The Twins Arrive!

Thursday September 8, 2016

6:30am – Thought I felt a trickle of fluid. Maybe my water broke?! I decided not to bother Derek until I knew for sure, especially as early labor is usually 8-12 hours. I had no contractions or other trickles throughout the day, so I chalked it up to my wishing it was time.

8:30pm – Got home after picking up Derek downtown. After multiple small gushes of fluid, I was now confident – my water had broken! After my research this afternoon, I now could consider myself one of the 6% of labors that start this way! I called my OB to ask when I should come in, and was excited to find out my OB was the one on call that night! She said to come in now, so they could get the babies on the fetal monitors. Derek ate dinner, we both took showers, and then we packed up the car.

9:15pm – Arrived at the hospital, and we went to the birth center’s triage unit so they could decide if I was actually in labor, and they should admit me. I had only had about seven 30 second contractions so far. My blood pressure was pretty high, so they decided to do some blood work to make sure everything was ok. The babies had a quick ultrasound to confirm they were still head down. They also had about 20 minutes of fetal monitoring and contraction monitoring. They decided yes, I was actually in labor and would admit me. My contractions started to become fairly close together and painful at this point, but I asked if we could walk around a bit before the epidural, as I knew I still had many hours to go. As we walked to the labor and delivery room, I began feeling very nauseous and threw up.

Derek and I hung out in our new digs, and I used to rocking chair to get through some contractions before we went for a walk. However, my contractions were becoming more than I wanted to deal with and they said it could be 45 minutes before the anesthesiologist could administer the epidural, so we decided to call him and get that process started.

11:30pm – Having contractions every 2 minutes. Derek was helping me with the breathing we had practiced at our class and letting me squeeze his hand. The anesthesiologist administered the epidural, which was a longer process than I wanted. Sitting hunched over  and shaking wasn’t my favorite way to work through contractions!

Friday September 9, 2016

Midnight – Epidural had kicked in, and we were exactly 37 weeks (full term!)! I was surprised that my legs were still tingly. I could feel the pressure of Norah on my left hip, but not the contractions. My OB checked my cervix, and I was already 8 centimeters dilated! 3.5 hours, and we had already moved through most of the first stage of labor – from early (usually 8-12 hours) to active (usually 3-5 hours) to transitional labor! My OB seemed surprised how quickly we were progressing! I was still being monitored for contractions and the babies were still having their heart rates monitored. I was pretty cold and experiencing the shakes.

1:00am – Reached 10 centimeters dilated! We started pushing in the labor and delivery room, knowing that at some point we would move to the OR for delivery.

1:30am – Show time! Derek put on some scrubs, and we wheeled into the OR. The OB and nurses got everything set up, and we began pushing. Norah was ready to meet us! However, her heart rate was falling lower than they liked, so my OB recommended the use of a vacuum to assist.

1:46am – Norah Louise Drayer loudly made way into the world at 4 lb 11.5 oz and 17.5 in. My OB then ruptured Naomi’s sac, and I began pushing her. Her heart rate also fell, so we again used the vacuum.

1:56am – Naomi Ann Drayer was born sunny side up (face up) with unicorn horn (slight cone shape pointing up and forward) and large bruise from vacuum. She was 5 lb 4 oz and 18 in. Mommy got to hold both babies while we were wheeled back to our room.

 

5:30am – Mommy and Daddy finally got to sleep after skin to skin, breastfeeding, and all the post-labor checks.

6:30am – Everything began again! The girls had to have 3 tests prior to feeding where their blood sugar was in the normal range. Unfortunately, the girls had some issues with this, and Norah supplemented with formula. When they finally passed it was nice because every time they were ready to nurse, I didn’t have to call the nurse to come test their blood sugar first and the babies didn’t have to keep getting their heels pricked. At the 24 hour check up, Norah had lost 5% of her body weight and Naomi had lost 7% of her body weight. Doctors like to see no more than 10-15%, which usually peaks at day 7.

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Saturday September 10, 2016

9:00am – I saw an OB, anesthesiologist, and lactation consultant, and I was given the green light for discharge. They were also given their discharge papers.

