I’m still here, really!

•August 2, 2008 • 8 Comments

I couldn’t resist posting  a picture on 31st July, which was transfer day in our FET cycle last year…

and amongst the nice comments, was a request for some news on how we’re managing with a 5 year old and twins.

There is so much I could say.. why haven’t I blogged? Admittedly time is short, but I’ve been somehow reluctant to say too much because  the last year has seen such a lot of sadness and loss amongst the blogs I read, I just felt GUILTY.

But here I am, I am so lucky… and I don’t want to just vanish in to the ether.

So how have things been? The babies were born at the start of the school Easter  holidays and Mr DG had 2 weeks paternity leave, a week of short days and then a week’s annual leave. My sister also came to visit for a few days. So it was 4-5 weeks I spent mostly indoors, concentrating on breastfeeding. I won’t say it was entirely smooth, both babies were quite small and sleepy and a bit yellow, and were slow to learn how to latch on.

To.ren, who fed within a few minutes of birth, generally found it easier than Mai.read, who was a full pound larger but was born while I was using gas and air … she did latch on for a bit but we were soon on oour way to the postnatal ward, and after she’d slept for the best part of a day, she pretty much forgot what to do.

Anyway, with the help of my midwives, and some feeding expressed milk by syringe, we survived the early days and they rapidly shot up the charts – moving from 2nd centile at birth to 20th at 12 weeks (M) and 0.2nd  to 20th (T)

Ok, more later!


PS Calliope, i’m SO happy for you!

Leave me comments, people, and I’ll be sure to visit you back and get in touch.


•July 31, 2008 • 10 Comments

Happy happy happy

•May 28, 2008 • 5 Comments

I always seem to think of good blog entries when I am not near the PC… and then when I’m on the PC I sort of surf lazily in between ordering groceries etc.

So I figured I may as well just do a little update, no great shakes.

It’s the school holidays so I have little DG home with me. It’s not easy as he is very NOISY and the babies couldn’t nap in peace. Today so far has been a bit more sedate and a friend should be here soon with her 5 year old DD. It won’t be quuet, but it will be fun. Both babies slept well last night and are having a good nap now. Mind you, little DG and I are both in our pyjamas still.

I can’t believe 7 weeks have gone by already. It’s gone in a flash, and I have enjoyed every fleeting minute. It makes it much easier to manage endless feeding … knowing that these are days I will think back on with a sort of wistfulness later. I think this time round I had a better understanding of what early breastfeeding is like, so I haven’t been worried or stressed. They’ve been growing really well, putting on at least half a pound a week, once we got past the first fortnight.

I’m just planning a naming ceremony. We can weave in some thanks for Hobbesy’s kind donation, she and her DH will be “non”godparents and she will sing (she is a professional singer)

I will try to update more often. I have been reading DE blogs and commenting when I can. I wish with all my heart that everyone can find peace and happiness.

A year ago the fresh DEIVF had just ended in a BFN and I was persuading the clinic to do an immediate FET, which went ahead in the end in July…

For Sarah and her angel on their edd

•May 22, 2008 • 2 Comments

And for Karen and Selina.

I’m so sorry.

Happy birthday to me

•April 29, 2008 • 10 Comments

Yup, it’s my birthday today. And I remember where I was last year, as my birthday was when Hobbesy and I stopped taking our BCP, at the start of the fresh IVF cycle. That didn’t work, of course, but we had lots of frozen embryos and after one cancelled FET as my lining wasn’t thin, we went ahead in July 07… two blasts grown and put back. Those embryos are now two beautiful babies.

So no wonder this has been a fantastic birthday. Admittedly I was awake from 4-6am with two grumbling little individuals, and they have both been in a feeding frenzy all day. But after lunch out with Mr DG (the babies slept angelically for that, happily) we went to pick up little DG from school and show off Mair.ead and Tor.en.  The playground has sometimes been a hard place for me, scene of many successful pregnancies and arrival of babies while I have been clutching to myself my latest miscarriage… today it was quite joyful to show off our gorgeous pair.

