Monday, December 28, 2009

Reflections around the Holidays

In past years Craig and I have been used to spending Christmas day with just eachother.  With working in claims for a few years I developed, I guess you could call it a fear of traveling on holidays. I dealt with so many awful accidents surrounding traveling on the holidays that I never wanted to take that chance, let alone have family travel to us on holidays and have them risk it.-Paranoid, I know. But in past years it hasn't been that bad because typically my family has a giant family christmas party with all my aunt's, uncles, cousins, etc. and it usually is two weeks or so before Christmas so I am ok with traveling then.  Its great because all of the family lives in Missouri, and every year we change the location. so its either in Kansas City, or St. Louis. Since my parents live in KC and thats only a four hour drive for us, its very easy to go up on Friday and if we have to travel to St. Louis its only a few more hours and so its nice.  We usually use this time with my parents to do Christmas. Since Craig's family all live in Indiana, we typically have to settle on ordering gifts via the internet and having it shipped or giftcards. So with my family we actually get to wrap gifts and give them to eachother.
Well this year we didn't get to do that. Since I am so far along in my pregnancy they did not recommend I travel especially anything over 2 hrs. so we didn't get to go.  Luckily from what my mom said, it really was a disappointment this year and because of poor planning a lot of the family didn't get to make it, so althought that is sad it makes me happy, that the one I miss is the "crappy" one.
Nonetheless not having a family Christmas party to attend this year made everything feel empty. Craig and I really like spending time alone on Christmas but at the same time not having a Christmas party really made me think.  It made me realize that times like this it sucks not having family close. Although my parents have already said that from now on they will come down for Christmas because of the twins and they want to be there for them, it just makes me sad that our kids wont have a lot of interaction outside of the holidays with family, especially Craig's side. I wonder what is in store in the years to come in regards to his family.  I am not overally concerned about his dad because he comes out to visit roughly twice a year.  Since he is retired he can come out more if he decides, but for one person driving 12 hrs can take a toll on your body.  And yes I know what you all are thinking, there are other ways to travel that wouldn't take as long but long story short he will only drive. But his sister and her family is what I wonder.  Times like this I wish we had bigger families with his sister being the only sibling and her only have one child, our twins only have one cousin that they will rarely see since. Luckily we have an adoptive family that have two girls, 6 and 3 and a 6 month old boy, and they have a lot in common with us, so we plan on taking family trips with them, and that will give the twins more children and family.  My brother is younger and isn't married, so there is no rush at all for him to start a family, so there isn't much additional family on my side.   The twins seeing their cousin is my biggest obstacle, since we normally go to Indiana once a year for a week they would have time then, but the next two years it will be tough because Craig only has so many vacation days as well as I and we need to take an actual vacation just Craig and I which we haven't done since we got married, so we have that planned for 2010 and then in 2011 is our 5 year anniversary and Craig's best friends wedding that he is a part of so that takes a lot of vacation time as well. so as of right now it looks like the first time we will be able to go to Indiana isn't until 2012 and our twins will be 2 years old then. I know they wont remeber much before then, but its the principle of seeing family that bothers me.
Ok I am sorry to ramble, but I just wanted to get it off my chest, because holidays always make you think of family and its just sad to me.
On a more positive note I cant believe 2009 is coming to an end, it has been a wonderful and eventful year with 2010 bound to be a huge adventure and an important chapter of our lives.
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and a great New Year, with many blessings for 2010.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

White Christmas

Well I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. It was actually a white Christmas, which was amazing! To Craig and I it was comical because Christmas Eve we actually had a blizzard warning.  For most that doesn't seem like a big deal but apparently this was only the second time they have had a blizzard warning in Tulsa. So you would think that this was going to be feet upon feet of snow, well not exactly.... Tulsa only averaged 5.4" of snow-hahahaha. Broken Arrow actually got 8", which was awesome. The only bad part about it was most of the day Wednesday it rained, then Thursday it rained and turned to sleet and by roughly 4 it finally started to snow.
We went to our church's first Christmas Eve service. It was great, yeah it was a little nerve raking getting out in the weather but it was nice going to service.  Craig had to help several people get unstuck from the parking lot, but it was fun.
What also made the snow so great was that Royce got to enjoy it. Growing up in Indiana he loved playing in the snow, and now being in Oklahoma that is rare so when we got home, he went crazy and had a blast playing in the snow. Cooper on the other hand, he was born and raised in Oklahoma and so he doesn't like the snow, even with his jacket on.  Here are a few photos of the snow and out house Christmas Eve and Day.