4:15pm – We finally got to head home after completing all of the items on the discharge checklist! Derek and I had filled out the birth certificate info and had picked up my prescriptions. The babies had seen the pediatrician and had passed their metabolic screen (PKU), jaundice check, hearing screen, congenital heart test, and the car seat challenge. We were ready to be in our own house, our own bed, not eat hospital food, not have people constantly coming in to check vitals, and introduce the babies to the animals!

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35 and 36 Weeks

At my 35 week BPP and NST, I found out that both babies are now vertex (head down). My doctor was surprised that the babies still have enough room to turn at this point. They seem pretty comfortable in there, though, and are still very active babies! Vertex/vertex is the best case scenario for delivering both babies vaginally (and not having a combination vaginal delivery for Baby A and c-section with Baby B). I was 1 centimeter dilated at this appointment, but people can be less than 3 centimeters dilated for quite some time. As I had not had any painful contractions or fluid discharge, my doctor was fairly confident that I would make it to my 36 week appointment. I opted to have my Tdap vaccine and Group B strep test at this appointment just in case, though.

36 weeks

This week, 36 weeks, was another big milestone, as the babies will hopefully be big and healthy enough to avoid the NICU, whenever they decide to grace us with their presence. Thus far it seems like our little ones are good at listening, and we hope they keep that quality! My mom convinced them to both turn head down, and Derek and I convinced them to wait until September to be born.

At my 36 week appointment, we had a growth ultrasound and of course a BPP and NST. Norah and Naomi are both still vertex/vertex. Twin A’s head is pretty far down in my pelvis, and it looks like she wanted to make sure that she got to be the first one out! The babies were 5 pounds 10 ounces and 5 pounds 11 ounces. The growth percentiles went down, but my doctor didn’t even tell me what they were because she wasn’t concerned and was just glad they are still in there, still growing, and similar in size.

I told my doctor that we have decided that to try for a vaginal delivery, and she was excited and supportive. I need to have a little chat with Twin B (Naomi) about not changing positions, dropping her BP, or getting wrapped up in her cord after Norah is delivered. If she changes positions, the OB on duty will have to decide if she wants to deliver Naomi breech, try to turn her, or go in for a c-section. My 38 week scheduled c-section will be changed to an induction. The official date is TBD, though. It will be around that 38 week mark still, as the uterus can only stretch so much, and it becomes risky for twins to wait until longer than after that because there is a risk of insufficient nutrients, more risk of high BP, more risk of cord issues, etc. As we are now past 36 weeks, if I got into labor, I will get to go through early labor at home, following the 5-1-1 rule (5 contractions of one minute or more in an hour). Prior to this point, even if I was having a vaginal delivery, I was to head to the hospital as soon as I had 4 painful contractions in an hour.

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Westport Light State Park

On Labor Day, we decided to try to tempt fate by driving 2.5 hours to the beach. At 36 weeks + 3 days, we are ready to meet these babies! No luck, but the puppies seemed to enjoy being back at the beach. Yes, I have officially outgrown all of my shirts and sweatshirts, all non-stretchy pants and shorts, and a lot of dresses. I should have grabbed one of Derek’s t-shirts, so my belly wasn’t hanging out…

Nursery

The nursery was a fun project, as we are excited for the babies to move in, and, it is the first room we have completely finished from beginning to end. Derek and I painted multiple coats on the ceiling to hide what looks like was once a navy blue ceiling. In the future, my grandma says we should use the ceiling paint that goes on pink, blue, or purple and changes to white after it dries to make the process easier. We were lucky that our families were willing to paint the walls and trim, so it was one less part of the project for us. We took off the old baseboards, with plans of moving them down, as there was a gap between the floor and the baseboard from old carpet. However, because the house was rented for over 25 years before we moved in, there was a lot of paint and caulk build up on the wall. We decided that instead of sanding it down, we would buy new baseboards that were higher than this lip.