Hobbesy also sent me an Amazon voucher, but it was hardly necessary!

Beautiful birth

•April 25, 2008 • 12 Comments

When I was pregnant with Little DG, one of the very first things I started to worry about was the birth and whether I would need to go into hospital. Things were no different this time. When we discovered it was twins, my emotions were a mixture of huge relief that the bleeding I’d had wasn’t a miscarriage, and a realisation that my hope for a home birth with a pool was probably out of the window – as it was in the end with Little DG due to my thrombosis and treatment with blood thinners. This time round, though, I knew that it wouldn’t be possible to arrange an independent midwife to deliver me in hospital, as the rules have changed.

You might think that having been through so much to get pregnant, that I’d be happy just to know the babies would be born safely, but things just aren’t that easy for me when it comes to hospitals. For a start, I do doubt whether a hospital can be relied on in that respect… but also I feel terribly stressed at the thought of being in the clutches of the medical establishment especially relying on the random allocation of a doctor and midwife, subject to the vagaries of hospital policies, let alone at a vulnerable time like being in labour.

So despite the cost, I went ahead and arranged an independent midwife to at least act as my friend and supporter throughout the whole process (and I suspected I’d get my money’s worth from the post-natal support and help with breastfeeding twins, if nothing else!) I chose the midwife who had taken over from the one who delivered Little DG (now retired) and I also got myself referred to an obstetrician recommended to me as progressive, by another independent midwife.

So the pregnancy progressed with me going regularly to see my haematologist (on blood thinners again) and for scans (monthly from 20 weeks then fortnightly once twin I’s growth and low fluid began to be a concern) but with my ante-natal care carried out by Rene and her partner, another midwife called Sally.

I found things surprisingly easy, no doubt helped by me working at home from about 28 weeks. And maybe I was less inclined to complain about inconveniences like swollen legs, because I was just so happy to be pregnant with no complications. I was lucky though, to escape many pregnancy ailments, with the exception of killer heartburn/retching and feet that seemed to get bigger by the day.

With the support of Rene and Sally we planned for the sort of birth I wanted. I was very concerned that I should have a natural birth with no unnecessary intervention, and we therefore sent my birthplan to the supervisor of midwives and discussed it with my consultant as well as meeting with the manager of the labour ward. We obtained the twin guidelines from the hospital and discussed my desire not to have continuous monitoring.

My other main concerns were about no unnecessary induction, being able to use the pool, letting the cord stop pulsing before cutting the cord, and letting twin II come naturally in their own time, plus DP taking twin I skin to skin while I delivered twin II. As well as no unnecessary staff in the room, paediatrician called in only if needed, etc. I did have some very anxious moments and bad dreams about the whole idea of going into hospital which culminated in me basically sobbing my way through a consultant appointment a few weeks before the end but Rene and Sally did their best to reassure me that they would be there and nothing would happen to me without my consent. My consultant was on the liberal end of the doctor spectrum and agreed with my requests, although she did keep reminding me of hospital policy to induce twins at 38 weeks.

I did acupuncture to prepare for birth as well as hypnobirthing and had an mp3 made for me by my hypnotherapist.

Everything was fine, apart from rather low fluid on twin I and slower growth than twin II, until just over 37 weeks when I had some visual disturbances one evening. Rene came to check me, my blood pressure was fine though there was some protein in my urine. We decided it was hopefully just a migraine. However at 37+2, the symptoms came back and when Rene same to check me, my blood pressure was up, not dramatically, but combined with +3 on the urine dipstick, it was enough for her to suggest we went into the labour ward to be checked.

They decided to keep me in for monitoring in case of pre-eclampsia and a 24 hour urine collection. I took this news quite well, considering. The 24 hour urine collection showed I had mild-pre-eclampsia but my blood pressure stayed stable, albeit elevated. I declined to be induced, and agreed that I could go home, after my regular scan, scheduled for 37+6.

