Saturday, March 19, 2011

Suck in that gut, lady!

No, that wasn't something I heard from a stranger mistaking a belly full of babies for a belly full of pudge.  It was something I said to myself as I walked past a mirror in the house, the other day!  So I stopped in front of said mirror, stood up straight, and to my amazement (and relief) this belly I have isn't something I got from one too many trips to Chipotle!  This was genuine "babies bump".

Now, this is usually where I'd post a picture of the fuselage of the Mothership, but I don't have a recent one and I'm not about to take one because I'm in old sweats, an old, tie-dyed t-shirt and have a mop of recently showered hair atop my head.  The internet does not need to see that.  I sort of promise to kind of attempt to get myself into a cute prego shirt tomorrow and ask Jeff to take a picture of me.  I do need more of them for my scrapbook, anyhow.

But for those of you who MUST know what the bump looks like now, this is will give you a good idea of what I look like.


Anyhow, I have another major announcement.  I'm calling the time of death for my morning sickness!  It has been an entire week without so much as a gag or the slightest wave of nausea!  I think I've more than paid my vomit dues with this pregnancy, that if I ever got pregnant again (don't count on it!!) I would have the opposite of nausea.  Not sure what that would be, but it sounds good.  I'm still not eating a ton, yet.  I get hungry, sure, but not the ravenous, lions tearing into a fresh zebra, kind of hunger.  But I still don't like coffee *frowny face*.

The girls are also moving a lot more.  It's the coolest feeling and I can hardly wait for Jeff and the boys to be able to feel them, too!  Until then, it feels like a sweet, little secret between me and my girls.  

Well, I managed to go the entire day without needing a nap!  However, this means that I need to go to bed.  Like, now.


Monday, March 14, 2011

All is good in the baby 'hood

Sorry for the lack of update.  I posted the results of the scan on Facebook, but then forgot that some of you who read this aren't on Facebook.  Anyhow, my cervix is of normal length (I'm so glad I just put that phrase on the internet) and there isn't going to be any nasty cerclage business for this pregnant lady!  Since that day there hasn't been anymore discomfort or other reason to worry.

Well, unless you're my husband.  See, on Saturday I found one of those Maternity Ultrasound Spa places.  (These places do massages on pregos and also offer 3D images of your precious, bellybeans.)  Being nearly 16 weeks, they were able to tell me what we have growing in there:

GIRLS!  Two, beautiful, precious, little girls!  The one on my right is Natalie and the one on my left is Elizabeth.  Although Andy picked the name Elizabeth, I like to think that he wanted to name her after Ms. Taylor.  And of course, being the insane Natalie Wood fan I am, Natalie is named after Ms. Wood.

And that, dear readers, is what we have to worry about.  I once heard a comedian say, "Having a little boy is so much easier than having a little girl.  See, with the little boys, you just have to watch out for that little boy.  With little girls, you have to watch out for that little girl and all the other little boys."

Pink is just so foreign.  Pink squeals and wears frilly things and is just  Look, I have nothing against girls.  Being one, I think we're pretty awesome.  However, I can say that because I've never raised one.  I've been swimming in a sea of blue for the past eight-ish years and I know how to navigate these waters.  These are fun, sometimes rough-and-tumble, waters.  All the dolphins have lightsabers and the seagulls wrestle each other.  

But a sea of pink?  How on earth do I scrapbook pink?  What kinds of stories do pink things like?  What games do these pinklings play?  Will I know how to speak pink?

I do have some help in my corner, though.  I have two little boys who are just tickled, dare I say, to be having sisters.  I have a husband who is going to be their hero.  And I have a love for them that started in my heart before these precious baby girls were ever even brought into existence.

I think we're going to be just fine.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Well that was slightly scary...

At the risk of oversharing (because it's just something my mouth and typing fingers force me to do) let me just say that this story started with a tiny bit of bright, red "spotting" and a slight tenderness/bit of pressure on my internal lady bits.  After a call to my OB, it was determined that a quick visit to their office wouldn't be a bad idea.

