Sunday, June 21, 2015

Two Months

We went in for the twins' two month check-up on Thursday, and everything went so well! Here are the Stats:

Winter Rose
Weight: 8.37 lbs-4th percentile
Length: 20.5 in-2nd percentile
Head: 14.6 in-10th percentile

Griffin Shae
Weight: 9.62 lbs- 9th percentile
Length: 22 in-17th percentile
Head: 14.6 in-4th percentile

So Winter has a bigger noggin compared to her size, but Griffin's head is just rounder, so I attribute her huge head to it being what I affectionately refer to as "torpedo" shaped. Her head is long and narrow, his is like a little cantaloupe, haha!

They are both doing great developmentally, but they are good at different things. For example, Winter is smiling a ton, tracks things really well with her eyes, holds her head up pretty well, and makes lots of little cooing noises.

Griffin is great at holding up his head, can roll from tummy to back pretty consistently, tracks with his eyes, and makes a few cooing noises, mostly when I let him just lay in the crib or on a blanket on the floor and wave all his limbs around. He smiles, but not nearly as much as Winter does, and he doesn't "talk" nearly as much either. He's more of a whiner, haha!

They are both great eaters, and I am still doing my best to breastfeed them. I went to a lactation consultant who diagnosed them both with tongue tie, but after talking to the pediatrician, found out that they are actually just fine. Which is great, because the idea of cutting into their mouths made me sad! They are getting better at eating more quickly, and I am only having to supplement a few ounces each day. I am so happy they are doing so well!

They are sleeping pretty consistently as well, they go to bed around eight and wake up at eleven, two, and then they wake up for good around seven or eight each day. It makes it easier to work around their schedules, because they actually have somewhat normal sleep routines now! We also just moved one of the cribs into our bedroom, which has been working well. I was just sleeping on a blow-up mattress since they were born in the nursery, but my back and hips were starting to give me major problems and Thomas was getting lonely, haha! So now he's trying to get used to being in the same room with them, which I'm sure will happen quickly as he begins to sleep through their fussy periods at night!

That's it for now! I will be sure to keep you all updated with their monthly updates at the very least.

Happy Friday!


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Six Week Update

I can't believe it's been six weeks already! In some ways it feels like it's been much longer, and in others it still feels brand new. The twins are doing great, and we are loving every day with our precious squishies.

Winter is now weighing in at 7lbs 9 oz. That's up 2lbs 9oz from birth weight. She doesn't cry much unless she's hungry or needs a new diaper, although she has started getting upset during the "witching hours" between eleven at night and one in the morning. She is our talker, she makes cute noises all day long! And she still smiles much more than her brother, usually right before she poops...haha! We are in love with her cute personality and can't wait to see more of it.

Griffin is weighing in at 8lbs 9oz, up 2lbs 12oz from birth weight. He is our whiner! He likes to "almost cry" and make little whining noises even if he's content. It's hilarious! He also likes to toss his head back dramatically and flail his arms around like a little velociraptor (bent at the elbow, hands and forearms waving up and down), it makes the whining even more humorous to watch and a bit more pitiful, haha! He is definitely a boy, he likes to be moving all the time! If he's awake, he loves to be on his back, all limbs flailing! He will also cry if he's tired, which Winter hasn't really done yet. He does smile, usually right after nursing, and it is a giant, gummy grin! I predict he will be the first to walk, but she will be the first to speak in full sentences. We'll see if I'm right!

As for me, I feel great! I hope it doesn't come across as bragging, because I had nothing to do with it, but after about two weeks my tummy and most of the rest of me looked back to normal. I was wearing my pre-pregnancy clothes (what little I have, anyway) at that point, and found out quickly that many of my dresses and tops don't accommodate my chest anymore. Time will tell if it's just pregnancy/nursing, or if it's a more permanent change! Most of my day is spent nursing or pumping, and since they were so little when they were born we have to supplement them a bit with formula so I still have the joy of preparing and washing bottles after each feeding as well. Hopefully now that they are bigger we can start to drop bottles here and there, and eventually switch to exclusively breastfeeding. Not that I'm against bottles, it's just expensive!

I'll be doing a post on my must haves for these first weeks with twins and a more full update on the twins at two months soon, so look forward to that! :)

Love, Sam

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Twin's Birth Story

A lot of my friends have done this, and although I know it's often TMI for most people, I think there's something to be said about reflecting on going through childbirth and allowing your children to read it later as well. I never knew a lot of things about my Mother's experiences with her own five labor and deliveries until I was going through it myself, and I think I would have liked to know a bit! So here goes!