Our front door, before the drifts came.

We have lights surrounding our flower bed rocks. The snow covering them was pretty cool.

Here's the house, before it got too bad. It is really exciting, this year our house actually looked like Christmas with the snow.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Baby Update

So today I was a little nervous because we hard our multiples specialist Dr. appt. This usually isn't anything special, since I have only had to go to him twice during my pregnancy but this appt was a little different, I would really get a good idea of how big the twins were and how far along I really was, if he thought I would go early.
Well today went very well. Caysen is weighing 5 lbs even and Price is 5 lbs 2 ounces, and they are actually right on track for a single pregnancy, in so many words that means I have big babies. Which is a great thing, but at the same time not so good because twin pregnancies cant handle as much baby weight and go early. So I asked the pressing question, what his prediction was of when I would go.  He said since my placentas looked good and were handling the weight so far very well that he figured I may go right at 37 weeks. Hopefully in the next couple weeks I can stay off my feet and go to my scheduled date or atleast wait till the weekend before, when my parents will be here again.
But all in all I cannot complain, everything is going extremely well.

Monday, December 21, 2009

One month to go

Tomorrow will be exactly 4 weeks to go before my C-section.  I am starting to get excited but a little nervous for the unknown before then.  I treat a C-section like a surgery and with surgery my thinking is, when the date comes that is when you get it done. But when it comes to having a baby its slightly different, you dont have complete control-the babies do.  Thats the frightening part of it all. I just hate having to be on edge trying to really be intune with my body to make sure I am not going into labor.
I know with twins everyone says, you get that "I'm ready to be done feeling" a lot faster-like at 30 weeks, but I never had that and I am thankful.
With a month to go its really made me start to reflect on my experience being pregnant. This pregnancy has really been very easy, really no complaints.  Of course the going to the bathroom more often is slightly annoying, but pregnant or not, if you have to wake up from a good sleep to go to the bathroom, I think everyone would be a little annoyed. I think the the only thing I really cant get used to and drives me crazy is the lack of physical energy.  At the beginning of the pregnancy you are tired, and all you want to do is sleep, but your body will still allow you to do everything you want to do.  Now I am not as tired but things take me longer to do and I have to take more breaks and naps.  Of course me being stubborn like I am, I try to fight through the physical exhaustion, but I have learned thats not smart.  Just a note to everyone... if you ignore your bodies signs of being tired contractions are bound to come-and that sucks. So I have learned to listen to my body and rest. but it really frusterates me when I have what I thought to be a small to do list and yet at the end of the day I only get half of them done!!!!
Just in the last week or so I have noticed the swelling in the feet.  I have been a little swollen before then b/c I haven't been able to wear my wedding ring for a month now, but it hasn't been bad. Now my ankles are starting to swell if I stand to long. But as much as I would like to complain, I look at several other women and know I have it very well.
The only other thing that is tough for me is the belly.  being pregnant for 34 weeks I am still not used to having this "thing" on the front of me. I bump into everything.  I haven't hurt myself-yet, but it really is embarassing when you are out in public and you hit something or at home you knock things over. sometimes its comical but other times I get so annoyed with myself.  You would think by now I would be used to it, but it still doesn't feel heavy so if I couldn't see the bump I would even know it was there.
Overall, like I said earlier I cannot complain about anything with being pregnant. Now I am just ready, well not exactly ready, for them to be here so I can start a new experience in life.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Weekend Progress