Considering how worried I was, especially when the tenderness/bit of pressure turned to the yucky feeling one gets when one's Aunt Flo is arriving, I was rather cool and collected.  My blood pressure was even really good, too.  (114 over 76 thankyouverymuch.)  So with a very fashionable paper-sheet skirt draped across my lower half, I waited for the doc and her shadow, a very nice student Nurse Practitioner.

The ultrasound paddle was applied to my belly and I was greeted by what I'd been really wanting to see: movement of the Bellybeans and strong heartbeats.  The OB needed to check to see if I was dilated, and I won't go into detail but that procedure involved a rather painful run in with a speculum.

Fucking OUCH.

Good news, no blood and cervix appeared closed.

Bad news, she still seemed concerned about preterm labor.

Fucking GREAT.

She asked if I was on Progesterone of any form and I said that we stopped PIO shots at 10 weeks.  She said that she was putting me back on PIO shots, but that they'd be weekly vs. daily.  Then she ordered an ultrasound with Dr. Siddiqi (same perinatal office that preformed the nuchal translucency test) so that they could check the length of my cervix.

Long cervix = good things.  Short cervix = bad things.

I go in on Thursday to have the thing measured and if it's short (let's hope it's not, ok?) I get a cergclage stitched in.

I wonder if they'll have to redeploy the laser wearing shark?

Anyhow, after getting my first shot in my ample rear (well, the first in about 5 weeks...the needle vacation was nice while it lasted!) my ultrasound with Dr. Siddiqi was scheduled for this Thursday at 10am.  Until then, I'm supposed to relax and take it easy.  No lifting.  Which, honestly, is pretty much what I've been doing since the womb squatters took up residence.

So to sum up: this isn't terrible news.  It ain't so great, but it's not terrible.  

Oh, and to the handful of women in the OB waiting room who gave me the side-eye because I wore my Mickey Mouse pajama bottoms: I hope you got a really cold speculum thrust somewhere.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Just call me Sigourney...

...because we have movement in the belly.  I feel the squatter on the left more than I do the squatter on the right (because of their positions) and they feel like marshmallows are wandering around my baby factory.  And let me tell you, it's really, really freaking cool.

The fact that I've said that makes me sort of laugh a little.  See, before being knocked up, I was sort of freaked out about the idea of feeling something move in my abdomen.  I mean, I've had gas and really bad cases of, uh..."gastrointestinal distress", but that's different.  I was actually kind of scared and thought that it would creep me out, a little.  That's really hard for me to admit because I've wanted to experience pregnancy for so long and have experienced so much grief over not being able to do it.

So, now that I've gotten to experience it, I can honestly say that it's one of the coolest things I've ever felt.  There are little Andrea-Jeff hybrids growing inside of me...and they move.

And that's another thing...I have created two, little, precious lives with my husband.  The first time I laid eyes on this man, I knew he was the man I was going to marry.  I don't know how, I don't know what told me, but I know that as far as I'm concerned, I gave him my heart and soul in that instant.

And now we've been given the gift of being able to create life together.

And now I'm totally crying.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The infertile, pregnant woman

Today marks the first day of my second trimester and still, I feel as this has all been a wonderful dream.  I'm not sure if all pregnant women feel this way, or if it's just us, crazy, infertile broads.  I've peed on more sticks than I care to count, have had at least three blood draws to check my hCG levels, have had 4 ultrasounds, have horfed more meals than I've consumed, am averaging two, one hour naps per day and still, I am not convinced that this is real.

And because I'm a crazy, infertile, pregnant woman, I take it a step further:  All of my tests have, obviously, been flukes.  All of the ultrasounds were pre-recorded and played for me, just to make me feel like I was pregnant.  Every time I tell someone I'm pregnant with twins, I'm totally lying, because that would be absolutely impossible.

