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November 11, 2007

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I can only say "Good Luck and God speed" - and I mean that from the bottom of my heart! Are we going to be able to send you a little gift for the 13's? I know you don't need it, but I'm thinking there may be a few of us that may want to? Please??

XOXO

30 weeks is good, even with twins. 32 is better and 34 is almost luxurious. So I hope the extra dose buys you a few more weeks, and for now it's one day at a time, right?

Sorry the school thing is a mess. I can't believe they are patting themselves on the back if he has time to write and solve extra problems in the time they give him to do theirs. Urgh...

Sorry, sorry, sorry about the migraines. They suck unholy craptacular shitholes. Sorry.

I had my first migraine ever when I was 26 weeks pregnant with my daughter. Because mine occurred with the visual flashing light thingy - first in my central vision and then expanding outward in a crescent to my peripheral vision - I was completely convinced that I was having a stroke. The migraines occurred fairly regularly during the rest of the pregnancy, disappearing for years after the day I delivered. Seems to be related to hormones (vascular reactivity, smooth muscle, blah, blah, blah). So hang in there, girl, there may be a silver lining to the less than 40 weeks pregnancy after all (although not too much less, please). And I totally agree with you regarding the pharmaceutical companies - better living through chemistry, I always say.

I don't know what to say. Suck city about the migraines. I guess my aching pelvis ( 35 weeks) is no sweat compared to that. I hope those babies and your uterus can hold on and hang out for a few more weeks.

Patrick has great taste. Orange is my favorite color.

Thank you so much for the information! I really appreciate it. It looks like for now they're waiting on a pump for me, and I'm a bit disappointed. As you said, I was told it wouldn't prevent labor so much as prevent unnecessary L & D trips, but that would be nice. My new dr recommended threshold for contractions is to call if I have more than 10 or if they get more intense. Apparently the normal rules don't apply to my irritable uterus. Right now I'm on oral procardia and oral terbutaline. Not being shaky after the terbutaline or have a heart racing after the procardia would be nice.

I'm sorry it's looking more and more like 2007 babies, though I know you're doing all you can to keep them in as long as you can. I had great luck with the shipping from www.babyage.com if you're looking for a way to get items like 2 new infant carriers to your house quickly and without spending a fortune. (I think their current flat shipping rate is $8) Target's shipping also usually works out pretty well/quickly.

FWIW, it's possible you could stay at your current stats for a bit and I'm praying you'll keep babies baking for as long as possible. I can only imagine how stressful all of this is, sweetie. I'm keeping all of you in my thoughts.

As for Patrick - I'm not sure what the answer is, but I know I wouldn't be happy about that kind of report from Em's teachers. There must be a way for his school to do more for him, though I'm not sure what that way is.

Hey! I am making your Lentil with Andouille right now. Wishing you the best. Hang in there - having no control is the worst, but try to take it one day? one hour? at a time. You are doing everything you can.

and I have no thyme - ugh - there goes the soup!

are you planning on two bedrooms for the babies or are they going to share one? just curious.

We live in a Frank Lloyd Wright knock off. The architect who built this house loved Wright and built this house for himself. We don't have a linen closet, not one of our kitchen cupboards is deep enough for my turkey platter, and my bathroom cabinets are so "flush with the wall" that my contact solution won't fit in them. I hope the architect's wife kicked his ass a time or two on my future behalf.

I hope you find the right balance with Patrick. I'm sure it's frustrating sometimes.

Luck with those babies.

Thrity weeks! All right! As a former neonatologist (and current psychiatrist-in-training; story is far too long to go into), this is the time when I felt happiest going to a delivery. Getting past 28 weeks is fabulous, but 30 is even better, and 34 is no sweat! I agree that they are likely 2007 kiddos...at least you can put them on your taxes...

About the babies, well. I actually have nothing to say other than I admire the grace and goodwill with which you're approaching the situation. It is what it is, as they say, and it seems that you're better at most at the much needed skill of coping. Good show, I think.

