So I finally got weighed at my 6 week postpartum check, because well I do not own a scale, I never have and I really don't know if I ever will. I have 6 lbs left to pre-pregnancy weight. YAY! Of course the fact that I pump allows me to have an extra 500 calories a day per child which I am sure I take advantage of. So in 6 weeks I lost 42 lbs CRAZY! Im cleared to do excercise HA, ok maybe walk with the babies because it is summer or maybe do some power shopping at Target. Hope everyone is having a great Monday!
8-?- run any necessary errands/groceries/target while Grant can be home
11 or 12- feed babies/pump
12 or 1- eat
1-4- clean house/clean more bottles/wipe counters/dishes/laundry maybe nap (maybe)
4-5 feed babies
5 or 6 eat dinner
8- feed babies
call it done for chores
10 pm- pump/Brittany goes to sleep
11 or 12 am- Grant feeds babies
As you can see pumping rules my life at the moment, while I may not breastfeed my twins they are both getting breastmilk, in all honesty it is just easier for us to both be able to feed the babies anytime they need to be fed. They also still have to have 2 formula bottles a day (for preemies) and to avoid confusion for them between bottles and breast. I know that every book says sleep when the baby(ies) sleep, well I now know what all moms talk about when they say that is impossible. You can try and lay down but you are just going to lay there and think about the laundry/dishes or chores that need to be done around the house. My husband is an awesome helper and luckily takes care of everything outside the house (yard, garage, garden), but is not a huge fan of the inside work which is fine. He also hates grocery shopping since more often then not he buys the wrong thing. I maybe take a cat nap which will go away as I return to work. So for now this works, the babies are calling the shots which is how it is supposed to be this early in the game. Lucky for us I am pretty sure both babies are very happy babies and really only make noise when they are hungry or have a dirty diaper...for now anyways.
These are the twins 4th of July/family reunion outfits!! I shrunk them down as much as my washer would so fingers crossed they fit ok!! I am still having trouble finding shoes that will fit my babies feet, they both had very skinny and narrow feet (sorry babies thats all from your mom), if anyone knows of somewhere that has shoes for such tiny feet please let me know!!
We took the twins out to Costco this past week, it was funny to watch people look when you walk in with a stoller that has 2 carseats attached to it. We had lots of points and stares. O well I guess I better get used to it. We also took them to Target because with me as their mama they will be spending a lot of time there, Target is my most favorite store in the world, I never seem to walk out of there with less then a hundred dollars worth of randomness. I love that they open at 8 am which I learned the other day!! AWESOME!! This means I can get up with the twins for their 7ish am feeding, put them back down and get all of my shopping done before daddy has to go to work. It definitely does take a little more planning to get out of the house with two little ones in tow. I hate being late I mean HATE it...I like to be at least 15 minutes early anywhere. So this will be an adjustment that sometimes one may be all ready to go then well...dirty diaper...crying baby...wants food. So I am learning to adjust my punctuality expectations. We are getting more comfortable with taking them places, they got to go to their Grandma and Grandpa Echols' house this week and finally both were able to hold the babies, everyone had been passing around germs for the last 6 weeks. Well thats all for the outings for now, but I am sure that as we get more comfortable and they get older there will be plenty of parks and zoo's and walks to come.
Finally it feels like summer is trying to make an appearance!! Its been a busy week in our house but I am sure it is just the beginning of busy weeks. Our good friends had their baby girl on Saturday June 26th!! Baby Scarlett weighed in at 8 lb 4 oz and she is now officially Ava and Landon's new best friend. We are all so excited to have babies so close in age, the funny thing is that Scarlett was due on July 4th and the twins on July 6th but now the twins are 6 weeks older then Scarlett. We can not wait to take strolls around Capital Lake with our strollers and enjoy the sunshine!! So we are just super excited to all have our babies here safe and sound.
This next week I am sure will be a busy one, the twins have another pediatrician appointment to make sure everyone is still gaining weight which judging by my mama scale they both are. We are looking forward to Grant's family reunion this coming July 4th weekend! The twins outfits are washed and ready and they are ready to make their appearance as the newest little Echols' family members. We are excited to see everyone, we have not seen everyone since the last family reunion in 2008!
The twins are just growing and growing these days. We are waiting for them to start smiling at us, we see smiles but we are both convinced its still newborn gas...
