My Story

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

Saturday, June 29, 2013

So I've been gritting my teeth and bearing this somewhat single mommyhood, counting down the days until my husband has a reasonable schedule and can participate in helping me around the house again.  To some extent, that was going to start today with him home all day and then leaving in the evening to perform his show.  Then over the next week, he had a relatively open schedule with an extra day off and his work days starting late in the day with no more show to deal with.  I was going to be able to relax a bit and let this shoulder and back pain I've been having subside.

I was going to go to the dentist today on my hubby's day off to get this cavity that I found taken care of.  Do you know how bad a cavity has gotten when you're finding it by feeling it with your tongue?  This is the second one in recent months and I still have yet another broken tooth and other things to get taken care of.  I swear I've been brushing.  My mouth is a disgrace.  But I digress.

So I get a phone call from K last night after the show and he sounds weird.  Turns out he was in a lot of pain.  He's been having back trouble for a while, but last night during the show, the final tweak happened and he ended up with shooting pain throughout his back and down his leg, hardly able to walk.

He gets home and he's really having trouble moving, nearly in tears.  This is not a man to complain about pain, he plows through it.  So he starts getting ready for bed, and he's flinching and freezing with just about every move he makes.  Over the course of 30 minutes, I watch the pain increase, and his mobility decrease.  I ask if it's ER worthy pain.  He goes somewhat silent because he wants to tell me no but the answer is a very clear yes.  We discuss logistics as he doesn't want the girls sleep disturbed by taking them along with us to the hospital but it's midnight so we can't call anyone.  He claims he can drive since it's his left leg that's going dead and I counter with the possibility of a shooting pain that debilitates him momentarily while driving. Then I declare that I'm making the very rare move in our relationship of taking over and making executive decisions and I throw him his pants and a shirt and start to get dressed myself.

I pack up everything the girls might need over a 12 hour period and get K safely in the car.  Then I get the girls in their carseats with as little production as possible hoping they will just fall back to sleep once they are in the car.  Yeah, that didn't happen.

If you ever find yourself stuck in this situation where you need to drop off someone at the ER, but they can't walk themselves in, but you can't really leave the car because there are two babies in it and you need to drop him in the loading zone and can't unpack the babies right there because the car can't stay where it is, here's what you do - I went in leaving K and the girls in the car, asked that someone come out with a wheelchair who can wheel K in while I go park the car and unpack the girls.

The following 4 hours were pretty standard ER stuff.  Waiting for a room, waiting for a doctor, being given some drugs and waiting to see if they take effect, blah blah blah.  Difference being this time, I had 2 very wide awake babies.  Much to my complete shock, at no point did they cry or have any kind of meltdown.  They just took it all in stride while I danced their favorite monkey for them.  There were a couple of moments of a worried look on the face, but that's as bad as it got.  I was mightily impressed.

Diagnosis - Something about pinching the sciatic nerve.  K is on bedrest, only allowed to walk to the bathroom until his follow up appointment on Monday.

So he's in a great deal of pain, the girls schedule is shot all to hell, I only got 3 hours of sleep, and I'm totally losing my mind because the countdown I was counting on has suddenly lengthened indefinitely and it actually got harder.  Now, not only am I mostly on my own looking after the two girls, I also have to take care of K who's stuck in bed.  He's in pain and kicking himself for not being able to do anything and I simply don't know how to handle seeing him hurt.  All those little things that he was managing to do in his 5 minutes a day of being home, like getting the girls up in the morning, unloading the dishwasher, getting trash collected and taken to the curb, that's all on me now.

I'm exhausted but I can't sleep.  I was literally delirious from drowsiness over 2 hours ago and I went to bed trying to catch that drowsy window and go to sleep early.  For some reason, going to bed only woke me up and now I'm doing the insomnia samba while still being incredibly tired.

I'm also feeling like a rotten person because my first reaction to this new situation was anger.  If I were a nice person, I would relish doting on my ailing husband, but instead I'm fucking angry that the break I was so desperately counting on is now gone for who knows how long.

