Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The Springer Girls

Check out our photos! The Springer Girls

I can't stop snapping photos of these girls! I've created their own blog of photos I've taken throughout the day. I've got a million, but only have some of them up. And I don't have any stories to go with them, as it's hard for me to get away for a second to type a little anecdote to go along with the picture. Hopefully I will be able to add more in the future, once we get this parenting twins thing down pat. Until then, enjoy the show!

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


Introducing Margaret Marceau Springer.
Born September 8, 2005 at 5:39 p.m. 6 lbs. 2 0z., 19.5 in. Posted by Picasa


Introducing Audrey Adelaide Springer.
Born on September 8, 2005 at 5:40 p.m. 5 lbs. 0 oz., 18 in. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, September 15, 2005

They're heeeeeerrrrreeee!!!!

I've finally got a couple of minutes to write more than a couple of lines...I've literally started this birth story at least five times in the past four weeks and haven't been able to finish it until now...

As a lot of you know, my c-section was scheduled for September 14, our four year anniversary, because Audrey was still transverse. I was still on strict bedrest and taking Procardia XL for the PTL, and had my last OB appointment on September 8. My mom drove me and on our way to the office, I warned my mother that if my OB makes me go to the hospital for more "monitoring", I would demand that the girls be delivered that day!! Little did I know...

At the appointment, my blood pressure was checked twice and both times, it was dangerously high. Also, my legs and feet were extremely swollen beyond recognition and my urine revealed that I had protein in it. All of that combined with the fact that I had made it to 36 weeks (I was 36 weeks 3 days) convinced my OB to deliver the girls that day. When she told me that I had finally developed pre-eclampsia and that I should go home and get ready, I was shocked. We had been expecting this for six weeks because of the PTL, but when it actually became real, I was freaked out!!!

Jim met me at the condo and we packed up and drove to the hospital. We arrived at 2:30 p.m. and got prepped and strapped to the monitors. I began contracting more often, about every 2-3 minutes, and it began to get more painful! My OB hadn't arrived yet and I wondered if we'd even make it to the operating room!!

My parents and mother-in-law came into Triage at around 4:30 p.m. to let us know they had arrived...I think my dad was more nervous than any of us! I was just anxious to get it over with...I was terrified of the surgery and though I knew what to expect, I still just wanted to get in there and get it done.

Finally, the nurse anesthetist arrived and told me the anesthesiologist was on his way and that things would start happening quickly. Meanwhile, my OB arrived and visited with me and eased my fears a little. Jim was whisked away to put on his little operating room uniform and I didn't see him until I was strapped down and numb.

The operating room was so bright and cold and busy. There were people everywhere, but my nurse (Donna!) and OB were wonderful, rubbing my hands and legs while I received the spinal and telling me everything would be wonderful. Finally, Jim was allowed back in and things got under way really quickly.

I didn't feel a thing, not even the pushing and pulling that I had been warned about. I was surprisingly calm, but still anxious to see my girls. All of a sudden, my nurse anesthetist shouted to an NA that there wasn't a mirror in the room. They called other operating rooms looking for one, but my OB announced that it is too late, that Baby A was coming. Sure enough, seconds later, I heard a strong squeal and at 5:39 p.m. Margaret Marceau was born.
Immediately I began to cry and ask Jim over and over if he could see her. He couldn't because she was taken immediately by the pediatricians. At 5:40 p.m., another hearty cry errupted and Audrey Adelaide arrived into the world (hand first!). I heard a few chuckles and my doctor announce that Audrey had just peed all over her.

We were unable to see them for what seemed like forever, and I kept asking Jim if everything was okay. I heard them crying, but we hadn't seen them yet. Maggie's team announced that she was 6 lbs. 2 oz. and 19.5 in. and that her APGAR score was 9. Then Audrey's team announced that she was 5 lbs. 0 oz. and 18 inches and her APGAR score was also 9. A nurse giggled and said Audrey was peeing again! I was so relieved to know that they were okay, but still we were unable to see them! I was starting to get very nauseus and headachy from the spinal and became a little disoriented and distracted, but soon enough, the girls were brought to Jim and he was able to hold them up to me and let me see and kiss them. They were gorgeous. More beautiful than I could have ever imagined! And they looked NOTHING alike! Later, after comparing baby pictures, we determined that Maggie, though named after my side of the family, looks just like her daddy and Audrey, named after his side of the family, looks just like me.

After the c-section, I was sent to Labor & Delivery because of my pre-eclampsia. I was put on Magnesium Sulfate (for the fourth time in six weeks!) for 24 hours to prevent seizures associated with pre-eclampsia and I didn't really see my girls too much in that period of time. I was in and out of conciousness because of the Mag and the pain medication and they were being monitored.

The next evening, we were admitted to Postpartum and the girls were able to spend most of their time with us. They were only taken away for vital checks. I was still in quite a bit of pain, but Jim is a natural and took such good care of them while I was recovering in the hospital. We were discharged on September 12th and are adjusting wonderfully at home.

Maggie and Audrey are amazing. They are growing bigger and bigger right before my eyes. You wouldn't know that they were a month premature. They eat and sleep and that's about it! Maggie is a little more easy going than Audrey, and I wonder if that's because Audrey is smaller. She just needs to be cuddled more, it seems, than Maggie does. But they are both so precious and just the best little girls I know. The furbabies are in love, as are anyone that meet them. They are sleeping in four hour increments and I'm waking them up at the same time so that they are on the same schedule. Once in awhile it doesn't work out, but for the most part, these girls are so good.

Thank you to everyone who wished us well as we struggled through preterm labor and the hospital bedrest. I was so frustrated for so long with the strict bedrest and hospital stay but I can see now that it was all worth while to have two beautiful and healthy baby girls!

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

It's a date!

September 14, 2005 at 8:00 a.m.

This will be our 4 year wedding anniversary!!

Of course, I still have 7 days between now and then...who knows, the girls may have other plans. But if the past several weeks are any indication, Maggie and Audrey should be here next Wednesday!

Thank you all for your support and good wishes! It's been a long few weeks but the end is near!


