Sunday, March 29, 2009

getting ready to step out into a BIT of reality

Kate (left) and Olivia (right) - getting bigger!

Did you think we'd never come up for some air?

Yea . . .I wasn't so sure either. : )

There are many days I have no idea where the day went. Ok, lets be honest. That is MOST days.

It all passes in a blur of nursing, diapers, nursing, Ava, nursing, babies and a splurge of a shower! My shower is the grand accomplishment of each day for me.

But can you believe it's almost been a month?! (This tuesday!!)

I can't either.

The girls have been gaining weight really well - last tuesday at their weight check, Kate weighed in at a whopping 6 lb 7 oz and Olivia chimed in right behind her at 6 lb 5 oz. I'm hoping that with such great weight gains the past weeks (and planning on another one this tuesday), that the Doctor will say we can stop with the supplements. They've averaged at least half a pound a week for the past two weeks.

Nights are the big challenge. We're just starting to let them go longer than 3 hours at a time (or attempting). A few nights this past week we got a couple stretches of 4 hours. Last night, it was back to 3 hours like clockwork.

This too shall pass - right?!

Ava has been a little bit more of a challenge lately - more just as she's gotten more aggressive with trying to handle the girls.

The other day I caught her just in time as she was proceeding to "lift" Olivia off the couch. Olivia's entire body was off the couch and her head about to follow crashing into the floor.

Her trying to "hold you" on her own is a more and more common occurrance.

Heaven help us.

She also loves to try and nurse her sisters. You'll catch her essentially laying on her sisters while trying to push her chest into their face. They love it. (that was sarcasm by the way).

Did I mention that Ava weighs 27 pounds?

Then there's this great cause and effect she's discovered.

Did you know that if you wallop your sisters on the head, they'll let out this great whelp and start to cry?

This is a favorite of Ava's.

She especially loves to do this while staring you straight in the face.

Yea . . .we're working on that one.

It is a grand cycle of love-hate . . .although in Ava's defense, most of the challenges stem for the fact that she usually absolutely love her sisters.

Ryan and I? We're working on reality (not just a defiant child) starting to stare us in the face as well.

My mom plans to leave for a little while this tuesday. Grandma Prevo will be stepping in alot . . .but at the same time, Ryan and I know we can't have our hands held forever and do want to work towards doing more on our own.

So we're going to be managing much of the nights on our own and I"m going to give most of the the afternoons after Ava's naps a try on my own as well.

This is a preliminary trial.

If you hear the sounds of two people drowning . . .that may be us. Adjustments will be made where needed. : )

The good news? - if all else fails, maybe we'll make BOTH grandma's move back in.

Ok, that's probably not a healthy reality. But my mom will be back in a couple weeks to take Ava home with her for a week, so I know I have that for sure breather coming. I also know Grandma Prevo can step in for crisis prevention too. : )

This is where I'm praying that the girls can really start to make progress at night as they continue to gain more weight. I know that may be the difference in how well our transition to more independence goes.

One of our biggest challenges right now is that I"ve been fighting thrush. For all you namesless readers that don't know what thrush is (yes, I know you're there . ..and one day I'll figure out a way to flush you out : ) ), it's essentially something that can occur with nursing that makes it oh so (NOT) fun.

Please place an emphaisis on the not.

It can make things discouraging when nursing is already pretty time-intensive with our chaotic life as it stands already. But I'm working on seeing what I can do to get rid of it and praying it'll clear up.

I'm trying to take each day of nursing as it comes. If I think too far ahead I get overhwhelmed.

Like trying to figure how Ava is going to love me nursing on the couch for 45 min - 1 hour throughout the day WITHOUT her own entertainment system. I do have some tricks up my sleeve I plan on trying.

I'm trying to be persistant without being dogmatic. : )

I really want to be able to nurse both girls.

But I don't want to sacrifice our family in the process.

So if all else fails, I know adjustments can be made there . ..and I'll just need to be thankful for the time they were able to be exclusively breastfed. That's not my ideal to consider though . . .so like I said, one day at a time.

I'm thankful for the blogging world though - on the days I feel pretty cut off . helps to feel like I know some of what's going on in the lives of people I care about! My times on the computer aren't always long or often, but it's fun when I find them. Especially since trying to coordinate a time that someone calls with me being able (or truthfully even wanting) to talk can be a feat in itself! So thanks for all the glimpses into your lives as well. I miss you all! :)

I also cherish my quiet moments.

