Thursday, January 28, 2010

Almost There!

I have a feeling my next post will announce my babies!

I'm 35 weeks and 4 days along.  At my appointment today, the boys were about 5 and a half pounds each. Once again, they were facing my backside, so no pictures. I think it has been a month since we've gotten to see their faces/profiles! Carter is still breech and Nolan is vertex so we will still be having a c-section...though I'll wait for labor to begin before heading to the hospital.

I was dilated to just about 3 cm today. So my cervix is changing even while I'm still resting! If I get moving, these boys could be here super fast! Dr. Martin thinks we'll be having them early next week.

So I think I'll keep resting for now then actually go OUT to dinner this weekend, for the first time since Halloween weekend. I was thinking Patrizio, but Dr. Martin said she totally ate at Patrizio the nights before both her boys were born! CRAZY!

Then Sunday, Brad and I will take a walk! You don't understand, I've been thinking about and planning this walk for quite some time now. We'll see how far my feet can carry my big body! Monday, maybe I'll get a pedicure. Anyone want to join me?

I'm still having some discomfort in my wrists and hands. My finger joints are very weak and a little painful and my finger tips are all numb. It is so weird! Like my fingertips have fallen asleep and won't wake up!

I can't believe how far we've come. I've been pregnant now for 8 months. I remember checking into the hospital November 2nd, very afraid, thinking 2010 was so far away.  Now here we are, approaching February....the same month as our due date.

I am so excited to meet our baby boys! I don't feel too nervous for labor and surgery, just yet. I just want the time to come already!  I think Brad's pretty ready, too! He wants me to start taking walks now!

So I'm thinking Feb. 3rd or 4th would be nice...Wednesday or Thursday. I like those days!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Big Boys!

I am 34 weeks and 3 days along at this point and so happy to have come this far!

At our appointment today, Carter weighed 5.1 lbs and Nolan weighed 5.4 lbs.  Reaching 5 lbs was another one of our big goals so yay! Carter was still breech and Nolan still vertex, so that means we are still having a c-section.

The cerclage was removed this afternoon, just a quick, in-office procedure. Afterwards, Dr. Martin checked my cervix and it was 1 cm dilated with some funneling. Women can be dilated a bit for several weeks or can dilate quickly. It all just depends on what my body wants to do!

I will continue weekly appointments. My next one is Thursday. I will wait to go into labor naturally, keeping Dr. Martin informed, and when we reach the second stage (contractions less than 5 mins. apart) we'll head to the hospital for the c-section, unless the babies have turned.

We also scheduled a c-section, should I make it to 38 weeks. They usually won't keep twins in the womb any longer than that. It will be Feb. 15, bright and early!

So right now, we wait!  Hopefully 10 more days. We are so ready!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Still counting down!

We had another appointment Wednesday (yesterday). Everything looks wonderful! My blood pressure was back in a normal range so pre-eclampsia is no longer a big concern.  Dr. Martin measured my belly again and it is the same size as a single pregnancy at 44 weeks.  Full term is 40 weeks! I've gained 50 pounds and the numbers are still creeping up. Keep on growing, boys!

Carter and Nolan weigh 4.7 and 4.8 pounds! That's 4 and 7/10 of a pound, not 4 lbs, 7 oz.   Total of 9.5 lbs of baby! Wow!  The boys were sitting side by side in my belly, but sort of on a diagonal. Both were facing my back side so we got zero pictures! Carter was breech and Nolan was vertex again. He must be flipping around lots. If Carter doesn't flip to be vertex, we are still on track for a c-section.

I'm starting to have weird things happen to my hands. My finger joints and wrists feel very weak and ache some. My hands fall asleep very easily, too. This is because the carpal tunnel in my wrists is being somewhat constricted from swelling.  It is a normal side effect of pregnancy.  I'm also very easily winded and get out of breath, just from having a conversation! That gives Brad and I a good laugh...which makes me more winded!

The boys are kicking and squirming like crazy these days! I LOVE it! I'm trying to catch some belly movement on video but every time I take the camera out, they sit perfectly still! Carter has the hiccups like 3-4 times a day and Nolan has them so rarely that I can only count two times ever. 

It is all worth it and even more so if these boys will just stay in for 17+ more days! Since I have to go back to work after only 8 weeks postpartum, the less time they are in the NICU and home with me, the better!  I will be looking forward to summer break when I can sit with my babies by the pool and relax and go for jogs, etc.  Okay, don't burst my bubble.  It is such a lovely one, isn't it?  Brad and I both know that we really have no idea what we are in for but it will be entertaining!

Jan. 17, I'll be 34 weeks along. I can't believe it! (3 days)
Jan. 20, the cerclage will be removed. (6 days)
Jan. 25, I will stop taking all medication. (11 days)
Jan. 26, my 29th birthday! (12 days)
Jan. 31, the boys will be 36 weeks along and we hope to get at least this far! (17 days)

I'm hoping that at this point, the cerclage is just sitting there and it is the bed rest that is keeping the cervix strong. If so, maybe once it is removed, my cervix will stay strong enough on its own to keep the boys in until February!

We are sooooo incredibly thrilled to have made it this far. Now we are getting greedy and wanting to make it even farther!  Thanks for checking in! 

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A lengthy one. Sorry it has been so long!

I don't know what happened. I totally lost interest in updating the blog! It has been 3 weeks and now we're back in action. Perhaps it was because Brad was home from Christmas Eve through the New year weekend. When he's home, I just want to hang out or guide him through his "to-do" list.

