Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Hurdles

Yesterday morning we had an ultrasound. The night before I had a rough time sleeping as I was so anxious and nervous about how it would go. Once we got to the doctors office I started to have a mini panic attack in the waiting room.. It was hard to breathe and I couldn't hold back the tears. I have many days were I'm strong and can be optimistic, but I think overtime my inner fears build up and just release all at once, and the anticipation of seeing if our twin boys were ok just triggered that release.

I was relieved that both babies had good heart beats, cord blood flow, and were moving. There was only a small amount of fluid around Baby A but that was to be expected as I am still slightly leaking. The sonographer was having a difficult time trying to find the membrane that separates the babies and she had Dr. Cook come in to see if he could see it. After a few minutes he said to her "It's very possible they are Monoamniotic now since there was so much membrane separation." At that, I burst into tears. He tried to reassure me that I've gone through the worst and that it will be ok. But.. I knew he was just trying to calm my nerves. Monoamniotic means they no longer have a separator between them and their cords, essentially making them in one sac. So if I was able to overcome all the other issues, now there was just one more risk: that their cords could get tangled and cut off their blood supply. As this thought crossed my mind, I couldn't help but just feel crushed. Every appointment I have I feel like there is a new hurdle in the way of getting these babies here safe. It's not for sure that they are in the same sac, but it's a possibility and future scans we will be able to say for sure if they are or aren't.
 
Dr. Cook made time for me in his schedule to put me in a room and talk things out with me. I had had some concerns about the plan and he was able to reassure me that we were doing the most we could do. I trust him and I just need to have faith that things will turn out the way they are supposed to. 
 
Next part of the plan is having a growth scan on Monday to measure if the babies are growing. Then I will be admitted Wednesday morning and will be there until delivery.. Which we are hoping will be a long time from now at 34 weeks. It's been good to be home and sleep in my bed and spend time with my littles, but I'll be thankful when we can be monitored closely at the hospital. Tomorrow will be 22 weeks... One week closer!!! 

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Fearful First Night

The first night in the hospital after baby a's water broke was very scary. That day I had no major contractions and only "irritability" that showed up on the contraction monitor, which wasn't a surprise. It seemed like we were in the clear and that we were going to be able to avoid going into preterm labor, so I told Doug it was ok for him to go home with the boys that night. 

Around 2am my nurse came in to take my vitals and I mentioned that I was feeling cramping. She put me on the contraction monitor and within 10 minutes I was having consistent strong contractions every 5 minutes. I could tell by the look on her face it wasn't good. I started to feel panicky which made the contractions worse. I was glad they weren't painful yet, but they kept coming and we're getting stronger. She gave me a medication in my IV to stop contractions and I asked her what they would give if that didn't work. She told me they wouldn't give me anything else and that she had to "fight to let them give {me} this medication". I was shocked and hurt and confused... I had come all this way to be told they wouldn't help keep the babies from coming too early? She explained to me that they don't like to stop labor in patients who have broken their water as labor could be a sign of infection. She also said since I'm so far away from viability they don't want to keep giving labor-stopping meds because they are hard on me and the babies. I just cried... I knew why they couldn't stop labor, but my heart was breaking. This could be the night I would meet and have to say goodbye to my babies. 

My nurse told me it would be a good idea to call my support person to come just in case things progressed. I called Doug to come down and his mom came to our house to stay with the boys. I was relieved when he got to my room. I had him climb into the tiny hospital bed with me and hold me as we cried and talked about heavenly father's plan for us. I asked him to give me a priesthood blessing and I felt comfort after that. I finally dozed to sleep in his arms, and the contractions slowly tapered off...

Friday morning I was still on edge emotion-wise, and I was tired from not getting much sleep, but the leaking/bleeding seemed to be letting up and there was no sign of infection or contractions. The amazing Dr. Cook came in to check on me and chat with us.. He clarified all the misunderstandings I had about the protocol of labor if it happened. He is so knowledgable and caring, I'm lucky to have him as my doctor. We love him so much we gave him some sour patch kid candies ;)

Last night was a world of a difference. Doug didn't stay but knew to have his cell right by him, and I got such good sleep. I slept from 10 that night to 9 in the morning with minimal interruptions from my nurse. Today I just have felt so much more positive and I was so happy to come home and gets hugs and kisses from my boys. I'll have to soak up this time with them as I go back in less than 2 weeks to stay until the twins come. They don't quite understand it but they are so loved by those who watch them that they do well when I'm gone. 

Two days past pPROM and counting... Hopefully many more to come! 

Me in all my hospital glory.
The bow goes well with my fabulous hospital gown, doesn't it?


Thursday, March 17, 2016

Things take a turn..

This morning one of my worst fears happened: my water broke. It happened as I got out of bed and I rushed to the bathroom. I was expecting to see clear fluid but I saw so much blood instead. Instant panic set in and I called Doug who had just barely left for work and told him we needed to go to the hospital. I texted my doctor and called my mom and she came to stay with our boys who were still sleeping at the time. 

I tried to hold it together but it was so scary as we drove to the hospital. I just kept praying that the babies would be ok. We got to the hospital and were checked in. They hooked me up to an IV and monitored for contractions which luckily I wasn't having much. They checked with the Doppler and found two heartbeats! I could relax a little after that. The nurse had to do a physical exam that was a bit painful but they were able to confirm baby a's water did break. We had an ultrasound and luckily both babies are doing fine and my cervix is still holding up strong. Baby A now has little fluid like Baby B had and I'm sure B is taunting A saying "See, that's how I felt!" 

