Archives for category: Pregnancy

do-do-do-doo, do-do-do-do-doo…

My time being pregnant can now be officially counted in hours. In less than 24, these babies will no longer be inside of me. I don’t know how I feel about that.

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Baby A refuses to turn, despite acupuncture, moxibustion, baby spinning, and swimming. This little guy is just too cozy, I guess. C-section is scheduled for tomorrow at 11:30 AM. If I’m honest, I let go of the idea of a vaginal birth a couple of months ago, but that doesn’t make tomorrow any less scary.

I thought I was so tough because, y’know, I’ve had two surgeries already. Yeah…I closely examined my laparoscopy scars yesterday (well, as closely as I could get due to my enormous belly), and realized how teeny tiny they are, and how teeny tiny those surgeries were. Not really comparable to my belly being cut open to pull TWO PEOPLE OUT OF IT.

I’m shitting my pants a little lot.

I’m scared of the surgery, I’m scared of something being wrong with these babies, I’m scared of how much pain I’ll be in afterwards and how I’m going to take care of these little babes. I’m on the verge of tears pretty much 24/7. People keep telling me how excited I must be. Um,,,well,,,once I get over this crippling fear, maybe then I’ll feel excited. Until I know that everyone is okay, I think all I really feel is scared.

I forgot to mention that last week, J had an acute sciatic nerve attack. He injured his back a few years ago resulting in a bulging disc. On Tuesday, though, he woke up to a numb leg and then crippling pain that sent him to the hospital with his mother (a retired nurse–thank goodness she was here!). I sat at home and cried, wondering how in the hell we were going to cope. It was hard enough trying to take care of him while 37/38 weeks pregnant. It seemed impossible to do after a c-section and with newborn twins. My mum will be staying with us, and his family is up for a bit, but still. Too overwhelming for this lady. He’s up and about now, but still in pain. He thinks he can handle sitting with me during the c-section, though. Let’s hope so.

But anyway! Let’s get back to what’s important.

I’m going to be giving birth to two babies tomorrow.

Holy.

Effing.

Shit.

It’s nearly go time, people. Let’s do this!

-Pumped Up Family Van.

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It’s been a little while since I’ve updated this blog of mine. I thought it was about time.

Today marks 36 weeks of pregnancy. These two little scamps are still happy to hang in my uterus, and I’m more than happy to host them. Baby A refuses to turn, despite my attempts with regular swims, Spinning Babies exercises, and pure will. Looks like it’s going to be a c-section for me. We’re hoping that we make it to our scheduled surgery date of August 15th.

Dudes, that’s in like two and a half weeks. I’m going to have BABIES. My mind continues to be blown by this notion.

We’ve been doing some stuff to get ready around here, and I feel pretty calm about it all. No more major freak-outs (J is quite thankful for this). My mum has been ah-MAY-zing, driving up a couple of times a week from my hometown an hour and a half away to help get this place ship-shape. J has been working like a dog, and transformed his office into a nursery. It’s one of my favourite places in the house. I’ll post some pictures once it’s a little more complete.

As for me, I continue to watch this belly grow, though must admit I was a little devastated when a few little stretch marks appeared around the belly button. I really thought I was going to get through this entire twin pregnancy sans scars, but alas…’twas not to be. Not that my pre-pregnancy days were bikini-filled, but anyway. And I’m totally not as vain or self-absorbed as any of this sounds. I earned these scars, and I’m thankful every day for why they’re here.

That's a lot of belly for one little lady.

That’s a lot of belly for one little lady.

Last week I had my first biophysical profile ultrasound. This was a new one for me. They measure 4 elements: baby’s (babies’) muscle tone, fluid levels, body movement, and breathing movement. Each of these criteria gets a score of either 0 or 2, depending on whether they’re evident at the time of the ultrasound. If you don’t get a perfect score, you’re sent to triage to do a non-stress test that measures the baby’s (babies’) heart rate(s).

So obviously, I ended up in triage on Friday after the biophysical profile because obviously Baby B wasn’t showing any breathing movement.

Awesome.