He has been a little helpful.  I was able to put Middie Biddie in bed with him because she's not as on the move as Teeny Tiny, so he read her stories while I watched just one baby for a change.  I think tomorrow I'm going to have him get up with me and the girls and just travel from the bed to the bathroom and then to his office chair in the living room.  I'll get the girls breakfast, get them up and clean and put them in their table so he can feed them.  Then I can go for a Starbucks run because that's only about 15-20 minutes and they won't need to be moved from that spot for that time while K gets them fed and entertains them.  Then maybe I'll set up a mattress on the floor for him so the girls can crawl all over him while I take care of things like dishes within earshot.  That way he can spend his entire day in that one spot and not have to move, but he can still participate in some family time and be a little helpful to me.  I don't think he particularly enjoyed being a captive in our bedroom all day.  Especially since we still haven't been able to get it destanked yet.  That was our project for this coming week.  *sigh*

Oh, as for his other obligations - the director will be playing his role on stage for closing weekend, walking through the part with script in hand.  His boss has been informed and he won't be working for at least a week, and then his wife will be insisting that he not do the freight shift or lifting anything heavier than a tennis ball for a month once he returns.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Still feels weird to say

I've been doing this mommy thing for a little over a year now.  Yet today when I made some dentist appointments, it felt really weird to say "my daughters".

I don't know why that feels weird.  I think part of me still keeps everything at a bit of arms length because I usually refer to them as "the girls".  I have two daughters.  My daughters.  Weird.

It almost feels like when I say "my daughters", there's a ton of story and explanation that needs to go with that.  I still feel like there's some sort of caveat to that phrase that needs to be explained, but there's not.  They really are MY daughters.  This is real.  They aren't going away for at least another 17 years.  I'm really going to get to experience holding hands to cross the parking lot, don't hit your sister, first day at school, zits, crushes and falling for the wrong boy (or girl), learning how to drive, all that.

I even have trouble fathoming that my body grew them.  They lived inside of my body.  I still find pregnancy to be this incredible, otherworldly concept that I'll never be a part of, and yet I've done it myself!  I've been there!  You would think I would be able to comprehend how that works.  How people grow inside of other people.

I created this person.

And I created this person.

And I created them at the same time.  

Sometimes, they still just seem like elaborate pets.  Like the cats I adore, but who will always have this separation from me since we can't fully communicate like grown up people.  

We're a family of four.  I have 2 daughters.  I'm their mom.  K is their dad.  It's just so weird!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Oh Aunt Flo, you have not been missed

So I'm having my first non medically induced period in.....ever?   It's been at least a few years.  Cramps, headaches, a need for copious amounts of brownies, and just that ooey gooey feeling.

Had a talk with K today about the possibility of having another baby.  Since my body appears to be doing normal womanly things at the moment, my interest in the topic is aroused.  When we've chatted about it over the last year, I've been leaning towards yes and K has been leaning towards no.  Turns out he's not really apprehensive about the idea of having another baby, it's the IVF that he doesn't want to go through again.  Can't say that I blame him.

I asked him what he thought of me getting some ovulation indicator sticks and maybe trying naturally for the next 2 years.  We've certainly heard the story a million times of the infertile who can suddenly get pregnant easily after their first completed pregnancy.  I'm rather curious if I might become one of those stories.  Highly unlikely considering the infertility problem wasn't just me.  K is on board with trying with the el cheapo ovulation detectors and lots of sex.

We're 99% sure that we won't get pregnant without IVF, but it wouldn't hurt to spend the next two years giving that 1% margin of error as much chance as possible to prove us wrong.  When I turn 40 and the girls turn 3, we'll decide if it's something we really want and break those frozen embryos out of storage, or if our family is complete and we can let them go.

In the mean time, will someone please pass me a pan of brownies?  This naturally hormonal woman thing really sucks when you're not used to it.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Invisible Jobs

I am a person who is only noticed when I screw up.  It's the nature of my various professions.  As a stage manager, the majority of the people in theater don't even know what it is I really do, until I don't do it.  As a video editor, if you notice my work, I did it wrong.  As a mom, do I even need to explain?

Considering I'm such a flattery whore, I wonder why I've chosen such invisible careers.  It's kind of getting me down at the moment.  A little depression is creeping in.  One of these days I'm going to find a way to obtain some external validation.  K does his best to acknowledge what I do that I do it well, but he doesn't really keep up with the neediness that is me.  So I'm going to do a little validating of my own by spelling out a bunch of little random things that I do that make me good at this mom job.