Last night, Ava and I got to snuggle in her bed, singing songs, before she went to sleep. It's one of her favorite things to do lately and I absolutely love it. It's so fun to hear her singing along and it amazes me how many words she knows. The child has her ABC"s halfway down and has recently added "Jesus loves me (Jamaican style)" as a new favorite. Her "la la la's" are pretty cute.

Or there is the rare quiet hour Ryan and I get to relax in the evening with all 3 girls asleep and nothing else going on or no one else around. There are days that pushing towards that is what gets me through the day.

This afternoon, I even got a few moments to snuggle just ONE wide-eyed baby while her twin sister slept. I love the times I get to soak in each girl on her own.

Those moments don't always happen too often.

But they do happen. And I'm so thankful they do. The past weeks would have been alot harder without them and so I take them as little "love letters" from God.

So once more, thanks for all the prayers, the love, the meals (wow - we've been spoiled and I couldn't be more thankful), and just for thinking of us. It means alot to know we're remembered.

Wow. This post should have been made in sections!

Until the next time . . .

Friday, March 13, 2009

we're still here . . .: )

Sleep walking at times . . .but we're still here. : )

Ava came back home wednesday so that's made life a little more eventful around here. Overall she's done remarkably well. She still loves her little sisters to pieces . ..the battles come between her and mommy more often as she, justifiably so, struggles with mom's attention elsewhere. I'm working on balancing the guilt (you mommies know what I'm talking about ; ) ) . . .with the need for her to still be responsible for choices while ALSO still being given grace and time for her own transition.

So I have my moments of "HOW AM I GOING TO DO THIS?!?!?!" . . .while thankfully also having the moments where God lets me see the complete joy/fun of our situation too.

Last night was a "HOW AM I GOING TO DO THIS!?!?!??!" Afternoon meltdowns and 3 children up often at night made for some long hours.

This afternoon (with a good nap by BOTH mommy and Ava) helped mend that. : )

Such is how our days often go. Yet God has been faithful.

We had weight checks for both the girls today.

Kate did remarkably well. After dropping down to 5 lb 1 oz, she had bounced back up to 5 lb, 11 oz - just under her birth weight. So that was so exciting to see!

Olivia did ok. She had gained only 2 more ounces, going from 5 lb 4 oz, to 5 lb 6 oz. However, she hasn't been getting any supplementation.

So the new plan is to alternate who is supplemented since Kate did better than she needed to and Olivia just a little less than the doctor wanted to see. We'll see where both girls are at again when we go to their 2 week check up tuesday (WOW - it seems unreal to write 2 weeks!).

And another thanks is that, for the most part, my chest pain has left! Nights are much more restful (well . ..when I am allowed to sleep : ) ) and it's nice not to have that weighing in the back of my mind. So thanks for your prayers with that!

That's all for now - here's a couple more pictures of our girls . . .

Ava helping Daddy feed Kate a bottle (willingness to "help" is never a problem)

Ava and Olivia getting some snuggle time in the swing.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

our latest . . .

Thought I at least owed everyone a little update . . .

The girls and I are all hanging in there (daddy too!).

Last night was probably our shortest night since coming home.

When we went in for the check up yesterday, while Olivia had gained an ounce (up to 5 lb 4 oz) since leaving the hospital, Kate had lost five ounces (down to 5 lb 1 oz). That wasn't exciting news to hear and a little perplexing since I"ve been nursing both the same. To top it off, both had higher levels of bilirubin that we needed to bring down. Kate had been pretty lethargic up to then which probably contributed to her weight loss (probably due to the juandice) since I would really have to work to get her nursing at times.

As a result, I got to have a nice nursing marathon the past 24 hours.

Yes, I said a nursing marathon.

The good news is that the Doctor was more than comfortable with me picking up nursing again yesterday afternoon and, for the most part, both girls have done great picking back up where we left off. So that's a praise!

Thankfully, both girls had good levels today when they were rechecked. So while I"m slightly exhausted and sleep deprived, the results help make it worth it.

