Thursday, March 24, 2011

Say cheese!

We're getting first proper smiles from both boys now, genuine ones...not wind! Now just to try and capture on camera. Felix smiled first and 2 days later Sebastian smiled at his teddy bear. Obviously it's far more engaging than mumma. Two nights ago he really got the hang of smiling and after his 6am feed laid there grinning at me. I almost didn't want to learn the light out to go back to sleep...almost! They're going through a bit of a growth spurt at the moment and feeding heaps but have managed another sleep block of midnight to 6am. It's not consistent as last night they only went 4 hours, but once in a while is still great. Totally in love with my little family :)

Oh, and I almost forgot the best news of the day...Bella did her first wee on her potty! My clever, big girl!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Oh what a night... :)

After a mammoth feed-a-thon from 10.30pm to midnight I put the boys to bed at 12.30am and they slept through until 5.45am!!! I woke with a start after feeling very refreshed and wondered what the heck was up! Thinking wow, they're starting to sleep through the night, today has made me question...6 week growth spurt? Seriously they have fed every hour and a half to 2 hours today and finally passed out about 10pm. They seem to have been awake all day as they have fed all day! As I type this I am VERY glad of a break and wondering just how long it will last. A repeat of last night would be good...please!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Where we're at!

The boys are now 6 and a half weeks old and the days have passed so quickly that I've not had a chance to update the blog so this will be a long one!

The early days
The first week passed in a whirl of feeding and adjusting to two tiny babies in an already busy house. Bella had a tough time initially accepting her new siblings and the fact that the focus of attention had shifted from her being the centre, to now being shared. There were many tears from her initially but today she is pretty well adjusted and it almost seems like we've always been a family of five and she totally adores her baby brothers. Each morning she is excited to see one brother and then the other, and lavishes them with kisses and cuddles. She knows their names and talks about them all the time. There have been many heart melting moments with the three of them and I hope she continues to see them as a positive addition to her life.

I'm exclusively breast feeding the boys and after a bit of a rocky start in the first week with them having latching issues from being premmies, they took to it so well. It was time consuming at first with them feeding slowly and constantly and I felt all I did was feed all day and night, but now they feed so well and we're on an established 7 feeds a day schedule and I finally get "time off" between feeds.. I had my usual doubts about "would I have enough milk", "were they taking enough milk" etc, but with the help of a lovely friend Simone, who is a breast feeding peer supporter and came to stay with us for 5 days to help with the feeding, I learned to trust myself and not worry so much. I know the proof is in the wet and dirty nappies, but I also bought some baby scales to do a weekly weigh-in just to satisfy any doubts.

Supersize me!
In the hospital both boys lost the usual initial amount of birth weight, with Sebastian losing the greater amount. He dropped around 350g and Felix about 150g. By the third week the boys had gained above and beyond their birth weights and now they just keep piling on the ounces! In week 4 they both gained 11 ounces, in week 5 Sebastian gained 9 ounces and Felix gained 12 ounces, and in the last week Sebastian gained 14 ounces and Felix 12 ounces...I guess I have good milk! Today my boys are weighing in at a healthy 8lb 6oz and 8lb 12oz. It's so reassuring especially after encountering so much negativity for exclusively breast feeding them. In the hospital they wouldn't hear of me feeding them just my breast milk and wanted me to supplement with formula. However, the boys have taken to the breast so well that I wouldn't consider feeding them another way and I honestly don't have time with twins and a toddler to make up formula and wash and sterilize bottles! They're also just too cute when they feed :)

We're wide awake!
We noticed when the boys reached their official due date, 4th March, they really started to change from their sleepy premmie state and become more alert and vocal with much more wide awake time. I'm not sure if they'll reach the "milestone markers" a bit later than normal as they're only 2 and a half weeks adjusted age right now. However, Felix gave his first proper smile yesterday and no wind followed so I'm pretty sure it was a genuine one! They have day and night sorted and are having extended periods of awake time and are now feeding every 4ish hours through the night. It's great when they do the longer period between feeds as I'm finally starting to feel human again. Day time is still on a 3 hour feed schedule with bouts of cluster feeding in the late afternoon/early evening. They're starting to enjoy looking around at all the goings on and are reaching out to grab things within their reach.

