Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A person’s a person, no matter how small . . .

My 27 week appointment - I really thought it would never get here!

 So, of course, I was a “tad” hesitant about it this morning, but since both Brayden and Payzleigh had given me a couple of good, hard, swift kicks already before I got to my doctor’s office, I wasn’t thinking the worst as I went in for my scheduled time. I checked in at the desk, paid part of my bill that is accumulating for me (my favorite part of the whole day – not), and then waited a couple minutes to go in. Katie, a new student nurse, called me back. She was very pleasant and easy to chat with, and when she strapped me up to the blood pressure monitor I asked her if she had been “warned”. She gave me a nervous glance, like she really wondered what that was about. She made the comment that the machine hated her and I said “don’t worry, it hates me too!” And soon enough she saw why. 161 over 99. Well, that was pretty good for me, for in the office. Then I dutifully handed her my sheet of “at home” blood pressures that I have been meticulously taking and recording since my last appointment when I brought in the previous document. Then she asked me if I had “white coat syndrome”. I said I did and that Dr. Kenney doesn’t pay attention to the ones here much as long as you put this sheet in my file, he’ll be happy.

 She then asked the normal questions: Headaches? No. Swelling? No. Nausea? No. Diarrhea, Constipation? No, No. Ok, come on in to room two.

 Once I was in there a nurse/tech that I don’t think I’ve had before came in and started. Corey was there, and we all chatted away (Corey, the tech/nurse, the student nurse Katie, and myself) and when she was explaining to us that we would be doing another whole body ultrasound to check measurements again, we explained some of our anxiety and how this is the week in our last pregnancy when we found out that our daughter had passed away. After the sympathetic sighs and I’m sorry’s, she started with Brayden (like usual!). He is still head down (YAY!!), and she measured his head, abdomen, stomach, leg bones, looked at his kidneys, and they are still trying to get a look at ever part of their hearts – but so far neither of them have cooperated! They’ve seen all four chambers, but have not had the opportunity to see every complete detail like they would like to. She informed us along the way that everything was looking normal.

 So, when she was finishing up with Brayden she asked me if he had always been measuring small. I told her that at each of the other “measuring” appointments he had measured one ounce smaller than his sister; the first one he was 8 oz. and she was 9 oz., and the second one he was 1 lb. and she was 1 lb. 1 oz. The tech just kind of nodded and moved the wand up to Payzleigh.

 Then she repeated the whole drill with her: measuring head circumference, abdomen, checking stomach and kidneys, leg bones and finally trying to see every detail of her heart. We saw the four chambers beating rhythmically, but again, not every detail that she was hoping for. When she was done with Payzleigh, she went back to Brayden to see if he had flipped over for her, and after a few gentle nudges she checked on Payzleigh’s position again.

 The were both not wanting to show much detail, but she did get a picture of Brayden’s foot intertwined with Payzleigh’s leg. I questioned how they could be so close since they are in different sacks, and she explained it to me that their sacks are like rubber gloves. They can feel each other, know each other are there, interact with each other, but there is a balloon-type-layer between them. That was a great analogy for me to kind of understand the true “closeness” that they are sharing in there!

Then she revealed what the scan showed; Brayden is measuring 1 lb. 13 oz. and Payzleigh is measuring 2 lbs. 4 oz. She quickly told me not to worry, but it didn’t take long for my brain to process that Brayden has fallen way farther behind Payzleigh than the “usual” one ounce. At this point they are almost a half a pound a part – and a half a pound is huge when you are talking about two pounds!

 No one at the office seemed overly concerned, but I could tell the thoughts are there. Dr. Kenney said they will do another measurement check at 32 weeks, and then we’ll decide from there what route to take, meanwhile, he wants to see me weekly for quick heartbeat checks. The tech said since they are on different placentas, that his might just be effected more from my high blood pressure, or it just isn’t getting the same blood flow as Payzleigh’s. He’s still in the 10th %, so she said at least he’s still on the chart. I told her I try to “rest” whenever I can, and she said that was good – get my feet up and rest whenever possible. (Easier said than done!)

Brayden - looking at us.  Payzleigh's legs all stretched out. Both of their heads together.