Rene and Sally came with me. Twin I was still something of a concern, but now at almost 38 weeks and with the pre-eclampsia, they scrutinised blood flow to the placenta and the baby’s brain etc much more thoroughly. They then declared he had pretty much stopped growing, that he was estimated at 4lb 8 while twin 1 was 6lb 14 and that he was beginning to suffer.

So we agreed to be induced. But then it turned out not to be such an emergency… in fact they couldn’t find a slot, right off. After I’d had the fear of god put into me by the scan dept, my own consultant came to see me on the ward and reassured me that the baby was only showing the very early signs of difficulty. We agreed I’d go home, be monitored the next day, and come back probably the day after for induction.

I was so relieved to get home and into my own bed and bath … I’d been in hospital from Saturday/Wednesday and not slept more than an hour in one go.

However I woke up before dawn struggling to breathe and nothing seemed to help. When Mr DG got up we decided to go back to hospital and called an ambulance. I was admitted again via the labour ward and they checked my heart via an ECG as well as testing for pulmonary embolism (due to my history) Mr DG had to leave me there alone as Little DG was off school ill.

At teatime they took me back to the ante-natal ward, with induction planned for the next day, 38+1.

I spent the night pacing the floor, interspersed with hot showers to relax my stiff neck.

Mr DG came to the hospital mid-morning, but there was no space in the labour ward. It was late afternoon before we were taken up. A lovely hospital midwife checked me, Doriscilla, and she said I was fully effaced and 2-3cm dilated. She suggested not having the pessary they had prescribed, but instead having a sweep and waiting for a few hours. So she gave me a sweep and I got into the pool to read my book. Sally and Rene arrived a few hours later and at shift change we got a new midwife, Harriet. I was visited in the pool by the consultant covering that night and her team, including her SHO Ranjit. The consultant was very keen for me to be continuously monitored but I reiterated my wishes and we came to a compromise for occasional monitoring via the CTG. (In the end , noone really came in and pushed monitoring on us, a couple of times Rene had to go and remind the midwife that I needed to be checked)

We relaxed for a while, and I had a few twinges, and possibly some leaking fluid, but nothing much happened despite Rene doing reflexology on my feet. I was enjoying having access ot the pool, and was tempted just to wait for nature to take its course and not have any further intervention, but in fact, I was keen to go ahead and have the babies during the night, and Sally and Rene were there… I wasn’t sure if we’d get kicked out of the labour ward if we refused any further induction!

So just after 10 when Harriet came back, I was quite happy to have my waters broken. It was quite painless, and Mr DG and I walked about for an hour or so. Contractions started at about 10.30 and by 11 o’ clock were 1:5. I was on the birthball, listening to my hypnotherapy MP3 and very relaxed.

At about 11.30 I started to want to get in the pool, which I hoped was a good sign. I got into the pool, by midnight the pains were quite intense. Rene called Harriet to say she thought I was close to transition. Harriet was surprised but checked me and I was almost fully dilated. I was finding the pains quite hard and I hoped I’d get the urge to push soon. I remembered from Little DG’s birth that the time just before pushing was the hardest. 00.45am and I felt the urge to push.

There was a rush to get me out of the pool, I chose to kneel on the bed leaning forward and got a bean bag to lean over. A doctor appeared at 1am, hurrying to place a cannula in case I needed any drugs. I was pushing. Tor.en was born at 01.10, and I took him in my arms. Mr DG cut the cord when it stopped pulsating.

Twin II was monitored via the CTG and scan, and was still quite high.

I relaxed, Tor.en fed and we enjoyed meeting him. At 1.50 the doctor came back and suggested a drip, but I refused. Mr DG took Tor.en under his tshirt and I tried various positions to stimulate contractions. At 2.30am I got back onto the ball and took Tor.en to feed, which did stimulate some contractions.

At 2.55 the doctor examined me again, Mair.ead was still high and seemed to be coming feet first (legs over head) This was confirmed by a scan.