  • I've created 2 big spaces in the house that are baby proofed with plenty for the girls to play with.  By thinking ahead and really looking from all angles, the spaces are pretty idiot proof and the girls can play without me chasing them every second.
  • I've equipped the big expansive spaces with safe things for them to pull up on and cruise along, and to break up the space so it's not so intimidating.
  • I always take the bottles and dishes straight to the sink so they don't smell, get left out of the dishwasher, or get found by itty bitty hands throughout the day.
  • I wipe down the girls feeding table and sweep under it immediately after the girls eat so whatever is on it doesn't dry making it that much harder to clean later.
  • I keep the house supplied so we never actually run out of anything.
  • While I'm never really on top of the laundry, I keep up enough that we're never actually out of clean laundry.
  • There's always a set of clean bottles and sippy cups available.
  • I keep the girls faces and hands free clean.
  • I keep all the bills paid on time.
  • The girls have wardrobes the next couple of sizes up.  They are organized and can be grabbed easily if they suddenly outgrow what they're currently in.
  • The girls eat from each food group every day.  How much of which group may not be balanced properly every day, but at least they are getting something from each.
  • I have an emergency diaper bag in my car so I'll never be stuck somewhere by surprise without at least some clean diapers, blankets, and snacks.
  • I change diapers frequently and quickly after they fill.
  • I rotate toys every week or so to prevent boredom.
  • I remember to take my fancy wedding ring off when bathing the girls or slathering on sunscreen so I don't scratch them.
  • I keep their nails trimmed.
  • I make sure the girls nap properly every day.
  • I give them independent play time and play time interacting with me.  No structure to either of those, but they both happen.
  • The big room of the house has floor level bins for toys to be tossed into before we go to bed every night.  Toys are the only mess and it takes 2 minutes to collect everything and toss it into bins for the girls to explore the next day.  The only organization is that soft toys that can safely fall on a babies head are in the higher shelf bins and everything else is tossed into floor level bins.
  • The TV cabinet has random plastic cups and stuff that the girls can discover.  Hopefully feeling like they found something they shouldn't get into will prevent them from actually touching things they aren't supposed to like the cable box (which is harder to reach).
  • I've kept the cats out of the nursery for 8 years so they haven't had a chance to destroy it like they've destroyed the rest of the house.
  • I've been able to keep the girls entertained without the using the TV to do it (so far).
  • I retrieve wubbas and pacis from under cribs every couple of days.
  • I put a lovey the Teeny Tiny likes in Middie Biddies crib that Middie Biddie has no interest in.  This helps keep her wubbas from being stolen by Teeny Tiny because TT feels like she's won when she takes the lovey.
  • I moved Teeny Tiny's crib out of reach of the light switch.
So there it is.  A bunch of stuff that I have done, or do every day that keep the house functioning, but is completely invisible, unless I fail to do it.  I think every mom should make one of these lists once a month or so just to realize how much they do and how well they do it.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Been single momming it

It's been a rough couple of weeks.  K's show opens tonight.  Having him do a show has been kicking my ass.

Just about every day, he goes to work, then straight to rehearsal and comes home between 10pm-midnight.  While he's been able to get up with the girls around 8am, he's been getting me up at 9am and then I'm pretty much on my own.  His days off from work are usually taken up by a few hours of rehearsal in the afternoon so I'm still not getting much relief.

Since his show opens tonight, I was really counting down the days until he would be home the majority of the day on Sunday.  But then last night, he tells me that one of the managers at work resigned and another is going on vacation leaving them down 2 managers so he'll be pulling a lot of extra hours next week, mostly the closing shift.  On Sunday, instead of a nice morning off (I was going to take the morning shift anyway and make him a Father's Day breakfast), he's going to be going into work at the crack of way too early, doing the matinee, and then going back to work for an hour or two to ensure the working manager gets a lunch break.  ARGHHHH!!!!

The last 2 weeks have been particularly hard because the girls have been sick for the first time ever and they are milestoning all over the place.  Teeny Tiny is cruising around the house and just now attempted to wave bye bye (she waved with her fingers toward herself) and Middie Biddie is finally on the move even though she's rarely motivated to actually do it.  They are attempting to say "mama" and "dada" but only glimmers of those words having any meaning.  We haven't officially counted either of them as having a first word yet.

They've been cranky, needy, snotty, and for one day really pukey, and just wanting some one on one attention that they've hardly been able to receive.  Mom and dad are a little lacking in the attention department as well since we're both tired and cranky by the time he gets home.

I'd like a day off please.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Let's play pyramid!

You know the game.  I list a bunch of random things and you guess what they all have in common.  Ready?  Let's play!

