My Story

The chronicle of the journey from infertility, to miscarriage, to finally raising twin girls born in June 2012.

Friday, February 24, 2012

20 weeks

Well, we've passed 20 weeks!  Woot!  I've got pictures, I've got video, I've got info!  Lots of randomness in this post so I'll try to break it up into topics.  The real baby stuff is the last section if you want to skip down to there.

*** My hubby, Mr. Quiet ***

K has been to every single doctors appointment since this IVF attempt began.  Yes, every single blood draw, every internal exam, he's there for all of it.  Like I said before, I married good!  I'm not good at dealing with doctors because the doctors I saw when I was younger, they were all real pricks.  Dr. C and my GP are very different from the pricks, but ya know, old habits of closing off and being on guard, they die hard.  So K goes with me, especially now that I have the addition of hormones to add to my usual issues, partially just to keep me company and to endure the scheduling challenges with me, and partially to remind me of questions and to remember the answers since odds are I won't remember them correctly.

He talks a lot to me.  So I forget that when he's not in his own territory, and an OB's office is NOT his territory, he pretty much just listens.  Doesn't say a word.

So Dr. C's nurse, we'll dub her RNA (as in Nurse A, but NA is too close to N/A and I don't want to be insulting), she comes in and we're talking about how I passed the glucose test.  She gives the remark "I should have told you to celebrate with some cake or something!" and K replies "Oh, she did."

RNA - "He actually speaks!"

Yup.  That's my man.  A man of few words.  And those few words are usually some witty remark that make you realize that he's been paying attention to everything all along.

*** Dr. C ***

Dr. C said he would check my blog to see how I interpreted my appointment today.  I told him that now that I know he reads this, I'm probably never going to talk about him again!  But that just wouldn't be any fun at all, now would it?

So, Dr. C, yes, you got rid of your old shoes, but your current shoes are now becoming old shoes, so says the woman who wears moccasins out in public.  Personally, I vote you keep your comfy shoes.  As mine start getting holes, they become shoes for the pottery studio until they are so worn out and covered in mud that they walk themselves into the garbage can!  Clearly I have my fashion priorities, if it ain't comfy, it ain't worth it.

I was going to campaign to see if I could convince you to go blond because that would just be hysterical, but I won't inflict such a joke on the woman who got you to get rid of your old shoes.  If it were just you, I might be evil and convince you that you could totally pull off being a blond (bwahahahahah!) but nope, can't do it now.  Damn conscience!

Ok, actual information that I took away from the appointment today other than the important stuff about the babies in the final section of this post - because anemia is common, I'm going to start taking an iron supplement with a vitamin C supplement as a preventative measure.  So I guess with extra iron, I'll also be adding metamucil and fiber gummies back into rotation to make sure I poo again at some point.  We're also going to keep me on a low dose of metformin since it might be what's holding off the diabetes and there's no reason not to take it.

I seem to be eating enough, which I was a little concerned about since I'm having to make a real effort to do so.  I'm so sick of food!  No, I guess I'm not really sick of food, I'm sick of the going to the fridge and figuring out what to eat process.  If someone just puts food in front of me, I'm generally happy to eat some of it, but only being able to eat a little at a time and needing to eat several times per day, it's just frustrating.  But according to my book, my weight is on track, and Dr. C hasn't said anything about the rate of my weight gain so I guess I'm doing it right.

And of course, I forgot to ask about the headaches.  Probably because I didn't have one for that particular hour.  And I forgot to ask about these little heart races.  Or, I'm not sure if my heart races, or just needs to pump harder for a few minutes, but I'm sometimes getting the feeling like a random bit of adrenaline is suddenly flowing through me.  Yeah, I forgot to ask, I'm a dork.  Others on my pregnancy forums are complaining about headaches and I understand that during pregnancy the heart has to work harder due to increased blood volume, so I'm going under the assumption that both of these things are normal.  I'll be back in 2 weeks so I can ask then.  I was social enough to chat about politics, but too brain dead to remember my actual relevant questions.  *sigh*

*** Size ***

First, let's check on the belly progress, shall we?  Again, we'll start with the 10 week picture because it's still difficult to determine what is fat and what is babies without a starting reference.

10 weeks

20 weeks
Never in a million years would I have looked at that 10 week picture and thought "gee, I was thin!" but that's what I'm doing!

Ok, so here's the thing - when I started going to the fertility clinic, I was at my very fattest, 266lbs.  After a couple of months on metformin, I lost some weight and kind of hung out in the 250-255lbs range.  I only ever bought 1 pair of comfortable jeans for the 266lb me, but I had a full wardrobe for the 255lb version.  I got pregnant with Girls 1.0, moved up into my 266lbs fat pants, and for about a week was starting to wear a pair of maternity jeans.

When I got home after losing them, my weight was once again peeked at 266lbs.  Over the next 2 weeks, it dropped down to 248lbs where I hung out for a while, and had to dig out my "thin" wardrobe that I hadn't worn in years.  Then the fertility clinic changed all their rules and decided I couldn't get pregnant again until I got my fat ass below 232lbs, so I worked my ass off to get there, and bought 2 pairs of smaller jeans as my body shrank simply so I could get dressed without my pants falling off.  I had no intentions of keeping that weight off which is why I only bought the bare minimum to dress myself.