About Patrick, I started to send you an e-mail and decided that was too weird. My son had a similar experience in K and is now in first grade. We'd hoped for more challenge and engagement this year after laying the social groundwork in K. We went with a K that offered a good social environment for him knowing he wouldn't learn much academically speaking. Now in first grade we're in a situation were he's so easy going about the lack of challenge that his teacher - a lovely, put-upon woman with 20 years in the classroom - has decided that she rather likes having a kid who finishes his work without much fuss or input on her part. We've asked for a smidge of extra homework or differentiated reading or for him to be able to skip ahead in math a bit and...no. Very nicely and pleasantly, but no. We're about to become "those parents" and it's not a nice place to be. The best I can say at this point is that (the distraction of the babies notwithstanding) is that you, too, will probably have to become much louder and confrontational with the school that you'd otherwise want to be. Kids like our sons, as long as they can do what's put in front of them and not use many resources in the process, will be allowed to drift along tending to themselves unless we insist on another path. If Minnesota has a support group for parents of gifted kids, you might want to contact them. In PA we've got a very active (and activist) group of parents that have all been down the road of evaluations and IEPs and so forth and talking with them is blessedly empty of the "you think your kid is better than mine, don't you" dynamic one gets elsewhere.

Thus ends my assvice for the evening. Good luck with everything you've got in front of you at the moment.

My only comment is that my twins came at 31 weeks out of the blue - no terb etc before then - and it wasn't like I felt huge contractions. I just felt, well, ODD. So trust that instinct of yours if you start to feel wacky and get a voice telling you to go in to the hospital.

Thinking positive thoughts!!!

If Baltimore wins...yeah well you already know how that ended. better chance I get pregnant than my team win.

no more details about the conference?? thats all we get??? jeesh. I am a diehard Patrick fan and feel like I deserve more. hrrmph.

Yes please we'd love to send gifts to the 13's and Patrick, something involving a font I think.

And please don't tell Patrick it will be a fricking miracle if the Raiders win, ever again. It's a very sorry football season in the Bay Area. My beloved 49ers suck and I can't even root for the guys across the bay.

OK, this is where all the commenters swarm in by the hundreds to say, "Oh, I was 50% effaced and a fingertip dilated for TWELVE weeks!! With triplets! And my water didn't break until I was at 42 weeks and only then after they stripped my membranes. And even then I STILL didn't go into real labor for another 72 hours. They were going to do a C-section when I FINALLY began to really dilate." And then others chime in with "Oh, my cervix was paper thin, so thin you could see the pulse in the baby's head through it, and it stayed that way for 8 weeks." And then I am mightily reassured.

Anyway, I'm so sorry about the migraines Julie. I am so glad you posted. Hang in there, honey.

Julia, avert your eyes for a moment, please.

Julia fans, remember once sometime over the summer someone mentioned a virtual shower-ish thing for the 13s? I thought it was a great idea. But I cannot remember who it was and I cannot now find the comments. (Yes, I did spend some of my weekend searching the comments of summer posts. Julia needs a search widgit!) Anywho, email me if there is some such thing happening. I'd love to participate.

Julia, hey, hi! 30 weeks! Phew! RE: Patrick: does your district have an accelerated learning program (aka that for gifted / talented)? In our district they test in Kindergarten and it is in 1st grade that kids move into the gifted program. So maybe it is a matter of talking to someone at the district, not the school?

I suggest you pack NOW. Otherwise you will have to ask Steve and Patrick to pack a bag for you after you've been admitted and birth is imminent/has already happened. You will end up giving birth in one of Steve's old hunting t-shirts, which incidentally is the only thing that was packed that fits over your breasts and belly, which means you will have to wear it for the next three days, bloodstains (both newborn human and ursine) and all. Your alternative top is a skin tight t-shirt that was too small even when you weren't pregnant or in the post-partum phase. Said t-shirt also has something like "I'm bringing sexy back" emblazoned across the front.

As for the bottom half, you will find, upon opening your lovingly packed bag, that your choices are 1. A soiled pair of PJ bottoms plucked from the dirty laundry basket 2. A pair of jeans that last fit you in your first year of college, or 3. white linen culottes.

Well, maybe you have more faith in Steve and Patrick, but I am speaking from experience here! And I know how obsessive you are, and besides, if you issue firm orders from the bed as to size/colour/cleanliness, it will give Patrick something to do.

