Monday, October 21, 2013

So you may have heard...

We're having triplets.

Believe me, I did not expect that I would ever reveal a pregnancy only 8 weeks along. Everything you're taught says WAIT. But when you're expecting triplets, your uterus measures 10-12 weeks bigger than that of a woman carrying a singleton. So I basically look 20 weeks pregnant. I'm already in maternity clothes. The cat is out of the bag.

I asked our perinatologist today what the likelihood of us losing one or more of these little guys is. He said that they are all measuring well and the hearts are beating strong, so of course there is a chance, but it's pretty slight. Once those hearts start beating, they usually stay beating. The biggest risk really is preterm labor. That, and the situation of the identicals. We aren't sure if they are sharing the same placenta yet (fingers crossed that they aren't). They have separate sacs, which is good, but separate placentas would be even better. We'll find out at our 12 weeks appointment. So here we are. Some of you would like to know how we got here. Well, I'll give you the short version.

It took us a while to get pregnant, as anyone following my other blog knows. We finally had our success with interuterine insemination (which is not the same as in vitro, btw). With insemination, I had to take a certain drug for five days to stimulate my ovaries to produce mature eggs. Then, at day 11, I had an ultrasound to confirm that the drug had worked. We found that it had produced two mature eggs, both of which would likely be released when Dave gave me the shot to trigger them. Then, 36 hours later, Dave produced a...sample...which they spun (to get rid of the duds--every guy has them) and washed (to let them swim a little easier). Then our doctor inserted a catheter into my uterus and VIOLA! 15 minutes later they were at their destination.

When we had our ultrasound before the insemination, our doctor asked us how we felt about multiples. We had discussed it and felt twins would be okay. I just assumed that since there were only two follicles, we would end up with two babies at the most. I did not anticipate one of the eggs splitting to give us a set of identical twins along with one fraternal...

I knew I was pregnant the night before I took a test. I was so sick, and I was only 3.5 weeks! I assumed I was having twins if I was feeling it that early, but we wouldn't know for a few weeks. Finally, six weeks came around and Dave and I decided to head down to the clinic on Saturday morning of conference weekend.

It felt so surreptitious, being at the clinic after hours, peeking to see what was in store for us. I had a feeling in my heart we would have twins. I was so confident that when we saw two sacs, I was completely unfazed  Of course, what my untrained eye did NOT pick up on was that one sac was twice as large as the other. When Dave said triplets, I looked at him to detect the, "Just kidding!" in his eyes. But there was no joke there. Just bafflement. I burst into tears. Well, I said a bad word. THEN I burst into tears. He burst out laughing. I guess you either laugh or cry in that situation. I made him take me over to the hospital immediately and have our fertility doc do another ultrasound to confirm. Thankfully he was on call that day and not busy. His machine was better, but all it did was give us a better picture of the three yolk sacs that were about to turn into real babies with real heartbeats.

I spent the next week in shock. Denial. Dread. These were not feelings I anticipated having about being pregnant. We had worked so hard to get pregnant, and now I was wishing I could undo it all. How could I possibly love three babies at once? Feed three babies at once? Sleep when there were three babies who needed me?  Adding insult to injury, as I entered my sixth week of pregnancy, I was SO sick. I mean, I could hardly move. I slept and slept and slept. I wanted to eat, but I couldn't. I don't throw up ever, so I just laid there wishing I could. When I voiced this to Dave, he said, "Honey, pregnant ladies don't feel better when they throw up. It's not like having the flu. When you throw up pregnant, you just throw up." So I stopped wishing I could throw up and just suffered in silence.

I had three rough days and then finally a break in the clouds. I had an appointment with Dave to have a mole removed from my back later that week so I dragged myself to the clinic. After the procedure, Dave suggested we have a look to see if we could see heartbeats (it was about the time we could). We did an abdominal ultrasound and it looked as if there were just two yolk sacs there. We looked at each other and breathed a sigh of relief. TWINS. "We're down to twins," he said. It felt so manageable. For the first time in almost a week, I felt excited about being pregnant again. I had three really good days. And then, the sickness returned.

I hit 7 weeks and I could. not. move. I was so sick. As sick as I felt when we thought we were having triplets. So Dave and I headed down to the clinic after hours again to take another look, fearing that Baby C may have just been hiding. Here is the video of that night:

I cried myself to sleep AGAIN. But David, being the wonderful man he is, started giving me a list of all the reasons why it is great that this is happening the way it is. By the end, I started to think that maybe someday I wouldn't dread this. I woke up the next morning with an abiding peace, remembering that these are going to turn into people who I will love and adore and WANT.

So, the goal is to make it to 33 weeks, which is mid-April. I'm eating as much as I possibly can and have my requisite 2 hour nap almost daily. I can't run anymore (not enough blood to go around), so I walk the dog every morning and will probably find myself in the pool later this week if I can bring myself to get into a maternity swimsuit. I read triplet blogs and make lists of things I'll need and things I can do to make our lives easier. Someday I may have energy to paint the room we are going to use as the nursery, but that may have to wait until my second trimester. We would like to take a babymoon, but I'm not really allowed on my feet after 20 weeks, so our window is pretty limited. Basically, I will have about 8 weeks where I'm allowed/able to be productive. Then it's back to reading books and blogging (and eating...always eating--blah).

So, here we go. I'm going to continue the record of this journey on a new blog entitled "Taco Tuesday Confessions: Triplet Addition." (Get it? Edition/Addition? Sigh...) The triplet blogs I have used as resources have been invaluable, so I'd like to pay it forward. Even just knowing I'm not alone has been so comforting. So, I may occasionally blog here, but bookmark if you want to keep up to date and see all the belly pictures you all have been asking for already...