This weekend my parents were nice enough to come down, even though they were down here not even a month ago and will be down again in another month.  But nonetheless my parents came down.  More like my Dad tagged along with my Mom, since my Mom really wanted me to have everything ready to go for the hospital "just in case". 
Dont get me wrong I was prepared to back my hospital bag, with a checklist, etc., but a part of me hasn't wanted to get it together because I feel like it will jinx me and I will have to go earlier than the 19th.  But I know "mother knows best" so she came down and helped me put it all together.  So there are only a few daily items I use that are not in my bag, but its ready to go and sitting in the nursery ready for me.
That was the main purpose for my parents(mom) to come down this weekend, she wanted me to be prepared.
While she was down here we also got my wall decal down (pictures to come in the next few days).  Everything on the nursery walls are decals, but the difference between the decal I just put up this weekend and our dots, is all the dots totalled roughly 50 bucks and they are vinyl so you can pull them off and stick them anywhere if you dont like where you have them and they WILL NOT peal off the paint. The wording decal I did purchase from Uppercase Living and I love it!  I highly recommend if you have not used rub-on's before or want personalized decorations for your wall to check it out. Anyway...   I bought my wording and it was roughly 50 bucks.  still not bad, but there is added pressure when you know once its on the wall if you try and remove it you are risking taking the paint off and it wont stick back on. And the sad part is, if you have ever worked retail had to do floorsets, especially around the holidays you have probably done your window displays and used decals-its the same concept, so it should be really easy, and it really was but knowing that if there is a mistake I am stuck.  But hey after roughly 30-45 minutes my Mom and I had the decal up on the wall where we wanted.  Like I said earlier I will take pictures, but I am waiting for Craig to put my corner shelves up and then the wall will be complete.
The only thing I didn't get done this weekend was put together my "hospital binder".  Wondering what that is... well I am a planner and have to be super organized, so I have a binder I have started to put things in for the hospital, like coupons to redeem at the hospital for free formula, free bags, etc. it will also contain all my paperwork I need, copy of insurance, driver license, and a list of people I need to e-mail/text etc to give them an update. Other than that I am set to go.
One thing I have to mention is that the hubs was very sweet and put the carseat bases along with the mirrors in the car. We were orginally going to put the stroller in the car, but after my parents came and were trying to work with the carseats and strollers, I realized Craig and I needed a little more practice before we put it in the car for good.
I am starting to get excited, but I think next weekend I will really be excited because this week we go to Dr. Fumia (the multiples specialists) so we will have a better idea how long I will last, and next weekend my game plan is to, although earlier than I normally do, put up the Christmas decorations and really get all the baby stuff out and have the house "baby ready".
So later this week look for some more updates on the pregoress of getting baby ready along with some more pictures!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Going back-sharing my story

Well the main reason like I said this week has meant so much is because, when I first found out I had to do IVF, I felt so worthless.
I know they say women dream about their wedding from the time they are like 3, well I wasn't that way all I remember thinking about once I met Craig was I wanted to start a family and having to do IVF, made me feel less like a woman that would be a good mother.
At first I didn't want to tell anyone what I was going to have to go through or what I had been through b/c I was embarassed,but the more I thought about it I really started to like my position and felt like although small it was a calling from God to educate and share with people my experience and to help support other women going through the same/similar situation.
It's kind of crazy but one lady, by chance I met in a fertility forum was thinking of having to do some type of fertility treatment. I actually referred her to my Dr and gave her all my left over meds (I know that sounds gross, and wrong but trust me if you knew how much drugs cost out of pocket, you would understand) My friend was orginally  going to try around August of this year but then her and her husband decided not to try b/c she has already had three children from a previous marriage. Well just last week she told me they decided to give it a shot, and she had her ET on Monday. Her situation has been different than mine, b/c her husband has had the fertility issue, but it has made me feel great, and from what she has told me has helped her as well to be there for support and help her through everything. I never thought that helping someone just by talking to them would make me feel like my pregnancy and my journey was worth it and given to me for an even bigger reason than to start a family.  It has been a wonderful experience and feeling and I encourage anyone who is going through this situation or a similar one, and needs someone to talk to, to contact me.  Or even if you aren't going through this situation but want to know more about it let me know. The one thing I must say is that if you know someone going through this situation PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE try to understand that it is the most emotionally and physically draining and trying time.