For better or for worse, the Virgo baby is plenty fussy! How else do you expect these kids to grow up to be perfectionists? Get used to it: The Virgo baby can be quite particular and needs to have a routine. At least having a routine isn't all bad, but don't even think of changing it! This baby will not respond well to lots of change. The Virgo baby can also be picky about food, so keep it simple at mealtimes. Aside from these peculiarities, this tot doesn't require a lot. A clean bedroom and simple clothing are sure to keep this baby dry-eyed. The Virgo baby is quite good at amusing itself for hours with the most basic of games, feeling very little need for the attention of others. The Virgo child also wants to talk early on, probably earlier than most of the other babies around. There's a lot going on in that mind wanting to come out! From an early age, this baby can also be seen as mother's little helper, as the need to serve others is a strong Virgo trait. They also won't make a fuss over their accomplishments, since by nature these kids are a bit shy. To sum up, the Virgo baby is fine on their own but also happy to help others, loves cleanliness, and can easily keep themselves amused. All this adds up to a pretty good (albeit picky!) kid.

36 Weeks

How your baby's growing: Your baby is still putting on the pounds — about an ounce a day. She now weighs almost 6 pounds and is a little less than 19 inches long. She's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered her body as well as the vernix caseosa, the creamy substance that covered and protected her skin during its submersion in amniotic fluid. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, which will stay in her bowels until birth. This blackish mixture, called meconium, will become her first bowel movement.At the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. (Babies between 37 and 42 weeks are considered full-term; a baby born before 37 weeks is pre-term and after 42 is post-term.) Most likely she's in a head-down position by now, which is optimal for a smooth delivery, but if she isn't in the next week, your provider may suggest scheduling an "external cephalic version," which is a fancy way of saying she'll try to coax your baby into a head-down position manually, by manipulating her from the outside of your belly.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

The Girl Who Cried Wolf

The thing is, every time I was sent to the hospital by my doctors, I was sure that THIS time would be IT.

On July 25, when it was discovered that I had dilated and was having frequent contractions, I would have bet my last dollar.

On August 16, when the nurse administering the non-stress test told me that she would have to page my doctors and have me admitted, I called in the soldiers, stating that this time, it's got to happen.

And on Friday, Sept. 2, only three days away from being 36 weeks, having not slept for the last week, and feeling as if I was nearing the end of my rope, I just knew that Friday would be a birthday. In fact, when Dr. W. said that she was sending me to the hospital because of the indications of pre-eclampsia (my horribly swollen legs and feet, my raised blood pressure, and the presence of protein in my urine), I made the calls, again, and told my friends and family that I was making what I thought was going to be my third and final trip to the hospital.

When I arrived, sister and nephew in tow, I checked into the now familiar Family Birthing Center and prepared for what I knew was to come: bloodwork, monitoring, blood pressure and urine check, cervical exam, IV for potential dehydration and numerous visits by the residents, all of whom weren't completely familiar with my records. We were there for eight hours. In those eight hours, my contractions increased in intensity and frequency (every 2 minutes) but everything else returned to normal and my cervix remained unchanged.

When J. left his office, co-workers were slapping his back and shaking his hand, congratulating him on the impending births of his children. They were sure, like the rest of us, that the third time would be the charm. When he arrived at Triage, his frustration of seeing me in pain, the lack of progress, and the ignorance of the residents overflowed and he lashed out at the current resident. She was about to admit me to Antepartum for the third time for "theraputic rest" and he could see the desperation in my eyes at the thought of another day in the hospital. I begged her that since she, nor the doctor on call (a physician from another practice that was covering for mine over the weekend), were planning on delivering the babies tonight, to let me go home. She reluctantly agreed and I was discharged at 9:00 p.m.

Earlier that day, Dr. W. told me that if I haven't gone into labor naturally, that a cesarean section would be scheduled close to 37 weeks - September 12, 2005. So, on Tuesday, I'm calling the office, scheduling the surgery, and if by chance I happen to have to return to the hospital before then, I will not call, text, page or tell anyone what's going on. Maybe, just maybe, I'll have these girls soon.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

34 & 35 Weeks

Thirty-Four Weeks

Your baby gets bigger and bigger as each day passes. As of week 34, the baby weighs almost 5 pounds (2268 g), and is between 19 and 20 inches long (roughly 49 cm). There are lots of new developments in progress. The baby's skin is starting to be less wrinkled and while the hair covering the baby's skin (lanugo) is decreasing, the vernix white coating is getting thicker in preparation for the delivery.

If you've seen or felt something drip from your breasts, you're not imagining things. Pre-milk substance (colostrum) is in the making, thanks to the hormones from the placenta.

Thirty-Five Weeks

Nearing the ninth month, your baby weighs approximately 5 1/2 pounds (roughly 2495 g), and measures approximately 20 inches from head to toe. The baby will continue to grow, putting on about a half a pound per week until delivery.

Over the next few weeks, the organs (which are all present), are just putting on the final touches before birth.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

From the Father-to-Be

First of all, Jean wants to apologize for not returning phone calls oremails. I told her she was being silly for apologizing but she making medo it. Below is a summary of the last 5 days.

This is just from my memory, the days are starting to blend together. For me a Monday doesn't feel like a Monday anymore, it just feels like any other day. Also, Jean is not up for visitors. She is pretty darn miserable and is just concentrating on what she is going through. Jean and I went to the hospital Wed morning at 7:30am for a 'non-stress test'. Just a normal test to make sure everything is okay. At this time the nurses noticed that Jean was contracting every 2 minutes. We stayed in the emergency birthing dept for about 4 hours so they could continue to monitor the babies. The doctors then decided to admit Jean to the Labor and Delivery dept and give here an IV of magnesium sulfate (not fun) to help stop the contractions. The contractions started to slow around 4am on Thursday morning.

On Thursday they decided to move Jean to the antepartum dept because she was doing better. She stayed there all day Thursday. Her contractions were happening about every 8 min.

Friday morning Jean's contractions started getting closer together and more painful. So, the doctor's sent her back to labor and delivery for more magnesium. Jean's contractions were so bad on Friday night that the doc's gave her asleeping pill and morphine to help with the pain.