This baseboard project was a lot easier than the one we did on our first house in Gainesville, thanks to our experience and some new tools. We picked out MDF baseboard from our local lumber store. We then painted it with a semi-gloss white to match the trim around the doors and windows. We measured all the walls and used a chop saw (Derek’s PhD graduation present from his dad!) to make the cuts. This was much quicker than using a table saw and miter saw, and the cuts are probably also a little smoother! We also decided to buy a brad nail gun, as we will eventually be replacing all of the baseboards to match the nursery. This gadget has nail depth adjustability and was a life saver. It was super quick, and Derek didn’t have to worry about hammering his thumb! In the name of teamwork, I was the stud finder, and Derek was the nailer. Afterwards, Derek laid a bead of caulk, and I wiped it down with my wet cloth. Finally, we touched up the baseboard paint in a few places, and we love how the freshly painted and caulked trim makes the grey walls pop and the room really look finished!

Crib 2

Bookshelf

Paint and Baseboards

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Maternal Fetal Medicine Follow Up

After our 32 week appointment with my OB, we had a follow up appointment at maternal fetal medicine due to the twins’ weight discrepancy and Twin A’s small size. I had a pretty detailed ultrasound, looking at each baby’s organs, growth, cord blood flow, and amniotic fluid. Everything looked good, and there were a few surprises. I got to see a baby drinking amniotic fluid, holding her leg, licking her hand and cord, etc.

34 week 3d ultrasound
Twin A playing with her cord

It also appeared that I might only have one placenta, which would make the babies mo/di and not di/di. It is also another argument for a c-section. Either way, there is a 33% chance that our babies are actually identical.

Zygosity (twin type) is not as simple as having 1 or 2 placentas. According to Multiples of America, “more important than the placenta itself are the fetal membranes, which can be helpful in determining twin type. They are the thin membranes filled with fluid that surround the fetus and are attached to the placenta. The amnion is the inner membrane, and the chorion is the outer membrane. A shared amnion always means monozygotic twins, but is very rare. Two amnions and one chorion also means monozygotic twins. If there are two amnions and two chorions the twin type can be either mono- or dizygotic.

Fraternal or dizygotic twins will always have two placentas, as the two eggs implant separately into the uterus. However, if the eggs implant close together the placentas can become fused and take on the appearance of one placenta. Twins can then be mislabeled monozygotic.

However, identical twins do not always have one placenta. Monozygotic twins come from an egg that splits into two. The timing of the split will determine the number of placentas. If the split happens after the egg has already implanted into the uterus, there will be one placenta. If the split happens earlier, before implantation, then the two eggs can implant separately into the uterus and form two separate placentas. The twins will still be identical.”

Derek and I met with the director of fetal medicine, and he felt that at this point we don’t have need for concern about the babies’ sizes or discordance. The babies were 4 pounds 10 ounces and 4 pounds 9 ounces. This puts them in the 21st and 20th percentiles respectively, and obviously doesn’t show much weight discordance. The doctor gave us some information about why the weight formulas have a 15% margin of error. Bone measurements are fairly accurate measurements, but a squishy abdomen is not. If a baby is getting squished, then this part of the formula could be off. He also stressed that again the percentiles are compared to singletons and twins tend to be smaller.

The doctor said that they really only start worrying if the babies’ weights are 20% apart, a baby suddenly just stops growing, there isn’t good cord blood flow, or there isn’t enough amniotic fluid. When there isn’t enough cord blood flow, the blood goes to the brain and the heart and the other organs and limbs don’t grow; the kidneys don’t process as much amniotic fluid, which manifests as a low fluid pocket for the baby.

As our babies aren’t presenting with any of these issues, he recommended that I only need to see my OB once a week for non-stress tests (NSTs), which measure fetal movement, fetal heart rate, and uterine contractions, or biophysical profiles (BPPs), which is an ultrasound to measure amniotic fluid, fetal muscle tone, fetal heart rate, and fetal breathing. At this point, the doctor does not feel that we need to consider delivering the babies early to get them more nutrients outside the womb. As well, I do not need to have extra appointments with the OB or fetal medicine. We will have another growth ultrasound at 36.5 weeks.

