My Story

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

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Never done this before

Middie Biddie is having a major whine fest tonight.  Normally I just force her to deal with it and check the diaper every 45 minutes or so but tonight, after over 2 hours, I decided to try something different.

I put Teeny Tiny in Middie Biddie's crib with her.  I'm watching them party on the monitor having a grand old time together.  That's what they normally do over the railings, but now they are interacting with each other on a level I don't think I've seen before.

Obviously neither is getting any sleep.  On the other hand, they weren't sleeping before and Middie Biddie was really upset about it.  They aren't upset now.  When they both get tired of wrestling and start to fade out, I'll go back in and put Teeny Tiny back in her crib.

I'm sure someone will tell me why this is the most awful thing to do for some reason.  Oh well.  One night of sleep disturbance won't kill them.  The clocks change in a couple of days so I'm just pretending that I'm getting them accustomed to the new schedule before it happens.  Yeah, that's it!  I'm getting them adjusted so it's not a shock!  This has nothing to do with just wanting to watch my girls play together in the cutest way possible!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Discussing a third

*milestone update*  Teeny Tiny officially has a vocabulary of 2 words!  If I ask "who am I?" she says "mama!"  If I ask "who are you?" she says "bay-bay!"

And now on to the real post.

As I was bitching and moaning about this period last night, it suddenly hit me like a ton of bricks - I might actually be capable of getting pregnant on accident.  For the last 20 years, that's just never been a reality for me and suddenly, my whole comprehension of what could or could not happen suddenly shifted.

In the past, on the rare occasion I had a period, there really wasn't much to it.  I could get away with just wearing a pantyliner since my body didn't have a whole lot of material to expel.  Then I had my first postpartum period and of course it was pretty heavy.  Didn't think much about it since it was the first period in a year, of course it was heavy.  Then 2 months later, another period and again, it was heavy.  Now 2 months after that, and good lord I can't believe all this was ever stored inside me!

It suddenly occurred to me that hey wait a minute, this is a full, proper, healthy uterine lining I'm shedding here.  And I must have ovulated to signal the shedding.  This is happening every 2 months.  HOLY CRAP!!!
Now of course, my body changes don't change the issue on K's side of things.  But being responsible adults, we had a sit down to discuss the possibility and desirability of a third.  Many a man has been told his swimmers are no good only to be surprised later.  I figured we should discuss whether or not we actively want a third or if we should consider some form of birth control other than "it probably won't happen".

We have some reservations about a third.  But those reservations are pretty much the same reservations anyone has about having any baby.  Do we have the room for another?  Finances are already a problem, would a third be devastating?  How will that take attention away from the girls?

K's primary reservation has always been the IVF process.  Does he want another baby enough to go through all of that?  That's where he's really be teetering on the fence.

My primary reservation has been that I was so miserable during the newborn stage.  I love each new stage that the girls get to and I really don't miss the one I'm losing, how much of their development would I be missing because a newborn was taking all of my attention?

But I have been daydreaming about it a little bit.  How I missed out on newborn baby snuggles because I always had to put down the one that was happy and pick up of the one who wasn't.  How a lot of my misery was rooted in the fact that I simply didn't know when the miserable three hour loop would end.  I have an idea of that now.  With only one, K and I could switch off night time responsibilities a lot easier so each of us would get more sleep.  If I got pregnant today, by the time a baby got here, the girls would be old enough to go to the drop-in daycare center for a few hours if I got overwhelmed.  Heck, they would be old enough to grab my water for me if I got trapped on the couch.  That alone would be a big help.  Of course then the question becomes whether or not they would choose to, but that's a whole different issue.

I've thought about how I would do things differently.  I would probably try harder to get nursing down (I'm assuming the next baby would be a singleton born full term without all of the preemie concerns) but I would probably still pump.  Hopefully have the best of both worlds of being able to just whip one out when the baby was hungry as well as have someone else be able to feed it.  I probably wouldn't be so obsessed about my supply since I now know that my body will produce enough for three even if I just follow the advice for getting enough for 1.  And without the preemie concerns, I probably wouldn't be so determined to ensure that the next baby got only breastmilk, I don't think I would be as opposed to supplementing with formula for a full term baby.  That whole feeling of the world over my shoulder judging my every move, hopefully that wouldn't be there.  That was soul crushing with the girls.

So, we've come to the conclusion that while we don't have the same burning desire for a third that we had for a first, if it happened, our reaction would be celebration and not "oh shit".  We don't think it will happen, but we are looking at the reality that for the first time in my 38 years on this planet, it actually COULD happen.  That's pretty exciting!