Saturday morning Jean was doing better, her contractions were every 8-10 min, so they sent her back to the antepartum dept. The doc's decided that since Monday (today) is exactly 34 weeks they were not going to give Jean any drugs to stop the labor. So, Saturday afternoon and Saturday night Jean's contractions were happening every 2-3 min. On a pain scale of 1-10 (10 being the worst pain you can imagine) Jean's pain was about 6-7. The doc's decided to give her pain meds to help with the pain and help her sleep. I was 99% sure that the babies were going to be born Saturday night. Sunday was very very similar to Saturday. A lot of contractions and a lot of pain. I spent the night at the hospital Wed, Thur, Fri, and Saturday. The funny thing is that with all of the contractions, Jean is only dilated to 2 cm. Maggie is extremely low and in perfect birthing position, but Jean is still not dilating any further. Also on Sunday night the doc's didn't want to give Jean any paid meds. Finally, around 12 midnight they gave Jean morphine for the pain but it didn't help much, she only ended up getting about 2 hours sleep.

So, that's pretty much it. Jean and I were positive that the babies were going to be born over the weekend. However, the doctor's will not perform a c-section, no matter how much pain Jean is in, unless the babies are in danger. That's about it. It is killing me that I have to be at work while Jean is going through this, but there isn't much I or anyone else can do for her at this time. I will keep everyone posted.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

33 Weeks

Your baby continues to fill out and gain weight. The organs are maturing and she is passing water from her bladder. Her skin has turned from red to pink and is also becoming less wrinkled. Your baby has started preparing for life outside the womb by storing iron in her liver. Your baby's skull is still quite pliable and not completely joined, in part so she can ease out of the relatively narrow birth canal. But the bones in the rest of her body are hardening.

Baby's full height is approximately 19.4 inches (49 cm). Weight is about 4.4 pounds (2000 grams).

Your baby should already be getting ready for delivery by turning upside-down -- her head should be pointing down. Your doctor or midwife will be paying careful attention to your baby's position in the coming weeks -- some babies do decide to turn back around.

If you're a first-time mother, your child's head may move into the pelvis this week and press firmly against your cervix. (This happens for about half of all first-time mothers.) If you're a second-time mom, you can expect this to happen a week before labor -- and for some this won't happen until the advanced stages of labor.

Last ultrasound??

This morning we had what was probably our last ultrasound! Yippee! We were unable to get photos of the babies b/c they are so big right now but we did get weights...Maggie is 4 lbs. 11 oz. (which is 1 lb. 4 oz. larger than she was exactly 3 weeks ago) and Audrey is 4 lbs. 4 oz. (which is 1 lb. 1 oz. larger than she was 3 weeks ago). Also, the technician was able to see some hair on Maggie's head! Awww!!! I can't wait!!!! Maggie is still head down, and Audrey is "mostly" head down...looks like she's curved and headed that way. No wonder I feel so much heavier!!!!!!

I'm 33 weeks 1 day today, which is further than I thought I'd be on July 25th! I'm thinking 2 more weeks, because I just really feel uncomfortable and immobile lately. More so than usual...feels like they are headed south and ready to arrive. Even their movement isn't as frequent because they are running out of room. Any guesses? I'll be shocked if I make it to 36 weeks (Sept. 5) but who knows!!! It's whenever they feel like finally meeting us, I guess!

That's it for now! I have my non-stress test tomorrow and doctor appt. on Thursday, where it will be interesting to see if I've dilated any more. The contractions are still coming but thankfully the medication is working!!!

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Labor & Delivery

Everything after that happened really fast. I was placed in a private L&D room, which was fully equipped to handle just that – labor and delivery. I think that it was good that it all happened so fast, because I didn’t have the time to think about what was actually happening.

I was hooked up to the monitoring system again and an IV was placed in my hand. The IV is probably the worst of the pain that I had felt at that time. It hurt so bad! Dr. P finally came in and explained what was about to happen to me. I was to be put on magnesium sulfate to slow the contractions for 24 hours at least. At that time, I would be reevaluated to determine the next course of treatment. The nurse warned me that the mag would make me feel miserable in the beginning, like I was having tremendous hot flashes. She wasn’t lying – I was miserable. I had never felt that hot before, I felt like I had a temperature of 120! I was also given a shot of steroids in my rear (the second most painful event of the evening). The steroids are administered to women in pre-term labor to assist the babies in more rapidly developing their lungs, in case they were born soon.

My nurse told me that I was only allowed ice chips and was not allowed to use the bathroom. Yes, that means that I had to use a bedpan the whole time I was in L&D. Let me tell you, when you plan on having a baby, you need to check your modesty at the door, because there is no way to avoid some of the awkward situations you find yourself in. And everyone sees EVERYTHING. I was uncomfortable, embarrassed, hungry and scared and I just wanted everything to be okay for my girls.

A little later in the evening, I was given a shot of morphine to help to alleviate the pain of the contractions. The morphine caused an immediate reaction for me, I felt like my throat was closing and that someone was lifting my chin and choking me. It only lasted about 30 seconds, but it terrified me. After that, I couldn’t tell if and when I had a contraction. This lasted for almost 24 hours! But I still couldn’t get any sleep because I was constantly being monitored and my vitals were being checked every hour on the hour.

J stayed the night with me because we were still uncertain if the babies would be delivered that evening or soon after. But eventually, my contractions went from every two minutes, to five minutes, to 10 minutes and finally every 15-20 minutes. I was on the mag until Wednesday morning, when they took me off the IV because four contractions an hour was controllable with an oral medication. Later that day, I was transferred to Antepartum, the division of the Birthing Center that houses the women with high-risk pregnancies and pre-term labor.

32 Weeks!

By the eighth month, your baby is becoming her own little person. The baby weighs around 4 pounds (1800 g) and measuring about 16 inches long (40 cm). She is almost ready to make an appearance. The baby has red, wrinkled skin but would likely survive outside the uterus at this point in time. The baby will still continue to grow inside your uterus with every body part still maturing.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

At Triage in the Birthing Center

As I was leaving the doctors’ office to head towards the hospital, I called J, my mom and sisters to give them an update of the situation. I began each phone call with, “Don’t panic but…” It didn’t work. My mom called my dad and basically informed him that I was about to give birth and J was terrified of the thought of what was to come.

