Monthly Archives: May 2012

Twin Pregnancy: Week 26 Update

Twin Pregnancy: Week 26

This week we went to Toronto for a wedding (Congrats Jess & Jordan!) and I had a vain attempt at pretending I was not pregnant. First of all, I booked us a room at the Gladstone Hotel, a really cool hotel on Queen West where each room has been designed by an artist. It was awesome. Until we arrived back at the hotel on Friday night around 10:30pm, and discovered that the dance party that was happening on the main floor of the hotel made it seem like we had rented a room inside a speaker. The next morning, when we talked to the front desk person about it, he offered us the room half-price, and half-price for Saturday with parking included. This is the point in my life where sleep is literally priceless. We declined and left the really cool hotel with our tails between our legs (we would have been AT that dance party 6 months ago!!!), and we booked into the Hyatt. And that was the best decision we’ve made in a long long time. Roof top pool! QUIET rooms! Just down the street from both shopping and the Rogers Center (Steph caught a few innings of a Blue Jays game while I maxed out my visa)! It was perfect. And we let the realization sink in that we need certain creature comforts now. The “cool” option is not the best option anymore. We are…getting old, and becoming parents. And it starts right now. 

My second vain attempt at normalcy was buying a pair of fancy wedge shoes from Brown’s. I had brought my trusty Teva velco sandals that sort of pass as cute fancy sandals, but don’t really, and I just lost it in the shoe store. I want normal feet again! So I found this pair of gorgeous black suede wedges, and they made my outfit look awesome by the way, and around 9:30 that night the swelling of the feet commenced. I ignored the swelling, and I danced as much as my extra 25lbs would allow, and of course, I dealt with my giant swollen feet for the next two days. But you know what? It was worth it. For about 5 minutes, I felt normal again. And those shoes are awesome. 

In other news, we had another ultrasound yesterday, followed by a doctor’s appointment and that darn one-hour glucose test. The ultrasound was cool as always, although it’s getting difficult to decipher what exactly we’re seeing, since they’re getting so crammed in their space. The little ones are still lying transverse, but apparently there’s still no need to worry about position at this point (other than the fact that little boy is SERIOUSLY up in my ribs – ouchy). The technician confirmed that boy and girl status (although there really was no doubt about it the last time we saw them!), and she kept asking what I was feeding them because they are quite big for their age. The little girl is measuring at 28 weeks, (just over 2lbs) and the little boy is right on 26 weeks (just under 2lbs). I guess twins are usually smaller for their age, but not mine! She also said they’re going to be tall, because they have really long legs. No one in that office is questioning my diet, that’s for sure! 

I did the glucose test, and I’m waiting for the results. It doesn’t really matter what the results say, I know how sugar affects me. The rest of the day I was cranky and pouty and things were very itchy *downstairs* if you know what I mean. I wish I’d done more research on the glucose test. Frankly, I’d much rather say “Yes, sugar affects me, I won’t eat it anymore. No test needed!” I already know I can’t have sugar in the evening or I’ll be up all night, I’m happy with cutting it out completely. I still have fruit and juice to keep me satisfied. I’ve been making apple juice popcicles that REALLY hit the spot. 

Sleep is starting to allude me. I get quite nauseous lying on my back, their weight presses on some vein that prevents blood flow. And switching from side to side takes up so much energy…I registered for a fancy pillow to help with sleeping, but I’m considering just going to get it, I don’t know if I can wait until June 10th (shower day!). One week left of full-time work! And not a moment too soon, sitting all day really pushes little boy into my ribs…not comfy. And I could really use a nap. 

Have a great weekend! 

Sarah


Twin Pregnancy: Week 25 Update

Twin pregnancy: week 25

I’m getting TIRED! This is actually a picture of week 24 + 3 days. I think I’m bigger now. The little ones kick like crazy at all hours of the day. Sleep is becoming more and more difficult…you’d think we’d get a break before they got here, eh? Work is getting to be quite draining, but I’m going to be only working mornings in June before I stop for good, so I will be able to blog way more then. For now, I will try to stick to my weekly updates! 