We still have the same plan for the embryos in storage.  When the girls are about 3 and I'm about 40, we're going to really look at how strongly we want a third and decide if we want it badly enough to go through everything again.  Maybe since I now seem to be providing a hospitable environment for an embryo naturally, perhaps they would allow us to thaw one every month and just transfer it at the right time to see if it would stick without going through massive amounts of medications and expense.  But we'll make the final decisions then on whether or not we want to use the embryos we have or let them go.

Last night during our discussion, we pulled out the medical records from when this whole adventure began and did some googling on K's test numbers.  We wanted to know if his tests came back indicating his ability to get me pregnant was impossible or just improbable.  We didn't really come to a final conclusion on that (I think it was more on the side of improbable) because I stumbled across a new fertility clinic in the area.  For those of you that have been with me for a while, you'll recall that I despised the clinic that took over the one I was originally at.  To see a new clinic in town thrills me to pieces!  Looked around their website a bit more, it's MY doctor!  Woot!  While I hated the clinic, my doctor was awesome, and I was his last patient there because he had the same opinion of the clinic that took over that I did.  He's back in practice!  I emailed last night to see if they offer embryo storage because I'm currently sitting on a bill for the next year.  If I can get them transferred somewhere else, I'd rather pay someone else to store them than to put more money into that clinics pockets.  It's such a relief that no matter what we decide for our future, I don't think we're ever going to have to deal with my pain in the ass clinic ever again, I have other options!  So, if you're in the Pacific Northwest and looking for a fertility clinic, there's a new player in town.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Obligatory blog post

I don't have a lot to write about but it's been over a week so I'm feeling the need to update.

The girls are transitioning to one nap a day.  Some days they are figuring it out and sleeping 2-3 hours so that one nap will work.  Then there are days like yesterday.

Ugh.  Middie Biddie absolutely refused to nap at all.  Whined and cried the whole time.  After a while I had to take her out of her room so she wouldn't disturb Teeny Tiny.  The day pretty much sucked from there.  Whiny, crying, needing sleep but not wanting it all the rest of the day.  She was toast by 5pm but I couldn't put them down for the night that early.  I stretched their playtime until 6pm and then put them down but she just started her crying again.  I changed diapers, I gave her some juice, I rocked until she was almost passed out but as soon as we headed for the crib, the crying would start up again.  They finally went to sleep a little after 7pm only to wake up an hour later.  More diaper changes, some water offered, and then more cry it out.  It sucked.

I think her issue yesterday was constipation.  She struggled during dinner to produce one solid poo nugget and that's the only poo I remember from yesterday.  That's why the juice at night.  She was rejecting milk and water and I wanted to get some fluids into her.  This morning, she had two very poopy diapers within an hour of waking up and she's been in a better mood so far.

I however, am in a foul mood.  So normal women do this period thing every month huh?  IT SUCKS!!!  Now that I've completed a pregnancy, I seem to have some normality to my schedule.  Fortunately, it appears to be every 2 months because I think I would kill someone if it were every month.  I stained the sheets, my underwear, my jammies, I have cramps and just blech.  Yay potential fertility, boo to bloody ickiness.  At least I'll likely hit menopause soon and not have decades of this crap like most women.

A couple of days ago we decided to be spontaneous and just grab the girls and leave the house.  We ended up at a coffee shop with a toddler play area and were the only ones there for most of the time so the girls were able to play without me worrying about my non-walking Middie Biddie getting run over.  The few short minutes that a couple of boys were they, one of them very nicely brought a toy over to the girls and then when to play with his brother.  They were probably about 6 and 8 or so.  Then we went to a local fast food seafood place and the girls were just angels for dinner.  Only a few things hit the floor and they started dancing in their high chairs when Lady Gaga played.  No meltdown or anything even though it was a pretty loud place they were unfamiliar with.  All in all, a very successful outing.

That's what's going on around here.  Most days are like the one before without a whole lot to report.

Friday, October 18, 2013

No more happy puking

Middie Biddie used to be a happy puker.  She would often shove food to the back of her throat to make herself vomit and was perfectly happy when she did so.  Didn't phase her one bit.  It's been a while since she's done that and she is no longer a happy puker.

Tonight I made ravioli for dinner.  They were cut up, but I guess maybe not small enough.  I'm not exactly sure what happened, it's all kind of a blur.  While the girls were eating dinner, I ducked under the table to clip their toenails.  Not something I do very often because they fight me so hard and really, what's the harm in long toenails?  But they were getting to a point where I think they might be bending back when stubbing a toe so they needed to be cut.

