We got our maternity photos back and they are gorgeous!! I am beyond happy with how well they turned out and I want to give a special thanks to Lora and Ted with Swinson Studios (http://www.swinsonstudios.com/) for taking them for us. They do such amazing work! We are planning to have them present for the birth to capture all the incredible moments, so hopefully these babies stay cooperative and we have an easy (and photogenic) delivery that we can capture on film.
Last weekend was the baby shower for my IPs and it was beautiful. I got to meet so much (more) of our extended family. It really makes this journey so much more special that we are all related. She got so many cute baby clothes and necessities, and I got to see the ADORABLE nursery they have set up for the twins! It is so incredible how much love will be surrounding these babies!
It is still a little uncomfortable to me how thankful everyone is. They all tell me what an incredible gift I’m giving and how amazing I am for sacrificing so much, but honestly, it’s not a sacrifice at all. I am so thankful that I am able to help grow another family and I would never think twice about it. I have the ability to help, and I really want to help, so I am. That is the end of the story.
I had another doctor’s appointment on Thursday, October 8. I was 34 weeks, 1 day pregnant with these twins. Both babies are still doing phenomenal and growing so fast! They were both measuring about a week ahead, and little boy was estimated at 5lbs 7oz, and little girl was estimated at 5lbs 9oz. That is 11lbs of baby already! I am going to the doctor weekly now and although little boy was head up at my last appointment, he appears to be making his way back to being head down as his head was right in the center of my belly this time. I’m just so glad that little girl is staying put in a head down position and we are still able to plan on a vaginal delivery!
I also had the culture done for Strep B and the nice doc measured my cervix. On the ultrasound it was still holding steady around 4cm long with no movement when she pushed on my belly (cervix of steel). She did a physical exam also and said little girl’s head is pushing my cervix back, but if the doc pulled it forward I was measuring about 1cm dilated. That means absolutely nothing, however. I could stay 1cm until I go into actual labor. She kept asking if I’ve been having contractions, but I really haven’t had many Braxton Hicks contractions and she said it is most likely because my uterus is stretched so large that it’s actually difficult for it to produce contractions. She thinks I will just go into one of my appointments and she’ll inform me that I’m dilated to 4cm and send me over to the hospital. She said she could be wrong, but she doesn’t think it will be anything dramatic and she doesn’t like women to “walk into the hospital and have the baby fall out.” She still wants those babies to cook until at least 36 weeks, but then she said she could be a little more “aggressive” with my cervical exams to see if that helps things along as she wants me to go into labor and not have to be induced. She then measured my tummy, with her handy measuring tape, and informed me that I’m measuring 42 weeks. Yep. My belly is measuring nearly 8 weeks ahead.
I have definitely reached the uncomfortable stage of pregnancy. Walking, standing, sitting, lying down, getting dressed (especially tying my shoes), shaving my legs….all of these have become extremely difficult, if not impossible. I’m still having pain in my upper left leg and frontal pelvis area. I can barely lift my left leg to get dressed, get in/out of the bathtub, get into the car, or go up the stairs to our condo. The pain is the worst when I’m lying in bed and have to roll over or change positions. My right rib pain is also near constant now and I walk around with an ice pack most of the time. It has gone from a dull ache to more of a tight muscle that spasms when I move a certain way. The ice helps though, and it’s only a few short weeks until these babies arrive!! My AMAZING husby has been so incredible. He has been doing so much around the house and helping with the girls and cooking. I’m very lucky to have him!
One of the other surrogates posted a picture of her gorgeous belly at 27 weeks pregnant and a lot of the girls were jealous that she doesn’t have any stretch marks, myself included. I have TONS of stretch marks from my girls, but thankfully they haven’t gotten any worse with this pregnancy. They are mostly due to genetics, but I have been using cocoa butter religiously and it seems to be working. If nothing else, I haven’t had any itchiness due to my skin stretching! I used to be really ashamed of them, and I still won’t wear a bikini in public, but I have learned to embrace them like battle wounds. They remind me that I got to grow two beautiful daughters, and I know there are many women out there who would kill to be able to be pregnant and earn some stripes. I am so lucky to have mine.