Saturday, October 6, 2012

Is this real? Are you real? And are you real?

Is this real? Are you real? And are you real? My babies are almost 5 months old now. And I still find myself asking this question. It still seems like yesterday when I was battling my demons of infertility. It's like I'm still waiting to wake up from this dream of bliss and find myself back in time in that dark hole of depression. I occasionally catch glimpses of myself in the bathroom mirror with one of my twins as I walk down the hall, and think to myself...this is crazy, this is so unreal. They are here! Finally! About this time, a year ago, I found out I was pregnant.  Doing IVF a second time was scary.  I knew what it was like to have IVF fail. I realized that my life was about to change and it could only take one of two paths.  And it all depended on a stupid pee stick. Pregnant or not pregnant. I had decided that this was the last time we were to try IVF again. I realized that if it didn't work, we would turn to adoption. I knew I was suppose to be a mom.  I could feel their presence. What mattered is that THEY got here and NOT how they got here. I don't know how my life would have turned out, had my pregnancy test been negative, but I'm sure that those two little spirits would have found some way to make it to our family.

 Though sometimes I wonder if my pregnancy test had been negative, would I have fallen back into that dark hole of depression, or would I have looked optimistically towards adoption?  I'd like to think that it would have been the latter. There was a moment, were I thought my second IVF had failed.  A couple of days before I was suppose to find out from the Fertility clinic, the results from a blood test, I had started spotting. I thought my period had begun.  I remember that moment so clear...."No! No! NO!" I said. I thought: "It was over." I started crying and cuddled up on the bed with my dog Isabelle. She stayed with my while I cried. I let myself cry for about an hour. (Marc wasn't home yet from work.) But after an hour, I remember thinking, "Okay, so we're suppose to adopt." and I had stopped crying. I still laid there, cuddled up with Izzy, when my sister-in law had called. She convinced me to take a prego test.  It said "Pregnant" and my immediate thought was "What?" (I wasn't expecting it to say pregnant.) I guess I had some implantation spotting.  In that small period of an hour, I felt what it felt like to have our second IVF fail a second time, and I didn't fall completely apart like I did with the first failed IVF.

One thing I learned during those last few difficult months of  infertility was that I decided to take joy in other people's happiness when it came to someone else's pregnancy.  I tried ( I TRIED, though it was difficult.) to be happy for them, even if they didn't appreciate the miracle it was to become pregnant, at least I would appreciate it for them. I still to this day am SO SO thankful for my two little miracles. How did I get so lucky? How did I get two???? But like that Pampers commercial that I love so much: "Every baby is a miracle." I've also realized that everyone is a miracle, and to appreciate the time that we are given with them, because each moment you spend with a loved one is SO precious. Whether it be a Child, a Spouse, a Mom, a Dad, an In-law, a Grandparent, a Cousin, or a Friend, each moment is a blessing.  Though there have been some difficult days with twin infants already, I am so blessed to have them in my life, and I remember that when things get a little hectic.

To give you an update, since I last posted at 20 weeks of pregnancy. I was very fortunate to have made it to 38 weeks with my twins. My twins were both healthy, (with a minor hiccup) I had a C-section, by choice, and I never went into any labor. (Which I dreaded. Thank goodness!) It was hard for me to enjoy my pregnancy at first until after I reached 25- 30 weeks, since I was so paranoid.  I remember even being worried at my baby shower, would I have to take all this baby crap back if something went wrong.? I didn't really buy things for the nursery or outfits until late into my pregnancy. I don't think it really sank in until the end.  But I did everything that I wanted to do while I was pregnant...Meaning, I got professional pregnancy photos, I painted my belly with foot prints, and Marc painted a globe of the world on my belly. I did yoga up until 36 weeks of my pregnancy. I ate healthy and drank a TON of water. By the time I was ending my pregnancy, I finally allowed myself to buy baby clothes and decked out the nursery.  My sister took me out to buy a "petunia-pickle-bottom" diaper bag for her baby shower gift to me...though we found a  black/white/red "Ju Ju Be" diaper bag that I liked even better. My sister also through me a baby shower that was equivalent to a Celebrity Baby Shower...she spoiled me.   And my dad helped paint the nursery.  Marc and I put headphones over my belly and let the babies hear Dave Mathews band, Mumford and Sons, The Killers, Enya....and so on.  Marc talked to the babies through my belly.  I loved feeling them kick, even though little Austin liked to wake me up around 2 in the morning...he still does that too....  As far as breastfeeding goes...I tried, I really did try, but it just wasn't for me.  They got breast milk for the first two months. I had enough for one baby, but not two, so I pumped and mixed it with formula.  I never got that "overwhelming feeling of love" that some women say they get while they breastfeed...I was just overwhelmed.  I didn't like how my breast felt. And I think with infertility, I worked up in my head what I thought breastfeeding would be like.   I got more that feeling of love, when I bottle fed them and they stared into my eyes. With breastfeeding, I just felt like they were smashed up against my boob. (TMI, sorry.)