I picked up J before heading towards the hospital, because we had been carpooling for several weeks due to my exhaustion, and going directly to the hospital would leave him stranded at work.

When we got to Triage, my blood was taken and I was placed on the monitors. They monitored each baby’s heartbeat and my contractions (which, at the time, I did not realize I was having). Everything seemed fine, if not a little boring for both me and J, just sitting there, listening to the girls’ heartbeats. After about a half an hour on the monitor, I began to feel really uncomfortable cramps in my uterus. But, since I had no idea what a contraction actually felt like, I just assumed it was partly just the pregnancy and the uncomfortable way that I was laying, strapped to the machines.

After over an hour of monitoring, the nurse came in and looked at the results. She informed us that the babies looked wonderful, and asked me if I had felt any contractions. I told her that I just felt really crampy, and the cramps felt like menstrual cramps. She then told us that I was contracting every two minutes and she had to get a doctor in to see me. When she left, the knowledge that I was in labor finally sank in. I was in labor!!! I was so upset, I immediately thought, the girls aren’t ready! If they survive, they will be in the hospital for weeks, and may suffer long-term repercussions of an early birth at 30 weeks! J tried to calm me down but I know that he was terrified as well. But all we could do was wait for the doctor.

Soon, the doctor came in to see me. She was a resident and looked no more than 23 years old. She reviewed the results of the monitoring, felt my abdomen and checked my cervix. I was still dilated to 1 cm and was effaced 50%. But the contractions were still coming. She advised us that I would have to be admitted to labor and delivery and that they would administer medication to slow the contractions as well as an IV to keep me from becoming dehydrated. The nurse gave me a hospital gown to change into and soon we were whisked away to Labor and Delivery.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

30 & 31 Weeks


Your baby continues to grow taller and fill out as you near the end of your pregnancy. By now, he weighs approximately 3 pounds (1400 g) and measures about 17 inches (38 cm) in total length. Your baby is continuing to grow rapidly now. In preparation for the journey to the new world, the baby is making movements that represent breathing even though the breathing inside remains the amniotic fluid. Sometimes at this point the baby may get hiccups and you may feel that happen!


Only 31 weeks, your baby weighs in at about 3 pounds 5 ounces (1590 g), and measures over 18 inches (46 cm) tall. Thanks to the deposits of white fat underneath the skin, the baby's color is changing from red to pink. At this point, the baby's irises dilate and contract in response to light, and his fingernails may extend to the end of the hands.

The organs are also in a growth period. Don't worry: Even if your lungs (and heart) make you feel breathless when you climb a flight of stairs or walk around the block, your womb mate is getting plenty of oxygen from your placenta.

The beginning of the end...

On Monday, July 25, 2005, I woke up reluctantly and began what I hoped would be my last week of work. For about three to four weeks before that, I had progressively become more and more uncomfortable and exhausted from my eight-hour days at the office. I kept telling J and my family that at the next appointment, I would ask to be released from work. At that time, my next appointment was scheduled for Wednesday, July 27, 2005. But, I did have something to look forward to that morning: we were scheduled for our latest ultrasound at the hospital at 8:00 a.m. that morning.

While going to the bathroom that morning, I noticed a slight tinge of blood…I didn’t panic like last time, because I was 30 weeks that day and I knew from experience that there wasn’t enough to worry me, that it could be another broken blood vessel. I mentioned it to J and he, being the ever vigilant and overprotective father and husband, demanded that I contact my doctors as soon as possible to report this finding. I was tempted to brush it off, since I was feeling fine (well, fine for any other woman in her third trimester with twins during one of the hottest summers on record in Michigan) and already had my appointment scheduled for Wednesday. But I conceded to ease his mind and on the way to the hospital I began trying to contact my doctors.

The ultrasound was quick and uneventful. The girls are too big to be able to clearly see on the screen at this point, and they were so active that they weren’t cooperating well for measurements. Eventually the technician was able to get the correct shot and informed us that Maggie was 3 lbs. 7 oz. and Audrey was 3 lbs. 3 oz. Right on track, according to the technician. She told us that these were good weights and that we shouldn’t be concerned about the slight difference between the two girls. Good weights!! I was shocked! The last ultrasound was on July 1, so that meant that Maggie had gained 1 lb. 1 oz. and Audrey gained 1 lb. 2 oz. in 24 days!!! Unfortunately, we only got one shot of Audrey (which will be posted at a later date) because of the cramped spaces they are living in at this point.

When I got to work, I continued to try to reach my doctor’s office. For some reason, the answering service kept picking up, even though it was well past the time that they opened. I considered forgetting about it and just waiting for my Wednesday appointment, but I thought about how concerned J was and about J&A’s experience and I continued dialing. By 10:00 a.m. I had been to the bathroom several times and hadn’t noticed any more blood at all, but still tried calling to get a hold of someone at the office. Finally, at around 10:30 a.m., I was able to reach the office, but then had to leave a voicemail for my nurse. One of her assistants called me back a few minutes later, took down my symptoms and decided that I should be seen on Monday rather than Wednesday, just in case anything else was wrong. I made my appointment for 1:40 p.m.

When I left the office, I told Sharon that I should be back in a couple of hours. She told me that I should just go home, because what was the use of coming back to work for a couple of hours and then turning around and leaving again. I was tempted to, but then I remembered that J and I were carpooling now and I couldn’t just go home, like I would have done before. I told her I planned on seeing her at around 3:30 p.m. and to let Lynn know where I was. She wished me luck and off I went, completely confident that I would be back.

The appointment was pretty typical of all of the other appointments I’d been having every two weeks since 20 weeks. I did mention to Dr. M that I would prefer to be taken off work this week, if possible. She agreed that I should go off, if I was okay with it financially. I told her that I have short-term disability and was unconcerned about that, but more concerned that I couldn’t really make it through an eight-hour day anymore. So, she wrote up a note, dismissing me from work from that date until delivery. Already, in my mind, I wasn’t planning on turning in the note until Tuesday morning, so I could get all of my projects reassigned, straighten up my office and conduct a little training for the women that would be filling my shoes while I was out.