The doctor is having me supplement Kate with some extra calories, but thus far, I've been able to pump a little extra too, so that even her supplement can be breast milk. It wouldn't have been the end of the world if she had to go to formula as her growth and health is by far my greatest priority. But it does feel good to know that, so far, I can give that to her. I do think she's been a little lazier with nursing but alot of that could still be due to jaundice and weight loss as much as anything.

I also had my appt today as well (have I mentioned I'm a little tired?!).

Staples came out (joy).

Dr. Nord and I were able to talk a little bit more about the chest discomfort I"ve been having.

Right now, his overall opinion is that this is just my body adjusting back from the pregnancy and birth. (Are you sure?!?! ; ) )

All the tests, including bloodwork, at the ER cleared all the major concerns. His thoughts were that with the huge task my heart has had with carrying the twins and everything else with pregnancy and birth, it's just protesting a little bit. For example, with a twin pregnancy, your volume of blood increases 100%.

At this point, he thinks we just need to give my body a little more time and see if it doesn't continue to get better. Last night was slightly better than previous nights so hopefully that can continue.

So for now, our biggest task is getting Kate to put weight back on. We go in friday for a weight check.

That's all for now - I'm too tired to load pictures.

So just know they're still cute. : )


Monday, March 9, 2009

A prayer request

Yesterday afternoon/last night proved to be a more slightly eventful night than we planned for as we got to spend it in Bromenn's finest er.

And not because of babies . . .because of me.

Since we've come home from the hospital, I've been experiencing alot of discomfort in my right leg, as well as uncomfortable tightness in my chest when I would lay flat. The tightness would get increasingly uncomfortable as I moved to an upright position and then dissapate fairly shortly once I'm upright. It only returns once I get in a more prone position again.

So with worries of a possible blood clot, we called Dr. Nord and he sent me straight into the ER.

My mom was at my sister's in Goodfield and Ava was up at Gpa Prevo's in Gridley, so with needing to go straight in, the girls got to come along until Mom could meet us there.

Let me tell you, it is SO comforting taking your 5 day old daughters into an ER full of sick people with who knows what.


please note extreme level of sarcasm within that last statement.

Yet amazingly, God was in the details and the receptionist there had triplets of her own at home and when she saw us and talked to Ryan, arranged for us to be taken back to a closed off room within 5 minutes of arriving to wait for the Dr. and let me nurse the girls.

It made for a long wait all evening in one room . . .but at least I didn't have to sit there amongst who knows what with our little girls.

To make a LONG story short (or maybe that was just the evening that was so long), after an ultrasound of my leg and cat scan of my chest area, they cleared me of any blood clots.

That is good news.

Yet frustrating.

My leg is better this morning (at this point I think it may be a pinched nerve) but the tightness and level of discomfort is still there in my chest, especially as I transition for laying down to upright (even with sleeping pretty elevated).

I go into Dr. Nord's tomorrow and am hoping we can figure something more out then.

Yet, what is a little harder for me is the fact that for 24 hours I can't nurse.

I know it sounds sillly and just 24 hours.

But I've worked really hard to be able to nurse and had been feeling so thankful how well the girls were doing. That had been a huge answered prayer for myself.

To stop for such a period of time with them so little and give them bottles makes it hard not to worry how they'll do when we try to go back to nursing.

I am obviously pumping which should keep my supply up for them.

So I thought I'd throw everything out there and ask for your prayers.

Prayers, obviously, that everything with my chest discomfort/tightness can be figured out, addressed and resolved. It's not the most settling problem to be dealing with.

But then prayers, also, that these little girls can adjust yet once more and continue to nurse again well. I'm a little nervous how they'll do after the ease of the bottle. Yet I know they are little and that they completely are capable - it's just mommy nerves. : )

Oh, and if you wouldn't mind adding in a prayer that our girls didn't pick up any awful germs during their little adventure, I'd be extremely grateful as well.

Until then, I guess I go back to the verse God really spoke to my heart the night before the girls were born, Psalm 9:10. I love the American Standard's version of it:

"And they that know Thy name will put their trust in Thee. For Thou, Jehovah, hast not forsaken them that seek Thee."

sweetness x 2

The girls just wanted to say "Good Morning" . . . , so here's some bright eyed sweetness.

Olivia (left) and Kate (right)

Friday, March 6, 2009

welcome home . . .