And make sure the camera batteries are charged!!!!

Just for Victoria, I could tell you I was a few cm dilated and my cervix had shortened to less than 1 cm and I stayed that way for a while, but that was on hospital bedrest, almost the maximum dose of magnesium sulfate, 1-2 injections of terbutaline daily and the occasional course of indomethacine thrown in for kicks, so that probably won't make you feel much better. But, hopefully it's helpful to be reminded that the pharmaceutical industry has more in its back pocket for you than the terbutaline pump.

Better living through chemistry is my motto, too.

Julia - Are you monitoring your blood pressure by any chance? When I was pregnant with my twins and on the home terb pump I also had to monitor my blood pressure. I say this because migraines and a surge in BP were the only tip offs that led my OB to determine I had pre-eclampsia and HELLP syndrome. Babies delivered just fine but worth seeing if there is a connection.

Crossing my fingers for many more weeks of pg ahead,
Leigh

I had migraines during the end of my first pregnancy. I thought I was having a stroke. Seriously. I developed tunnel vision, my face and arm went numb, then I developed a crushing headache. It happened frequently during the last month of my pregnancy. I was scared to leave the house b/c it's pretty difficult to drive with tunnel vision.

Also for Victoria, I walked around for a week 5 cm dilated with twins and when I reach 6 cm my OB said, "Um, well, hmmm. I really don't want to send you home like that. I'm afraid you'll deliver on the living room floor." So she broke my water and 8 hours later: ta da!

Julia: I am so excited for you. I have been worried for the past 28ish weeks and now I am just plain excited. Woo-hoo!

Oh, Julia....

I have no first person experience with migraines (I've maybe had less than 6 headaches worth talking about in my 52 years), but all three of my kids suffer from them. My daughter had daily, debilitating migraines while pregnant with my stunningly beautiful granddaughter 3.5 years ago. I have an huge respect for migraine headaches.

I'm glad that the fiorcet helps...my daughters ob would not let her take anything but tylenol.

my best to you, steve, patrick and the 13s!!

Deb

30 weeks is a huge milestone and indeed just another few weeks will be even better. Sending my wishes for December babies.

One note on the terb pump-- when I had mine I used a long skinny scarf tied to the pump to fasionably "wear" a la bike messenger style. I was all the rage lazing about my bed.

Somehow, yes, one reads these stories about climbing Mount Everest while 50% effaced and seeing nary a twinge of dilation but as you say when you put the whole picture together there does seem to be sort of a THEME.

I think I *would* trust Patrick to pack. It would be good for entertainment at any rate. I had been unaware until your post of the differential safety advantages of orange cushions.

Thinking very warm thoughts to you all, everything is crossed here that the 13s will have as much time as they need inside.

Good luck with the 13's, whenever they choose to arrive,

J

Definitely keep an eye on the headaches, as the other ladies have already said. If upper stomach pain begins to accompany them, or nauseau (although naseau often accompanies a "normal" migraine, so that's kinda tricky) or you just start feeling really yucky, call your OB ASAP. Rising BP is nothing to mess with ... I know you know that, though.

And please ... pack that suitcase! ;) (Have you bought any/many baby items yet??)

I just want to say that I'm currently hooked up to a cotton candy pump and let me tell you...it's no circus.


Thank you. I'm here all week.

A lot of women have contractions for weeks and go onto have perfectly normal full-term births (even with twins), I don't understand why it is such a big deal for you, especially if you're not even dilated? Of course it's best to keep the babies in as long as possible, but I guess I don't get it. It just makes me sad to see labour and delivery so medically managed.

I get migraines in the normal run of things but started having a truly terrible time with them about 16 weeks into my pregnancy. I was advised to see a cranial osteopath and it has helped immeasurably (touch wood - I'm 23 weeks now and they've cleared up a treat).

I know you're in no position to go jaunting off to see an osteopath now, but you've mentioned migraines pre-pregnancy too, so it might be worth investigating once the 13s are here and you are more mobile. I had no idea my migraines were connected to my back and neck, but it seems they are.

Best of luck with the final stretch - I'm sure there are thousands of lurkers like me rooting for you!

Ugh poor you, migraines are awful.