32 Weeks

32 week baby bump.jpg

Derek got to come with me to my 32 week ultrasound and doctor appointment. Naomi is on my left side in the frank breech position, and we actually saw an image of her head and foot right next to each other! Maybe she is going to be a gymnast or diver?!  Norah was transverse with her head by Naomi’s (uh oh they are already plotting world domination!) and her body lying along the top of my uterus. Because they both are up top, it explains why my heartburn has been so bad, and I have felt so full! Because they are both still refusing to turn head down, there is now a pretty high likelihood that I will have a c-section, so we talked a lot about what happens if I go into labor before my scheduled c-section and more details about what the c-section would look like.brrechNaomi is also now in the 24th percentile (3 pounds 10 ounces) which is a drop from the 25th. Norah moved from the 32nd percentile to the 34th percentile (4 pounds). As Naomi is small and there is a 10% difference between the babies, we are going to maternal fetal medicine to get a 2nd opinion/more detailed ultrasound. In utero weights are all based on a formula (which includes femur length, head circumference, and abdomen circumference), so it’s not an exact science. Naomi’s size could be because she isn’t getting enough nutrients (and we could do a scan of the cord to see if the marginal cord insertion is the problem) or that she is just going to be a smaller person (or just is going to be a peanut at birth like her mama). If the maternal fetal medicine docs are concerned we may have more doctors appointments (2 a week starting at 34 weeks instead of 1 a week). Also, if the difference between the twins continues to grow, my doctor may decide to deliver the babies early so Naomi can get the nutrients outside the womb that she isn’t getting inside.

My doctor really wants the babies to make it to 34 weeks (August 19). If I go into labor in the next week then they will try to stop labor and give me steroids to beef up the babies’  lungs. Any time after 34 weeks, we can go to the hospital and they will do an “urgent c-section” (not considered an emergency c-section). I am hoping for 36 weeks (Sept. 2) because then they will have good school birthdays (Sept. 1 is the cutoff here), and they will probably not have to spend any time in the NICU.

30 Weeks!

So even though 30 weeks isn’t a new month, it still seems like a big deal. Maybe it is because the babies will arrive at 30 something weeks or because we start seeing the doctor a lot more. I saw the doctor at 28 weeks, today was a 30 week check up, and I will be back for a 32 week checkup. Then at 34 weeks, we start going twice a week. My OB said that the hospital bag should be packed by 32 weeks, which also makes me feel like the babies could arrive any time!

I had my glucose tolerance test yesterday. I had to fast starting at 10pm the night before. Before drinking the glucola, they drew my blood to determine my fasting blood glucose level. This time I got to pick if I wanted lime, orange, or fruit punch glucola. I opted for the fruit punch again. It was a little harder to drink on an empty stomach, and again I only had 5 minutes to drink it. After an hour of feeling nauseous and lightheaded, I got my 2nd blood draw. The second hour, I had a headache and just felt tired (guess it was the sugar crash). This draw came out of my other arm. The final hour wasn’t too bad, but I was ready to eat. This last blood draw came from the original arm, which was already starting to bruise. The good news is that 5 hours later, I found out that my tests came back normal, and I do not have gestational diabetes. I just wish the original glucose screening was more reliable, so I didn’t have to do the “3 hour torture test,” as my doctor so aptly put it!

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At my doctor’s visit, she did a quick ultrasound to look at the babies’ positions, movements, and heart beats (not the longer growth ultrasound or really long non-stress test which will start at 34 weeks). It looked like Norah might have turned head down, so we might be able to avoid a c-section after all! I gained another 5 pounds, so my total weight gain is up to 24 pounds. If we keep on this pattern, I will have gained 45 pounds by 38 weeks! This would put me in the normal overall weight gain for twins. I think the real indication of how far along we are, how big my bump is, and how much weight I have gained is that I think today may be the last day of either wearing socks or getting them on myself!