So, I headed back to work after my appointment, and while I was in my boss's office writing my next three weeks of appointments on the calendar, he asked how my office visit went.  Well, I lost it. Right there in his office.  I feel better this evening, but it is a scary road and a half a pound is a big deal to me.  So my new, specific prayer request is that Brayden will continue to stay healthy and will gain more weight! Next appointment is next Wednesday morning!

Peace and Love to All!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

26 plus 5 . . .

I know, I usually round up to 27 weeks when I'm talking about when we found out that Calleigh Joy's gorgeous little heart had stopped beating for absolutely no reason that anyone could find.  It's just an easier way to say it - 27 weeks. Instead of saying, "I was 26 plus 5 weeks along".  If it would've made a difference in the outcome of whether or not she'd be here, I'd definitely say 26 plus 5, but the reality is that she's gone and there's nothing I can do about it. So technically, I was at 26 plus 5 weeks when she entered heaven for eternity.

That brings me to today.

Today, on August 25th, 2012, I am exactly 26 weeks plus 5 days along with Brayden and Payzleigh.   I have to admit, I have a real sense of peace today. A feeling that I know people are lifting me and my family up in prayer. Knowing that God is in control no matter what happens and He wants to grant the desires of my heart, but also knowing that He sees the whole picture and I only see what's right in front of me, brings a comfort that I can not describe.

This past week has been full of CJ.  Last Sunday we took part in a butterfly release that the group "Remembering Our Children" sponsors every August in Lincoln.

Then on Wednesday morning I got an unexpected message that Calleigh's foundation for her stone was FINALLY going to be placed that afternoon!  Not that we weren't expecting it, we've just been expecting it since last Memorial Day!

Now hopefully in the next couple weeks her stone will be completed and placed!

Back to Brayden and Payzleigh - my next appointment is this coming up Wednesday.  Two weeks ago when I was there I was told that I could come in anytime that I needed to and to make my appointment for two weeks, but to play it by ear if I needed to come in before that.  There were a couple of moments for me that I really thought about it, but then the peace that surrounded me overcame my doubt and I ended up NOT being paralyzed in my fear like I was afraid I'd be.  I know that is because of everyone's prayers for us! So, thanks again!

The last several nights they have kicked Corey so hard that he's felt it without even actually trying to! As we've prayed together before bed they have wanted to "join in" too, and they jump around and make such a ruckus that it distracts our prayer time and we have to take a break and laugh at them for a minute! :)  And then this morning I was looking at an online site that makes the cutest little girl clothes.  Every time I said the word "paisley", as in 'I wonder if she has any cute little paisley outfits for sale', Payzleigh Hope would give me the hardest, swiftest kick. It happened about three different times!  It was almost as if she recognized her name!  (of course I don't really think she does, but it was a fun little coincidence!)

Well, I'm off for today! It's finally time I started getting their room ready upstairs.  I think I've been putting it off for far too long . . .

Peace and Love to All!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

25 Weeks - So Many Mixed Emotions!

Well, we've hit the 25 week mark.  For most people this would really be no big deal, and I'm trying not to dwell on it a whole lot but . . .

This last Wednesday I had a doctor's appointment.  I hadn't had one for three weeks, so it's always a random bunch of emotions that I go through.  Then it hit me. This is my "25 week ultrasound".  25 weeks was how far along I was when I had my last ultrasound with Calleigh Joy.  (Well, at least the last one that I actually watched!) The ultrasound where the tech kept saying over and over, "she has such a gorgeous heart, just look at her gorgeous heart!"  That same 25 week appointment where all was assured to me to be just fine so far.  That same 25 week appointment where I was told, "everything's great, we'll see you in two weeks for another quick check-up."

Yep, THAT 25 week appointment.

So obviously I went in to this appointment with THESE two babies with a bit of hesitation, and I swear if the tech would've even STARTED to say the word "gorgeous" I would've probably flew off the table and left right then and there.  Thankfully "that word" didn't escape from her mouth and as I lay there watching Payzleigh and Brayden, I couldn't help but steal a couple quick glances at Corey, too.   He hadn't seen them on the screen for seven weeks, so as he watched the tech look over each one of them there was a sense of pride in his eyes - a happy look - a thankful, mind blowing, miracle of a look - a look that I love to see him have.