While I was working on Middie Biddies feet, I suddenly felt her jerk.  I look up and see vomit on her plate and she is red faced, struggling, a bit frantic, vomit coming out of her nose and snotty gooy bubbles around her mouth.  I think she must have choked on a ravioli.  I wasn't sure if she was still in the process of choking or just freaked out by the puking.

I immediately grabbed the plates of food and threw them away (the garbage can is within reach and the fastest place for them to go) partially to get the vomit out of her face and also to make sure Teeny Tiny didn't do the same thing with her portion.  I lean Middie Biddie forward like I used to do when she was puking to encourage her to let more out but she was struggling without really puking so I picked her up and put her in burp position on my shoulder figuring that position would either help her puke or I could do a modified Heimlich maneuver if need be.  The next few minutes were her crying and sputtering but apparently breathing and me trying to figure out if the emergency portion of the ordeal was over or if I would soon be calling 911.
Then there were minutes of me cleaning her face and trying to soothe her but every once in a while she would do kind of an aftershock puke of just general mouth goo and some other goo out her nose.  Ya know, the kind of ick that comes out of your face when you're crying and it just exits every orifice.  I changed her clothes, put her in the pack and play, changed my vomit covered shirt and cleaned the table so we could try something else for dinner if she was up to eating.

This whole time, Teeny Tiny is sitting in the table being really quite patient.  I heard the occasional scared peep out of her, but she handled it quite well.

I'd say the whole ordeal was about 20 minutes.  Then I heated up a premade toddler meal, those package thingies in the baby aisle and fed that to them for dinner.  Normally I like to try to make something other than a microwave dinner but this is just the kind of reason I keep a few of those on hand.

They ate dinner pretty well and during evening play time it was clear that they were just both tired and wanted to go to bed.  We've been off bottles for a while now but I decided fuck it, they're having a rotten evening and they prefer bottles, so they each got a bottle of milk before bed.

Before bed I checked Middie Biddie's temp.  K and I have both been feeling stiff and sore and we're not resting well and have mentioned that it's possible the household might be coming down with something.   The girls also took two solid naps today which is more sleep than they've been wanting lately.  But her temp was fine so I guess it really was choking.

We've graduated from happy baby puking to freaked out kid vomiting.  It sucks.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Toddler hair

This is just a note for anyone else who has a baby with hair that's falling in her eyes, but she doesn't like barrettes.

Middie Biddie has that ragamuffin look because her hair is just like mine, curly in the back, but stick straight and growing into the eyes in front.  The girls haven't gotten a haircut yet because I kind of want them to have long hair that can just easily be braided so it's out of the way.  But we're in that stage of hair growth that's just awkward.

I've tried several clips for clipping it out of her eyes and she is not having it.  Sometimes I can put something in there and then lead her hands towards other parts of her hair as she tries to rip it out, then not finding the clip, she'll forget about it and it can stay there the rest of the day.  But that takes effort, and fight, and usually doesn't work.

Solution?  Those little ouchless hair rubber bands.  The ones that are clear and about the size to fit around an adult finger.  I'm able to get her hair into one of those with surprisingly little fight (seriously surprised since it requires pulling a bit on her hair as I get the rubber band in), and she can't get it out so she forgets about it.

Before and after shots for your amusement.



Back Pedaling

So day 2 of the great one nap experiment and it's over.

By 10:15am they were starting to get cranky so we gave them snacks.  That entertained them for a few minutes but Teeny Tiny was getting that mile long stare.  By 11am, the cranky was out in full force, Teeny Tiny rubbing her poor exhausted eyes and Middie Biddie getting in on the whining action.  Basically both of them were pissed off and wanted to go to bed.

K normally takes forever to give his opinion.  It's one of the few things that bugs me about him.  I ask him something, and it's a full 1 or 2 minutes of silence before he answers.  So as they were cranking out, I asked him "screw the one nap, put them down now?" and before I had the question fully out there he enthusiastically shouted "yes!"

The old method may not have been perfect but 3 out of 4 members of the household were damned happy using it.  Middie Biddie would have her moments of annoyance with it, but was content for the most part.  So it just makes sense to continue with what makes 3 out of 4 happy rather than what's making 4 out of 4 miserable.

They probably just need a more gentle transition to the new schedule.  So I think we'll go back to letting them take their first nap whenever they want, then having crib time around 4pm and start limiting how long that quiet time is allowed to last regardless of sleep status.  I guess we'll just spend the next month gently pushing the morning nap a wee bit later and shortening the afternoon quiet time until they consolidate naturally into one nap.

