Monday, October 01, 2007

We're so proud

There are giant, healthy babies in my belly! Seriously, our girls on today's ultrasound weigh in at a healthy 5 lbs (Baby A) and 4lbs 11oz (Baby B) which is slightly ahead of the average for 33 weeks gestation! Way to go, girls! At this rate they should be very healthy and well-developed by their 37 week c-section date of October 29th, and might even be "done" a little sooner. My perinatologist expects I'll go into labor sometime before my scheduled date, and if that happens my OB will proceed with a c-section at whatever time the girls choose to arrive. Me (and my aching body) can hardly wait to finally have these girls on the outside where we can really get to know and enjoy them! (For those of you who like math, please note I'm currently carrying almost as much baby weight as when Little Blue was born - he was over 10 lbs - and also keep in mind the average baby will continue to gain about half a pound a week until delivery, so if these girls stick around until week 37, they'll have a combined weight over 13 lbs!!)

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


Today Blue and I each felt our girls kicking for the first time from the outside. And in an instant of giggly surprise, weeks of aching hips and sore back and tiredness all faded substantially into a much more cheerful perspective. My children are in there. They are growing and healthy and we can feel them. Even see them push and bump against my skin. Somehow this is even more important than when I began to feel them weeks ago from the inside. This is tangible, and it can be shared. It is magical and thrilling. I am content.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


So, the Pamphlets are finally pregnant again. It took a while, but is always worth the effort. Of course, there are always a few surprises when you introduce biological chemistry to romance and mix in humor. And boy have we ever had our share of suprises this time!
First, we had a sonogram at nine weeks. Expected to be a routine scan, the idea was to view the heartbeat of the baby and confirm a healthy rate of growth. I nearly fell off the table when the sonogram technician said she thought she saw two little ones in there. But when I saw them on the screen, looking so tiny, with their tiny hearts thudding away like mad, I loved them instantly.
This is a blog, however, and not a Hollywood docudrama, and so there must be a certain degree of honesty to maintain the integrity of the medium. In the first few days and weeks after learning that multiple babies are on the way, not everyone is filled with joy. Not all the time. Twice the contents does not equal twice the enthusiasm. Especially not at first. Having twins is a little scary, a little overwhelming, and financially staggering. There are moments of thrilling excitement, of almost giggly happiness, but there are also tearful moments spent contemplating a future vastly different than the one originally imagined. There are choices to be made about work, lifestyle changes and sacrifices to be made for the sake of health, and times when fears simply get the better of you. What if I develop a fatal blood clot because of the two blood clot disorders I have, and wind up leaving Little Blue motherless all because I didn't want him to be siblingless? What if the blood clot develops in the placenta and chokes the life out of my helpless children before they ever arrive? What if I can't keep my blood sugar in tight control and they suffer health consequences that are entirely my fault?
What I'm finding is that having twins is a dichotomy of experience, at once sweet and bitter, encompassing elation and trepidation. Today was a perfect example. In one brief instant during a sonogram, we learned a single fact both thrilling and chilling: our twins share one placenta, so by definition they are identical twins, a fascinating and fun phenomenon. But with a shared placenta, they are at risk for a deadly condition in which blood and nutrients meant for both is unevenly shared, which can lead to serious health complications for the recipient twin, who becomes engorged, and can lead to the death of the poor donor twin, who literally gives all of its vital life resources to its sibling, growing steadily smaller and sometimes being completely reabsorbed by the mother. As terrifying as that is, I still left our appointment today feeling a little excited. I'll be monitored closely to catch any possible case of twin-to-twin transfusion early, and it doesn't happen to everyone, and after all, they are a healthy size so far, and so incredibly cute when they wriggle around on screen during the sonogram! I've lost 9 pounds since I became pregnant so far, and as long as I stick to the strict guidelines of my nutritionist, there's no reason to worry that I'll have a problem gaining too much weight. I have no personal history of blood clot problems, despite the two mutations, and statiscally even people who have more than one clotting disorder like I do might still never experience a life-threatening clot in their lifetime. So I plan to spend as much of my pregnancy as possible embracing the joy, and forgiving myself when I get worried or emotional. And not thinking too hard about what might happen. And giving Little Blue as many tight hugs and special quality times with us as we possibly can, so that when his siblings arrive, he might forgive them for demanding so much of our attention. I think he'll find, as we will, that they'll be worth all the effort and worry when they get here. Twice the expected number of babies might not always be twice the excitement, but it's definitely bringing more than twice the love to our family.

