Friday, March 23, 2012

Greetings, wise internets.

I come to you with questions!

I've had all these debates bouncing around in my head for days or weeks or months and I keep thinking "I should ask the smart people who read my blog about that." I even started a list... but it was on a post-it which I seem to have lost. So, here are the two I can think of right now, most likely to be followed up by more in the near future.* Thanks in advance for any thoughts you care to share!

1. Baby Books - Anyone have one they love? Must be appropriate for a two-mom family, obviously. I keep going back and forth about whether to get the same ones for Crash and Bash as we got for E. On one hand, I like the consistency of getting the same book for each child - nobody's will be cooler than anyone else's. On the other, is that boring? Would it be more special for each child to have their own unique book? One pro for sticking with the same one is that it took me FOREVER to wrap my head around the billion milestones I was supposed to be watching for with E, and it would be nice not to have to "learn" a new book this time around. That said, E's book wasn't anything amazing. I picked it up a few days before he was born when I realized I didn't have one yet and I chose it primarily because I only had to cross out one reference to "Dad" instead of 629 like all the other books I looked at. I wonder if I could do better with a little more advance research. Which brings me back to... Anyone have one they love?**

2. Bear pictures - We took E's picture with a bear every month for the first two years of his life, and intend to do so on every birthday from here on out. I'd like to carry this tradition on with Crash and Bash. The question is... Same bear? Different bear? Different bear for each child? On one hand, I like the idea of using the same unit of measurement for each child. On the other hand, is said unit of measurement going to become a family heirloom in which case it would be nice for each child to have their own so it can live in their homes someday, be chewed on by their offspring, etc?

Any thoughts?

*Actually, these will definitely be followed up by more in the future as I have a whole separate list of questions for the twin moms out there - so many, in fact, they warrant their own post, so that will be coming soon!
**The astronomical probability of these books being totally neglected is not lost on me. It was hard enough keeping one book up-to-date. I realize I may look back at this post a year from now and laugh at the very thought that I might maintain two baby books while raising twins and a preschooler. But, I want to try. And the first step is having the books there just in case I might, you know, want to write a sentence in one every 6 months or so.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

28.5 weeks...

...and time is flying.

Babies are estimated at about 2.5 pounds each. They're also freaking adorable, not that I'm biased or anything.

I have a backlog of actual posts in my head. Hoping to be back with more words soon!

Monday, March 12, 2012

my so-called life

There are four questions/comments I get a LOT these days:
1. When are you due? -OR- Is it a girl/boy? (These seem to be the interchangeable icebreakers and, apparently, do not warrant any other form of greeting or introduction!)
2. Do twins run in your family?
3. Is this your first pregnancy?
4. Wow, two more boys? Your husband must be [insert some synonym of "thrilled" and/or "over the moon" here]!

They come almost exclusively from complete strangers, and yet, I feel compelled to answer them honestly. Part of it is noble - seizing the teachable moment and all that - but much of it is that I'm a terrible liar. I have this irrational fear that the complete stranger is going to catch me in a lie and then... yeah, I dunno. Like I should care, right? But anyway, my typical answers are either (1a) "first week in June" followed by a pause for them to pop their eyes back into their sockets, and then "but I'm having twins so I'm bigger than I would be with one." Or, (1b) "Actually, it's two boys." Then we move on to (2), "well, no, but we did fertility treatments so that's kind of beside the point," and (3) "nope, I have a three year old son," before closing with (4) "my partner and I are both very excited."

Amazingly, that's not enough for some people and they proceed to ask if I'll have a c-section, whether I will breastfeed, if I'm going to keep working, and so on. STRANGERS ask me these things. OFTEN.

Late last week, I went to the post office to mail a package. It was Thursday or Friday afternoon and I was wiped. When the woman at the desk asked when I was due (after already having made a bet with the desk agent at the next station over, which I overheard - classy), I launched into the spiel, but I just didn't have it in me to do the full song and dance. So, when we hit the question about my family history of twins, I just said "nope" and left it at that, although I did throw in a slight smile/shrug as if to say "I just have no earthly idea how these two life forms found their way into my uterus!" I took the easy way out again when she asked about my husband: "Oh yeah, he is." And then came the twist. She asked if we'd been trying long. And without any forethought, it just came out: "No, not really." I guess I was on a roll. She proceeded to tell me about how she knew people who had to try for months and months (gasp!) and weren't we just "the lucky ones!" I just smiled and nodded... and willed her to finish the flipping transaction already so I could get OUT of this Twilight Zone of a conversation.

As I got back into my car, I thought about who that woman was that I'd just impersonated - a woman who had quickly and effortlessly conceived three children just by having sex with her husband. It's hard to think of a profile more different from my own.

The next day, I started out telling the truth to the woman doing my facial, but when she used her own post-IVF-surprise-pregnancy story to encourage me to "seriously consider" an IUD after the twins are born, I just laughed and went along with it. Maybe I missed out on a chance for Each One to Teach One, but... I don't know. Would it really have made a difference if I'd outed myself, or would it just have prolonged the conversation, further preventing me from enjoying the QUIET relaxation I was paying for?

