Thursday, June 25, 2009

What doesn't kill me makes me stronger, right?

I sure hope so...

Been another rough week. Was in the hospital from Mon-Wed with pre-term labor. Only about 1 cm dilated and cervix is still pretty thick at 3cm, but still having lots and lots of contractions, some of which are now painful. I got my steroids on this trip to the hospital and got lucky in that I didn't have to get Mag Sulfate! Only increased my Procardia dose from 10 to 20mg and the contractions began to improve.

There are consequences of course to this new dose: LOTS of swelling and shortness of breath. I can't really speak normally anymore, can only whisper. But the real story is the swelling. OMG. From my hips down to my toes, I'm at least 3 times my normal size. I can't walk really, just kinda shuffle along since I can't bend my feet and lost my ankles a few weeks ago. My knees don't bend either, which makes going to the bathroom every hour definitely more tedious. I kept showing my swollen legs and feet to docs and nurses in the hospital and none seemed to be overly concerned. Hmm...I guess I could chalk it up to my new Procardia dose of 20mg. Just not sure this is normal to me. And, not that I can see the lower ankle area, but my Mom and Aunt said that my bottom feet were turning a little bluish gray color, obviously indicating poor circulation. Just trying to figure out if this is normal or abnormal! Go back in am for another OB appt.

Boys are still growing well. Luke measures in at 4lbs 4 oz and Harry measures in at 4 lbs 13 oz. Yay! They are the only reason I'm hanging in there. I know that sounds like a "duh" statement, but seriously, I don't think I could be doing any of this if it were for myself. I am miserable! If it were me, I would've gone to a dr and said "fix me" several weeks ago! But keeping them at the forefront, I keep thinking I can hang in there for a short period of time. I would like both to be weighing in at 5 lbs, so that should be around 34 weeks. That's 10 more days. That's my goal. Anything beyond that is great, but that's all I think I can do. I'm looking at my poll results thus far and realize that you all have a lot more faith in me than I do in myself! I'm relying on my faith and hope to get me through, but my goodness it's hard!

Thanks for all your kind and sweet remarks on the below post. You all are the best. Trying to get caught back up on your blogs soon!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

"I will survive"

Well, today marks another milestone day: 32 weeks! It also kicks off my new "I will survive" campaign. I hope I can make it all the way to term (37 weeks) for the babies sake. But for me, I'm pretty miserable right now. I can't imagine 5 more weeks! Please no mean comments! I know that probably sounds bad and sounds as if I am putting myself before my boys. But, I swear, I am really running out of steam and definitely not enjoying being pg anymore. I am totally grateful to be pg with these boys and to have come through all we have to get here, but my body just wasn't designed to carry this much weight and two babies. I truly believe that!

For those of you asking on my last post, I'm on modified bedrest and have been for the last couple of weeks. I limit my trips up and down the steps to a few times a day for meals. But, I have my little portable refrigerator plugged up in my bedroom so that I don't have to walk downstairs for snacks, etc anymore. So, where does it hurt? Well, I hurt all the time from bad round ligament pain. I can't get comfortable to go to sleep for very long at night or even naps during the day because of this unrelenting abdominal pain. And this is normal. Okay...

Then, my back aches are just downright disabling. I can't walk upright sometimes. If I could have a strong fist (or tennis ball) at all times in my right shoulder blade, that would be really helpful. I've been told by my doctors that a massage can trigger pre-term labor with me, so those are out. But I will defy them and definitely have another massage again around 36 weeks if I make it that far (which despite all of my above complaints, I still hope to be pg by then). And my knees really hurt too. I guess it's just from too much weight to carry around.

So how big am I? Take a look for yourself, 32 week belly pic...



Let see, there's also the constipation factor. It is HORRIBLE, but I guess I'm lucky since I've had no hemorrhoids so far. And then there is the swollen leg, feet and ankles. I don't fit into shoes anymore (although I have 1 pair of flip flops I cram them into for drs appts). Also, my hands are swollen and I think I've developed carpal tunnel syndrome since I have lots of pain with my right hand especially. My understanding is the swelling causes nerve compression and pain, which leads to carpal tunnel. I guess this is sort of a good excuse for not posting as often as I should (just kidding!). Lucky for me, there's not a lot to do, so I take naps whenever I want during the day! Trying to do what everyone says and rest up before they get here! But, the swelling isn't reduced with rest or elevation. I don't appear to have pre-eclampsia for now (yay!), but they're watching me closely for it.