I started this pregnancy somewhere around 235lbs.  I'm back up to about 256lbs, and have just grown back into what I consider to be my "normal" wardrobe.  I still have some weight to gain before I get out the fat pants, and even more before I get out the maternity jeans.  And being a fat person all along, lord knows I have plenty of tops that will serve just fine as maternity tops.  So why my mother came by to try on some maternity tops that she bought me, I'll never know!  I appreciate the thought Mom, but there's a chance I won't need anything more than the wardrobe I already have!

*** Employment ***

It looks like I'm ready to unemploy myself.  I left my pottery gig because the potty breaks, and being exhausted just didn't make production feasible.  Left on good terms though, I'll have that job when I want it back.

The video gigs have started up again after being slow for more than a year, and I'm finding that I can't keep doing it.  The video stuff was ok for a while, but the last couple of weeks, I just feel like crap when I get home from a job.  The lugging around of equipment just doesn't feel like something I should be doing.  And I'm moving slower than usual so a job that's supposed to take 90 minutes is taking 2 hours.  K went on a job with me yesterday and he did all of the equipment lugging, and he agrees, it's time for me to stop.  Sometimes it's no big deal, but sometimes it's grueling, and there's simply no way of predicting which kind of job you're walking into.  I have 2 more jobs booked, one of which is likely to be cancelled, and then I'm done until the kiddos are ready to be without me for a couple of hours at a time.

I have a very part time admin job that I'll keep.  It's about 2 hours per week, and not even every week, but it's just nice to be useful somewhere even if the paycheck really only covers the gas.  And another friend has hired me to take edit notes for her video shoot this weekend, and that has no physical requirements at all so I can do things like that.  I'm hoping more little gigs like that will trickle in so I'm not completely throwing us under the financial bus.

But, bigger picture - not working for a few months to make sure the kiddos get here ok, that's still cheaper than another IVF attempt if I keep working and harm the kiddos doing so!

*** 20 week anatomy scan ***

Ok, I know that this is what you're all really here for.  It's not about me, it's about the babies, so let's get to it!

It's been a week of good news.  All I have is good news.  I'm so out of my element here!

I'm still just gobsmacked that I didn't fail my glucose test and get to assume I don't have diabetes for another 2 months.  I am going to start checking my blood sugar levels when I wake up so we can just be sure that everything stays ok before I take the test again at 28 weeks.  Lucky me still has my handy dandy blood poking kit that I was taught how to use in my last pregnancy.

Let's check in on the little ones, shall we?  The pictures and videos are getting a little more blobby again.  Mostly because they no longer have much room to lay all nice and profile for the camera.  So the cuteness factor is a little diminished.  Today they were mostly curled up pretty tight, ankles crossed.  But there's some cute swallowing action from Baby B at about 1:15 in the video.

The ultrasound was scheduled to last 20 minutes, but it took us about an hour.  They were being a bit difficult to measure and today was the anatomy scan where they do tons of measurements.

We did finally got a proper potty shot of Baby B and it's confirmed, we've got 2 girls!  The technician says there's always a margin of error, but yeah, both girls.

They both of brains!  And kidneys!  And hearts with 4 ventricles!  They are developing properly, no abnormalities!

Size wise, there are 2 things that we look for.  First, we want them to measure above the 10 percentile in terms of general size.  The percentiles are standardized for singleton pregnancies and it's just generally understood that twins are going to be smaller, which is why being above only 10% is acceptable.  Second, you want the twins to be growing evenly.  You don't want one at 10% and the other at 40%.  Mine?

~~~~~~Drum roll please!~~~~~~

Measuring at 43% and 44% (aka average size for a singleton!) and a size differential of 0%!

Dr. C says that a differential of 0% is unheard of (as in exceptionally great) and that average singleton size is really healthy for twins.

The last 2 things to look at are cervix length, and the state of the SCH.

In the book I'm generally referring to throughout the pregnancy, When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy, says that at the 20 week scan, if you have a cervix length of 2cm or more, it's likely that you will carry to term.  So I went in today with a very specific goal in mind.  Did I achieve this goal?  4.6cm bitches!  Boo-yah!!  I can't really pull off "boo-yah" can I?  Yeah, let's move on.

And now, the state of my bleed.  The nemesis of this pregnancy.  The ER Trip Generator.  I haven't bled for 2 weeks now.  And the SCH is about half the size it was at the last few checks, so it's pretty much getting squished out of existence at the moment.  I'm not going to tempt the fates and declare anything about it being solved, or gone, or anything like that which might be interpreted by the universe as predicting the future in any way, but there ya go.  Half the size it was, and haven't been bleeding for a while.  Take from that what you will!

The babies are healthy.  They are the right size.  They have all of their parts and those parts are functioning properly.  I don't currently have any diseases or other issues that is threatening their well-being.  I'm still not really feeling their movements, but I'm sure feeling my skin stretch so I have that to tell me that they are still growing every day.

So I'm having a pretty good day today.


  1. so awesome Alex. I'm so happy for you!

  2. I'm so happy for you!

    Come on over to my blog and give me a heads up if you want hats in the future. As a rule, I won't start knitting until after 30 weeks or so.

  3. This is such FABULOUS news. Congratulations. I am so so so happy for you!

  4. Wonderful news Alex! I'm so very happy. Half way there!

  5. Fabulous news! Glad to hear things are going well!

  6. Happy 20 weeks! Our Hubbies sound very similar. Men of very few words in the office. I always love seeing the videos!


Please share your thoughts! It makes me feel like I have friends.