The last thing Dr. M did before the end of the appointment was check my cervix. I had quite a shock when she told me that I was 1 cm dilated. I immediately became terrified!! What does that mean?!?! I had been reading my pregnancy books in weekly increments, never reading ahead to what to expect during labor and delivery. I think it was denial or fear of what was about to happen to me that kept me from reading the most crucial chapters of the books….My eyes welled up as I began to imagine going into labor right then and there and the thought that my babies are way too small and underdeveloped to come out TODAY!!!

Dr. M calmed me a bit by saying that it could be nothing and I could be dilated like this for weeks. She asked if I was feeling any pain and discomfort and I thought back to the past few days. I really hadn’t noticed anything significant except for my backache, beginning on Saturday night when J and I went to see ”The Wedding Crashers”. Other than that, I chalked my aches and slight cramping up to growing pains and the simple fact that I’m 30 weeks pregnant with twins, I am going to be a little uncomfortable now and then!! Had I just read further in my books, I would have been able to detect some of the early signs of labor.

Dr. M instructed me to go directly to Triage and told me that I would likely be monitored for a few hours and would then be sent home for rest. She indicated that she would notify my on-call doctor, Dr. P. and the hospital would be ready for me to arrive.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Surprise! It's a Diaper Dinner!!!

Many thanks and hugs go out to the Ladies of R&P for throwing Jim and me a surprise Diaper Dinner on July 20, 2005! Here are some photos of the event. My co-workers are the greatest! Always asking about me and the girls, offering wonderful advice and excited to hear my appointment/ultrasound updates! And they really did it this time, when we went to Olive Garden, expecting to meet up with old friends, but finding them waiting for us with boxes and boxes of diapers! We had a wonderful dinner and delicious cake for dessert! You guys are the best! I'll miss you (not the work!) while I'm away!!! xxxooo

Fun Facts

Our Birthstone is Opal (Hope)
Our Flower is Calendula or Cosmos (White, Yellow and Varied)
Our Astrological Sign is Libra
We'll be born in the Chinese Year of The Rooster
We'll will start kindergarten in 2011
We'll be old enough to drive a car in 2021
We'll graduate High School with the Class of 2024
The meaning of the names Margaret and Audrey

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

28 & 29 Weeks...

28 Weeks: Your baby's eye lashes are developing, as subcutaneous fat is deposited. If you have a baby boy, his testes will probably begin descending. Your baby is about 13.8 inches long and weighs about 2 pounds 4 ounces!

A baby born at this time has a good chance of survival with the help of medical technology.

Twin tip: Many practitioners ask that you stop working and get at least 6 hours of rest a day, even if you don't have a high stress or physically demanding job.

29 Weeks: Your baby is busy getting ready for the birthday! The baby is beginning to regulate his own temperature and the bone marrow is completely in charge of production of the red blood cells. The baby is even urinating about a half liter of urine into the amniotic fluid everyday!

The movements that you feel will probably begin to change at this point. You once were the home of wild gymnastic parties, now as the space becomes cramped you will notice smaller movements, such as elbows and knees. Try monitoring the baby yourself, using fetal kick counts.

Your baby weighs in at about two pounds nine ounces (1.16 kilograms)!

Twin tip: If you're finding yourself out of breath or having trouble breathing while you sleep, try propping yourself up on some pillows to help alleviate one other sleep stealer. Also mention this problem to your practitioner to ensure it's not another problem unrelated to pregnancy like allergies or asthma.

Monday, July 18, 2005

The Baby Shower - July 16, 2005

Here are some photos of our baby shower, held on July 16, 2005 at Sajo's of Clinton. It was a great day for a shower, since it was raining cats and dogs all morning long! But it turned out wonderfully, thanks our family: Mom & Dad M., Mom & Dad S., Tracy, Arisa, Amanda and Kimberly! Even Jack helped out that day! Thanks to all of you, it was a success! We love you so much!

Welcome to the Springer nursery!

The Crib Posted by Picasa

The closet. Posted by Picasa

Waiting for the little girls... Posted by Picasa

Mobile & Stuffies Posted by Picasa

The crib. Posted by Picasa

Toy Box & Bath Essentials Posted by Picasa

The changing table. Posted by Picasa

Where the second crib will go. Posted by Picasa

The Nursery Posted by Picasa

The results are in....

I passed! I passed!

And was given strict orders by my nurse to have an ice cream cone A.S.A.P.!!!!!!

Woo hoo! I was seriously worried folks, as I am an admitted carb addict. I was getting nervous and having nightmares about medical professionals swiping a steaming plate of pasta right from under my nose! I even had a sort of going away party for myself this weekend, going into carb overdrive in anticipation that I'd be reduced to a low carb, protein rich diet for the next 6-8 weeks!!!!

Now I can breathe a sigh of relief. I don't have to start dieting until after the girls arrive.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Let her eat cake!

I haven't have many cravings in the past 27 weeks. I loved my Doritos in the beginning, and then there were the pizza rolls. I needed mangos for a bit and couldn't get enough of Thai food (still can't, I don't think it's the pregnancy, I just think it's me). The queso incident and the Krispy Kreme mentioned in a book that sent me reeling one midnight are moments I'll not soon forget.

Food. I love it. If you know me, you know I'm not a dieter. Yes, I do get the guilt that every women wrongfully feels when she puts fork to mouth. But, I can never be one of those women that have willpower to attain the perfect body through fasting or low-carbs or only watermelon, or whatever the plan may be. I just think life is too short and I like myself too much to deprive myself of something so good. So, pregnancy has been very good to me in the food department. I haven't taken advantage of it like I thought I would, but there have been a few insane moments where all I could think about was food, food, FOOD!

I'd been craving cake ever since Sunday. I wanted it so bad. I made J. search through the pantry for cake mix. I whined and begged and I even managed to make a few tears sprout in my eyes. I had hoped that the dramatics would convince him that he needed to run to Kroger at that very moment (probably 10:48 p.m. on Tuesday night) to pick up one of those ready-made ones and get back here with the goods and a large fork immediately. No such luck.