A pink onesie
A blue onesie
A blue pair of pajamas
A brown pair of pajamas
My shirt
My jeans
Middie Biddies leg
Middie Biddies tummy
A pink pair of pants
A pink pair of socks
A toy block
The pack and play mattress
The seat of an exersaucer
The saucer of an exersaucer
The seat of a play table
The seat holder of a play table
The dinner table
The seat inside the dinner table
The changing pad
The strap that holds babies on the changing pad
A wubba
Middie Biddies face
Middie Biddies neck
A bib
A larger bib
My new living room laminate floor
My old dining room carpet
My new changing area vinyl floor
Some duct tape

And the answer is....

Things I've cleaned vomit off of between dinner and bedtime!!!!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Happy Birthday!

Gonna be a lot of pictures in this post because yesterday was the girls first birthday!  And just for good measure, they have their first cold!

A couple then and now pictures.

Teeny Tiny Then:

Teeny Tiny Now:

Middie Biddie Then:

Middie Biddie Now:

We had some family and friends over to watch the girls eat cake for the first time.  My mom made them each a single layer cake with fruit loops as decoration.  We expected the cakes to last all of two minutes before getting destroyed, but my dainty little daughters just picked the fruit loops off one by one and munched on those.  Middie Biddie also showed us the proper pinky position for eating cake at tea time.  
They were pretty shy with everyone here staring at them.  No real chatting, just kind of sat there and munched on their fruit loops staring at everybody who was staring back.  Once the fruit loops were gone, the grown ups took a fork to shred the corner of the cake to get them started.  After about an hour, a cake finally got up ended and it got a little more entertaining.

They ended up consuming quite a bit of cake.  Fortunately, they didn't get sick (I was prepared for some puking during the rest of the day but that didn't happen).  Afternoon nap pretty much didn't happen, but overall no real adverse effects from the massive sugar infusion.  Today they are a snotty mess so we're all about the mild liquid based foods.

So, here's the first birthday photobomb!


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Sick, not tired

Well the good news it that the girls are perfectly happy quietly playing in their cribs.  The bad news is that the girls are perfectly happy playing in their cribs.

I put them down almost three hours ago and with the exception of a bottle an hour ago, they've been hanging out quietly undisturbed in there ever since.  Middie Biddie finally dropped off to sleep about 45 minutes ago, but Teeny Tiny is having a grand old time chatting with her monkey, standing up and looking over the adjoining crib railings to spy on her sister, and just sitting there kicking her feet.  At least there's no crying.  But there's no sleeping either.

As for the sick, they both have runny noses and some congestion.  So far, the nose goo is clear and runny and no sign of fever.  Last night Teeny Tiny woke up around 10pm coughing and needed some soothing to go back to sleep.  I think K woke up a few times because of little coughs on the monitor throughout the night.  Overall, they don't seem too upset about it.  They really don't like it when I try to clear the snot away, but I'm gonna do it anyway.  I'm keeping kleenex within reach and they aren't napping or sleeping very well, but that seems to be about the extent of it.  We're having people over for cake for the girls first birthday on Saturday and I've given a heads up to the parents who are bringing kids.  I don't think it's an illness that really warrants a heads up, but I'd rather let the parents make that decision than to make it for them by not telling them.

I'm pretty sure it's just a conspiracy to make sure I don't get any cute pictures of their first birthday.  Teeny Tiny has a very obvious scratch right between the eyes, the first mark I've ever seen on her face.  Yup, they just want to make sure that they are beautiful every other day of the year, but the one day that we might put pictures in the scrapbook, they want to look like gooey, scratched up messes.

I'm not sleeping a whole lot right now.  Just can't get comfortable and my insomnia is back.  I'm pretty sure it's because I've put on a lot of weight. I'm at my record high non-pregnant weight at the moment and everything aches.  Once K's play is over in 2 weeks, we've decided to spend the following three months really putting effort into losing some weight.  I should be getting the new orthodics for my shoes any day now so hopefully I'll be able to use the treadmill without my feet aching after 10 steps.

Teeny Tiny should be taking her first real steps any day.  She's got a couple of small toy tables and she's started pulling up on one and then walking pushing it ahead of her.  But it doesn't count until they take steps not holding onto anything, right?  Middie Biddie is still content to just sit on her bum and engage in more intellectual pursuits.

The house has officially transformed into a kid house.  The living room is scattered with buckets of toys, a few large toys (a really big one is being delivered next week) and a couple of ottomans that we got so the girls can cruise and so people can sit when they come over.  The main portion of the house has the flooring installed although we never got around to installing the molding so it's not really finished.  Once K is home again, possibly before, we start tearing out the rest of the carpet and just putting down vinyl tiles so we have something non-stinky to walk on, but that can be installed without disturbing the girls with the noise.