I just wanted to say I'm a 29-weeker myself, from '71. As far as I can tell all my faculties are relatively intact, although I have been tempted to blame my lack of athletic skill on it from time to time.

It sounds like Patrick found his own solution in that case. Is he bored or unhappy? There will be ways to challenge him later, so if he's not getting turned off school or spending his days in misery, it might be a concern you can deal with in the ubiquitous later.

Wishing you the best!

Is Patrick still in the school where the ages are grouped together or have I missed a mini-series or two? Too many blogs, not enough time...

If so, it surprises me they can't find more challenging things for him to do - like, say, giving him work at a higher level that someone else in the same classroom is probably already doing.

If not, have you considered moving him forward a grade? I wouldn't suggest it yet, because in my opinion, kindergarten is more about socialization than actual learning, but perhaps skipping him to second grade at the end of the year?

Crossing my fingers for those babies, although I had a Christmas baby and nothing could have been more wonderful.

I have a migraine right now -- tail end of one. I take Fioricet, too. The one with codeine! I give it 4.5 stars. I also took it while pregnant, and if my babies were born with an opiate addiction, they showed no sign of it.

Patrick. Is there a place near you that has a "child-centered curriculum"? My understanding of this is that they tailor the work to each child's abilities. There is a school here in CT called the Mead school.

http://www.meadschool.org

At Mead, you'll find kids who need extra help, kids with special learning problems, exceedingly gifted kids -- basically just all sorts. It is a really nurturing place and has great results. I'm in too much pain to really explain this effectively. Good luck with your smart kid.

Have you thought about enrolling Patrick in a private or semi-private toutoring program to keep him engaged in school work, yet give him a challenge? They advertise chains of such places here, but you may be able to talk to a teacher at the school for recommendations as well (and you may even want to consider asking an upper-level teacher about it if Patrick's teachers don't seem to be responding to his needs). We have one such chain called Sylvan, which I think is a national thing, but no promises.

30 weeks! OMG! I can't believe it! I'm 5 behind you and 30 seems like it's so close! I hope they hang in there for awhile yet, but I've always sort of skeptically wondered if 38 was a possibility with twins... :-) As always, you and the babies are in my prayers.

Speaking of Frank Lloyd Wright -- have you read LOVING FRANK? Amazing book but very sad. Actually, i wouldn't read it while hormones are coursing through your veins.

We too are crossing everything for you and the babies out here. We wish you nothing but happiness!!

Julia,

Hope the babies will stay put for a couple more weeks!

I am hoping you'll be like my friend who, pregnant with twins, was on bedrest for a couple months around 20 weeks, and was induced at 38 weeks, because the babies decided they liked it inside, after all, and were in no hurry to get out on their own (their Mom was very ready for them to vacate the premises, though ;-)

Total suckage about the migraines. Glad you at least have some meds that keep them in check. Better living through chemistry is a wonderful thing :)

My daughter is the same age as Patrick and we're having some of the same instructional issues. She's in an academically intense school and they put her in an advanced reading group, but that only meets once a week. I ended up buying various levels of workbooks for her and we just do those at home. There are also websites at readinga-z.com and sadler-oxford.com where they can work at whatever level they choose. Academically, she's easily ready for first grade, but socially she still needs to be in kindergarten so we've decided not to worry about it unless we have to. I hate for her not to be challenged, but I think it's really important to fit in socially, and that would be really difficult if she jumped a grade.

I forgot to add, I went to a school where academic challenge was not a daily feature, shall I say, since I was reading at 12+ grade level when I was 6, and I have turned out... no, never mind, not entirely normal, but fine in my own eccentric way. Which is to say I kind of agree with the previous poster that Patrick's school is not an immediate problem. Hope the migraines get better, yuck.

Julia, don't read this. Lucky, Yes! I would LOVE to have a virtual shower for the 13s!! I love love love to knit and knitting babies' things is totally fun. I didn't want to ask Julia directly because I knew she would just blush modestly and say, "Oh, I couldn't." Plus it's kind of creepy to ask someone on the internet for a real mainling address because you look like a stalker. How do we arrange a virtual shower?