Now that I've tried keeping them awake more during the day to interact with us, I feel much less guilt about them having potentially too much crib time.  They were NOT happy about being interactive and playing in the play rooms for that much of the day.  Now I can let them have their crib time and feel confident that it's as much about their happiness as it is for mine.  At least for another few weeks anyway.  These things are constantly changing!

Well that sucked

Woke up bright and early with the girls this morning around 9am.  It's K's day off and normally he takes care of everything until I wake up on my own and meander out into the house.  Knowing today we were going to try to accomplish a few things, as well as go for much longer stretches of awake time with the girls, I opted to get up with him this morning.

K still did the vast majority of parenting today.  His back was bothering him and I had some stuff to do for my pottery shop so it made sense for him to sit and play with the girls while I ran around and accomplished stuff.

Around 11am, they got cranky.  Normally this would mean nap time but we're trying the new schedule so we kept them up.  They stayed cranky.  Shortly after noon we couldn't stand it anymore so we put them down even though we were planning to hold out until 1pm.  We were hoping for a solid 2-3 hour nap, but Middie Biddie was fully awake by 2:30 and it took another half hour for Teeny Tiny to wake up too.

They were cranky and throwing tantrums ALL DAY LONG!  We were going to hold out until 8pm for bedtime but by 7pm the whole family was just done.  Teeny Tiny had major droopy eyes, both were quick to cry, and the parents were just white knuckling to get through the day.  They were in bed by 7:15pm and Teeny Tiny went right to sleep.  Middie Biddie took a quick nap and then babbled for over an hour.  Not sure if she was awake or talking in her sleep.

It was just a crappy day all around.  I'm hoping that once they get accustomed to only having one sleep opportunity during the day, they'll take that opportunity to get the full amount of nap sleep that they need.  For one nap, it really should be in the 2-3 hour range.

I did manage to get the new car seats installed and all of the laundry done though.

One thing I realized after the girls went to bed, it really is difficult to do ANYTHING when the kids are cranky.  I don't mean that it's difficult because they require attention or take up your time, but rather your brain does not fully function when it's hearing the cranky happening.  K was fully in charge of the kid care today and I needed to figure out how to take photos of the Christmas ornaments I'm going to be putting up in my shop.  While they were cranky, I just couldn't figure it out and the pictures I ended up with sucked.  Once they were in bed and my brain wasn't being assaulted by whining, I just thought "duh!" and figured out how to get it done better.  I just suddenly figured out how to stage them better, how to get the lighting better, and how to fix what I thought was a broken camera.  These aren't edited to be shop ready yet, but just look at the difference from my first set when I was listening to horrible unhappy kid noises and then the set I took after they went to bed -

My kids are awesome, but I swear they suck the IQ points right out of me.  It's like there's only so many to go around and when they are awake, several get allotted to them and I lose out.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Gonna change the naps

Thanks for your comments on my previous post!  They were really helpful.

So we're going to try something different.  We've been doing naps according to information for much younger kiddos and we need to update.  They've been getting up around 9am, nap at 11am-1pm, then going down around 4pm for that useless crib time and then bedtime is just all confused depending on if they slept at all during that evening nap.  Since Teeny Tiny will go to sleep quickly whenever she's put in her crib, I hadn't realized that they've outgrown such short awake times.  But I'm aware of it now!

So we're going to get them up between 8:30-9am, down about 1:30pm, up at 3:30pm (unless both are firmly asleep in which case we'll let them determine wake up time), then bedtime about 8pm.  They may get an hour of pack and play time in the evening so I can make dinner and because we all sometimes need a little down time between play sessions.

They've been waking up earlier and earlier in the morning, maybe it's because they're getting too much sleep.  Seems like blasphemy to me to consider too much sleep, but maybe that's the case!

I'll do my best to impose this new schedule on the girls for a week and see if they are able to conform to it and if it seems to meet their sleep needs.

And to answer the question about why they both go down when only one needs the nap - I do that for a few reasons.  First, because if one falls asleep and the other is up still playing, I have to commit to that.  If the second one gets tired while the first is asleep, I can't put her in her crib without waking up the first one.  Second, the awake one then gets tired and wants to nap right when the sleeping one is waking up.  It makes everything confusing and difficult to manage bedtimes and such.  Third, I need recharge time (yeah, selfish, but it's an honest reason).

So I guess we're going to go more with Middie Biddies sleep schedule since Teeny Tiny would probably be growing into those same needs very soon anyway.  Personally, I like Teeny Tiny's schedule better, it gives me more free time, but it's not about me now is it!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Twin toddler nap time

I'm not exactly sure how to write this post.  Here's what's up - 

The girls are having trouble with their naps.  Teeny Tiny is still very much wanting two naps, but Middie Biddie barely wants to take one.  It used to be that their first nap was 90 minutes, almost exactly, every day.  Then the second nap would be about 3 hours later and last anywhere from 30-120 minutes.