No one seemed concerned about this. Everything else was great, but it was stressful regardless. My doctor told me today at my appointment that unless you’re willing to lay there for 2+ hours, there’s a big possibility you’re not going to see breathing movements. Of course, Baby A was breathing like a champ. Poor little B. This little buddy has already been deemed trouble by all who hear of my experience. Anyway, the non-stress test looked “beautiful” according to the triage nurse, and I was gladly sent on my way again. I’ve got another biophysical profile on Wednesday, so we’ll see what happens then. My doctor is away next week, so I’m on my own. No appointments, no ultrasounds, nothing. A week off. Nuts.

I’m still more than a little paranoid about something going terribly wrong, but I’m trying to get over that in order to visualize what my life is going to be like in a mere matter of weeks. One thing that I’m trying to think about is my post-birth shower. I couldn’t bring myself to having one before these babies were born in terrible fear that I was going to jinx everything. My sister is kindly organizing this for me, and I love her for being adamant that I’m going to have one. If it were up to me, I’d probably just say, “Oh, don’t worry about it. Who needs the fuss?”, when deep down, if I’m honest with myself, this shower means a lot. Not the gifts part, but the part that acknowledges that WE ACTUALLY DID THIS. After two years of heartbreak and tears like I’ve never experienced, we got here. That has to be worth celebrating.

Anyway, I mention the shower because I’ve been asked to make a registry. I’m a bit particular, and have found items all over the place that I love, not just at one store. I read Pregnant Chicken religiously (if you haven’t checked it out, please do–she is so freaking hilarious AND is from Toronto!), and she mentioned this great site called BabyList. You can add items from wherever you like onto the list (kind of like Pinterest), and it includes a link to the page. You’ve got space to give a description, as well, and also you can organize your “wants” into categories, like transportation, clothes and accessories, and my personal favourite, It Takes a Village (Help and Favors). Here, you can add things like meal delivery services (genius!), or EVEN BETTER–a link to your MealBaby site. This site is also genius, as it allows you to create an online calendar of days you’d appreciate a homemade (or otherwise) meal delivered to you from all your well-wishers. There’s space to include favourite foods, foods to be avoided, etc., and even instructions on the best time to deliver it. Guests can then choose a date, and they input what meal they’re bringing, so you’re not ending up with 12 veggie lasagnas on the same day.

So.freaking.smart.

The last exciting part of my life these past few weeks was getting fitted for nursing bras. It was the most ridiculous experience of my life, not because the lady wasn’t good, but AS IF MY BOOBS ARE ACTUALLY AS BIG AS THEY SOUND.

Come on, now.

A 34 F is where I am currently sitting. F. As in FREAKING HUGE. That sounds like pornstar big to me, and trust me when I tell you, these puppies don’t look like they’re going to be featured in any adult movies any time soon. Regardless, I got some cute and comfy bras, and splurged on a ridiculously expensive, but equally ridiculously soft, pair of nursing pajamas. I figure I’ll be living in them for the first little while, so it’ll all be worth it in the end.

I’ll end here, and let you know that my next thrilling post will tackle the single most humiliating moment of recent history–buying adult diapers. You can’t wait, I know.

Until then,

-The Hooterific Family Van.

Still full of babies. Still so, so thankful that this is the case, though it continues to feel like a dream. We’re nearing the home stretch here–July. This will (hopefully) be the last full month when I’m pregnant. That’s my goal: to last the full month (and then some).

I had a follow up with the perinatologist last week to check on the kidney and bowel situation of Baby B. He found the kidney, despite Baby B’s refusal to move into an accommodating position, but he suspects it might be slightly lower than its counterpart. This point could be entirely moot, however, as he said it’s more than possible that it was just how B was positioned. His recommendation going forward is for Baby B to have an ultrasound after birth to firm up the position of the kidney. Beyond that, though, he’s done with me. So there was one piece of good news.

Then I asked about the echogenic bowel. “I see no issues with the bowel”, he said. “Everything looks good”.

*Insert BIG sigh from me*

So there was two pieces of good news. In fact, it was all good news at that appointment. Baby A was weighing in at 4 pounds 1 ounce, and Baby B at 3 pounds 7 ounces. My OB is pleased that B is the smaller of the two, as I guess that’s better for labor, if A decides to get his/her act together and spin around for vaginal birth. In any case, I was pleased to hear that they’re growing well.

Being the eternal pessimist that I am, I wasn’t entirely consoled by the absence of the echogenic bowel. I wanted to know if its presence was the concern, or its initial diagnosis. Dr. Google wasn’t super clear, but it sounded like it was the diagnosis, regardless of whether it stuck around or not. My OB today, though, said if it goes, it’s not a worry anymore. I would like to believe that opinion more.