Doctor doctor...
The boys have been assigned their pediatrician and have been for two health checks with her so far. She is really happy with their progress and weight gain and has been the first health care professional to support me with feeding the boys myself. Such a refreshing change. She's so happy with them that we don't have a follow up appointment until they're 8 weeks old.

It's a twin thing
The debate is on as to whether Felix and Sebastian are actually identical even though they were in 2 sacs with 2 placentas. This technically means they're non-id but apparently 25% of all non-id same sex twins turn out to be identical. It's something to do with the egg splitting on the very first day. So far the boys look way too similar for me to think they're non-id. Apart from a small difference in weight and Felix having a slightly longer face it is so hard to tell them apart. Even after all this time I sometimes have to do a double take if I'm holding one of them. Sebastian has a very small red mark under his nose, but that will fade in time so maybe not the best way to tell them apart!

They do odd twin things as well. Even if they are in two separate rooms, if one cries the other will at the same time. If they're being fed separately, when one is being fed the other will make sucking noises, even if he can't see that his brother is being fed. One day I needed to wake Felix up more to feed so I gently squeezed his foot and Sebastian who was being held by Chris flinched and moved the same foot. They are so in tune with each other but I don't know if this is just from spending 8 months together in the womb or if it's something deeper than that. If they continue to look the same then we will have their DNA tested at 6 months to determine whether they are indeed identical.

Ok, so that will do for an update for now and I will continue to find 5 minutes from somewhere to keep updating the progress and the journey of the boys and Bella as they grow up together.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Our Birth Story

So the day after having a scan and receiving my C-section date from the hospital for the 9/2/11, my waters broke lying on the sofa at home after a few contractions and feeling a bit "off" during the afternoon. Luckily my dad was here to stay with Bella while we went to hospital, with me having a bit of a panic and feeling completely unprepared to have twins, especially only being 35+5 weeks gestation!

When I got to the hospital around 9pm I wasn't really having contractions and an internal exam confirmed that my cervix was high and closed. As I'd just eaten dinner I was told that they didn't want to do a C-section for 6 hours until my stomach was clear so they'd put me on monitors for a couple of hours and then move me to a room overnight with a section booked for 8am the following morning. I was put on the monitors but pretty soon the contractions started to pick up and became more frequent and more uncomfortable. I was moved to a delivery suite at midnight and examined where it was found my cervix was favourable and starting to dilate. The contractions went to every 5-6 mins lasting roughly 20 seconds so they decided they were going to deliver at 1am as a planned section as they weren't sure whether I'd hold out until the morning and didn't want to do a middle of the night emergency section.

They then discovered I'd tested positive for Group B Strep from a swab they took on entry to the hospital so they changed their minds again and said I'd wait until 4am while they got 4 hours of antibiotics into me as the worry was that as Felix had broken his waters he was at risk. So, I laid back on the bed and by 1am was getting regular contractions which were starting to get really painful. By 2am they were coming constantly so I asked if they could put the epidural in ready for the section as I was at the point of so much pain and felt like I might need to push. The gynae checked my cervix and said we had to go to theatre as the babies were well on the way and she could feel Felix's bottom coming. I was whisked into theatre where they administered a spinal block and the babies were born at 2.40am and 2.42am, weighing 5lb 4oz and 6lb 2oz. The section is the strangest thing I've ever experienced!

Both boys came out crying and they took them to a side room for checks. I was handed each one in a towel for a quick cuddle before they took them to show Chris and then round to SCBU as Sebastian had breathing problems. They think it's because they had to break his waters and he may of inhaled some of the amniotic fluid. I went down to recovery until 5.30am with my body going in to complete shock and Chris went to SCBU with the boys.