I have to admit, my forays into dishonesty were a little intoxicating. The exchanges were easier; shorter. They also felt empty, like cotton candy, but I'm kind of okay with that too. It's not my job to educate a dozen complete strangers every single day. I do believe there is value in telling my truth to increase visibility, both for same-sex parents and infertility veterans, and I plan to keep that as my default course of action, but sometimes, my feet hurt and I just want to wrap this damn conversation up so I can get home already, you know?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Sorry for all the fly-by posting I've been doing lately. We're in the home stretch of finishing up all of the big home-improvement-slash-baby-readiness projects we wanted to do and are on day 12 of 17 straight days/nights of houseguests. First M's mom was here, followed by my parents, and on Thursday, it'll switch over to M's brother and sister-in-law. Then, our guest room is closed until further notice! I can't complain - we put out the call for help and were lucky enough to get a great response - but whew, are we ever exhausted. M and I did a LOT of work on our own before the parade of helpers began and the end result is that we haven't had a day "off" in over 6 weeks. But, our house is much improved, furniture has been relocated, truckloads of items have been taken to Goodwill, NB-3 month baby clothes are washed and in the nursery closet, and all we have left to do is to pick updated decorations for our newly bared walls. OK, we're not quite to that point, but we're close. Soooo close, and I cannot wait until all that's left on our to-do list is putting our feet up and waiting on the babes' arrival.

With all the chaos going on, I haven't taken the time to thank you for the kind and thoughtful comments y'all left on my last three posts. One of the things I treasure most about blogging is being able to stream out a barely-formed jumble of thoughts, and then have my fellow (read: wiser) bloggers come along and post comments that leave me thinking "Right! That, exactly!" or "Wow, I never pieced that together myself, but she's 100% right." And on that note... a couple of follow-ups:

HUGE thanks to all of you who empathized with my ramblings about our NT scan, and especially to those of you who shared "been there, done that" stories. Like Katie, who commented about her own pre-screening scare, my overwhelming feeling is one of regret, and I do not say that lightly. I wishwishwishwish we had never done the NT Scan. If I were to be pregnant again (ha!), I would decline it. I'm sure the test would be a useful tool for some people/scenarios, but for me, the magnitude of worry it caused when we had no desire for diagnostic testing any earlier than an amnio was simply a recipe for disaster. I realize I say this from the priviledged position of having several clean cardio scans since the NT, but my regret was instantaneous and has not wavered. And we're still not out of the woods. No one ever is, really, which - for me - is all the more reason that early testing is crap. You either get a possibly-false sense of security or a possibly-false sense of the world crashing down around you. Delightful!

Regarding viability, Bionic and tbean's comments pulled the chain on the lightbulb for me about WHY I was so underwhelmed by the 24 week milestone. It's because all of the sudden, people start talking about your baby's arrival like an Actual Thing; an Actual Thing that could happen, and holy hell, it is soooo too soon for that! It's true that a 24 weeker should do better than a 23.5 weeker, but nobody talks about your baby coming at 23.5 weeks because that's Scary. Then all of the sudden, they sneak a toe across this largely-theoretical line and everyone starts verbalizing how they can be born and be okay! And I'm left thinking "Um, they're only one day older than they were when they were Not Viable. Someone's going to have to explain the balloons and fireworks to me." Anywho. We're now a whopping 2.5 weeks over the theoretical line and while I'm still petrified at the thought of the babies making an untimely appearance, it certainly does get less scary by the day.

And SPD... thank you, thank you, thank you to those of you who offered tips and sympathy! I have been very conscious to keep my knees together as much as possible (there's a great joke in here somewhere...) and to find the right balance of gentle, frequent activity without overdoing it. I have been seeing a Webster-certified chiro since the beginning of February so it was easy to ask her to shift her focus a bit at my last appointment, and I think that helped too. All in all, I have to say that so far, I'm feeling VERY lucky to have what seems to be a minor case. As long as I keep my activity reasonable, it's manageable. For now. And at this point, I'm counting each day that it's tolerable as a win!

In other news, we had an ultrasound yesterday and got lots of good news - Crash (Baby A) and Bash (Baby B) are both within range for normal singleton weights. Crash was estimated at 1lb. 15oz and Bash was estimated at 2lbs. 3oz. Both hearts look good (144 and 152 bpm) and not only has Crash's placenta migrated off of my cervix, but he has turned head-down! I'm still working full-time and haven't had to limit my mobility yet, but it's getting tougher to do everything (oh sleep, how I miss you already) and my boss and I are meeting later this week to discuss a plan for scaling back my work schedule in the near-ish future. It's tough because my boss has her own medical leave scheduled for the second half of March, and I am HER coverage plan, so the goal is to make it to April (30 weeks) without any drastic cuts to my schedule if at all possible. That said, Crash and Bash are the number one priority so we'll do whatever we have to do whenever we have to do it!

Oh, and E's birthday party is this weekend. How exactly did it happen that he is turning THREE?