J had a dream the other night that I delivered both babies (me: “How did I deliver? Was it vaginal or a C?” J: “That part wasn’t included”). Baby A was a girl, Baby B was a boy. So now he’s convinced. I still think it’s two boys.

I’m getting huge. I’m still not in discomfort, though sleeping is sporadic at best. I feel like every time I turn over, I’m swinging a medicine ball with me. Also, turning induces pee (let’s be honest–at this stage, EVERYTHING induces pee!), so I end up having to haul myself out of bed for a wee. I think I felt my first contraction last night when I sneezed. Also, B started doing these rhythmic kicks on my right side that bolted me awake. It was the weirdest feeling.

That's one serious belly.

That’s one serious belly.

No news on the nursery front. We’re still trying to clear out the room so we can paint and set up the cribs and dresser. The mattresses and sheets are in the States, but we’ll have some curtains and wall decals to make it feel like babies are going to be in there. As if this is all even happening. I still can’t believe it.

-Huge but Happy Family Van

30 weeks. Keep cooking in there, babies. We can totally rock 8 more weeks of this gloriousness!

It’s been an exciting, yet incredibly relaxing, week around these parts. We’re (very slowly) checking things off our massive TDBB list (To Do Before Babies), though I feel that each day, I’m more accepting of the growing reality that the majority of those list items will remain uncrossed. Meh. What can you do?

We started the week by deciding on which new car to buy. We’ve currently got a Honda Fit–an amazing little car that has served us really well. It’s taken us on many, many cross-border trips to visit J’s family 8 hours away, transported nearly all of the materials we used for our home renovation, handled mattresses strapped to the top, hauled away tons of shit we never really needed, transported me to and from my first surgery, my second surgery, our egg retrieval and transfer… It was the first major purchase J and I made together. I remember at the time feeling so grown up–buying a car with my dude.

We were sure we’d be driving this car into the ground, but back then we certainly hadn’t banked on filling the backseat with two car seats. J’s just over 6 feet tall with ginormo legs, and the Fit just wasn’t long enough to put a car seat behind him. We had a 3 car debate going for a while: Volvo XC70, Subaru Outback, or the Toyota Prius V. We (I) decided the Prius was just a little too small for our needs, and financially, we couldn’t rationalize the added expense of the Volvo AND the massive gas guzzling involved. So…Subaru Outback it is. Exciting! As much as I love the Fit, it does feel like a step up. Hondas are great, but they come with n-o-t-h-i-n-g. I’m most looking forward to heated seats and a sunroof. Score!

So the next item checked off our list this week was ordering all of our baby goodies. I’ve been spazzing over the fact that it barely looks like babies are going to be inhabiting this place in 8 weeks (fingers crossed). Here’s our issue: as I mentioned, J’s family lives in the US, the land of cheap goods and future grandparents who drive a minivan awash with space. We just couldn’t bring ourselves to purchase anything here (I know…bad Canadian not supporting our economy), knowing how much we’d save if we ordered it there. These savings come at a hefty price, however. I’m not going to have anything for these babies to sleep in until J’s parents are here. They’re planning on driving up as soon as they get word that b-day is here (baby day). Realistically, we figure we’ll have at least a few days before the babies are able to come home, so I guess (??) someone is going to need to go to our house and set all this shit up.

We’ve been humming and hawing about where these babies are going to sleep in those first few months, and after a lot of thought and research, we’ve decided on the Arms Reach Co-Sleeper. Whether or not we’ll use it as an actual co-sleeper, I have yet to decide, but we needed something that was able to withstand the weight of 2 babies for longer than a month.

Canadians, if you look into the Co-Sleeper, you’ll find tons of stuff about how it’s banned in this country because of risk of injury or death to babies. Hence my initial hesitation. However, upon inquiring about play yards (I guess they don’t like the term “play pens” anymore, eh?) at a well-known baby boutique here in Toronto, the sales rep actually recommended that if I knew someone in the States, I should get one. Twins parents kind of get the shaft with those play yards, as the maximum weight for the sleeping section is 15 pounds. That’s not a lot when we’re talking about two babies. Also, we had our childbirth class last week, and the educator recommended it, as well. She said it wasn’t banned because of safety, but because the government wasn’t sure how to classify it: as a crib or a bassinet.