Finally, on the way home last night, I made him pull over and let me have what I had been covetting for five days!! It was a beautiful cake and I couldn't wait to finish dinner and have my slice. My eyes were like saucers and my mouth watered as if I'd been starved for weeks. I rushed through my dinner and wished the minutes away for that to settle (as you get bigger with beans, your stomach has less room to expand, therefore you get fuller quicker - not good for a woman on a mission!). Finally, I had my slice! It looked like the best cake I'd ever had. I couldn't wait to eat it and was already thinking of asking for a second slice. everything in life, my desire for the cake and the anticipation of getting it far outweighed the experience of eating it. It was a letdown. It was good cake, don't get me wrong. It wasn't the best I ever had, but definitely not the worst. But. It just didn't scratch that itch. It didn't hit the spot, like I thought it would. What a disappointment.

Now, I have another five slices left to finish off (J, as per his norm, cut the slices to their exact serving slice, so that he could have one on his "Cheat Day" and know exactly what he was eating). I'm not in a rush, I won't be shedding any tears. Well, not for cake at least. I've got about 10 weeks to go and I'm sure between now and then I'll have another food breakdown.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

27 Weeks

Your frisky baby is on another growth spurt, shooting up half an inch this week to measure about 15 inches from head to toe. She weighs roughly 2 1/2 pounds, and will gain approximately half a pound each week for the next 10 weeks. The average full-term baby weighs about 7 1/2 pounds and measures from 18 to 20 1/2 inches, but many normal, healthy babies fall outside this range. Unless your practitioner has told you of a potential problem, it's safe to assume that your little one is right on track.

If someone puts his or her ear up to your belly, over the fetal back, your baby's heartbeat will probably be distinguishable! Your baby will probably be very active between weeks 24 and 28. You may notice in the weeks to come that your baby will begin to have regular, predictable patterns of movement and sleep.

On the outside, her skin looks wrinkled from floating in water. So don't be surprised if your newborn has a crinkled, prune-like appearance for a few weeks after birth as she fills out into a baby. The lungs and immune system are still continuing to mature during this period of time.

This week, the membrane that has covered your baby's eyes will split apart to create the eyelids. Now a new visual discovery begins for baby. At this point the baby's eyes are probably blue. They will only take their true color some time after birth. The eyelashes and eyebrows are now in place.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Audrey's profile. Posted by Picasa

Audrey rubbing her face. Posted by Picasa

Audrey facing us. Posted by Picasa

Maggie's profile and Audrey's foot! Posted by Picasa

Maggie looking at us. Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 01, 2005

July 1, 2005 Ultrasound Posted by Picasa

Putting the nursery together - June 27, 2005. Posted by Picasa

26 Week Ultrasound Update!

This morning’s ultrasound went wonderfully. Our ultrasound tech was the best we’ve had. He was very thorough and descriptive and took his time with each girl. Both have posterior placentas, Baby A’s [Maggie] is lower than Baby B’s [Audrey]. Maggie is weighing in at 2 lbs. 6 oz. and Audrey is weighing in at 2 lbs. 1 oz. They were both 1 lb. 4 oz. on June 9th. So they are growing little beans!!! We saw both girls waving and Maggie opening and closing her mouth. Audrey seemed to be kicking Maggie in the head at one point! Maggie is in the head down position, as she always has been. Audrey is transverse. She was so active this time that he was having a difficult time getting good measurements of her! I’ll post the new picture this weekend. They are just adorable! J. was on Cloud Nine after this ultrasound. He’s so excited for them to get here!

P.S. [RE: Monday's OB appointment]. On Monday, I was exactly 26 weeks and had to do my second 1-hour glucose test. Yesterday, I got the call from my OB and was informed that I failed my 1-hour test and now I have to do the 3-hour test on July 11th. They had warned me before that my chances of gestational diabetes may be higher because my mom has diabetes and I’m carrying twins, but I was hoping that wouldn’t be the case. We’ll see. Cross your fingers for me for July 11th! Also, my nurse informed me that I have an iron deficiency now and will have to begin taking iron pills along with my prenatal vitamins.

Next appointment is July 11th, after the 3-hour glucose test. I’m trying to schedule my next ultrasound for the end of the month. 30 weeks! Wow! I’ll be beginning my weekly appointments and weekly NSTs soon!

Thursday, June 30, 2005

For Stacy...

Since she's offering to go on my diet, should my 3 hour glucose test come back just as bad as the one this past Monday (and I hear she's offering to poke her finger five times a day too! What a trooper!), I'll honor her request and post the sites for the registries:

Babies R Us


Ann Taylor Loft

P.S. S: are you also going to join me in my Iron supplements & Prune Juice??? Puh-leeze?

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Twenty Six Weeks

Your baby weighs approximately 1.5 - 2.0 pounds (850 g) and measures 9.2 inches (23 cm) from crown to rump. At this point, the baby's lungs and brain are much more developed than before. The baby has eyelashes and is able to recognize light from dark that reveals the optic nerve has developed. Your baby can hear you and your bodily functions - heartbeat and digestion, among others - as well as outside noises. So if a sudden sound startles you, imagine what it does to your baby!

Creating a new life is nothing short of a miracle. With this fetal development tool, you can get an insider's view of a baby in the making -- from conception to term. On this quick-time animation, you will be able to watch the entire development, specify portions of the pregnancy (i.e., weeks 15-25), or freeze the frame on a specific week.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Super Size Me!

Yes, I feel like a weeble wobble. I. AM. HUGE. I'm growing out of my maternity clothes. My size larges are now getting a little snug. I must...*gasp* buy XL on my next shopping trip!! I haven't seen anything below my belly button for weeks. My toes touch each other from being so swollen and I contemplate just leaving whatever I've dropped on the floor until someone comes by to pick it up for me. I. AM. HUGE.