32 week baby bump

28 Week Baby Bump, Appointment, & Names

28 week baby bump

We (the babies and I) spent 3 hours in the medical complex yesterday. We had another growth ultrasound, which unfortunately was at the imaging center and not my doctor. This means that I didn’t get any fun pictures, and I had to drink 16 ounces of water before the ultrasound and then hold it for the next hour and 45 minutes. This is not a nice thing to do to a pregnant lady! The little ones were 2 pounds 11 ounces and 2 pounds 12 ounces. My doctor was happy that they are still so close in size. She didn’t seem worried that they are now in the 25th and 32nd percentile (instead of 40th). My mom told me that I was in the 5th percentile when I was born and the doctor was excited when I hit the 10th percentile at my 1st birthday, so it sounds like genetics may be at play! Both babies were still breach, so their consistent breech positions are leading my doctor to believe that I might end up having a c-section. We scheduled a “just in case” c-section for Fri. Sept. 16 at 7:30am. If the babies decides to wait that long, it would be full term (37 weeks is considered full term in all pregnancies, even though 40 weeks is what due dates are calculated to) and exactly 38 weeks.

Yesterday I also had my glucose screening, Barbacoa lettuce wraps.JPGwhich identifies women who are at risk for
gestational diabetes. My doctor recommended that I try not to eat simple carbs and high sugar foods the meal before, so I had barbacoa lettuce wraps for lunch. The glucola tasted like a thicker fruit punch Gatorade. You have 5 minutes to drink it, and then you can only have sips of water for the next hour. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. After that hour, they drew my blood. Unfortunately, I got a call today saying that I am one of the 15-23% of moms who show elevated blood sugar (mine was in the 160s when normal is 130 or 140). This means I have to do a 3 hour glucose tolerance test. I will have to fast for it, and it requires 3 blood draws (one every hour). The crazy thing is that 2/3 of women who take the glucose tolerance test, test negative for gestational diabetes.

Finally, I had the pleasure of getting a RhoGAM shot in the butt. My blood type is A- (thanks Dad), so this is a preventative measure in case one of the babies has a positive Rh. The shot ensure that my body won’t produce antibodies if any baby positive Rh blood enters my system (which usually happens during delivery). While this would not be a problem for this pregnancy, it could have negative consequences for future pregnancies. This shot hurt! I could feel the whole muscle contract! I have the pleasure of getting another RhoGAM shot within 72 hours of the babies’ birth.

I gained another 8 pounds these last 4.5 weeks, so that brings my weight gain total to 19 pounds. It seems like I am catching up! People keep telling me how small I am, though. I can see a huge difference between the 24 week and 28 week baby bumps! Part of it is probably that during the 3rd trimester, babies more than triple their weight! Weeks 27 and 28 I was really tired and taking almost daily naps, but I have felt better since then. Still getting round ligament pain when I stand up or roll over. Some backaches and trouble getting comfortable when sitting. Without lumbar support, it feels like my ribs are digging into my stomach. So basically the normal pregnancy stuff! Derek said last night when my belly was up against his back, one of the babies kicked so hard, he felt it!

Derek and I have been calling the babies by their names for the past few months. We wanted to make sure that we liked them and felt they fit before we shared. We we are excited to finally share with you: Twin A is Norah Louise Drayer and Twin B is Naomi Ann Drayer. Louise was Donna’s (Derek’s mom) middle name and is his sister’s middle name. It was also Donna’s maternal grandmother’s middle name. Ann is the middle name shared by Michelle’s mom (Patricia), Aunt Katherine, Aunt Margaret, and Grandma. Grandma said that her parents gave her the middle name Ann because they needed a short name since Marguerite Goodendorf was already so many letters!

24 Week Baby Bump & Appointment

24 week baby bump

Overall, we had a positive 24 week ultrasound and doctor appointment. The doctor was glad to hear that we have been feeling kicks for the past 3 weeks. I don’t think I have had any Braxton Hicks contractions yet. Someone described it as your belly becoming so tight that it seems like you could bounce a quarter off of it. While my belly does feel hard, I think it is just because there are two babies in there! Sometimes my lower belly or under my ribs will feel uncomfortable because of the babies’ positions.

