go we have a c-section scheduled for Thursday morning.

The visit with the doctor was fairly uneventful. He listened to their heartbeats and answered our questions about our next steps. He didn't check me because I haven't been contracting much. He also said that if I go into labor regardless of the amnio results they would not stop it at this point and I would have a c-section. He said my pregnancy has been a model twin pregnancy and he is glad they have maintained their growth at the same rate.

Our ultrasound revealed that these girls have been busy growing quite a bit in the past 2 weeks. Also, Baby B is now transverse. I think she is trying to figure out how to get around her sister to the right position. Here are their stats (remember these are not exact):

Baby A:
6 Lbs. 7 oz.
71st Percentile

Baby B:
6 Lbs. 3 oz.
64th Percentile

Greg and I both had our last day at work today (mine was from the couch as it has been for the past 4 weeks). I think I'm done regardless of the amnio results but if their lungs aren't developed Greg will go back to work on Thursday.

It is all very exciting and overwhelming at the same time. It felt like this day would never come but it is here already.

Monday, June 7, 2010

A Review of Sparkpeople's Blackberry Application

In this post I am going to review Sparkpeople's new blackberry application for tracking your weight, food, nutrition, etc. My overall impressions of the application are positive. It is responsive and works 90% of the time. The 10% of the time that I had issues could be as a result of connectivity issues with my provider. Once you get used to using it, I think that it will be a great application for you to have on your blackberry. I plan on using it to record data and look up food and calorie counts. Below is a preview of the application screens.

When you open the SparkPeople Blackberry App you are greeted with a count of the total calories you have available for the day and how many calories you have burned and how many you have left to burn for the day.

Along the top you'll see links to the food tracker, fitness tracker, weight tracker, and more (where you can track your water intake for the day, view reports, modify your overall goal, etc). If you click the food tacker you can enter the food you take in during the day similar to if you were on your personal computer. The great thing is you have access to all the same foods that are in SparkPeople's vast database of both entered and stored foods. At the bottom of the screen is a running daily tally of your calories, carbs, proteins, and fats.

The next screen you can record your exercising for the day. On this screen you can see how many calories you need to burn for the day to meet your daily goal. Along the bottom, there is a total of your daily total/daily goal and your weekly total/weekly goal in minutes of exercise and calories burned.

The next tab is where you can record your weight daily and it also shows you how much you weighed the last time you weighed yourself. The last tab is where you can do various other actions like record how much water you took in during the day. You can change your overall weight goal, toggle your meal plans in your food tracker, and run reports on your overall progress.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

A Moment Of Silence Please

Last week, the Seattle Mariners announced that, Ken Griffey Jr. (One of the most greatest baseball players of all time) was going to retire from baseball, after 22 years.  In a sport dominated by stories of steroid abuse, Junior is one of those players that has done it cleanly and has had one heck of a career.  If not for the injuries suffered at the end of his career, he would be at the top of the HR list.  He is a player that will be missed by all.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Twins at 36 weeks

Can't believe I get to do this post. This is the last one:

Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. She now weighs almost 6 pounds and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. She's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered her body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected her skin during her nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture, called meconium, will form the contents of her first bowel movement.