Twins usually come earlier than 38 weeks, which is the absolute cutoff that most doctors will let you go because of the risk of stillbirth. My twins did not. And not only did they not come early, they showed no signs (and neither did my body) of wanting to come out at all! At my 38 week OB appointment, the nurses were all shocked that I had made it that far. I thought that I should at least be progressing somewhat, but no. My cervix was completely closed and so high up the OB couldn't even find it! Awesome. So we decided that because both twins were head down we would try a few things to get my body to go into natural labor before opting for a c-section.

We scheduled my induction for a Thursday afternoon. At around six p.m. a nurse came in and administered cervidil, a cervical ripening agent. The next twelve hours were spent hoping my body would get the we waited. And waited. I felt nothing. We stayed up all night, wishing for actual contractions to begin, and although I often felt Braxton-Hicks as I has been feeling for weeks, nothing new seemed to be coming of the medication. At six a.m. the next morning, the nurse came to check me and said I was barely over 1 cm dilated. Which then begged the question, would that be enough?? The nurse said it was a close call, and that we needed to choose whether we'd try to go natural still or opt for the c-section. After careful consideration, we decided that a c-section would be our best option, since my body obviously didn't respond well to induction meds. We let the nurse know, and she informed my doctor when he arrived for the day. She returned, and told us the doctor wanted to check me himself  and then chat with us a bit.

Ten minutes or so later, my wonderful, experienced Doc came in, and after checking me gave his informed opinion that i was actually a full 2 cm dilated and 70% effaced. He was confident that with help from pitocin and breaking Twin A's water I would be able to deliver within eight hours. Without much time to decide, I asked if he was sure that I would be in the clear for a natural delivery, and while he reassured me of that, he went ahead and broke my water. I was a bit in shock! Here I had already mentally prepared myself for a c-section, and all of a sudden the plans changed. I think the nurses realized that I was overwhelmed and reminded me that I could still choose to do the c-section at any time. Once I calmed down a bit, I was of course thrilled to be doing a natural delivery, which is what I had wanted from the beginning.

They started me on pitocin at around seven thirty in the morning, and told me to let them know when I was ready for my epidural. My doctor had discussed with me that he felt that I should get an epidural no matter what to make sure that if things went unfavorably he could easily transition me to a c-section. At around nine thirty my contractions picked up, and I decided it was time. The anesthesiologist came in and the epidural was placed in minutes. Unfortunately, I guess I wasn't hydrated enough because my blood pressure and Baby A's heart rate plummeted. t was scary to see five nurses rush in, give me an oxygen mask, and put a monitor directly on Baby A's head! I had no idea what was happening, because the blood pressure drop made me super groggy, but I could see the look on Thomas's poor face! He was terrified! Luckily the problem was easily rectified by pumping me full of fluids, and all was well.

Things steadily progresses for the next several hours, and finally I was close to six centimeters dilated and almost 100% effaced! I was happy that things were going well, until I stared feeling a lot of pain again. The nurse told me that was normal, but if I wanted an extra dose in my epidural they could call the anesthesiologist to come give me a boost. I told her to pleas do that, haha! He came in and asked me if I was feeling sharp pain or just pressure, and I said while it wasn't necessarily sharp per se, It was very painful. He gave me the extra meds and left. About an hour later, the extra meds hadn't done anything and I was in more pain than ever due to the fact that my sciatic had begun spasaming with each contraction. Ouch! They called the anesthesiologist back in, where he did a few tests and realized that my epidural had completely failed! He felt kind of bad that he had doubted me earlier, so he was very nice this time and assured me that he would do whatever he could to make me more comfortable. We decided that instead of trying to see if the existing epidural could be used, we would go ahead and redo it. He came in very quickly with the equipment and after a grueling ten minutes of me sobbing on the bed trying to sit still as he pushed on my shoulders (which made my sciatic VERY angry) to get me into position, the new epidural was placed and I finally had some relief!

After that ordeal, I was ready for a little rest, but soon after the epidural kicked in, I was dilated to a 10 and fully effaced! The nurse went to check with the doctor to see if I was okay to push, and he agreed. This was at around 10:15 pm on Friday night. I had been in labor (or trying to go into labor) for over 24 hours. Pushing was so nice, because it finally felt like I could do something productive! My contractions were every few minutes, so we pushed with them for two hours straight. At around 12:15, Baby A was still not quite to the point that we could be transferred to the operating room (where they were going to do the actual delivery) and my contractions were beginning to dwindle.   Like one every six or seven minutes. We continued to push for another half hour, but Baby A was stuck just behind my pelvic bone, and the contractions were too weak to really be of any help, so the doc took us into the OR and decided to use forceps to help get Baby A out.