As there are not scales in my womb to measure the babies, the doctor uses a formula, combining the femur length, head circumference, and abdomen circumference to figure out weight. Twin A is 1 pound 8 ounces. Twin B is 1 pound 7 ounces. There is only a 4% difference between the babies, which is positive news. This weight keeps them in the 40th percentile (which includes singleton pregnancies), which is the same as at 20 weeks. Based on these measurements, my OB wasn’t worried about the 2 things that came up at the 20 week anatomy ultrasound: my weight gain (I gained 5 pounds in the past 4 weeks) or the marginal cord insertion. My cervix length was shorter today, which can be an indicator for pre-term labor. The doctor said CL shortening tends to happen with twins, so we are just going to stop measuring it and not worry about it. Nothing we can do about it anyway! Both babies were breach today, which made the ultrasound pictures a little less fun. Instead of cute profile pics, we saw skeleton looking pics. The doctor said that the babies still have time to move around, so no guaranteed c-section yet. If at 32 weeks they are still breech, they will probably stay that way, though.

Crazy to think that we are about two thirds of the way through this pregnancy. Depending on the source, the third trimester begins between 24 and 27 weeks, so I suppose we are in the home stretch! On Sunday, we did the Chirico Trail to Poo Poo Point. The point has a gorgeous view of Lake Sammamish and is a take off point for paraglider and hang gliders. The trail was an 8 mile hike with 1800 ft elevation gain. Based on how my pelvic floor felt during the descent and my gastrointestinal troubles following the hike, I think I probably didn’t drink enough and this was a little too strenuous for 24 weeks pregnant. We asked the doctor about the feasibility of going on a 2 day/1 night backpacking trip. She said while she wouldn’t ban it, she also wouldn’t recommend it. Her biggest concern was that twins tend to come early, and if something happened, how hard would it be to get to a hospital quickly. I guess the Drayers need to start taking it a little easier!

Picking the Name(s)!

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I think one of the most exciting parts of learning you’re expecting is the realization that you get to pick a name for the little guy/girl.  The entire universe of baby names is yours to choose from, and it’s fun to think about the endless possibilities.  Then the realization starts to sink in that whatever name you choose, your child is going to carry with them for their entire lives.  You realize that the name you select for your child can impact the way the world sees them and the way they interact with the world.  And finally, you realize that the name you select is going to say a lot about you as a person and a parent.  It’s going to be a signal to everyone about what you as a parent care about and what you want in and for your child.

I don’t really love the Freakeconomics trend in economics, but the chapter on baby names from the original book has stuck with me. Economists Stephen Levitt and Stephen Dubner try to disentangle the impact names can have on the future of the child.  I don’t remember the exact details of the original text other than they find a family with children named “Winner” and “Loser.”  In the book, Winner becomes a loser and Loser becomes a successful member of the NYPD (disclaimer, this may not be a 100% accurate representation of original, but that’s the general idea).  When I was looking for a copy of that story I found this brief paper discussing the class association with different names. Similarly, this short article lays out some problems with current name trends, and how ridiculous the spellings are becoming (warning: a bit crude).

baby-name-surprised

 

And these issues matter to us as parents.  Speaking for myself, I feel an overwhelming sense of responsibility to select a name that my child won’t resent me for, that people won’t make fun of them about (although I am convinced young children can find reason to make fun of any name), while still giving them their own identity.  So when Michelle and I found out we were expecting we started a short list of names, a couple for boys and a couple for girls.