Prayers, if you're willing. Love to you all.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


I woke up yesterday feeling a little melancholy about not being in Boston this year for the marathon but also really excited for everyone who was running. I was remembering my first time and all the excitement that came with it and then hurting so bad at the end that I promised Cherie I would never run another marathon (yeah...). I ruefully thought about the hypothermia of 2007 that I'm convinced was just karma coming back to bite me after KT and I mocked all the warnings the BAA kept spamming us with. I laughed as I remembered that year's pre-race X-L hot chocolates from Dunkin' Donuts and our subsequent potty emergency that occurred when our bus got lost on the way to Hopkinton. My heart hurt a little more at the remembrance of the agony of 2010, running just two months after losing my mom unexpectedly and the sacrifice KT made in running a slow race with me even though her own mom had come to watch her run.

I thought about the race all day, wondering if I would ever return to Boston as a racer. Plagued with various health problems and injuries, I keep asking myself if it's time to hang up my laces and pick up biking [shudder]. But then I was running errands and the news of the bombings came over the radio. I started shaking and had to pull over. I took out my phone and looked at the news. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. I kept thinking that the only carnage that deserved to be there was the self-inflicted kind: people limping through a bad race, people chafed in all the wrong places, dehydration, hypothermia, sunburn, etc. etc. etc. Not shrapnel wounds from a bomb blast. And the spectators: that's supposed to be the safe part, and we runners NEED them at the finish. It's the only thing that carries you through that last half mile--I've run a lot of races and nothing beats the roar of that crowd. Hearing that turn from cheers into screams of terror was more than I could handle. I called Dave sobbing and he told me to come straight to the clinic. Bless that man's heart: he made his patients wait, closed his office door, and just held me while I sobbed in his arms.

I realized in that moment that I wasn't upset because I was imagining myself there. I was imagining everyone ELSE there. People who had worked their whole lives to run in that race. People who were just trying to help runners through the last half mile of that grueling course. People who were enjoying the rush of accomplishment. Shattered.

Running is sacred to me. At the end of the day, it's not about burning calories or being faster than the other ladies on the trail, even though that's part of it. No, at the heart of it is my sanity. It kept me alive after my mom died; it was the one thing that felt safe and familiar when everything else was falling apart. Even now, to keep life from spinning out of control, running is where I go. I always feel better when I'm done. It's like coming home at the end of a long day. And yesterday's bombs left me feeling as shaken as if someone had broken into my home, my sanctuary.

I felt compelled to reach out to my fellow runners yesterday after I'd pulled myself together. We are spread all over the country now, but by reaching out to them, I felt like we had retreated into a cozy room, snuggled under the blankets, and reassured each other that everything was going to be fine. And in that virtual little pow-wow, I decided that I'm not quite ready to give up the running shoes. I need to go back to Boston one more time. One more time to prove to that sicko/those sickos that they can't scare me away from my sport. They invaded my sanctuary but they will not rob me of it. No way.

My first Boston - 2006

After promising Cherie (and myself) I was never running another marathon...

There are no 2007 post-race pics since I was, you know, half-naked being attended to in the medical tent...

Boston 2010
Trying to be cheery at the start.

I love my KT.

Boston, we'll be back. I promise.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


We've been doing a little remodeling. Dave says I've been in a super-nesting phase, but since I'm not actually gestating a little person as of yet, I maintain we are simply still in the bachelor-pad-to-home transformation. When I start decorating a nursery, I'll call it nesting.

It turns out that even though Dave and I are the best of friends, we are still learning how to work on a project together. We are great workers-in-parallell -- divide and conquer, that's what we're all about -- but when we actually have to combine our efforts on the same thing...well, there has to be room for growth, right?

Exhibit 1: Our first foray into vinyl lettering.

This looks innocent enough, but this project was embarked upon at 10:30 at night and I was hungry and tired. We both had our own ideas about how to deal with the difficult font application.  We had to step away from the project a couple of times and take some deep breaths. Dave makes me hug him when I start to get anxious. There was a lot of hugging that night. The one good thing that came out of this night was that we were up late enough to catch the exploding water softener within 5 minutes of bursting. The flooding in the garage could have been so much worse

I decided this year I wanted an herb garden, so we ripped out the bushes along our patio and my dad and I worked together to put in these raised planters while Dave was hard at work doing his doctor thing.
Two days of backbreaking labor later...

I have my very own herb garden right outside my kitchen!

Those are my peppers and strawberries!

Tomatoes, tomatillos, and squash

About a month ago, we had a guy come look at our yard to tell us how much it would cost to rehabilitate it. After he walked around, he just laughed and said he doesn't do the kind of work it would take. It was going to cost us thousands, so I decided I am able-bodied enough to do the work myself. I have been out there daily since. I'm feeling pretty proud of myself.

Gone is the vicious mint and in its place is a rose that is not only alive but CLIMBING like it's supposed to on the archway that I put in.

I resurrected the rose garden. You can really cut those suckers back and it's amazing how fiercely they will grow back

 There are little pieces of FRUIT on that tree! It not only lived from last year to this year, but it actually GREW! I'm so excited for my first crop of plums!

Peaches. I'm going to have fresh peaches. I can hardly stand it, I'm so excited.

I needed a break from the yard so Dave helped me put in the last of our vinyl lettering this weekend. We grew a lot during this process and actually ended up having a great time by the end. It's so satisfying to see the product of your labor.

 This is in our dining room. It turned out so nice.

I love this little corner in our living room. I never thought I would have a husband, let alone such a great one. And I for sure never thought I'd have a house in which I could hang a picture of us and put up semi-cheesy vinyl lettering. But I love it.