Yet, here I sit with a tiny bump below my belly button, exhausted beyond belief and kicking myself for not bringing the bottle of phenergan upstairs with me.  And even crazier, I have pictures of the imaginary squatters in my belly:

This is Happy.  Clearly, happy takes after me because this is the only good shot we got of him.  He would not cooperate with the nice ultrasound tech and would not pose for a 3D picture.  Happy just wants to be left alone.  No flash photography, please.

Unlike his brother, Grumpy:
...who was totally cheesin' it up.  We had no problems getting 3D images of this one.  (Clearly, he takes after Benny.)

And yet, even after this photographic evidence, I still don't believe it.  I've seen fuzzier pictures of Bigfoot and faces on the surface of Mars that convinced me of their existence than these pictures do of my own children.

Then again, I sometimes look at the two boys I have now, and wonder, "has this all been some wonderful dream?  Could these really be my sweet, handsome boys?"  To women like me, getting to be a mother is like winning the lottery.  Unbelievable at first, and even after the fact, you're still amazed that it happened to you.

I am just so excited and overjoyed at the idea of meeting the two little beings that currently take up residence below my belly button.  I keep pinching myself to make sure it's really happening.

And you know what?  It totally is...

Monday, January 31, 2011

Where do they come up with this stuff?

For those of you who know me and who have met my boys, you know that despite our differences in DNA, we are a lot alike, especially in the way we talk and our shared, warped sense of humor.  And this new, pregnancy thing has long been fodder for their inquisitive minds.  

For example, just a few weeks ago, I was horfing in the bathroom.  (Well, that wasn't exclusive to a few weeks ago, but the rest of the story is.)  Mid-horf, I hear a little voice from the other side of the door:
"Mommy, awe you okay?"
"Yes, Benny.  I'm okay.  I'll be out in a minute."
"Okay.  Mommy?"
"Yes, Benny..."
"Don't fwoh up da babies, okay?"
"Okay, Benny.  I'll try not to."  

Then there was the question that Andy had for me.  It was Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and a clip of one of his speeches on the radio inspired a breakfast time talk.  After discussing the fact that the color of one's skin has no bearing on the quality of their character and that Dr. King's dream wasn't about fighting dragons or swimming in a pool  of spaghetti, Andy posed a question:
"Hey mom?"
"Yeah, Andy?"
"If the babies come out black like Dr. King, we're still going to love them, right?"

Yes, my older boy-child actually said this.

"Yes, Andy.  Your father might have some questions, but no matter what these babies look like, we're going to love them."

That was said, of course, after my face imploded upon itself from trying to contain the laughter. 

Saturday, January 29, 2011

IVF/ICSI Graduate!

After just one round of IVF/ICSI, Jeff and I graduated with flying colors!  (We're fast learners, I guess.)  I definitely don't take that lightly though, considering the countless women and their partners who struggle through cycle after cycle and don't get anywhere closer to their dream than they were when they first started.

So after a great ultrasound (and seeing the babies MOVE!  Like, actually squirm around!!) I was released from Dr. Thomas' care.  I ended up switching OBs, too.  Not because I didn't like the practice I was at, but because I want to deliver at a hospital with a Level III NICU.  This is a good thing to have when expecting twins, or so I've read.  The new OB's office only deliver at Good Sam, which not only has a Level III NICU, but I've heard nothing but rave reviews about.  I had my first appointment with them on Friday and it went well.  The doc I saw was really nice and we hit it off.  I think the high point of the visit was during the exam, she asked if I had any questions.  I asked, "Yeah, when do my boobs get bigger?  I mean, if I'm going to be pregnant, I want huge melons."  I knew we were going to be friends when she snortlaughed.

Anyhow, here are the last ultrasound pictures from Dr. Thomas' office.  They actually look like real babies!  Heads and bellies and hands and legs and things!

Pretty neat, huh?