Our birthing class was great–we had a private session, as the group classes were full. Our educator was fabulous, and lives close by. She’s a labor coach, as well, but doesn’t work over the summer. Too bad. I really liked her. J had to lie down during the epidural talk (there weren’t even pictures), so I’m thinking a labor coach may not be such a terrible idea. The one she recommended is also trained in hypno-birthing, which is of great interest to me.

The final exciting event of the week was my growth ultrasound that I had on Friday. I went back to the clinic that did the first two (not the hospital’s high-res one with the perinatologist–but that’s a whole other story). The tech was new to me, but super nice. I was on my back for most of it, until I felt like I was going to pass out and had to roll to my side. I got super sweaty and everything started going black…yeah, time to move. She suggested I go to the bathroom. Uh, lady, if I get up now, I’m going to be on the floor. Probably just going to hang out here for a couple of minutes.

I felt fine once I had laid on my side for a bit and took my sweater off. The room felt like it was a million degrees which is so weird for me. I am always cold. This pregnancy has wreaked havoc on my internal thermostat. Anyway, she continued with the ultrasound and lo and behold, she found two kidneys on Baby B, complete with blood vessels leading to it. She kept asking if I was sure it was Baby B that they had said only had a single kidney, and kept shaking her head. I asked about the echogenic bowel, but all she said was something along the lines of, “The doctor has to analyze that” or some other such thing that essentially means it’s still there.

So…I’m off to the OB tomorrow to see what he has to say, which is never really a lot. I think I’ll get the results of the gestational diabetes test, so fingers are crossed that everything comes back okay. I’ve got an ultrasound booked with the perinatologist for next week, so I’m a little anxious to find out why I’m going back there.

Large and in charge.

Large and in charge.

All in all, things are chugging along. I’m growing, babes are growing, but still no preterm labor signs, which I’m very thankful for. Nice long, closed cervix and no contractions (that I know of, anyway). Let’s keep this party going for another 8 weeks, hey, babies? What do you say?

-The Ever Growing Family Van.

…work, that is. I officially stopped working on Monday, though I’d be lying if I said I’d been giving teaching my all up to that point.

My students threw me a surprise baby shower on my last day. It was pretty much the cutest thing ever. A co-worker tipped me off to what was about to go down, as she is well aware of my constant on-the-verge-of-tears emotional state, so I was able to hold it together. The whole thing was totally overwhelming, and a “teacher moment” I’ll never forget. They organized baby-themed games complete with prizes, made a playlist, put up decorations, made a cake, organized a collective class gift, brought in a pile of other gifts…something else.

So despite having a few pressing items left to complete before I’m officially done with my teaching responsibilities (i.e., report cards…ugh…), my leave has begun. Getting a letter from my OB was no big whoop, thank goodness, as I was finishing on Friday despite what he was going to tell me. My appointment wasn’t until the Wednesday of the same week I wanted to be done. That’s what you call leaving it to the last minute. I’m kind of a pro at that.

I spent most of my first day off lying on the couch watching Dr. 90210, and the babies were going crazy. I’m chalking all the movement to a relaxed mama and not their inherited love of terrible, terrible television. I imagine they’ll be classier than that.

At 29 weeks, it feels really nice to sleep when I want, as my nights are pretty stop and start as far as sleeping goes. Comfort is becoming an issue, and I’m getting some pretty sore hips. I don’t mind so much anymore, as I know I can have an afternoon snooze if I like. Also, the ability to eat and drink whenever I want to is pretty awesome, but nothing compares to my new-found ability to PEE WHENEVER THE MOOD STRIKES. For non-teachers, this may not seem like a big deal, but holy, it most certainly is! At school, I was restricted to the following pee times: 8:30, 10:20, 12:00, 2:15, and 3:40. Often, I would be close to bursting and would have to walk down two flights of stairs to an available toilet, then bolt up them again to pick up my class. Yes. It was certainly time to be done.

I go for another growth ultrasound on Friday, and we’ve got a private baby class on Thursday night. I’m looking forward to that. Neither J nor I have much experience with babies (read: ANY), to the extent that neither of us has ever even changed a diaper. Um…yeah, we’re going to need some tutelage on that one. The house still isn’t ready, but I at least feel like we’ve got a plan going forward. We’re going to get there.