Have a great May 2-4 for all my Canadian friends! 

Sarah


Twin Pregnancy: Week 23 Update

Twin Pregnancy: Week 23

In the beginning, the weeks seemed to take forever. Now, all of a sudden, they are flying by. I want everything to stop and slow down, and at the same time, I’ve started having this craving to hold my babies in my arms. I’m glad that they’re safe and warm in my belly, but I have a longing to hold them and know what they look like. Pregnancy is such a strange thing, the way that your emotions are connected to your body; and how it all knows to do the right thing at the right time. 

I ordered a bunch of books from Amazon earlier in the week, (a whole whackload on Attachment Parenting, the philosophy of which I love, but not sure how it will translate with two infants), and one of the books I got is Birthing from Within. As soon as I started reading it, I knew I would love it. I will do a full review when I’m done, because I think everyone should read this book. One of the topics she touches on in the first chapter is “worrying” during pregnancy. The author explains that worrying is a healthy aspect of pregnancy, and a way for us to work out deep-seated issues. In fact, women who worry a lot often have easier births, because they have been able to work through their fears. Ignoring fears can hinder a peaceful birth, because the fears were never dealt with. I love this idea. The neuroses that pop up in pregnancy actually serve a purpose.

As I have written in the past, I am having a hard time accepting that we have to stay in our downtown townhouse (even though it’s brand new). This particular neurosis seems to climax once a week or so, when I go on a mad house hunting frenzy and usually end up driving my husband nuts. Each time that this happens though, I try to look at the reasons I’m doing this – mainly that I am worried about feeling trapped in a house that does not serve myself or my children – a carry-over from watching my mom raise my sisters when I was 16 and there were 7 of us crammed in a tiny town house. These issues, no matter how annoying and repetitive they seem, need to be addressed, and I need to come to terms with them so that I can move past my fears. 

I use my own craziness as an example, but it could be anything. It could be worrying about dying during childbirth, or that you won’t know how to take care of your baby properly. Whatever your worry is, it’s okay to worry about it! It’s a signal that there is some work that needs to be done on a deeper level. Follow your worry, keep asking WHY. Why am I worried about this? What happened in the past that might make me think this could happen? What narrative have I been dragging around that might not serve me anymore? And I got all that from the first chapter! Phew! 

We had our first pre-natal class on Wednesday (for parents expecting multiples). There were only 4 couples, but it was neat to be around people who are in the same situation we are. The class is given by someone who had twins, so that’s a bonus too. The first session focussed on nutrition…to which I bit my tongue for most of…lots of talk about dairy…but it was a good introduction.

When we were introducing ourselves, we were asked to give our names, due dates, and how we were feeling. The first 3 women, when they got to the last question, all said that they felt great, although a bit tired in the beginning. I was sitting there with my mouth open. A BIT TIRED???? When it came to my turn, I said: I have never felt so horrible in my life, I could barely eat anything, and most smells sent me retching. As I was talking, I could see everyone else nodding in agreement. Um…ladies…WHY ARE WE LYING ABOUT EARLY PREGNANCY??? It is no walk in the park! I felt like my body was being taken over by aliens and I had zero control. The freakin’ world looked different! I was depressed and struggling, and pretending you were “a bit tired” does not help anyone! Especially with us ladies who are growing two placenta, there is no need to be a hero. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe they really did not feel sick, but somehow I don’t believe it.

Anywho, other than that, the class was fine, and I’m glad I’m doing it, even though I’m not sure how much learning is going on for me. The more I read and think about it, the more I realize it’s so instinctual, and what we should all be learning is to trust ourselves, and to realize that the knowledge of birth and child-rearing is so ancient and ingrained, that we can’t NOT know it. 

There’s my message for the weekend. TRUST YOURSELF. 