We were wheeled into the OR, and not fifteen minutes later Baby A-a boy we named Griffin Shae-was born. He came on April 18th at 1:03 a.m., 5 lbs, 13 oz, 19 inches long. Shortly after he was born, they broke Baby B's water and used a vacuum to help deliver her. Baby B-a girl we named Winter Rose- was born at 1:13 a.m., she was 5 lbs even and 18 inches long. Both babies were healthy and screaming, and I got to hold both of them right away. They were perfect! I was in love! Winter was crying before Thomas set her on my chest, and then she immediately stopped when she heard my voice. It was a moment I'll never forget.

Now the fun starts! The doctor had been massaging my stomach this entire time, trying to get my placentas to release. No dice. They took the babies from me, and the doctor began to look worried. Apparently if your placenta doesn't come out quickly enough you are at high risk for hemorrhaging and other nasty things like infections. No bueno. I didn't know this at time, so I didn't understand the gravity of the situation until (at this point I will warn you, it gets a lot TMI if you want to stop reading...) the doctor PUT HIS WHOLE ARM INSIDE ME. Literally! He started manually removing (ripping) the placentas from my uterine wall. This was uncomfortable, to say the least! Even with a functioning epidural it was excruciating, to the point that I begged him to stop. They called that poor anesthesiologist down. He gave me enough pain medication to do an actual c-section, but instead of going into effect immediately, it took over ten minutes to have any effect on me. After that I don't recall anything, but apparently (I was told later) they ended up putting me into twilight sleep (like when you get your wisdom teeth out) because i was in so much discomfort.

I woke up two and a half hours later being wheeled back into my room, where my sweet, terrified husband had been doing a fantastic job of keeping it together and doing skin-to-skin with our precious newborns. I wasn't allowed to sit up to nurse them because they had doped me up so much that my blood pressure was dangerously low, but I held onto those little bundles as much as I could until they gave me the all clear to sit up and nurse. After that It was smooth sailing! My recovery has been a breeze due partly to the fact that they spent so much time scraping out my poor uterus! I know, gross.

Later the doc and the anesthesiologist both came in to check on me and explain exactly what had happened to me after I knocked out. We were all very grateful that we had decided to re-do the epidural, as without it they probably would have had to put me completely under anesthesia which would have been much more dangerous and had much worse effects for me. We were released on Sunday night, and life has been crazy and wonderful ever since!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Life as of late

I know I am terrible at blogging. But this is kind of like my online journal, and right now I feel the need to capture the moments before they're just a distant, fading memory. So this is my attempt to document the last nine months...

Pregnancy was pretty easy for me. I didn't get sick, I just got more tired than I though was humanly possible. I wanted to sleep through my entire first trimester! I could easily sleep twelve hours a night and still take a three hour nap after work. At the time I was working full-time the the MTC as a cook, and although it wasn't strenuous, I would often just collapse into bed at the end of my shift. As I entered my second trimester, I had found a different job working as a sandwich maker at a little family-run place in Provo, and I loved it! It was less demanding on time and energy, and I was grateful for the change from a huge operation serving 400-600 people three times a day to feeding just a lunch rush.

The third trimester was probably the worst, but really I have no reason to complain. I did have my bouts with sciatica and general uncomfortableness, but by large and part I wasn't really suffering from anything but lack of sleep.

Thomas, as always, was a champ. Despite being in school full-time and working full-time to support us, he always made time for his suddenly very emotional wife. That man is a saint. He frequently went to the store/Wendys/Chik-Fil-A/Cubby's when I wanted something in particular, and always made sure I had plenty of chocolate!

So as far as the pregnancy part of babies, that wasn't too hard. My body did really well carrying our two little munchkins. A little too well, actually, but more on that later.

As for the rest of life lately, things are going well! Thomas is done with school for the summer, so other than a few easy online classes he is just working. I love it! I am so excited for the day that he can be done with school and we can have hubby/daddy in the evenings and on the weekends.

After Thomas graduates next April, we have pretty much decided to stay in Utah and job hunt here. There are a few reasons for this, one being that, surprisingly, Utah has become quite the tech hub in recent years, and another being that when we decide we are ready to expand our family, being in close proximity to the U of U will be so much easier than having to come in and out of the state for several weeks at a time. Of course, life has a funny way of messing up the best laid plans, but for now that's what we're looking at doing in the near future.