Here’s how the bump is progressing:

29 weeks - Enough with the kicks to the cervix, Baby A!

29 weeks – Enough with the kicks to the cervix, Baby A!

Baby A feels really low, and when s/he starts moving around, I am still expecting to see a little hand waving at me from down there. J and I were driving back from a wedding this past weekend and he asked what was up when I turned really quiet. Hesitantly, I told him it felt like Baby A was going to fall out. He just looked at me and said, “Yeah…pretty sure it doesn’t work that way”. I still did some extra kegels just in case I could trap that little dude in there a bit longer.

-Baby Trapping Family Van.

28 weeks today. Holy shit. I never, ever thought we’d get this far. I still have trouble believing I’m actually pregnant, despite the crazy movements my belly now makes. At night, instead of watching TV, I just watch my belly move around and try to imagine that in good time, we’re going to have two little babes.

It’s wild. This whole thing has been totally wild.

Anyway, onto my secret.

So I have this really cute pair of yellow cropped jeans I bought at probably 5 months. They’ve got white spots on them, kind of cheetah-ish, but less tacky. Anyway, I wear them often.

Here’s the secret, though…

 

THEY’RE NOT EVEN DONE UP! NOT EVEN ALMOST!

I bought these pants in my pre-pregnancy size hoping that my belly band would keep these suckers up. The first time I wore them, J bet me my pants would be down around my ankles by morning recess. Wrong, husband. These suckers aren’t going anywhere. Not even my massive belly can push these pants down. Sure, there’s a lot of wriggling them back up every now and then, and yes, I live in constant fear that my underwear is showing or someone is going to clue in to my secret, but otherwise…belly bands are the greatest invention ever! Easily half the pants I wear are normal pre-pregnancy pants using a belly band. This makes for quite a savings on maternity clothes, let me tell you.

Anyway, I had to share my little secret. Hope you enjoyed!

-Pants-Undone-And-Loving-It Family Van.

I hit the 6-months pregnant mark on Monday. My belly is filled with 2 24-week babies that squirm and kick and punch like crazy. I’m in love with being pregnant.

I think I’m good at being pregnant, too. Despite some drama, things have been pretty smooth sailing over here in pregnancy land…

Except for one thing:

I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that in a little more than 3 months time, this lump of mine that I adore so much is going to transform into two babies.

How does this...

How does this…

...turn into this? (Please let them be this cute!)

…turn into this? (Please let them be this cute!)

Belle wrote a great post about this recently, and I’m certainly not saying anything new here. It was really comforting to read another person’s story that sounded so much like my own. I’m chalking this up to my finely tuned defense mechanisms that I built pretty solidly for the 2 years of misery we experienced while trying for babies. Now the time has actually come, and I’m not sure how to let myself really settle into all of this. I rub my belly all the time, I watch it move around, but there’s still something missing there where I can’t connect those things with the living beings that are inside. I thought once I felt them kick, that would be it, I would make the connection, but it didn’t happen. I’m still in total denial of what comes after this.

My cat knows something is up, even if I don’t. If I’m sitting down, she no longer sits on my stomach, but sits on my boobs that create a little shelf for her. It’s the most awkward thing to watch. She kind of hates it, but wants to be close, I keep shoving her butt out of my face, but I want her close…It’s hard on us both. Our dining room is turning into Baby Supply Central, and she pretty much avoids everything baby-related at all costs. This cat is terrified of children, and I think she knows that her peaceful days are numbered. Sorry, sweet puss. Apparently this massive belly is housing two tiny terrorizers.

So back to my initial reason for posting: what do I do about this? How can I start allowing myself to feel more connected to what’s happening inside me? I don’t want to miss out on what could very possibly be my only pregnancy.

-Large and In Charge Family Van.

Pardon the pun. It’s my coping mechanism currently.

I went for the high resolution ultrasound today, fully expecting them to find the bright bowel was a mere blip from old, crappy machinery.

No such luck.