I have learned what moms meant by don't feed into the hype of all baby products, of course I bought everything that looked like a good idea to have around for a newborn baby. So far the most helpful thing that I never thought of was a sterlizer for all of their bottle nipples and pacifiers, instead of keeping a pot of water on the stove this saves time and money since its a small amount of water and takes only a few minutes to complete a cycle. I definitely bought too many clothes so I am lucky that the twins are small and will fit into most of it for a longer time then most babies. I am still waiting to use our cloth diapers, they do not fit them quite yet but I excited to see if I actually like the idea of cloth diapering two babies. It definitely will save us some serious cash if I can do it.
I was not feeling very well this day, my contractions had increased, they were starting to become more painful and last longer. I had just been sleeping on and off. At 1 in the afternoon I was surprised by a few girls from my office who must have literally flown up from Olympia via I-5 to visit me on their lunch hour! I was so excited to see them, I had been on bedrest so long I had not gotten to see most of my work buddies, so I visited with Christie, Emily and Debbie for a little bit before they had to get back to work. Later on Emily would tell me I looked like I was in pain (I thought I faked no pain pretty well but o well). After they left I decided to call the nurse because the contractions were just not getting any better and I was done with pain by that point again. The nurse came in and offered me some pain medication while we waited for the Doctor to come in and see if the reason for the contractions was that I was progressing. Dr. Mckinney came in and checked me, I was back to 3 cm, she made the call that we were having babies this time, I was thrilled, mainly because by this point I was mentally and emotionally as well as physically done. She discussed again her view for a natural birth and that they could guide Ava down the right way since she was laying transverse (head to my left and feet on my right side). I said I would think about it since they did not need a decision yet.
I called Grant and my family and told them what we had been decided. The nurses got me ready to move back to Labor and Delivery again. We had to load up or hospital (hotel room), and move everything to my new Labor and Delivery room. I'm pretty sure the more times you get moved the better your room gets. My room this time was HUGE! It was a corner room and was so nice and spacious compared to the other L&D rooms I had been in. I sat in the bed and waited while a plan of attack was formed by the doctors.
The "plan" went like this...
Watch my labor and see if I continued to progress on my own
If not, I was to be given potocin to move things along
Then go from there.
I was offered pain medication and to get into the birth tub, which I would highly recommend! That was the only time my contractions were eased. I washed my hair, shaved my legs (people were going to see them and I had not bothered to shave my legs in quite awhile). I felt nice and dare I say refreshed. I was only allowed to do this for a little while since I had tested group B strep + so they would have to have an IV of antibiotics in at least 4 hours before I was to give birth.
I got out of the tub and got back into bed to apply make-up, vein (yes) necessary (no) but do you know how many pictures people take of that day and after laying in a hospital for 8 days I did not look super great or perky with dark circles under my eyes from the exhaustion of it all. Our friends and family all came up to visit. The nurses would periodically come in to get everything ready to go. They got my antibiotics started and more fluid, I weighed myself on the Sunday before the twins were born and I saw 166 on a scale!!!!!! All of which was fluid and baby but WOW! Now we sat around and waited for the potocin to take effect.
And waited.....and waited....and waited...
Got the epidural, which I was a pro at, being it was my 2 attempt at labor for the week, the first had been on Mothers Day were I also received an epidural and then stalled in labor.
And waited....tried to rest...and waited...
They kept upping my potocin, I was having consistent contractions but was not dilated past a 4 on my own, I really lost track of time during all of this, I tried to rest but the excitement of finally being able to see my babies was keeping me awake.
Thursday May 13th...
Sometime in the early morning hours they decided to put an internal monitor for contractions in to see if my contractions were really strong enough to keep me dilating or if we would just need to go to a c-section. I think this was around 7 am.
I went back to sleep around 8ish, my nurse stayed with me until maybe 8:45 when she went to go get some breakfast, Grant had gone down the the cafeteria and my mom and aunt had gone out to get some food as well. Next thing I remember was waking up in terrible pain. Grant had returned and I tried to tough it out for a few minutes but it was obvious that something was going on. My nurse had decided it was taking too long for her breakfast and she must have had a sixth sense because she returned right as we called for a nurse. She took a "look" and immediately called for the doctor, because between about 9:00 and 9:15 I had fully dilated and was ready to go, Landon's head was already peeking out, so they immediately had Grant change into his daddy scrubs and I was wheeled off to the OR(when you are pregnant with multiples you always give birth in an OR just in case). Grant got changed and followed with his cell phone calling everyone that it was GO TIME! Camera in hand we were ready to meet these babies!!
