Thursday, July 28, 2011

Funny Things About Newborns

1) Their pooping noise can embarrass any adult in the room.

2) The rooting reflex is comical (although frustrating) when they get to a feverish pace.

3) The little faces they make, specifically when they put their mouth in an o shape and the smooshy
sideway face when they stretch.

4) Sleepy smiles (so cute).

5) Grunts, snorts, and whatever else they come out with.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Two Weeks Old

This week brought your first baths.  We put a towel in the sink, and neither of you particularly enjoyed the water.  Otherwise, nothing really exciting to say.

One of my favorite things you two do is grunt talk to each other.  When one of you start grunting (which seems to be almost constant), the other one usually joins in.  Very cute.

Daddy went back to work this week.  He had been so helpful at night, helping feed you two every time you got up.  Now I have to do it on my own.  Sometimes I get to sleep for a couple of hours at a time, and sometimes you wake me up every hour.  I'm trying to get you on the same schedule.  It's not going real great.

I swear you two like sitting in poop.  Every time I change a poopy diaper, I get a dirty look like, "Mom, I worked hard for that," and then you promptly poop again.

We got a nice gift from a neighbor.  They brought bread and t-shirts.  It was very sweet.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

One Week Old

So I'm writing this twelve weeks after the boys were born.  I should have done this much earlier,'ve been kinda busy.  So, from what I remember, this is the birth story of our twins!

I don't remember exactly how early Steve and I had to be at the hospital, but I drove us there and waddled my 190 lb. self to delivery.  Yep, that's right, I gained 70 pounds for these babies!  They took us back to our room immediately.  We got a huge room usually used for water births.  Steve thought we got a hot tub. :) We also had a couch and little table.  It was all very nice.  After the normal vitals check and all that, the nurses started the meds.  My mom and Linda eventually made it to the hospital and we all hung out for most of the day.  Throughout the day, each time Linda would leave for a walk or drink etc., the doctor always came in.  We started trying to kick her out at random times just to hurry things along.  But my mom almost missed the birth altogether.  She had gone out of the room to get something to eat when the doctor came in and said I was fully dilated and ready to push.  After frantically texting her, she made it back just in time.  So after hours of waiting, I was getting nervous we would go home babyless, and so I gave the babies an ultimatum of 5pm.  And by golly, they almost hit it! 

At 5:40pm, Brant Douglas was born weighing 5lb 14 oz and 18 inches long.  I pushed a total of four times during one contraction.  My mom held one leg and Linda the other.  Daddy stayed up by my head and held my hand.  He swore that he wouldn't be able to look, and he didn't.  I watched in a mirror.  Since Daddy didn't feel comfortable cutting the cord, Mimi did it for him.  After Brant was detached from me, Daddy followed him to the nurses' station.  Brant screamed for a long while, and Daddy tried to comfort him as best as he could.  He also came over to kiss me, and I noticed that he was crying.

At 5:56pm, Brax Robert was born weighing 6lb 7oz and 19 3/4 inches long.  I only had to push four times with him also.  This time, Daddy peeked and told me that he would watch the next time we had a baby.  Grandma Linda cut the cord this time.  Brax didn't cry nearly as long as his brother.  And after what seemed liked forever, I finally got to hold the babies. 

Lynn and Brooke came in later that night.  Lynn commented that I seemed very calm.  I was watching the Cubs game and chilling in bed.  There really wasn't much else I could do!  Papaw brought Elias up to see his brothers.  He was extremely excited and was heard saying, "Now I never have to play with mom and dad ever again!"

Around 10 o'clock that night, we were moved to a postpartum room.  It was very, very tiny.  Daddy slept on the couch "bed."  Brax scared us that night when he started coughing and gagging on a ton of mucus that he eventually spit up.  We were told that mucus was normal, especially for babies that don't hang out in the birth canal very long.  After that, we asked for both babies to be kept in the nursery while we slept.  Neither of us trusted ourselves enough to wake up if it happened again.  And it did happen again, more than once.

In the hospital, I noticed that Brax seemed to be very aware of things going on around him.  I even saw him follow a person as they walked past his bassinet.  He was very calm and chill.  Brant, on the other hand, was more high maintenance.  He was constantly hungry and never seemed satisfied.  I did try to breast feed them.  Brant had no problems, but Brax couldn't latch on.  The lactation consultant later determined that the roof of Brax's mouth was too high for him to latch.  He hadn't eaten in the first 24 hours, so we had to decide between pumping immediately or allowing him to be formula fed.  I started pumping colostrum.  It was a little frustrating pumping every 3 hours and only getting a mL of colostrum that Brant downed in seconds and Brax had trouble finishing.

Over the next two days, we had more visitors, both boys endured a circumcision, and we about went stir crazy in the tiny room.  We almost had to stay due to the loss of weight by both boys and Brax's trouble with taking a bottle.  Luckily, the hospital's pediatrician allowed us to leave as long as we saw our own pediatrician in the next few days.

Stats from their first doctor's appointment on July 11...
Brant: 18 5/8 inches, 5lbs 9 1/2 oz
Brax: 18 1/2 inches, 5 lbs 15 oz

In this first week, the boys have shared their first smiles.  Brant has even giggled.  Elias says they smell like marshmallows.  We've had lots of visitors, and my friends have taken turns bringing us scrumptious dinners.  Daddy tries to get lots of skin-to-skin time in, and we've tried to do a little tummy time too.  We've noticed that Brant hates the hiccups and will get mad and cry whenever he gets them.  We also had our first scare.