I'm actually really enjoying bedrest. Haven't missed work at all. Haha. I have a little "project of the day" and set out to accomplish it, whatever it may be. It's nice to get things checked off the to-do list! I haven't turned on any daytime TV yet and hope I don't! I can see myself getting sucked into those soap operas, talk shows, etc. I feel productive this way and so far haven't even thought about TV.

Finally, here are last weeks u/s pictures of my chubby cheeks baby, Harrison. It doesn't appear he's been skipping out on too many meals (little sugar baby)! I love the first one with him yawning and his arms lifted up, how precious?!! Steve told the ultrasonographer how we never got a good 3D pic of Harry. So, she spent a little extra time and took pictures, while he was lying transverse under my ribs. Lucas was in his normal cramped position, head down facing my back, so no pics of him. But we get to see/meet them very soon!!


Saturday, June 13, 2009

"I gots da suga"

I'm quoting my husband on this one. Background story: Christmas 2008 my Dad's side of our family rented a great lake house to spend the holiday season. We played some games, one of which included a game I can't honestly remember the name of, but it was lots of fun. We played on 2 teams of 4 people and you passed around a little screen that displayed a word. The goal was to guess the word as fast as possible and pass the little screen on to the person sitting next to you of the opposing team. Anyway, Steve got the word "diabetes" on the screen. All he said in his description was "I gots da suga" and sadly, we guessed diabetes instantly. Being that we live in Kentucky, there are lots and lots of people with "the suga."

I failed my 3 hour glucose tolerance test last week and therefore was informed I do indeed have gestational diabetes. I was stunned as I only failed the first test (glucose challenge) by 1 point. I guess I already knew I was at a higher risk since I had the following risk factors: 1) I have PCOS and was on Metformin last year; 2) I'm pg with multiples; and 3) have a family history with my Dad and Grandma. Yes, I did eat some extra ice cream during the pg, and I have craved carbs moreso than usual. Then, of course I had the cardinal signs-frequent urination, frequent thirst, frequent hunger, and fatigue. But I am pregnant, so all of these things seemed normal, right?

But, it would seem I do indeed have diabetes. I check my glucose 4 times a day (fasting in morning, and then 2 hours after every meal). I watch what I eat, when I eat, and most importantly what foods I eat together. I learned all of this after my extensive diabetes nurse educator and nutritionist consults in the hospital earlier this week.

That's right: 2nd trip to L&D is in the bag. How did that happen? Well, it was what you might call a series of unfortunate events. I went in for an unscheduled visit on Monday due to some bad cramping and lower abdominal pain (which after all I went through over my 3 hour office visit, we never found the cause). It was my OB's surgery day, so I had to see an ARNP as all the other physicians schedules were filled with their own patients. I will admit that I kinda lost it when delivered the gestational diabetes news. I cried and let my hormones get the best of me. I am pregnant afer all. Then the ARNP decided I needed to have my cervix checked to ensure I wasn't dilating or softening. I will tell all of you, this hurts like hell. Really. I read lots of blogs and don't recall anyone ever complaining about this pain. So, this warning is for the rest of you behind me. It sucks. But, at least I wasn't dilated or effacing.

So, I'm still crying from my diabetes diagnosis and now my body feels completely violated (again), then the ARNP declares I'm getting a non-stress test (NST). Um, that sounds like a good idea. I'm totally stressed out and crying, so let's do a stress test. After she hooked up me and the boys, my contractions were coming regularly every 5 mins and Luke was in distress with HRs in the 170s (he is normally in the 140s). She consults with another OB and then the OB comes in to tell me I'm not heading home after todays appt. And she wants to get aggressive: admit me to the hospital, give me Mag and steroids to help the babies lungs develop. I suggested a more conservative approach: try taking my Procardia and just see if the ctx went away with that first.

After being admitted to the hospital, my ctx had increased to every 3-4 mins. However, the Procardia started kicking in and that spaced out the ctx to every 7-8 mins. They administered a shot of terbutaline (even though I'm slightly allergic with rash, itch, etc) and it got them under better control. By morning I was having about 3-4 ctx an hour, which isn't too bad given our state of affairs. I should say that I wouldn't have argued against the Mag (ie, "flu in a bag") and steroids if I clinically needed it, but happy my approach worked in the end. Upon discharge, my OB did say that I would get both at my next admission. Hmm...seems like she knows there will be another L&D admission before we deliver...Actually, I totally expect it too, just a matter of when.