Yep, I posted it on the wall in our kitchen. This way, I would not have to nag so much. Brad always gets it done but typically on his terms, not mine.

Speaking of the list, all major things are done! These are things that had to be done before babies and some things that I just really wanted to have resolved before babies. Here are two major ones:
Brad detail cleaned both of our cars after getting them inspected and oil changes.

And installed the car seats!

Aren't they adorable? I know, I'm talking about car seats here and not babies yet. =) I hope I can fit between the seats for the car ride home from the hospital!

We also got our windows professionally cleaned, outside and in.  They were so horrible that you could barely see out and we had major challenges trying to clean them ourselves because of all our bushes out front.  A one-time house cleaner is coming in a couple weeks to take care of some things I can't do and Brad doesn't have time to do. I can't wait!

The most exciting thing that happened and wasn't even on our list was that we got a king size bed! Thanks to Suzzi (brad's mom) for the mattress! We are loving it! Sleeping so well, even me! And my husband has such great taste that he picked out the bed, dresser and bedding! And I love it!  (He shopped like crazy and sent me picture after picture).  Then he gave our bedroom walls a fresh coat of paint. We feel so grown up now in our new bedroom! The bedding isn't in this picture yet, but here is a glimpse.

We had a nice Christmas. I told Brad he didn't have to do any decorating since I wouldn't be able to help him, but one morning he put up Christmas lights before I even got out of bed! He said we can't have Christmas without some lights! No tree this year, or Christmas cards, but the front of our house was lovely, especially with the snow falling Christmas eve! I have such a wonderful husband!

We spent time with Brad's sister's family Christmas eve and Christmas Day so that was definitely nice, getting to see the kiddos open gifts! It is funny because all the way back in May, we bought Christmas tickets to go to Charlotte. We had no idea what we were in for at that time!

My aunt, Linda, visited the end of December. She arranged a long layover, since she is a flight attendant. She came ready to be put to work! It was so nice to see her and she didn't take a break! Thanks, Linda!  It actually motivated me to organize closets and cabinets. I think I've gone through all of them now!

New Year's Eve: Brad was enjoying his Pinot Noir as he had been all break. I started putting down the sparkling grape juice too early and I was struggling to stay up! But we made it to midnight and welcomed 2010 with a kiss!

Now for baby news and the real reason for this blog:

I had another appointment today. I've actually had 2 or 3 since my last blog post. The babies are continuing to grow wonderfully and my cervix continues to maintain a great length. The boys are 4.2 and 4.3 lbs.  At each of the last 3 appointments, Nolan has actually been bigger than Carter! He has been smaller for the entire pregnancy until now.

Baby A, Carter Brannon Kowalski. 

Baby B, Nolan Bradford Kowalski, with his lips puckered up!

The sono tech says she thinks these boys look nothing alike! I can't wait to see them! Here's the link to view more sonograms.

Well, with 8.5 lbs of baby inside, it is no wonder I look and feel the way I do.  Dr. Martin measured my belly size to be 40 weeks. That's full term! I'm only 32 weeks but obviously expect to be much larger looking. I've reached 45 pounds weigh gain. I feel like the last 5 pounds have gone straight to my arms and legs. My feet are really hurting and swell a bit when I shower.  I hope I can manage to at least take a walk once the babies are here! I'm sure things will bounce back.


And you know what, we officially reached my Doctor's last major goal of 32 weeks! Our babies are going to be just fine!  That said, I now feel like I can say, I'm over being pregnant! I want to wake up in the morning and not feel like throwing up. I want to take a yoga class. Most of all, I want to know what these boys look like and sound like! I CANNOT WAIT to meet them.  My heart aches for it! That is why I continue to have dreams about my delivery and seeing them for the first time.

Speaking of delivery, we are still on track for a c-section. Bummer! Both babies are breech (bottom down), opposite of this 32 week twin pregnancy picture.

At my last appointment, though, B had flipped and was head down! I was hoping that this week, A would do the same but not so much! Oh well. I still have some hope.  By the way, A is the baby closest to the cervix.

So here's the low down:
23 weeks: I checked into the hospital and had cerclage placed.
26 weeks: Goal number 1 reached! I went home on bed rest.
28 weeks: Goal number 2 reached!
32 weeks: Goal number 3 reached!
34 weeks: Cerclage will be removed. We are scheduled for January 20. I could go into labor any moment after having it removed or it could be a few more weeks.
36 weeks: my personal goal. February 1.
40 weeks: full term. My due date is February 28. Who knows.

A little worrisome news at today's appointment. I had high blood pressure. Dr. Martin said that she really noticed that I also looked much more swollen than last week.  Though she did not diagnose it, these are signs of Pre-eclampsia, a high blood pressure condition that is more common in twin pregnancies. It is dangerous for mom and babies and is reason enough to deliver the babies once diagnosed.  But she is just concerned and did not diagnose it! She was concerned because, in addition to my weekly shot, I am taking a uterine relaxer that doubles as a medicine to lower blood pressure. She had me lie on my side and she took my blood pressure again and it was much lower.  That's good! This week, the purpose of my bed rest is to relax and keep my blood pressure from rising. Hopefully next week it will be just fine and we can stay on schedule for the cerclage removal.

Pregnancy is amazing...having such an effect on so much of our bodies....being a different experience for every woman...causing such strong emotions...creating life!  I'm fascinated every day by it.

Thanks for all the thoughts, prayers, food and for checking in! We are so thankful to have made it so far and cannot believe we are almost there! Could have babies in 2 weeks (hoping for 4)! Crazy!