Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Twenty week Twins!

Do you ever get ready in the morning, head out the door, and just feel like it's going to be a great day? Today was one of those days. Coffee in hand, birds chirping, it's already over 30 degrees at 9am, and today I'm 20 WEEKS!

I am officially halfway!! Hopefully, I'm over halfway. I for sure don't want those twinsies coming too early but I think if I was still pregnant at 40 weeks I might just die. The babies are the size of bananas! They are 6.5 inches crown-to-rump, or 10 inches total, and about 10 ounces! My sister pointed out to me that if they were laying feet to feet they would be the length of a full term baby already! That's a lot of baby.

We had our mid-pregnancy ultrasound last week and it looks like the babies are doing wonderfully. Their heartbeats are strong and they are measuring right on time. We couldn't get all the measurements because they were moving so much so I have to go back next week for another ultrasound (oh, darn!). Here's some shots of the babes!

I am in love already! And beyond excited. I found a forum yesterday for twin moms and a bunch of the ladies would post their pictures of their newborns and excitedly post, "they're here!" (ok, some of them would say "their here!" but I'm sure in their after birth haze they weren't thinking about grammar). Anyway, to see those precious little miracles made me tear up. I still sometimes can't get over the fact that I'm going to have two babies at once. Is it too soon to pack my hospital bag???

As far as pregnancy goes, I'm doing great. The babies are getting much stronger and I'm starting to feel them way more often.  I don't really have any annoying pregnancy symptoms right now other than low energy. I am starting to notice my limits though. Monday night I came home from work and cleaned/cooked for hours... Tuesday I woke up with back pain and was exhausted all day. Oh well. I am so grateful for a smooth first half of this pregnancy. I assume the second half won't be a breeze, but I'm ready for it! 

The picture on the right is from over the weekend, a few days before 20 weeks. I had to compare it to a picture from my pregnancy with Easton, so that's the pic on the left. How far along was I there, you ask? Ummmm.... well.... 30 weeks. Yikes, I know. In my defense, I had just eaten a huge lunch in the pic on the right! I know I will have a much bigger belly than before, but if I'm showing about 10 weeks ahead, what am I going to do at week 35? 38? I will be looking full term so soon! Oh, how uncomfortable. 

I don't mean to whine, I wouldn't trade this for the world. How many people can say they are growing two little lives inside of them? It's amazing. I am so blessed that God gave me the chance to do this. So I'm going to suck it up, and be grateful! I do appreciate your prayers as I start off on the second half of pregnancy.  There are a lot of risks that show up in the second half, but I'm going to take it one day at a time. 

As always, thanks for reading! 

Monday, March 16, 2015

10 Things I Learned at Childbirth Class

Saturday I went to my first birthing class. My doula had some friends that were having their first childbirth education class and I offered to go be a guinea pig and give feedback. Honestly, I did not think I would learn that much. After all, I have 3 whole pregnancy apps and I've already had a child. But I have never been through labor, so I thought I could at least get a few tidbits of helpful info. I got much more than I expected. Here are some of the things I left with:

1. Childbirth classes are important. If you are pregnant with your first, find one and take one. You learn a lot of terms from your doctor but a lot of doctors don't really thoroughly explain them. Also, during labor, nurses and doctors ask you a lot of questions and expect you to weigh the pros and cons quickly while you are in pain. Having a plan in place and knowing what will be thrown at you is very helpful. 

2. Bringing your husband can make it awkward.  Most of the guys in the class seemed a little squeamish at some of the terms. They can get on board with uterus, vagina, cervix, etc. but when you break out perineum, mucous plug, and episiotomy they start squirming.  Then show them a video of a baby's head popping out followed by the delivery of the placenta, and their faces start getting pretty white.  I know its different with your own kid. My husband will hopefully be able to look past the gross parts and melt at the sight of his boys being born. But in a classroom setting and some random woman's lady parts on a big screen, different story. Luckily, my hubby was working.

3. Not bringing your husband and instead bringing your friend/doula is even more awkward.  I knew we only had to make it through introductions before we could explain that she was my doula and not my significant other. I'm kicking myself in the pants for not introducing us as Susan and Carol (Friends fans will get it). After explaining to the class that she was filling in for my husband who had to work, I though the awkward part was over. Silly me. Of course we're going to try out some of the labor positions and then get massages from our partners. I couldn't help but laugh the whole time. I guess if my doula will be there during labor/birth, I might as well get used to it getting awkward! She's great though, we had a lot of fun. Any day spent talking about babies is a good day for me!

4. By the end of your pregnancy, your bladder looks like a pancake. I knew that it gets squished, but actually seeing a diagram of your bladder at week 4 and again at week 40 makes you wonder how it fits any liquid in there (think grapefruit size before, chocolate chip cookie after). And I will have 2 babies laying on it. The last few weeks of my pregnancy will probably be the only time in my life I will be asking for a catheter.  Side note: The lady said I should be drinking 3-4 liters of water a day. Liters? Lady, this is 'merica. I don't know what the heck you're talking about.

5. One day of growing a baby expends as much energy as walking uphill 5 miles. I have two babies I'm cooking, so I'm going to take the liberty of saying its 10 miles for me. I walked 10 miles uphill today in addition to working my job, cooking, cleaning, and taking care of my 1 year old, what have you done? 

6. There are 4 stages in labor. Here's my version: 
  • Early labor, Phase 1: "Ouch, this really hurts, but sure, the families can come visit for a little while."
  • Active labor, Phase 2: "I'm only how many centimeters? Why again do I want to avoid an epidural? Also, get the family out of here before I punch one of them!"
  • Transition, Phase 3: "I'm NEVER doing this again! OOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWW. I swear to sweet baby Jesus, if you touch my head one more time I'm going to throw you out the 3rd floor window."
  • Birth, Phase 4: (ahhhh push it, P-P-Push it real good!) "He's here! Baby A is here! *cue the tears* Holy crap that hurt, what a big head. Wait, you mean to tell me I have to do that again?! The second one is breech? Excuse me, you're going to stick your hand where?!?!?!"
7. Yoga Balls help during labor. This one is self explanatory. I want a pink one.

8. It's helpful to bring a pair of shorts for laboring.  This one wasn't really part of the class, it was a conclusion I came to after watching/trying out some of the laboring positions. I think squatting in a bottomless and backless gown is probably not so comfortable. Or attractive.

9. The "he-he-who-who" breathing is not going to help, unless your goal is to hyperventilate. Breathing through a contraction is important, but the quick short breaths in all the movies isn't going to help any. Controlled deep breaths are more helpful. Apparently, grunting through pushes is also helpful. We practiced. I'm a grunting pro now. 

10. Husbands should be preparing for labor. 15-20 pushups a day and nightly massages will help him be ready to support his laboring wife. I told my husband this. He laughed. Thanks a lot, babe.

There you have it. Ten random things I learned from childbirth class. There was much more, but I won't bore you with it all. I strongly encourage all you preggo ladies to attend one. Just don't wait until right before you give birth. Watching some random lady push a baby out takes at least a month or two to recover from.