The doctor managed to turn Mair.ead to head first, while I had a quaff of the gas and air, which made me feel quite spacey. The doctor suggested I have the syntocinon drip to bring Mair.ead down and keep her head down. At 3.30 Mair.ead still hadn’t descended. The doctor then suggested going to theatre to rupture her membranes, which I agreed to.

I was quite upset to hear that the journey from the labour room to the theatre (although not far!) would need to take place without gas and air… as the supply was not mobile… I recall taking several deep breaths and chucking the mouthpiece at the midwife and shouting “Go, go!” The drip was so much more painful than my natural births with Little DG and Tor.en had been!

Anyway, just before 4am we were in theatre, Sally, Rene and Mr DG were all allowed in, Tor.en was there in a cot. Being the middle of the night the place was very quiet. Mair.ead’s waters were broken at 3.57, I started to push and she was born at 4.11 – just over 3 hours after her brother. If we’d have started earlier, they could have had different birthdays!

I remember just carrying on pushing until someone told me it was all done and the placenta was out. It was such a relief it was all finished!

In recovery both babies were weighed – Tor.en was 5lb 5 rather than the estimated 4lb 8 and Mair.ead was 6lb 4 rather than 6lb 14.

1st stage: 2:45

2nd stage (Twin 1) :15

Mr DG came up to the postnatal ward with me at 7am and refused to leave. It was so lovely to have him there with me and the babies. I dozed off, feeling so happy and amazed that we had finally done it.

Two beautiful babies, and a beautiful birth. It wasn’t without complications but I knew that nothing happened that didn’t have a good reason.

NB Mr DG and one of the midwives took it in turns to text Hobbesy and send her pictures as the night wore on, so she had a sort of ringside seat!


•April 18, 2008 • 25 Comments

Hello everybody.

Excuse the radio silence… our little miracles are two weeks old tomorrow and we’ve spent the time getting to know them and establishing breastfeeding. Our birth was wonderful and I will write it up. For now, I’m enjoying something I never thought I’d have … not one, but two beautiful little babies – Tor.en and Mair.ead.

Our beautiful babies

They’re here!!

•April 5, 2008 • 40 Comments

DG’s beautiful babies are here! Both, and mother are healthy.

Baby girl (Mair.ead) born at 4.11am, two hours after baby boy – with far more trouble – she was delivered in operating theatre, but normal delivery in the end. First with just pool for pain relief, second with just gas and air. She is 6 pound 5 and he was 5 pound 4

KF -x-

BIG news

•April 3, 2008 • 9 Comments

Well, I (kf) haven’t updated again as the plan was that DG would stay in until yesterday (Wednesday) morning as she was already booked in for a scan, then if all was well she would be allowed home later in the day. The scan caused a bit of a panic, it looks like the little boy hasn’t really grown much since the last one. It sounded like they would want to immediately induce.

Back on the ward a sympathetic doctor went through everything and said it wasn’t as much of an emergency as it first sounded. The signs up til now were the earliest signs the the placenta is beginning to fail. She would need a ctg/monitoring that afternoon then be allowed home for a few days before induction.

The babies wouldn’t stay still for the monitoring, but they decided late in the evening she could be allowed home  overnight to return to try monitoring again at 9am this morning.

Well this morning came and dg went in early as she was having difficulty breathing. I didn’t hear anything til early this afternoon so was starting to worry but finally have heard that she has been poked and prodded all day with a decision made to keep her in until induction… TOMORROW!

DG is obviously finding this all very stressful. She has been in on her own all day today as Mr DG has been at home looking after a poorly little dg, so he won’t be in until things get going tomorrow. At times like this I really wish I could drive!

Well, muster all the positive thoughts you can coz this is it! These so long awaited and much wanted babies will very soon be here. I for one cannot wait, and can guarantee I’ll be pretty emotional once they’re here

Everything has been headed to this….

No news is ok news

•March 31, 2008 • 5 Comments

Well dg is still in hospital tonight. They ran some more tests but not all the results are in yet. She’s feeling positive about it all and things certainly don’t seem to be getting worse which can only be a good thing. Lets hope she’s posting her own update tomorrow 🙂