Everything was so crazy fast from there, I got to the OR, there were so many doctors and nurses, we had 2 NICU teams, several other nurses, anaesthesiologists, 3 doctors. They got me onto the surgical table and ready to push, we waited for my next contraction to push, I pushed maybe 6 times and we saw Ladon make his BIG appearance into the world.
They whisked him to his warming bed, and gave him extra oxygen, we were so in love! I turned back to the doctors only to hear them say that Ava had instead of going the way we wanted her to and turn head down she had gone breech, they attempted to turn her, which did not work, then her heart rate dropped, all I could hear was a nurse counting her heartbeat, it was under 100. They told me I would be having a crash c-section because she was in distress. The anesthesiologist gave me a block to numb my whole lower body for the c-section but when the doctor did her "poke" test, I could feel sharp pain, I was starting to freak out and was looking to Grant who was near my head, I could see worry on every doctor and nurse in there, I turned to the anesthesiologist and told him to "knock me out and get her OUT!" so he did, I remember the mask being put over my face and I was out. This is sad to me because Grant was not able to see his daughter born since they had to put me under they had to kick him out. We also have no birth pictures of Ava, which may be a good thing since she was not very responsive and required help immediately after birth, her cord had gone around her neck.
I woke up in recovery a couple of hours later just asking if they were ok, I was in pain, I had just had happen what I had told every single doctor there that I did not want to happen, I had given birth to Landon naturally and then still had to have a c-section. I got the full experience. They had me hooked up to pain medication that I could push the button to get more, whatever they gave me in the beginning did not work so they switched me to morphine which worked better. All I wanted to do was see my babies and see for myself that they were ok. Once I was ready to leave recovery, they wheeled me to the NICU to meet my babies. They were so tiny and had so many different things hooked up to them, monitors, IV's, cpap masks, and lots of prick marks from where they had been poked and prodded. I could not believe that they were mine and I had carried them for all that time. My mom, dad and Grant's mom had all been able to come in and meet them as well. After about 10-15 minutes they moved me up to the postpartum floor.
This was my story, it was alot of unplanned things, many things that were totally out of control, many things happened that I wish had not, but bottom line was my babies were here, safe and healthy for 32 week old twins. That is really all that matters to me. I never went into it with a plan (thank goodness) because I knew most likely none of it would happen, I played it by year which I guess kept things kind of exciting for us, completely unpredictable. It took a lot of healing time and a month long NICU stay but here, 6 and 1/2 weeks later I feel better, my babies are home with us and thriving and now I really have a story to tell.
Wow so I am terrible at finding time to update this so I am going to try harder...well as hard as I can with two newborn infants at home. I will also attempt to put together their birth story as well, in a weird way I am still absorbing everything that happened between the 5th and the 13th when they finally were born, eventually it will get on here.
Landon was able to come home from the NICU on June 5th and Ava followed on June 10th. We have now had two infants in our house for 1 week. We are learning the meaning of day by day or even hour by hour with what needs to be done for the babies, the dogs, our house and well our sanity as well. The babies are doing wonderfully in the weight department, we had a pediatrician appointment on Tuesday and Landon is weighing in at 6 lbs and 4 oz, and Ava at 5 lb and 15 oz, so she is over 6 now I am sure. According to the pediatrician they are doing really really well, they have another appointment in 2 weeks to check their weight and then they will get scheduled for their 2 month shots!! HoLY COW 2 MONTHS!! They both love to eat and get better and better at taking their bottles and larger amounts every day. I could stare at them for hours but I won't because I still have a house to keep clean. Seriously thinking about hiring a housekeeper every other week to keep up on it all. Landon and Ava both sleep for about 4 hours and then wake up and eat and just go back to sleep for 4 hours. We have got them both where they wake up within a half hour of each other and get back to sleep, this way we have about 3 1/2 hours to do other things around the house.
We had some newborn pictures taken this past Saturday by our friend Kristina and today we will have some more taken by my friend Jill who has just moved back home to Washington from Utah and is starting her own photography business, she offered to take some for us as well as some family shots which I am super excited for!! I will post pictures when we get them!!
For now I will leave you with their 1 MONTH photos!! I can not believe its already been 1 month!!