Dr. Cook came in to tell us the plans. He said it is good that I'm past 20 weeks as data shows better outcomes when waters break prematurely. He said he thinks the bleeding is blood from my subchorionic hematoma that I have had since before the surgery 3 weeks  ago, and it didn't surprise him. The plan is for me to stay until Saturday for them to monitor me and the babies. I will get antibiotics as infection is a complication of preterm premature rapture of membranes (pPROM) aka sac of water breaking. Once I'm released on Saturday I'll be on stricter bedrest at home and then I will be readmitted to the hospital in two weeks from today and will stay for the remainder of the pregnancy. I will get steroid shots to help mature the babies longs and will get medication to stop labor if I start contracting. If I carry to 34 weeks (which I hope I do!) they will take the babies as it's not safe to go longer. 

It's all so overwhelming and I feel awful that Hunter and Landon won't have a mommy for a long while. But I'm grateful for modern medicine and good doctors who are doing everything in their power to keep these little ones cooking. 24 weeks is viability, meaning the time the twins have a chance to survive out of the womb. So that's the first goal, but obviously we need them to bake longer so they have fewer complications. I'm glad to be at a great hospital with a level III NICU that can handle micropremie babies if it comes to that.

Thank you for all the prayers and support for us! It's been a battle but we know that we can get through with our Heavenly Father and the Savior! 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

21 Weeks

Last Thursday I went to my weekly appointment with my Perinatologist and had our anatomy ultrasound, basically checking every little part of each baby. Luckily my mom was able to keep me company at my appointment since Doug had to work.   It was a looongg appointment but I loved spending so much time viewing our sweet twins on the screen. At one point I got really dizzy and had to sit up and nearly fainted. We figured it was because I was lying flat on my back and not on my side. Once I changed that I felt so much better! 

After the ultrasound the doctor (different from Dr. Cook- he was out of town) came in to tell us that everything looked great! Both babies had fluid measurements of 4 and had good strong heartbeats. He also said they were about the same size, measuring exactly what they should be. It was such a relief!!! I was so glad to have an appointment with only good news. We also got some really cute pictures as well :)

Cute little nose!

I have no idea why it looks like a hole in his head..

Baby B Profile


That face! 

The cutest little bum picture ever

My last appointment was Tuesday. The front office had to schedule me to meet with Dr. Cook first and then have my ultrasound. Dr. Cook said that as of Thursday, everything was looking great and that he thinks I can move to light duty instead of bedrest next week. Woohoo! Then I had my ultrasound and he popped in afterward to talk to me about it. He said that Baby A, whose sac Dr. Chmait had to do the surgery through, had a fluid measurement just under 2cm. Baby B's fluid was 4 like it was last week. I have been having a tiny bit of leaking so he thinks it's possible that Baby A's sac has a slow leak. So.. Next Tuesday they will check again and if it's still low they will have to run some tests to be sure. I'm bummed for sure but I'm hoping the measurement was off this week and next week everything will look great and I can still move to light duty. Fingers crossed! 

On a positive note, it's been fun to feel them move around more, and it's also reassuring so I don't freak out between appointments as much. I can pretty much tell which baby is moving which I never thought I'd be able to tell. 

It's been hard to be on bedrest and miss out on the fun. Hunter started tball and I only got to see pictures of it. Luckily my boys give me lots of hugs and kisses so I still get to feel like mommy. Hopefully these weeks will fly by and these babies will get here safely. 

Saturday, March 5, 2016

19 weeks

Well I officially have 1 week of bedrest down. It's funny, you would think that having the excuse to do nothing would be wonderful.. But in reality it's awful! Don't get me wrong, it's been nice watching Doug mop floors and all :p.. But the weather is so perfect outside and all I want to do is go on a bike ride with my little family or go on a hike or go play at a park. Sigh. But as I'm laying here listening to my boys play, full belly from a delicious breakfast whipped up by my husband, and feel the subtle movements of the twins wiggling around inside of me, I can't help but feel grateful. I know that even though bedrest is hard it is so worth getting the boys here into our arms as healthy as they can be.

I had an appointment with my doctor on Thursday for an ultrasound. It's amazing to see how much better the twins are doing! Baby B now has fluid, 5cm of it which is perfect. Both of their hearts and cord flow are perfect. Really, this much improvement this early on is amazing. The only downside of my appointment was that the separation of the amniotic sac from my uterus is much, much bigger. I could even see the membrane just floating around on the ultrasound. The sonographer said in all her years of experience, she had only seen such a thing one other time. So.. I'm just more at risk for my waters breaking or going into preterm labor. My doctor didn't seem overly concerned since those are somewhat manageable if they happen. But, I just have to be even more careful and have stricter bed rest. 

I am really grateful for modern medicine and for the doctors who have given my babies a chance. Dr. Chmait, who performed the surgery, was amazing and I know I was led to him for a reason. He personally called to check on me this week. It's so nice to know there are doctors who truly care about their patients and take the time to show it.

I'm also so grateful for all of those who have called or texted us, offered to make dinner or help with grocery shopping, watched our boys, sent flowers, gave me reading suggestions, and prayed and fasted for us! We feel so loved. Two of the many acts of service that have blessed our lives was my wonderful mother slaving away 2 days in the kitchen making us so many freezer meals! My sweet mother-in-law, Cheryl, has set aside her time to watch Hunter and Landon and is always making sure that we are fine. I could go on about all the wonderful things people have done but these two women are such great examples of service and we just love them so much!!!!