AND THEN WE FOUND OUT WE WERE HAVING TWINS!   Oh boy, talk about a double heaping of responsibility. It was tough for me to keep thinking about names when we didn’t know genders and had to potentially come up with two girls names, two boys names, or one of each.  So we took a brief break.  But now that we know we know we are expecting girls, we are back on the Name Game Train.  A couple of considerations that were important to me personally:

  • My initials are D.D.D, and everyone in my immediate family’s name starts with a D.  Unfortunately, Michelle ruined this fun trend so this isn’t a consideration.  That said, it was kind of fun and something that ties our family together might be cute.
  • We would like to avoid a name from the top 10 most popular lists.  Not because I have a problem with the names in and of themselves, but because I always found it tedious when I was in a class or camp with a bunch of people by the same name.  This always led to nicknames, at which point you should have just given your kid the nickname instead of their real name.
  • We also want to avoid a super uncommon/unique name.  Again, not that I have any real problem with unique names and spellings, but I would like to pick a name common enough that teachers, new acquaintances, and their future boss don’t have trouble puzzling out how to pronounce it. Nothing more stressful than being a teacher on the first day of class trying to figure out how to pronounce a child’s name correctly.
  • We would like to incorporate some homage to our families. Especially Michelle’s since she took my last name. And since my Mom is gone, it would be nice to do something to honor her as well. With twins we have a better chance of doing so for both sides!
  • We would like the first name, middle name, and last name to sound good together.  Of course this is mostly subjective and a matter of repetition, but the way names look and sound as a whole is something we are definitely considering.
  • We would like to avoid cultural appropriationA lot has been written about this. While I find it a bit silly, especially in the US where we pride ourselves on multiculturalism, I think it wouldn’t be kind to our future children to stick them with a name that’s usually associated with a cultural group of which they are not a member.

Other than that, we just wanted names we LIKED.  That still leaves a huge list of names left to explore.  Michelle purchased The Baby Name Wizard book as a starting point. I relied on web searches and eventually landed on the Social Security Administrations list of popular names.  This website is awesome because it allows you to search by year, decade, and state.  It also allows you to track the popularity of a name over time.  I found myself looking for names ranked between 50-150 for recent popularity, as I felt this range is where you’re not going to wind up with three children with the same name in every class, but also they will be common enough the teacher won’t struggle to pronounce it.

We have come up with a short list of names that we really like. We are currently trying them out over the next few weeks to make sure they work for us.  However, we won’t be sharing them yet, and might not until they actually arrive.  As all parents eventually realize, EVERYONE has an opinion on names.  For now, the only opinions that matter to us are our own, so we will try to avoid sharing to avoid the criticisms and “helpful suggestions” that inevitably follow.

 

Anatomy Ultrasound

Today was our anatomy ultrasound, where the doctor looks at all of the organs and bone structures. It is also the much anticipated gender reveal! Both babies have good looking internal organs (including 140 heart rates) and bones. They are each 12 ounces, which was positive because one baby isn’t growing faster than the other, and they are in the acceptable weight range.

20 wk ultrasound - twin A20 wk ultasound - twin B

Something the doctor said we need to watch is that both babies have marginal cord insertion. This means that the umbilical cord is attached to the edge of the placenta and not the “meaty part” (as my doc very scientifically said) of the placenta. The concern is that this may cause the babies to get less nutrients than they need. About 7% of singleton pregnancies have this and about 25% of twin pregnancies. While my doctor is not super worried right now, it is something she will continue to monitor throughout my pregnancy (we already have ultrasounds about once a month anyway!). She said as long as the babies continue growing well, have good heart rates, and are active, we are good to go! If this doesn’t continue to be the case, then they will induce to get the little ones the nutrients on the outside that they weren’t getting enough of on the inside.

Overall they are currently around the 40th percentile for growth to this point.  That may seem low, but that percentile includes singleton pregnancies as well.  The doctor mentioned that they don’t have any concern until that falls into the 10th percentile, and really there is no danger to the babies unless the are in the 3rd percentile or lower.  So all things considered, they are growing just like we want!

Finally, the doctor said that I haven’t gained enough weight – only 6 pounds. Unfortunately, I think I lost weight when I wasn’t feeling well during the first trimester. So, I have some catching up to do. She said I should feel free to have 2 desserts. So… the moment you have all been waiting for… Here I am with my 2 (PINK) desserts.

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That’s right, my gut reaction has been correct all along. We are having twin girls! Derek better be prepared to have his nails painted, play house and dress up, and attend ballet recitals! We are so excited to have an overall positive anatomy scan and can’t wait until we get to meet our little girls in a few months!