As far as our little "hiccup" goes, everything is perfectly fine now, but Ava was born with craniosynostosis. Which means that part of her fontanels in her head prematurely fused. I guess it's common in twins. Her head looked like a kidney bean for a while. They told us we needed to lie her on her left side to take the pressure off her brain, and that she would most likely need surgery and a helmet to shape her head correctly. My husband gave her a blessing while we were in the hospital, and we all had a feeling that she would be alright.  We took her down to Primary Children's Hospital to have her looked at by a specialist, who was a guru on a less invasive surgery for her condition. We had to wait till she was a month old to do a CT scan, which showed that all her major fontanels were open and that she didn't need to have surgery. :) I took her down to Primary Children's again at 4 months, just recently, and the specialist said she did not need to wear a helmet either, and that her defect in her skull was so minor that her hair would cover it up, and most likely resolve on it's own by the time she is 2 years old. So everything is all good, like I said.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Thursday, January 5, 2012

19 Weeks and Counting!

Tomorrow I will hit the 19 week mark and will also be going in for the "Big Appointment." I'm excited to find out what the sexes of the babies are, but more importantly, we will hopefully find out that they are developing correctly and are healthy. I've thought all along that they are a boy and girl, but recently I've been getting vibes that they are both girls. For instance, I was at Target with my husband, and I saw a cute lamp and almost said out loud: "Oh, that will be cute for the girl's room." Marc has said the same thing to me, that he thinks they are both girls. It wouldn't surprise me if they were both girls, since his dad has cursed all the Mattsson boys with having far there are only two boys out of eight grandkids. I really don't care either way, I think both boys or girls, or both boy and girl will be exciting and fun in there own unique ways. I'm just hoping they cooperate, so we know 100% what sexes they are, and I can start buying baby crap.

At 15 weeks, the nausea had finally worn off. Now my source of daily comfort and knowing they are okay, is feeling them move! (much better feeling than ralphing all the time.) The kicking started off real faint around 15 weeks, like a muscle twitch, or bubbles. Now it's slowly starting to feel stronger. Baby A is on top, just under my belly button, and is the most active. That's why I think it might be a boy. Baby B is on the bottom and a little more mellow, and at my 15 week appointment, the Dr. thought it looked like a girl but it was still too early to tell. I love laying in bed in the morning, waiting between alarm clock sounds, and feeling them move. It's like they are saying good morning to me. Marc still can't feel them and they alway stop kicking when I grab his hand to feel my belly. Oh, I wish he could feel them! We have had some fun with listening to them with a stethoscope...I have one from school. I only hear sloshing and tapping sounds like they are moving...can't pick up their heartbeats with it though.

I am feeling calmer at this point in the pregnancy, but I still have the worry in the back of my mind that something could go wrong, even though at this point everything is probably okay. It's hard hearing when others have had miscarriages or when I watch those TLC programs on TV, and see laboring mothers or when the baby's born not breathing...Ugh! I have to change the channel. There is also the guilt factor of "Why me? Why did I get pregnant, while my friends in my support group are still awaiting their miracle?" I still pray for them. I did finally get off of celexa, and I'm doing better than I expected. Which is good, cause I don't want to be on that, being pregnant, or breast feeding. And despite some of the stressors of being pregnant after infertility, I think I'm managing well for myself.

I will also say that it's finally sinking in that I'm actually pregnant. The first 4 months, I was so paranoid about loosing them again to miscarriage, and I think I was in a state of denial. I even avoided reading the baby books for a while. Now, it's sunk in that I'm going to have to start looking into childcare, find a pediatric physician, Lamaze classes, breast feeding classes... how I'm going to balance breast feeding/pumping with my busy schedule at work? How will we adjust to the changes to our budget with twins? Ah! Where to start? I feel like a deer paralyzed in the headlights. We do at least have an appointment tomorrow in the afternoon with a daycare. You would think I would know all the questions to ask, given that my mom owns a daycare back home in Sacramento, but I don't. Luckily she e-mailed me a list of things to ask. I've forgotten all those things already. I've also gotten some good recommendations for pediatric doctors I'm slowly starting to prepare myself for all this.

I've been trying to take care of myself too. I've been, swimming, elliptical, walking...taking it easy at the same time. I'm going to try to take advantage of my me time while I feel good. I know I'm going to have to start taking it easy soon enough. Just from talking to friends who've had multiples, around the 30 week mark is when things will start to get uncomfortable. I saw an episode on MTV True Life of two couples who were expecting twins. Both ladies looked huge!!! I was in shock, and in more shock thinking that's going to be me in a few months! Ahhh! I feel like I already look about 6 months pregnant, though I'm almost 5 months. But bring it on, baby! Fat belly, heavy breathing, waddling and all! I told Marc he's going to have to help me with grocery shopping to help push the cart around. But poor guy's got two herniated discs in his back and is probably going to need surgery soon. So both of us are going to be waddling around like gimps. We'll have to call up his parents or people at church to come and help if we need. I won't hesitate asking for help either. I'll have to update again sooner this time. Especially after tomorrow's appointment. Wish us luck!