Bright bowel is still there, and after an incredibly thorough ultrasound, the perninatologist went over the results with me. He said the brightness was visible through the whole bowel, though still sounded confident that it was very likely nothing. He went over my options, and sent me for blood work to be tested for infections and cystic fibrosis. If my CF test comes back negative, that’s the end of that story. If I come back as a carrier of a CF strand, J will then need a blood test to see if he’s a carrier, too. I guess it’s only if both parents are carriers of a CF strand that there’s a chance the baby will be born with it. The doctor says the chances are like 1% of cases–he’s only seen one birth with echogenic bowel that resulted in cystic fibrosis. He said the chances of infection are really low, as well, as he saw no other symptoms of infection in the ultrasound.

So that brings us to the big one: Downs Syndrome. As I mentioned yesterday, echogenic  bowel is a soft marker for DS. The doctor talked about the options that were open to us if we wanted to continue testing (amnio), though said this is really only a recommendation when the chances are greater than a 1 in 200 chance (greater than? less than? I hope you know what I mean). We’re just above that. As a result of our blood work and our NT scan, Baby B had about a 1 in 1600 chance of having DS. Echogenic bowel increases your odds 6 fold, so we’re sitting at about a 1 in 250 chance (the doctor did the math–I trust his more than my own). He said the risks connected to the amnio are nearly on par with the actual chances of finding Downs, and frankly, I’m not prepared to do an amnio at this point. And really…what are we going to do about it at this point?

The doctor kept repeating that he saw no other markers for Downs, and that both babies are growing really well. That was comforting.

Then came the news about Baby B’s kidney situation. Neither him nor his ultrasound tech could find Baby B’s left kidney, leading them to believe that this kid will likely be born with 1 kidney only. Not the end of the world, he explained, but I felt like a frigging truck hit me over.

There is still a chance that they’ll find the kidney at another scan, but they couldn’t see anything this time, nor could they see any blood vessels going to it. Again, the doctor didn’t seem concerned and said there are no real health issues related to people born with 1 kidney. It’s very common, blah blah blah.

All I could think about, though, was SERIOUSLY? Haven’t we been through enough? It’s like this whole stupid roller coaster never ends. As soon as I start to feel comfortable and settle into this pregnancy, I’m bowling-balled with shitty news. I’m feeling pretty sorry for myself today, and am just hoping against hope that we go for a future ultrasound and everything is magically okay. I appreciate the fact that the doctor was so positive about everything, but I just want two perfectly healthy babies. A lot to ask, I guess.

Ugh. This parenthood thing is hard, and these babies aren’t even born yet.

-Wishing things were easier Family Van.

We had another OB/GYN appointment today, which I was anxiously awaiting for after our growth ultrasound two weeks ago. I had it done at the same lab that did our anatomy scan, with the same tech, so I was pretty comfortable with the routine. The tech was great both times, though this most recent one was a little harrowing.

Everything seemed to be chugging along as usual–I wasn’t nearly as anxious as I was for the anatomy scan. We knew everything was there and was okay. As far as I was concerned, this ultrasound was just to make sure both babies were “sharing nicely”, as my OB/GYN always says. Sometimes twins can be resource hogs, I guess, and one takes all the good stuff away from the other. From all I’ve read, that’s more common with identical twins, as they share more stuff in utero, but anyway…

So she was scanning my belly and using an unusually large amount of jelly on my belly (it rhymes!), but this happened last time, too. I was digging that stuff out of crevices for hours. I’m pretty sure when my belly button finally pops out, so will all kinds of dried up ultrasound goo. Delicious. Anyway, she started with Baby A, as per usual, with nothing too exciting to report. Baby B’s scan seemed fine, until the end. She said she needed to go show something to the doctor on staff.

Um…what? Can you fill me in here, lady?

She asked me to de-pants myself while she was gone so she could measure my cervix, so I was lying there, pants-less and afraid, but trying not to spazz. She said nothing when she came back, and proceeded with the dildo cam. I felt so used. So cold. So sticky from all that ultrasound jelly.

She sent me off with more pictures, including two updated 3D pictures of the babies’ faces, but again, Baby B looked like a Melty Face. Baby A is getting cuter and cuter, which makes me hope even more they’re not the same gender.

So let’s skip ahead past the 2 weeks of imagining the worst and waiting for a phone call from my doctor telling me some awful news. When none arrived, I figured nothing was actually wrong with the scan, so I could relax.

Wrong. Well, sort of.