We are settling into our new roles as parents now and look forward to updating everyone on the twins as much as possible! Stay tuned! 

Monday, September 22, 2014

A New Beginning

I think most of you know now that our first round of IVF was successful! We are expecting twins, and my official due date is May 1st, 2015! Needless to say, we are ecstatic! We hoped and prayed and fasted with all of our family for this outcome, and we are so excited to start our family! I hesitated to share the news too publicly as I am only 8 1/2 weeks right now, but with so many people following our journey up until this point, I figured I would share!

So far I haven't had any morning sickness, which has been a real blessing! The nurse who helped with my first sonogram was impressed that I wasn't sick at all, especially considering that I'm having twins. My main symptom has been fatigue, I feel like I just want to sleep all the time! Luckily I get to take a nap most days, but on the days I don't I really struggle through the afternoons.

My insides also already feel like they've shifted a bit, and things feel funny. I am so paranoid about everything after what we went through to get to this point that it was a huge relief to hear both of those sweet heartbeats last week! I am sure I will be antsy until we pass the 13 week mark, and any happy thoughts and prayers you'd like to send my way would be greatly appreciated!

I know it comes down to having faith and trust in my Heavenly Father, and I am trying to be diligent in putting aside my worry. It's one of those things that is really hard right now, but I know if I rely on Him I will be blessed through this experience. I am so grateful for the opportunity I have had to even carry a child, let alone two! I am so excited for what the future brings, and know that we will continue to be blessed according to our faith. I am so grateful for all the love and support Thomas and I have gotten through this from friends and family, and we are so happy that we have been able to live in a place with such incredible opportunities for our family.

I promise to keep you all updated, and as soon as I stop just looking fat and start looking pregnant, I will start posting belly pics!

Until next time!

<3 p="" sam="">

Friday, August 8, 2014

It's Time!

Everything has been leading up to this week. All the hormones, blood tests, shots, and doctor visits are coming to fruition in just a few short days! My sister, our egg donor, flew in last Saturday. We had several ultrasounds each to determine what stage we are at, and what the timeline was for the rest of the week. On Wednesday night she had her trigger shot, which matured the eggs she had produced. This morning was the retrieval!  We had been told we could expect 11 eggs...But there were 14 closer enough to extract! That's awesome! Off those 14 there will be some that won't fertilize, but we are hopeful that we will be able to have a few pregnancies! Only five days until we transfer the embryos, then we wait again. We will find out if we are pregnant on August 25th. I'm excited and nervous, but most of all I have faith that no matter what comes from this we are doing the right thing for our family. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Hormones: The Continuing Saga

So I am now in the throes of hormone therapy. I have noticed a few things, most of them not really terrible, but just different, and some downright obnoxious. WARNING: This post contains TMI.

One of the first things I have noticed-my boobs are huge. Like, at least a full cup size larger! It's incredible! It's not really a bad thing, except my bras don't fit and I don't really want to pay to replace them. So for now, I have to deal with the dreaded "double boob" that comes with a too-small bra. Also, the girls are tender. Not so much that it really hurts, but enough that I notice. I can only hope that it won't get too much worse when I'm actually pregnant!

Since I started the Lupron injections on Sunday, I have been really fatigued. I can easily sleep for twelve hours and still be tired. This doesn't surprise me, as it has happened to a lesser extent on other hormones, but I am not a fan. I feel useless, and it annoys me that one tiny little injection can make such a huge impact on my energy level.

The crazy has begun. Luckily, Thomas has escaped the bulk of my hormone induced wrath, but some of my co-workers aren't so lucky. I have very little patience with people who can't do their jobs correctly, and am having a tough time keeping it to myself these days. Fortunately for me, most of my co-workers think my angry face is adorable and not at all scary. This helps with not getting fired. Plus everyone there loves me, and I can basically do no wrong. This also helps with the not getting fired.

I have been alternately hot and cold, so much so that in one day I can go from a "clothes are SO not happening right now" to a "it's Antarctica in here, bring me a soft blanket stat!" mood very quickly.  It could have something to do with our schizo thermostat, but Thomas doesn't seem to have any issues...

So all in all, it's been good! I'm sure it'll get more intense as the time for the embryo transfer comes nearer, but I really believe that with the help of my Father in Heaven I can do anything! I have felt His love and support, and I know that He is always there to help me.

Bring on the babies! ;)