Brant was downstairs laying in his seat while I ran upstairs to get Brax.  As I was coming down the stairs, I saw Elias holding Brant and walking across the living room.  I about fell down the stairs.  Very calmly, I took the baby from Elias and made him promise never to pick up a baby without permission EVER again.  I don't even want to think about what could have happened in the two minutes I was gone.  I do have to mention that Elias was holding him perfectly with one hand supporting Brant's head and had the other around his body.

Oh well, we made it through the first week.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Thirty Eight Weeks, Two Days

On Tuesday, I had my last non-stress test and regular doctor's appointments. The stress test went perfect and at my appointment she said that not much had changed....still 3 cm and 50% effaced. I had just finished telling the doctor that the PUPPP had cleared up and I felt like I was good to go the rest of the time when she tells me she's leaving for vacation. So now I had the choice to induce and for sure have her as my doctor...or leave it to chance as to which doctor would be on-call if I delivered next week. This same, exact thing happened to me with Elias. I chose induction with him (only 4 days early) because I was a first-timer. This time I wasn't so sure and I wanted to talk to Steve first.

Of course, he said he didn't care what I chose. My mom thought I should go ahead and be induced. Linda didn't say anything. So I decided to go ahead with the induction since we've had a few glitches here and there with the boys and I'm a little nervous about being a high-risk pregnancy with a doctor I've never met before. And the PUPPP was starting to come back after being off the meds. I really couldn't face that again.

So here I am, at 1:30 am on Thursday morning, not able to sleep. My restless legs are keeping me up...along with my anxiousness and nerves and excitement. I have to get up in 4 hours, but I keep wondering about how tomorrow is going to go. Will I be able to deliver both vaginally, or will I end up with a c-section? Will the boys be healthy? How am I gonna handle two newborns at once? Will the induction even work? How long will it take? Elias took 24 hours. And so on and so on.

Today was my last day with just me and the boy. We really didn't do much. I really can't do much. But as we were running errands, he says to me, "Mom, I hope you don't die." Wow. What a thing for a kid to be worrying about. He went on to tell me that if I died, Daddy would never, ever be able to leave again. So now, I'm worried about that too! Later tonight, after we had dropped Elias off (at Mimi and Papaw's), bought the stroller, gone to dinner (Olive Garden) and ice cream (Baskin Robbins) and a movie (Transformers 3)...I was telling Steve about Elias' comment and he says that he would lose two people. So sad.

Let's just hope and pray that nothing terrible happens today and that we come home healthy with two beautiful baby boys that are going to change our world forever.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Thirty Eight Weeks, Zero Days

I really didn't want to take another 2 week progress picture, but here we are...

Last Thursday, I had been pretty busy, but hadn't felt the babies move all day. So that night, when they are usually the most active, Steve and I sat on the couch and waited for something. I drank my water, put an ice pack on them (I know this works from having PUPPP), and moved them around for a bit, and still nothing. I then called Aunt Myra...she tells me to drink some caffeine and wait a half hour and they should be jumping around. So Steve gets me a flat, gross coke...still nothing. So I called the doctor around 10pm. She tells me, of course, to head in to Labor and Delivery. Poor Grandma Linda had to come sit with Elias while we went in.

At the hospital, they put me on the monitors for a non-stress test. Brant of course responded pretty quickly, but Brax was taking his sweet time. They checked my cervix (no change), told me they looked fine on the monitors and to call Dr. Soper in the morning to schedule an ultrasound.

The next day, I went in for the Biophysical Profile ultrasound which measures body movements, muscle tone (flexing of the arms and legs), breathing movements, and amount of amniotic fluid. Each criteria is scored with either a 0 if absent or 2 if present. It was extremely uncomfortable laying on my back for an hour and 15 minutes, but I was really excited to see just how big the babies had gotten. Unfortunately, that didn't last long once she was finished. Both babies are measuring two weeks small. I was 37 weeks, 3 days:

Brant measured in at 35 weeks, 4 days; 5 lb 3 oz and had a heart rate of 133.
Brax measured in at 35 weeks, 3 days; 5 lb 15 oz and had a heart rate of 138.

The ultrasound can be off on weight by 14 oz either way. Also, Brax never practiced breathing. So Brant got a perfect 8/8 and Brax only got 6/8. The doctor assures me this is fine, but I can't help but worry a little, especially since Elias still has to get breathing treatments.

So now I'm torn between wanting the babies to be born so I can keep an eye on them and make sure they're not going to lose any weight or have any other trouble and keeping them in as long as possible so they can hopefully get bigger and work on the breathing thing. I guess it doesn't really matter, since I obviously have NO SAY! :)

On an positive note, I no longer suffer (and I mean suffer) from PUPPP. I cried (yes literally cried) at my last doctor's appointment because I thought I might have a nervous breakdown and she prescribed me a medication that is usually given to those with severe poison ivy and after the second day, it stopped itching for the most part, and by day five, most of the rash has gone away. Now it's mostly the scabs from me scratching until I bled. Thank God!

I can definitely wait out the last couple of weeks now with hardly any problems. I can still get around pretty well and I feel good. In fact, I just put together a big piece of furniture in just six hours (I'm very proud) even with a big belly and having to get up and down off of the floor.

Fun fact: My fat feet can no longer fit in any of my sandals or flip flops. I've been wearing my tennis shoes exclusively for about 4 weeks now. BUT...I can still tie my own shoes!