***Thanks to all who read, and stuck it out to read all three 'novels', it was something I had to get off my chest***

Going back-God sent

 After a few months of analyzing our situation, and LOTS of praying, Craig and I decided to go ahead and pursue IVF. We knew that we wouldn't be able to try several times, but we both wanted a family and knew what needed to be done. After a little bit of time Craig actually decided to take a shot in the dark and check his insurance one last time to see if it covered IVF, and our prayers were answered... IT did!!!!! There is no way to explain how happy we were, it trully was God sent.
Well once we switched insurance at the first of the year we were ready to revisit the topic with our Dr. and figure out what this journey had in store for us. After having a few more tests done, and getting all our pre diagnosis stuff handled and squared away we began.
I still to this day cannot explain how lucky we were to have insurance that covered IVF. there only roughly 13 states in the US that require fertility coverage, and out of those 13 only a handful actually pay for a large portion of it. And although we live in Oklahoma Craig's company is based out of New York and they require fertility coverage and pay 20k!!!!!
Craig and I decided to start roughly in April.
to give a run down:
Lupron shot from April to May
Repronex shot from April to May
Gonal-F for a few weeks in April
Progesterone from May to August.
Our egg retrievel date was May 8th and they collected 22 eggs(amazing)
19 fertilized normally
May 13th was our egg transfer date. (2 eggs transfered, 4 frozen)
although after the retrieval I had some days I was very uncomfortable. I suffered from OHSS (Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome) I knew it was temporary.
The week of bedrest and laying flat on my back after the transfer was tough, but luckily my mom came down and was there to keep me occupied.
I have to say that was and has been the hardest part of my journey.
Once I was done with progesterone shots(had to take a shot once a day until week 13!) everything has been smooth sailing. I wont say pregnancy has been easy, but it hasn't been as hard as I thought it would be.
I trully believe that this was the journey God wanted us to take, b/c things have just fallen into place.

Going back-surgery

So I apologize in advance, but I just feel like I have to share my story.....
This week has been a very interesting one. and to understand why you have to understand what I have been through. So the next few post will be my story.

Basically last August I went to a new OB/Gyn, turns out he was an endocrinologist, a*k*a fertility specialist. Well I went to of course do the typical meet the new Dr. appt. Of course there is a ton of paperwork, and b/c of his speciality, alot was geared toward fertility stuff. So of course when I go in he reviews all my stuff and says seems like I am in good health. Well when I explained to him we have not used any type of birth control for nearly 3 years it took him back.  His exact words were "you should have gotten pregnant by now, if nothing was going on". Well that is always something so encouraging to hear-Not. well long story short he checks me out and discovers that I have septum on my uterus that could be blocking the natural flow of eggs to be released into the uterus, and because of my pain I had felt I had endometreosis, and noticed I had PCOS, polycystic ovarian syndrome. So he explained to me that he would like to go in and do a hysterscopy, which means he would remove the septum and while he was in there get rid of some of the endo. Needless to say I was absolutely taken back, and VERY upset. I went in to the office in early August and they were ready to schedule me for surgery that next week-I couldn't say yes to that, I was still in shock when I left. After crying for majority of the day and trying to gather my thoughts, I realized I was more scared to have a surgery, since I have never had surgery, I really didn't picture my first surgery being on a part of my body that could really effect my future-kids.  Of course Craig was there to calm me down and make me realize it wasn't too big of a deal so at the end of August I had surgery.  While in surgery the Dr did a laproscopy to make sure everything was clear.  What he discovered while in surgery was that, I didn't have endo, put I had adhensions. Well these adhensions were all over my fallopian tubes so when the Dr ran the dye through my system he realized that my tubes were 95% block due to these adhensions. Of course I wanted to know how these adhensions came about, and what he told me again was shocking.  Apparently my pain tolerance is higher than I thought b/c he told me that nearly 5-6 years ago I must have had my appendiz leak.  It leaked just enough that I would have gotten pretty sick, but would have only lasted roughly a weekend. well with my appendix leaking my body attacked it like an infection and caused the adhensions.
So of course all this was discovered during my surgery-that went well by the way. But the Dr came to the conclusions that if I ever wanted to have kids I would have to do IVF, Invitro fertilization.
I did not see the Dr after surgery except once I woke up he told me everything went well. I'm sure you are asking why he didn't tell me that I would have to do IVF. well he had talked to my husband and my mom, and they all agreed that with me having surgery around my abdomen that it would cause me to be extremely upset and they didn't want to do that to me so soon after surgery, so they all chose to wait.
Well Craig being as loving as he is, it was tearing him up inside not to tell me, so by the end of the night I knew, and their prediction of me going crazy was correct, I cried and cried and cried.
I went back to the Dr roughly a week later for a check up and that is when he showed me pictures, explained his discovery and what our next step was. Of course the next step would be IVF, the only problem with that was my insurance did not cover IVF and if you are not familar with IVF it is not cheap.  You are looking at roughly 10k per try! So not to overwhelm myself we decided to take a few months off and get my body's system regulated before revisting the situation.