Funny thing is, according to my doctor, I lost 5 lbs. over the course of two weeks. She questioned my eating habits!!! My husband and the rest of our family can attest...I have NO problem eating at all. Though...because the girls are growing and pushing my insides out of the way, it's becoming increasingly more difficult to eat. My stomach doesn't have the room to expand that it used to. And if, on any particular meal, my eyes are bigger than my stomach and I decide to overindulge, I feel miserable for the next two hours and try to ease the pain by overdosing on Tums.

In other appointment news, the babies' hearts were beating away and everything looks good so far. Dr. W. was concerned about my extreme drowsiness. J and I now carpool to work after I mentioned to him that I've been falling asleep at the wheel and one day actuallly had to pull into a Meijer for five minutes to snap out of it. She warned me to expect to be taken off work in the next two to four weeks, which terrifies me. I can't even think about it. I will be miserable! I don't know what I'll do on house arrest!! Expect more posts, I guess. I'll be bored out of my mind.

My Kind of Town....

What a great weekend! If you know me, you know I love Chicago! We go every year and I can never get enough of it. I didn't think we'd be going this year because of the girls but at the last minute last week, we decided to make the trip with my parents and my nephew Jack. My dad had a free suite at the Renaissance, so we packed our bags and left Saturday morning. We spent the day at Taste of Chicago where we saw Leann Rhimes in concert and ate a ton of food from restaurants all over the city. My dad had ordered a wheelchair for us to use for the day and J. wheeled me around all day, through the millions of people at the festival. Later, we walked down Michigan Avenue to do a little shopping. The beans were quiet all day long...I don't know if it was the bumpiness of the L, the wheelchair ride up and down the streets of Chicago, or the heat, but they weren't having any of it! On Sunday, we took Jack to the The Navy Pier, where we walked along the water, rode the Ferris Wheel and went to the Children's Museum. I can't wait to bring the girls back next year!!! We've promised Jack that we'd take him back to see the Shedd Aquarium and Field Museum, and I definitely need to hit Giordano's, Ghiridelli's, The Cheesecake Factories and H&M, which I missed this trip. I know the girls will love it as much as I do.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Twenty Five Weeks

The babies are becoming more and more aware of their surroundings this week. By this week, a baby is responsive to both light and touch. Additionally, her lungs go through an important developmental process this week.

Light: The baby is responsive to light now, which seems to indicate that the optic nerve is working. If you shine a bright light on your belly, the baby will move away from it. This may become an effective way of getting the baby repositioned when she's sitting in an uncomfortable place. So, it appears that the baby is responding well to stimuli.

Touch: The baby responds to outside touch now. It is recommended that this time is used as a way of bonding, by trying to tickle the baby's foot or roll back and forth to see how the baby responds.

Lungs: This week, the lungs begin to secrete surfactant, a fatty substance that covers the inner lining of the air sacs and allows the lungs to expand normally so breathing can occur. Although it will be approximately 10 more weeks before the lungs are fully operational, the production of surfactant is an essential step in making the fetus viable outside the womb."
If you were to go into labor now, your baby would have a strong chance of surviving. Some of the greatest advances in medicine over the past years has been the care of premature babies.
Your baby at this stage weights only 2 pounds and is still extremely small, and although the chances of him/her surviving should he be born now, he/she would probabaly spend serveral months in hospital.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Yes....another appointment....

I swear, I don't know what I'm going to do when I have to start the non-stress test appointments every week in 6 weeks! I think I'll just do bi-weekly updates because this is getting ridiculous! Thank God for insurance!
Everything is going smoothly so far. Cervix is long & closed, babies are both at 150 BPM and are growing well and have a good level of fluid. Audrey was moving around a bit, but when Dr. P put the dopplar on Maggie she laughed out loud. Maggie was rambunctious and causing a lot of commotion in there. Poor Audrey!
I was given a prescription for Abuterol (Yessss!) to help with my shortness of breath/asthma and instructed to sleep in a semi-upright position or in a Lazy-Boy. Gee, that should be very comfortable. And in the same breath she told me to continue getting a full night's sleep (hah!) and try to nap or lay down as often as possible (hah! hah!). She also suggested reducing my work hours, which I'm definitely not ready for yet. Yes, I'm feeling them a lot more and I'm getting more and more tired and uncomfortable, but I was planning on going at least to 35 weeks. J thinks I'm living in a dream world, but a girl can hope, right? The truth is, I'm terrified of being at home all day with Avery. She's a little hellion and I think I rest more at work than I would at home with her running around!
And yes, I've gained another 3 lbs. TWENTY POUNDS! The total number itself doesn't phase me anymore, because I know I can't do anything about it. So I just go by pounds gained from Day 1 to Day ?. And so far, my doctors are happy with the 20 lbs. and the girls are doing well. But driving back to work and contemplating stopping by McDonald's for a sausage biscuit, I thought...I'm going to gain at least 10 more in the next 10 weeks! If not 20! (The famous Dr. Luke suggests 1.5 lbs. per week!). AND THEN I've got to lose it starting in October/November!!!!!! Needless to say, I didn't stop by Ronald's house. Sigh. At least everyone is being kind and saying, "It's all baby!" since I don't seem to be growing anywhere else. It only looks like I swallowed a watermelon! clothes are starting to not fit anymore!!! Specifically, my work slacks. Aaarrrggghhhh!!!!!

Monday, June 13, 2005

"Gray skies are going to clear up, put on a happy face!"

And I repeat, my dear, my love, my sweetie pie: "Who can be grumpy with a wiggly belly? 'Not I,' said the fly."

Just look at your beans and smile.

Have a wonderful day.

I love you more than anything.

And I have a do the girls. Even if they won't high-five you anymore!

24 Weeks

Your baby weighs in at one pound, six ounces, and measures 21 centimeters crown to rump. Rapid eye movement has begun. She can hear everything now, and also has a sense of equilibrium. She can tell the difference of what would feel upside down as opposed to right side up, even in such a small amount of space to move around! Now that she's almost completely formed, your baby will build up body fat to help her retain heat.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Future Soccer Player??

June 9, 2005. Maggie tried to kick at the ultrasound tech at the beginning of the examination, and we were rewarded with a great shot of her foot. Obviously she doesn't take after her mother in the foot department! Look at that thing!!