Have a great one,

Sarah


Swimming and the Mama Guilt

Yesterday I had a burst of energy and signed myself up for pre-natal aquafit classes at my local city pool.  The class started at 7:30, and while I am usually curled up on the couch at that time of night, now that the sun stays up a bit longer, I pushed myself to just go. And it was awesome! I highly recommend getting into the water when pregnant, ladies. For 45 minutes, I felt like my old self again. The moves are sort of silly, and definitely not the intense cardio I used to enjoy pre-pregnancy, but just to feel light again was miraculous. Also, bumbling around with 10 other pregnant ladies in various stages of belly was so heart-warming. After the class one of the women asked about maternity clothes, and everyone started discussing where their best finds had been (a tie between Motherhood and Thyme, and a recommendation to check out Value Village). Anyway, unfortunately I discovered the class 3 classes in, so there’s only 3 left, but I’ll take what I can get. Once it’s over I might just start swimming regularly, just to be in the water.

I wanted to write a bit about “Mama Guilt” in pregnancy. For us plant-based dieters, or anyone who prides themselves on healthy eating, dealing with “morning sickness” is not only tough physically, but mentally as well. I know I mentioned it here in my first trimester; I was devastated that I couldn’t eat properly in the beginning of my pregnancy. I felt horribly guilty that my first act as a parent was to forgo my usual salads and whole grains, and start on a fairly steady stream of toasted tomato sandwiches (actually, tomato sandwiches have been hard to kick, I had one today) and plain pasta. I remember I made a box of Kraft dinner one night because I was so hungry, and NOTHING seemed edible to me. Even just turning on the burner to boil the water made me gag.

And so the “Mama Guilt” thoughts start running through your head. What happens when my children arrive? Will I cop out and feed them crap sometimes? What is this doing to them now? Will they crave junk food? How can I justify not needing animal protein when I’ve been downing the yoghurt?

Now that the nausea has passed and I am back to eating a more balanced diet, I want to say what I wish someone had told me in the beginning.

Around 3 months my midwife explained to me that the little ones take the nutrition they need, and they leave you with everything else. So really, you are not harming them at all.

The sickness that I experienced was magnified by my twins (two placentas = double hormones!), but even with one, it is like nothing you have ever experienced before, and you really have no choice but to listen to your body. This isn’t just a 24 hour flu that you can power through; this is potentially months of feeling like crap. Do what you can, and do not beat yourself up. There is no such thing as a “perfect” pregnancy.

My version of “eating badly” is often still on the healthy eating scale. I felt so guilty over a Dairy Queen blizzard, but I’ve only had one so far (although I may have to have another one when the weather gets warmer). I have stopped at the Tim Horton’s on the way to work a few times and ordered their smoothie and a bagel/egg/cheese/lettuce/tomato breakfast sandwich. But I did not get a donut to go along with it (even though I thought about it). I have been eating at least a banana and an apple every day. I made a side salad that night I ate Kraft dinner. Yes, it’s not how I normally eat, but it’s not that bad.

All mamas-to-be need to remember that. There are plenty of ways we are going to scar our children in the future, I’m sure (that’s only partially sarcastic!). Worrying about the chocolate bar we ate during pregnancy is such a drop in the bucket, there’s absolutely no point in it.

Finally, just know that you have built up a great base for your little one. Your body has been pumped full of the healthy stuff for the last little while, so it’s not like you’re starting with nothing. You will read websites and books and articles screaming at you about how important your diet is – and it is true to an extent – but panicking or stressing is worse. Do what you can and know that your baby will be fine.

Once the little ones arrive, and my hormone levels go back to normal (ie: the fog lifts) and I start contending with breast feeding and lack of sleep, I will clean out the pantry and focus on fine-tuning my diet again. Right now, my body is being invaded by little monsters, and I’m doing everything I can to keep my sanity. Even if that includes more tomato sandwiches than are necessary.