When I was brought back to the room I was told Sebastian was on oxygen and they'd leave the boys together for now to keep an eye on Felix too for signs of GBS. It was a long morning of lots of pain and anxiousness for me as I still hadn't seen them since theatre. I was told at lunch they'd taken Sebastian off the oxygen and I'd see them about 1pm but I wasn't able to get out of bed to go to SCBU as I was in too much pain and feeling very sick from the medication. We were then told they'd bring the babies to me at 3pm but they didn't make it to the room until 6pm. 16 hours without seeing my babies seemed like an eternity but Chris took lots of photos of them and some video to show me. The wait was well worth it when they finally came to the room and I saw how totally perfect they were.

We were only in the hospital for 3 nights before they decided to release us. This was a total surprise as I thought with them being born at 35+5 gestation we'd have been in for quite a but longer, but the boys proved to be little fighters so our release forms were signed and we were on our way home :)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Felix Edward and Sebastian John
Born at 2.40am and 2.42am, weighing 5lb 4oz (2.4kg) and 6lb 20z (2.8kg) respectively. The cutest two boys I've ever seen :)

Monday, January 31, 2011

The Only Way Is Out...!

I thought it was about time for a long overdue update. Everything had been going great with the pregnancy up until the 32 week mark. I went for a routine scan and the babies were measuring very large for dates. Twin 1 was estimating the size of a 34 weeker and Twin 2 around 35 weeks. The question of gestational diabetes and high blood sugars was raised again so I was booked in 2 days later for the long curve glucose tolerance test. After a few days wait for results I was called back to the hospital where they said one of my results was a little high. While it wasn't indicative of GD they decided I needed a closer eye kept on my blood sugars and was sent away with a blood sugar monitor to test before and after each meal.

I thought that was enough to cope with until I started itching like crazy! At the back of my mind was obstetric cholestasis an uncommon condition in pregnancy affecting the liver. I went to see my private doctor for tests and sure enough they came back confirming OC. This is not a condition to be taken lightly as it has risk factors to both mother and baby:
My doctor wrote a recommendation to the consultant at the hospital for close monitoring and an earlier delivery, preferably before 37 weeks, and I was put onto medication.

So, just as I was getting over the shock of that one, I went to a routine midwife appointment where my blood pressure was measuring 150/100 and was sent in to the hospital for monitoring. I spent 3 hours strapped up with a trace put on both babies and had blood and urine samples analysed, looking for the onset of pre-eclampsia. After the blood results came back favourable and my blood pressure was showing to be within limits I was allowed to go home on rest and given a large container to do a 24 hour urine sample in. Not the easiest thing to do when you are very heavily pregnant with twins! My bump is currently measuring 46 weeks pregnant so even finding the toilet is getting harder without having to collect wee into a container as well!

I went back in to the hospital this morning at 35+3 for a scan and some more monitoring and to have further analysis done on the wee sample. Both babies were fine on the scan with steady growth. Twin 1 is estimating 5lb 11oz and Twin 2 6lb 6oz. They were both very active. Unfortunately Twin 1 has now turned from transverse to bottom first so there is no way to consider a natural delivery anymore. After I had monitoring for half an hour to check the babies weren't stressed and my blood pressure was right back down to 130/70, the consultant came back with my consent forms for a C-section and a choice of dates for us. I'm gutted that I won't be able to deliver these two naturally, but I believe everything happens for a reason and perhaps it is because a CS is the safest method for them.

So, the date we'll be meeting our babies is Wednesday, 9th February 2011!!!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Just a quick post to wish everyone a very happy new year. I'm so super excited that my babies will be arriving this year, in fact by the end of next month at the latest!

I had a scan on Wednesday and the babies are doing so well. Twin 1 is estimating 3lb 8oz and Twin 2 at 3lb 10oz. My obs/gynae thinks that I'll make it around the 36-37 week mark as the babies are quite large and both measuring on par with a singleton pregnancy so he doesn't think my uterus will be able to cope with getting much further. As I type I'm 31+1 so they could be here in 5 weeks....eeeeeeeek!

I'm at a huge, uncomfortable stage now as I carry around the combined weight of an average newborn, plus two amniotic sacs and two placentas. No wonder I'm tired, ache and slightly hormonal... I'm back at the hospital on 10th January for a further scan to determine the positions of both babies and to discuss delivery decisions.

Happy 2011 everyone and what a life changing year we're about to have!