But now Middie Biddie is waking up after an hour and she's stuck in the crib until Teeny Tiny wakes up sometime in the next 30 minutes.  Ok, fine, no big deal.  But then Teeny Tiny is rubbing her eyes and wanting to go back to bed after about 2 hours of awake time and Middie Biddie won't let her.

I've been trying holding out until Middie Biddie also demonstrates that she's tired, and today I said screw it and put them both down after only 90 minutes of awake time because Teeny Tiny just seemed exhausted.  It seems that no matter what I do, the same thing happens - no second nap because Middie Biddie wants to chat so they play instead.  They end up spending over 2 hours in the crib because they're playing, will occasionally nod off for 5-10 minutes so I think a nap is going to happen, and then more playing.

Now here's where I'm torn.  On the one hand, they are spending a significant amount of their day in their cribs being ignored by me.  Especially if they do fall asleep right around the time I'm about to give up and go get them which adds another 1-2 hours to their crib time.  On the other hand, I'm not hearing any complaints from them either.  They are happily playing with each other, babbling back and forth and sometimes getting some rest too.

Is this awful of me?  To leave them "alone" in their cribs for so much of the day?  Is playing there much different from playing out here in the living room? 

When it comes to playing out here, they don't interact with each other a whole lot, they mostly focus on their toys and on me.  In the cribs, it's full on sisterly bonding.  They throw their loveys out of their cribs within minutes and are only left with each other to play with.

Here are a few highlights from todays "nap".

One day I love that because they are twins and keep each other company, we don't have the crib problems that other parents have and I can leave them in there a little bit longer because they won't get unhappy about it, and the next day I'm feeling guilty that I'm not spending more time with them. So what the hell is a mom to do?  Enjoy the fact that they can spend a couple of hours perfectly happy without me and do all the things a person wants to do with spare time?  Or do I feel like crap that they are spending so much time confined to these little spaces without me there and beating myself up trying to figure out how to get them to use that time for sleep?   These are not rhetorical questions! 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Feeling overwhelmed

I'm cranky today.  No particular reason.  The girls aren't being difficult or anything.  I just woke up cranky and overwhelmed.

My house is a mess.  Every time I try to clean it up, I just get paralyzed because it's overwhelming.  About a third of the house has been gated off since the girls were born.  That's where crap goes when we don't know where else to put it.  The room of perpetual storage.  I've been trying to slowly empty it out and clean it up, but I swear the crap is more fertile than I am and it's multiplying.

I tried to get rid of a ton of baby stuff (as referenced in my loading up the van blog post last week) but the consignment store only allows you to have 25 items on consignment at any given time.  So K left the big stuff with them and my van still has bags of clothes and other odds and ends packed in it.  The last thing I want to do is bring it all back into the house so now I'm driving around in a portable storage bin.

The room of perpetual storage is overwhelmed by the huge boxes that our car seats came in, a cat tree that needs to be gone but is really heavy and difficult for me to move, and just other random crap.  Every day I think that I need to get those car seats installed so I can get rid of the boxes, but they are the brand that's on the big recall list and I haven't gotten around to checking to see if these particular seats were recalled.  I don't know how to check the manufacture date on them which is what will determine if they are recalled or not and every day, it's just not my top priority. They've been sitting there for a month now just waiting to be a priority.

The dinner table is covered in mugs from my shop (go buy some people, I want them out of the house!) that need to be packed up and stored, but I don't know where to store them, so they just sit there adding to the clutter.  I finally got some Christmas ornaments done but I need to do the photography so I can put them for sale in my shop, but the table is covered in other stuff that I need to find a place for, but I don't know where it goes....and round and round I go.

My bedroom floor is still torn apart with bits of carpet here and tarp there and nothing getting accomplished.  K says we'll tackle it on his day off on Monday, but we never found a day to tackle it during his vacation so my hopes are not high.

I've been trying.  Really I have.  I've made it a rule that I have to throw away one thing every day.  I figured that as time goes by, that will reduce the size of the mountain and make it a little more climbable.  Some garbage is gone, but now I'm hitting the point where I'm looking at things I actually have to make decisions about.  Like the bottles.  The girls haven't had a bottle in about a week now, but I'm still not ready to throw them away.  So what do I do with them?  Well apparently what I do is toss them into the room of perpetual storage and let them mock me every time I walk by.

I kind of want to tip the entire house into a giant garbage bin and then just pull out the few things I actually want to keep.  It's days like today that I wish I liked wine.