Growth scans of the babies revealed that Lucas weighs 3 lbs 6 oz and Harrison weighs 3 lbs 13 oz. They are big boys. So, thanks to my new diagnosis of Gestational Diabetes, I have new nicknames for all of us: I'm just a Sugar Momma totally in love with her Sugar Babies. :-) I loved Sugar Babies candy when I was little, so seems fitting. Cervix is measuring around 3.7cm these days, but is still closed with no signs of dilation or effacing. Finally, was discharged to home after my diabetes teaching.

Follow up appt yesterday went well overall I suppose. Both babies doing well, Momma is okay for now. However, my swelling/pitting edema has gotten really bad, I've gained 2lbs in just a few days, I'm having some visual changes, and lastly my normally low (100/60 or less) bp has risen to (124/80). And keep in mind I'm on Procardia every 4 hours which actually is decreaing my bp! So, they are going to be keeping a careful eye on me next week in hopes that some of these signs of pre-eclampsia go away. I really hope they do as it can be a scary condition.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Letter to my sons

Boys,

Today is Mommy's birthday. And you don't know it, but for many years my birthday wishes have been for you to come into my life. Every wish made and every tear shed seem to be more of a distant memory with each passing day. My precious, sweet, innocent sons-quite simply: I can't wait to meet you.

Even though I haven't held you yet in my arms, you've held a place in my heart long before you were ever conceived. I've prayed for you, cried for you, and have gone through a lot of heartache to have you. But, I can tell you that it was all worth it. Through everything, I never lost sight of you, never lost hope that I would one day meet you, and you gave me the strength I needed to persevere. Every time I see your little hands and feet, and hear your perfect beating hearts on ultrasounds, I smile. You make me so happy.

I remember the day (Dec. 3, 2008) when I found out I was pregnant with you. That will be one of the best days of my life! What a surprise to know it had finally happened! And then another beautiful day was the day I discovered you both made it and were nestled away inside Mommy's belly-the day of our first ultrasound (Dec. 26, 2008). Daddy and I saw the screen and both immediately knew we were pregnant with twins before the Doctor ever told us. We were so happy-best Day after Christmas present ever!

As you continue to grow in my belly, I am thankful for each additional day you stay inside me and grow. I first felt you kick when I was 18 weeks pregnant, but Daddy couldn't feel you for a few more weeks on the outside of my belly. He loves you both very much as well. I have loved watching you grow every two weeks. You are going to be such big, strong boys! I still enjoy to feel every kick and every movement you make inside me. And you should know that the love both Daddy and I feel for you grows each and every day.

I have had a great pregnancy thanks to you both. I haven't been sick the first day and have generally felt good this whole time. You are the sweetest children for helping Mommy to have a relatively easy pregnancy. I can only pray that you'll continue to help me to have a good pregnancy by not trying to enter this world too early. I need you to stay put for a little less than 2 months. I want more than anything to have you both big and healthy at delivery so that we can take you home with us when I leave the hospital.

I love singing to you, playing songs for you, patting you through my belly and reading to you. I hope you will recognize some of the songs I sing and some of the books I read when we are in your nursery together. I apologize for crying every time I read you "Guess How Much I Love You," but it pretty much sums up how I feel about you.

You make me want to be a better person. I find myself thinking of ways I need to change to be the Mother you deserve. I want to be the best Mommy in the world to you both. I know I will make lots of mistakes along the way, but no matter what, I love you more than anything. I've never known such a powerful, unconditional love before. You will always have Mommy's heart, so please be gentle with it and take care of it.

I want you to know that you can come to me with any problem you may encounter along your life's journey. And even though I know that I won't be able to fix everything for you, I will give you my love and support. You'll teach me probably more about life than I will ever be able to teach you.

You are coming into this world with lots of people loving you so, so much. But, I'm pretty sure no one could ever love you as much as your Mommy does. So, remember, you still have to be Mommy's little boys! Know this-I have loved you forever and will love you forever. I promise to always be there for you and no matter where you may go, I never will be far away (and hopefully will always be in your hearts, as you will always be in mine).

~Mommy