Both girls must have been riled up after the exam, because on the way back to work, I was treated to a flurry of kicks and punches from the two of them. There are a few things that are sure to get them kicking like mad...on the rare occasion that I have to use one of the antique typewriters in my office, when we go to the movie theater, or if I've gone a little too long without eating. Posted by Hello

June 9, 2005 ~ 23 Weeks 3 days

Maggie ...Can you see her? I know these ultrasound photos can be difficult to make out sometimes. When I'm describing them to people, I sometimes get confused myself. This is Maggie laying on her back. You see her chest and abdomen to the left of the photo, and her chin, lips, nose, eyes and head toward the middle of the photo and what appears to be her placenta to the right. She's rubbing her eyes right now. Maggie was, as usual, rambunctious and wiggly during her photo shoot. She is currently head down. She weighs the same as her sister, 1 lb. 4 oz. I've verified the culprit. She's the one who's been kicking me so furiously. Posted by Hello

June 9, 2005 ~ 23 Weeks, 3 days

Audrey was non-cooperative as usual. She weighed in at 1 lb. 4 oz. and is currently in breech position. She had her head tucked and facing down, so we weren't able to get a good shot of her face. Everything looked fine though and she's growing like a weed! Hopefuly next time she won't be camera shy! Posted by Hello

Monday, June 06, 2005

Twenty Three Weeks

Your baby is now about 8 inches (20 cm) crown to rump and hovering around the one-pound (500 grams) mark. Her body is well proportioned, but it still slender, with little fat.

She's also sporting new developments from head to toe. Meconium, the baby's first bowel movement, is forming in her intestines. The lanugo that covers her body is darkening. Your baby's lungs have begun to develop surfactant, a substance that will help the lungs to expand following birth. The nerve cells are all in place now. Soon they will begin to join together to form a full nervous system. The dental buds are in place now and the enamel that will create the milk teeth starts to construct itself. Tiny lines begin to appear on the fingers and palms. These will become the future fingerprints. And her fingernails are now completely formed.

You're probably feeling a lot of movement and may even notice some early, relatively painless contractions, called Braxton Hicks. Don't worry -- these contractions don't mean you're going into labor, and your baby is unaffected by them.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Another appointment...

PSA: Beginning with this one, I'll start to go every two weeks, so you may start to get a little more than bored at my progress reports. But, this is mainly for documentation purposes, since I find myself too busy or exhausted to pick up a pen, so feel free to skip them.

Now that that is out of the way...I was late again to my appointment. And to think, I'm the only one in my family who is close to being on time! I arrived to discover that as of August 1, Dr. P will no longer be practicing obstetrics, just gynecology. I'm a little upset by this, since she is my primary doctor. But, during this pregnancy, I've been able to meet with all of the doctors and have no complaints about any of them. In order to maintain their on-call practice, they will be working with three OBs from Farmington Hills...and one is a MAN!!! YIKES! A young man! I'm sure he's seen it all but I am crossing everything that he won't deliver the beans. My first choice would be Dr. W. She's wonderful and just had a baby, so she knows.

On to our progress...I've gained 17, yes SEVENTEEN POUNDS (eat that CVS cashier!), since the beginning of the pregnancy. Dr. W. was beginning to worry that I wasn't gaining as much weight as I should (Dr. Barbara Luke suggests at least 24 lbs. by Week 24!) and asked if I have been eating enough. I had to giggle at that one...I feel like a vacuum cleaner or garbage disposal! Put a plate of anything in front of me and it'll be gone before you know it! The beans had good heartrates, at 150 bpm and 140 bpm and everything else looks great! She said I've developed carpal tunnel in both, not just my right hand, and that I have to reduce my salt intake (No!!) and elevate my feet & legs every evening. Poor J. - he's been so good about everything...he goes to work and then comes home and takes care of me, the condo and the dog. And always with a good attitude and no complaints.

Starting at my next appointment, they will be monitoring me for pre-term labor. I'll be going for check-ups every two weeks beginning June 14th and for non-stress tests at the hospital every week, beginning August 8th. They will also be monitoring the babies' growth with ultrasounds every 3-4 weeks, beginning June 8th. Finally, my next glucose test is on June 28th to double-check for gestational diabetes. I'm very impressed with how thorough these doctors are with regard to this multiple pregnancy. After watching what Angie and James went through, I have been terrified that something will be missed. But with this sort of treatment, I think all of us are in good, capable hands.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Twenty-Two Weeks...

Your baby now weighs nearly one pound! He or she measures 19 centimeters from crown to rump. Your baby now has eyelids and eyebrows and has developed fat, which helps to keeps it warm. In boys, the testes descend.

Almost all the follicles from which your baby's hair will grow are in place. Some babies are born with long, thick hair, others with almost none, but it will all fall out during the first months of life. Fingernails grow longer this month, and toenails are just starting to grow.

The number of nerve cells in your baby's brain increases rapidly this month, especially in the front of the brain, where thinking takes place. Your baby's system begins to produce the white cells that will enable it to fight illnesses and infections. The baby's senses, too, are beginning to awaken, and it may be able to hear sounds, such as the flow of blood, the beating of your heart, and the rumblings of your stomach.

Inside your baby's intestines, the first stool, called meconium, is forming. If your baby is a girl, eggs are starting to develop in her ovaries.

And, believe it or not, those teeny, tiny ears can now hear sounds from outside. She reacts to external stimuli like your caresses and voice.
Posted by Hello

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

The Nursery

Actually, this isn’t the nursery, just a photo of the bedding that we decided on. I still wonder if there is something better out there for the girls, but this is quite adorable. Not too girly and pastel, but with some character and wonderful colors. I want to get started on the nursery soon before I get too uncomfortable to do anything.

We are blessed with a wonderful, generous family who are helping to create our dream nursery, including our cherry wood cribs (from Grandma & Grandpa S. and Aunt Amanda & Victor) and our changing table (from Aunt Tracy). I can’t wait to see how it’s all going to come together. Even though this is only their temporary nursery, I’m so excited!! I’ll post photos as it develops
Posted by Hello