Our little buttons
(Olivia is on the left, Kate is on the right)

Well we made it home this afternoon . ..ready or not! : ) However, it has been so fun reading everyone's comments and emails. We feel very loved! Please don't take it personally if you don't hear back or find me a little slow on the upload/response. Mommy is moving a little slow these days! But know we've appreciated all the love, encouragement and prayers!

We come home with such thankful hearts. Both girls are doing so well - Kate left the hospital at 5 lb, 6 oz and Olivia left at 5 lb, 3 oz.

As I've told several already, it amazes me how within 12 hours of having them with us, two very distinct personalities have emerged. Kate is our slight, how should I say it, drama queen?! She seems to have no problem letting herself be heard . . .or even expressing what she seems to think Olivia should. Even the nurses have gotten a few chuckles out of her. Olivia seems to take life in stride and save her opinion for the times it seems most urgent. Regardless, both have stolen our hearts and I know it will be an adventure watching them grow together. They make me smile often throughout the day.

Each girl looks a little more different than the other with each new day to me. But I keep waiting with interest to see what the final genetic tests say regarding if they are identical or not. They send the placenta away for testing and we may not hear back for another week and a half.

Ava has been incredible with both the girls - she absolutely loves her babies. At first glance of them, her most common reaction is outstretched arms as she says "Hold you. Hold you." Our biggest battle is convincing her that she needs to sit down to hold them. She's done better than I expected with us all home tonight and when getting jealous, is thus far distracted fairly easily. It is so fun to see her interact with them.

Daddy has been a trooper trying to meet all his girls needs: playing with Ava, snuggling a hungry baby or making up for many of mommy's physical (and lets face it . . .emotional :) ) needs.

Mommy . . .well, mommy is taking one day at a time right now. In all reality, the c-section and immediate recovery went absolutely great. I've been so thankful for two healthy and overall very happy little girls, nursing that has gone better than I could hope and lots of great help. I've said over and over that as I consider so many of the details that I worried about preceding these little girl's arrivals, all I can keep saying is "Wow God."

This last day has been probably been my roughest (beyond immediate surgery), so I find myself laying very low tonight. It makes me thankful for such great help with family. My mom has been such huge help around the home and now with the babies . . . and Ava leaves tomorrow to go play with Grandpa and Grandma Prevo for a little while. So I know all my girls are in great hands which enables me to slow down as needed. We are blessed!

Ok, I'll stop talking since I know my ramblings are the last reason many of you have checked my blog. :) Here's a couple more pictures of our little girls from this afternoon . ..I'll try to post more as we get a chance these next days/weeks.

I love how little they look in Daddy's arms!


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

it's a girl (x2)!!!

Welcome Kate and Olivia!!!

Kate Amber
born: 7:32 a.m. on March 3rd
weight: 5 lbs 12 ozs
length: 18.5 ins
Olivia Mae
born: 7:33 a.m. on March 3rd
weight: 5 lbs 10 ozs
length: 18.5 ins
Can you tell them apart?!?

Daddy's 4 perfect ladies (proud? me? Yep!)

Mommy and babies are doing great.

Our little (but growing rapidly) family. I praise God for these girls in my life. If I get to the end of my days and all I have to show for my life is my faith in my Jesus and these 4 girls that have stolen my heart, I will be satisfied and want for nothing more to show.

thank you all for your prayers and love. (I have got to go catch up on some sleep now!)

37 weeks!

Wow. Way back when I wrote out my weeks on my calender, truth be told, I didn't think I'd be here on 37 weeks with babies still waiting to be born. Yet here we are, and as I look back, God has really been in so many details (including those of my growing belly!).

Ryan has been able to meet both of his big deadlines at work - with the last larger one being just yesterday! He's now in a position that being gone from work brings no extra stress. My mom and dad were able to meet some appt's they'd hope to get to last week and every new day has helped our little girls prepare for their big arrival. Not to mention, Ava gets just a little bit more grown up with every hour. That's always helpful!
So while, yes, there have been (some) complaints and aches and pains on my part, I am so thankful we've made it to today.
Thank you for your part in praying us here.
Although rumor has it that sometime today your prayers can change . . .I think we may have a winner. Leslie, let me know where you want your gift card from. Although have some mercy and give this mommy a little time to get it to you. : )
We'll update more as we can!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Mommy and Daddy aren't the only ones getting ready for babies