The tech started with Brayden (she always does since he's 'Baby A') and did a quick look at some of his organs. She didn't do all the measuring and calculating that she had to do the past two scans, this was somewhat of a quick check-up.  Brayden stayed with his back to us or slightly to the side the entire time, so she was able to get NO good pictures of him.

Then she moved the wand up to Payzleigh.  She was facing forward so the tech changed the machine to the 4D setting to try to at least get some good pictures of her and I think what she saw surprised her!  She said, "the face you see is Baby Girl B with her arm up over her mouth."  Then she said, "oh my gosh, and this other arm here is her brother!"

  So there you have it! Payzleigh is jabbing Brayden in the ribs and Brayden is elbowing Payzleigh in the nose!  I sure hope this is not a definite sign of what's to come!!  :)

But seriously, for me the "dreaded" 27 week mark is a week and a half away, and I can not even begin to thank EVERYONE that has told me this past week that they are praying for me!  From people at my work, to people at Corey's work, to people that live in town with us, to the many friends that we have made from all over this world!  We appreciate and are thankful for each and every one of you!  Please continue to pray for these two precious little lives, I feel the prayers and don't know if I could get through some days with out them!

Today it has been 19 months since we said "hello and goodbye" to Calleigh Joy, and tomorrow is the annual Butterfly Release for children gone too soon in Lincoln.  It promises to be a beautiful day filled with lots of caring thoughts and memories as we remember our "Beautiful Happiness".

Peace and Love to All!!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Lamaze, Hurt Heart and Counting Baby Kicks . . .

Corey and I started Lamaze this week. I haven’t quite figured out what I think about it, except we seem to be the oldest in the class – BIG SURPRISE! My doula, Heidi, just finished taking her childbirth education classes and is helping with our group, so that is fun to have her in there. From what I can tell after just the first night is that this is the first baby for all of the other mom’s in the class and two of the other dad’s seem to have other children. It makes for some very interesting questions! These are questions I probably had 22 years ago, but don’t remember wondering about today. One thing I did pick up on is that every other couple in our class has an innocence about them that I wish I could get back. They all seem so busy getting ready for their babies, buying things, decorating rooms, making plans . . . and I feel like I’m stuck in limbo. Waiting for 27 weeks to come and go. Wondering if I will even feel ready after that. Hoping that this feeling of panic will stop that comes over me every time I don’t feel them move for a couple hours. Wishing I could be hooked up to an ultrasound machine 24/7. But, we plug away. Day after day we get closer to November. Day after day we rely on God for our strength. And day after day Corey and I have each other.

 This week my heart has gotten hurt. I’m not going in to details, but if you could pray for me, my attitude and my convictions and standing up for the truth and what I believe to be right. I’d really appreciate it.

 Kick counting is something totally new to me. They didn’t have such a thing when I was pregnant with Justen and Taylor (at least that I had heard of), and typically it starts around week 28 of pregnancy, so I didn’t even get a chance to do it with Calleigh either. BUT, I am much more informed this time, reading everything I can get my hands on and soaking up any information I can to ensure that these two precious little ones come in to this world crying and breathing. So, kick counting it is. Like I said, it typically starts at 28 weeks, but being the over-protective momma that I’ve been lately we started a bit early. We are currently at 23 ½ weeks, so I do keep in mind that their kicking habits have not totally become predictable enough, but I have noticed enough of a pattern in the post week or so to start. Brayden always kicks me down low every morning after breakfast. I just sit at my desk and feel him. (Well, I work at the same time!) Payzleigh consistently kicks me up high in the middle of the night, especially when I lay on my right side trying to find a comfortable position. If I lay just far enough on her head she’ll squirm around until I back up a bit. BOTH of them kick the left middle part of my tummy at the same time every evening. All four of their feet are right there together, so when they get each other going it’s like Indian leg wrestling going on inside of me. I do feel them at other times during the day, but these are just a couple of patterns I’ve figured out lately!

 Here are my pictures from my doctor’s appointment last week on July 25th, my next one is not until August 15th! At this appointment Brayden is weighing 1 lb. exactly, and Payzleigh is weighing 1 lb. 1 oz., so they pretty much doubled in a month since my last appointment! They are both growing and gaining perfectly, and it was so much fun to see their personalities on the screen again!

Love and Peace to All!