My doctor told me today that Baby B showed a spot of “bright bowel” on the ultrasound, or echogenic bowel syndrome, if you want to be fancy about it. He said he sees it all the time, it’s super common, and he’s not concerned. I wish I could say the same. He said possibilities for causes could be that the baby drank blood (am I housing two tiny vampires?), has an infection, or it was a crappy ultrasound machine. Echogenic bowel syndrome is also a “soft marker” for chromosomal defects, I was told, though the doctor feels that with the great results we got from the NT scan and blood work, the chances of something like this are tiny, tiny, tiny.

Still there, though, so…freaking out a little.

Tomorrow morning I’ll go for a high resolution ultrasound with a perinatologist at the hospital. The good news: I’ll get results right away from the doctor conducting the ultrasound. J asked about whether we should be worried about Baby B’s melty face. Our doctor suggested I ask the doctor tomorrow for a better picture, but assured us he’s never delivered a baby “with no face”.

Ugh.

So bottom line is this: dull bowels are happy bowels. Fingers crossed for the dullest bowels ever tomorrow, for everyone concerned.

Baby B Baby A

-Fingers crossed Family Van.

So it’s been a minute since I last reported on my pregnant self. Lots to share!

I’m a few days shy of being 21 weeks, and I’m not going to lie: I’m sad to think that this pregnancy is more than half over. Never in my life have I felt so good, so full of life (literally–HA!), nor have I ever had so many compliments. Pregnancy suits me. I look good, I feel good, and I freaking LOVE this big ol’ round belly. We were at a wedding this past weekend, and rented a hotel room. Upon entry into the room, I stripped down to my birthday suit and proceeded to run back and forth. Pregnant nudie bodies are hilarious, even more so when they’re in motion!

Anyway, let’s back track a little, because there’s been some major events that have gone on. At about 16 weeks, I felt like something wasn’t quite right, and thought it could perhaps be a bladder infection of some sort. I didn’t know who to call, or what to do. Do I go to a walk-in clinic? Do I call my OB? I called my OB, and the nurse told me I could see the doctor if I got there early, so off we went. I was kind of paranoid because my pee hadn’t been tested when I saw him for the first time (a week or two before). When I described the feeling to him, he told me it was probably just round ligament pain, and that I shouldn’t be worried. He listened to the babies’ heartbeats, and I was really happy to see that little machine get pulled out. He stayed on my left side, so we only heard one heartbeat.

But there’s two babies in there…

I think I said something about only hearing one, and he told me you usually only hear one at this stage with twins. “They’re on top of each other”, he said, even though every scan I’d had showed they were next to each other. What was also disconcerting was the fact that a week or two before at our initial appointment, he was shocked to hear two distinct heartbeats.

I held it together until I got into the car, and then…explosion of pregnant lady freak out crying. Sobbing, ugly crying about disappearing twin syndrome, dead babies inside of me, the whole deal. Poor J. He suggested we find an ultrasound clinic and pay out of pocket for an ultrasound to calm my nerves. My anatomy scan was two weeks away, which seemed like a lifetime.

I ate a taco, we bought a car seat, and I calmed down a little.

Sort of.

I waited the two weeks for the anatomy scan, but was still so so so worried that we wouldn’t find two live babies in there. Oh, I should mention, too, that the doctor said something like, “We’ll have to wait to the anatomy scan to see if there’s two” or something like that, though J swears that I misunderstood what the doctor meant.

Anyway, J wasn’t allowed to come in with me at the beginning of the anatomy scan. They’d call him in later. I could kind of crane my neck to see the screen, and saw the 4 beautiful chambers of Baby A’s heart. I got some comfort from this, though it was never A that I was worried about. A is on the left, so that’s who’s heartbeat I heard at the doctor’s.

I had to wait a long time, but ultimately saw the same image for Baby B. Two heartbeats, two beautiful healthy babies.

We got a shit ton of photographs of the babies, including two 3d images of their faces. Baby A looks adorable, but Baby B has a mangled face because s/he was waving his/her arms over his/her face. I have to walk everyone through where the actual face is. I love that I’m the only one who can see it. Sweet little mangled face…

J created a graph to illustrate my nerves vs. ultrasounds. Gotta love engineers…

Idea note_14_01

Here are some photos of the babies. I’ve labelled them in an attempt to make Mangled Face seem a little less so.

Baby A!

Baby A!

Baby B!

Baby B!

 

-The “Still-Pregnant-With-2” Family Van