Just a couple of ewwwy gooey girls about to turn 1!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

What a frustrating, nothing day

Today was not my greatest day of parenting.  Nothing went particularly wrong, we just had a whole lot of nothing happening.

The girls are out of sync on their naps, probably because Teeny Tiny is burning calories all over the place while Middie Biddie just sits there enjoying the ambiance.  As a result, I put them down for a nap, Middie Biddie protested while Teeny Tiny wanted to sleep and it was 2 hours of protests, a little dozing, a lots of quietly amusing themselves and then finally falling asleep for the third hour.  Then for the afternoon nap, another 2 hours of me thinking they would pass out any minute and it not really happening.  That's a whole lot of crib time for the day with very little sleep to show for it.

If there were just one, I could go with the flow.  Nap not working?  Ok, let's get up and try when you seem tired again.  But with two, well one needs to nap and if I let the other one stay up, the whole day is just screwed because the other will want a nap when the first one is getting up and I spend the entire day trying to figure out when who needs to eat and when who needs to sleep, and just, no.  Not doing that.

Teeny Tiny has a diaper rash again.  Been fighting it for a couple of days now but I'm not really seeing any improvement.  She spent her morning play time in the pack and play with bedwetting pads lining it and a bare bum to try to air things out a bit.

I'm also very frustrated that Middie Biddie isn't really crawling.  She can.  If I put her on her tummy and walk away, she'll frantically scramble to get to me.  But I just can't seem to motivate her to move for anything other than fear that I'm disappearing!  She needs to play!  She needs to understand that there's a life to be had if she'd just scootch away from me and have it!  And she needs to start moving for health reasons, muscle development, tiring herself out so she'll sleep well, that kind of thing.

Another part of the problem is that Teeny Tiny isn't getting her fair share of my attention.  I'll be sitting on the floor with Middie Biddie between my legs, me hoping she'll see a toy that's worth moving towards, and Teeny Tiny will sometimes try to crawl up on me which makes Middie Biddie cry because she's getting leaned on, and it's just a mess.  I can't play chase the baby with Teeny Tiny because Middie Biddie will just sit there all abandoned and start crying.

I really tried to motivate her today.  I've been pretty successful by putting her on her tummy and walking a few feet away then giving lots of cuddles and praise when she gets herself to me.  I think one of the skills she's missing is figuring out how to go from seated to crawling.  I've been setting her up and manipulating her to her tummy to try to teach her how to do it.  Sometimes she'll be sitting up, get herself to lying on her back and pitch a fit from there.  But I've seen her in the crib, she's perfectly capable of turning onto her tummy.  But no, not when outside of the crib.  Apparently she's a flipped turtle if she's not in the crib.

Today I spent a lot of time with her seated on one side of the room and me seated on the other side of the room trying to encourage her to come to me.  She found my waving and high pitched tone very amusing and just sat there laughing at me.  I'm not kidding!  Look at her!  Laughing at me!

So that was my frustrating, nothing day.  Too much crib time, too much play time spent doing nothing.  K is home tomorrow.  Tomorrow we'll do better.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

So, that happened

Transformation complete

Well, the last piece of the Mom puzzle is in place.  I sold my little two door car and bought a MomMobile.

In a few days, we'll watch the girls attack their first birthday cake.  Teeny Tiny is cruising and Middie Biddie is doing a floppy crawl like action, and both are clinging to me all day.

I'm starting to wonder how much blogging I'm going to be doing in the future.  While this was originally meant to be an online baby book, because I knew I wouldn't ever sit down and make a real baby book, this blog became a very different story two months after I started it.  There doesn't seem to be much story left.  From loss, to the return of the bitter infertile, to harrowing pregnancy, to post partum depression, through the milestones of two babies.

We're going to transition to toddlers soon.  During the first year, life with babies changes significantly every month.  I'm guessing I've got another 6 months or so big changes (walking and talking) and from there on out, each day will probably be very similar to the day before.  I don't know if I have the writing skills to make what is really a pretty monotonous job, entertaining.  If I knew how, I would probably turn this blog into a book with the first birthday being the last page.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not giving up this space.  This is still the easiest way for me to record those things in life that I want to record.  My kids are going to say funny things and do funny things and I'll need a place to record those things.  But I do kind of feel like I'm writing episodes for a show that has jumped the shark.