Julia, I am so sorry to hear about the migraines, hubris notwithstanding. Those headaches sound awful, and more vomiting is not something you need. Blech. I hope you are not going to have them for the rest of this pg!

About terbutaline - I never took it during pg except for my asthma, which always flared when I got pregnant. I become albuterol-tolerant pretty quickly, so that my bronchial dilation responds less and less to the normal dose. I'm guessing that's what's happening to you, too. I love that comment above about the pharmas having more in their back pocket for your irritable uterus. Those 13s need a few more weeks to cook!

About K - my 5 yr old, who is smart but nothing like yours, told me last week that they learned R & M in school! I know they are doing penmanship, but still, she's known her letters for a couple of years now. I asked her if she liked learning R & M again and she said yes. I asked what she liked about learning them again and she said she liked getting them right all the time. Sigh. So, anyway, she's not bored, she's pleased with herself for doing things right. Ask Patrick what he thinks about the work he's doing in school. I'm thrilled and appalled that he wrote himself some harder problems.

30 weeks. You rock star, you.

30 weeks, congratulations!

I hope that they stay cooking for as long as possible (although that phrase does seem a little weird). Migraines are pretty awful when you aren't 30 weeks gone with twins, and I sincerely hope that they aren't any sign of anything even more sinister.

If it's any help my parent's were labeled as pushy when I was about a year older than Patrick and it's never done me any harm. I was the one complaining that the books I was sent home with were boring! I hope that you manage to sort something suitable out with the school without too much bad feeling.

Hooooold on there, little babies! You have a little more baking to do. OK, here; my wild guess: the week of December 17th!

LOL @ orange pillows!

I'd let the Patrick thing go for now, I think (you know, with all the caveats of internet advice). His solution of writing harder problems for himself seems perfectly effective to me and a much better learning experience than having someone else write harder problems for him. The time to start worrying is when he stops doing that, and seems bored or unhappy. From what I can tell Patrick seems to have the kind of mind that finds curiosities for it to solve and consider, and does so without blowing things up. If that's true, as long as the teacher's don't stop him, he'll satisfy his minds needs.

bj

30 Weeks!! WooHoo! Keep on cookin' 13s!

Orange is a fabulous color.

They are regularly checking your blood pressure, aren't they? Cos I'm not sure I have all that much faith in your very (overly?)laid back ob-lady. In the UK, and by this stage of a difficult twin pregnancy, they would be monitoring your blood pressure at least weekly, and you'd be getting minimum weekly visits from your community midwife for same. I would be worried if you were not having it monitored that frequently.

I'm so sorry about the migraines! I just started getting them (two years after giving birth to my second child) and they are how you described. Disco balls in my eyes, first. Then pain and sensory issues so nauseating I wanted to bury myself in the backyard under all that dark, cool, silent dirt.

Well, congrats on thirty weeks. I am breathing easier now, so who cares how you feel?

Looking forward to Steve's guest post about the successful and beautiful birth of Abigail and Beatrice. (A and B, get it? and I think Patrick would love twin baby sisters.)

Get to it! Preferably headache-free...

I'm hoping for you so much, I'm going to strain myself with yearning. Truly...

Lurker here. So glad the 13s are staying put. But yes, pack that bag. My husband packed mine after my water broke at work when I was 33 weeks - please benefit from my experience and do it yourself!!

I had migraines while on bedrest for PTL with my second. They are exquisitely awful. You are lucky you get fioricet. I got Tylenol, and just eating a couple of jellybeans every 4 hours instead probably would have made more difference.

And my son is reminding me of Patrick. While his kindy classmates are struggling with spelling "D-O-G" my son writes and illustrates a short story on the back of his worksheet. We don't know what to do either.

Hang in there.

Julia-

On Patrick, I went to the parent/teacher appointment and we decided that our focus should be on her social skills. If she gets bored, they are working on making harder problem sets for her, but the biggest thing is the class wants to work on social skills....

Can you arrange for a phone call with the teacher? Maybe there is a way you can discuss how to challenge Patrick...

38 weeks? You really just figured this out? Let's hope these buggers hang in for 4 more weeks, k?

And I am sorry about those migraines. I get migraines like that and OMG....I am sorry

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