Saturday, March 24, 2007


1. How old will you be in five years?
32, not that it matters, as plenty of people think I'm that old already. My 40 year old friend gets carded more often than I do.

2. Do you think you will be married by then?
I plan to continue being married for the rest of my life.

3. How tall are you?

4. What do you look forward to most in the next six weeks?
Our first sonogram of Pamphlet 2.0

5. What's the last movie you saw?
Charlotte's Web, a couple hours ago.

6. Who was the last person you called?
The last call I made was during work yesterday, I don't recall who it was.

7. Who was the last person to call you?
Blue, yesterday.

8. What was the last text message you receive?
Blue sending me a link to watch the new Order of the Phoenix trailer.

9. Do you prefer to call or text?
I don't text over the phone. It costs extra and is WAY less efficient than talking. But I love computer text messaging.

10. Do you have any pets?
A pretty, precious princess named Guenhwyvar. She's lovely and silky soft and very temperamental.

11. What were you doing at 12am last night?
Watching the Roast of William Shatner.

12. Are your parents married/separated/divorced?
My biological parents have been divorced almost 27 years, but my "real" parents, my mom and step-dad, have been together almost as long.

13. When is the last time you saw your mom?
I think it was during our vacation to California in 2005. But we'll see her this summer when we head back for my high school reunion!

14. What color are your eyes?
Very blue.

15. What do you like about winter?
Uh... not much. I like watching snow fall. But driving in it sucks. And scraping it off my car. And stamping it off my feet after which it tracks all over the house anyway. The best thing about winter is that's when Little Blue arrived.

16. What do you like about the summer?
Summer is hot and humid and I'm really nervous about tornadoes, so it mostly bites. The best thing about summer is our daycare closes for vacation so we get to take our vacation to spend time with Little Blue and see my family.

17. What do you like about spring?
It is my second-favorite season, a time of rebirth and the stirring of new life and hope. Both of my pregnancies were begun in the spring.

18. HOW MANY States have you lived in?
3. Incidentally, Blue said 1, but he forgot we lived in Independence for a while, so his answer should have been 2.

19. How many cities/towns have you lived in?

20. Do you prefer shoes, socks, or bare feet?
Bare feet! I like my toes in the grass and my feet touching the earth.

21. Are you a social person?
I am friendly, good-humored, and affectionate with my friends, but I tend to be a little shy and just smile quietly around strangers.

22. What was the last thing you ate?
Garlic and olive oil couscous.

23. What is your favorite restaurant?
I'm a huge fan of Zuppa Toscana and alfredo-dipped bread sticks from Olive Garden, but Old Chicago, BoLing's, and any good steak or seafood joint are close runner-ups. And of course, if money and time were no object, my top two would be The Melting Pot and Gojo's.

24. What is your favorite ice cream?
Chocolate fudge.

25. What is your favorite dessert?
Tropical Sno.

26. What is your favorite kind of soup?
Zuppa Toscana when splurging: a deliciously spicy little jobber with sausage, potatoes, kale, and a creamy but not too thick broth. For everyday though, it's gotta be creamy tomatoe soup with grilled cheese.

27. What kind of jelly do you like on your PB & J sandwich?
I'm not a super-huge fan of the PB&J, but when I eat it I like lots of kinds of jams, including strawberry, blackberry, grape, raspberry, apricot, and plum.

28. Do you like coffee?
About three times a year, yeah.

29. How many glasses of water, a day, do you drink on average?
Glasses could be any size. Let's go with an objective measurement. Most days I drink at least half a gallon of water.

30. What do you drink in the morning?
I tend to prefer hot tea with cream and sugar or chai latte from a delicious powdered mix.

31. Would you rather sleep with someone else or alone?
A specific someone.

32. Do you sleep on a certain side of the bed?
I am traditionally on the right side of the bed when you're standing at the foot looking at it.

33. do you know how to play poker?
a couple different ways, yeah.

34. Do you like to cuddle?
If I were a mythological deity, it would be Goddess of Cuddling, Snuggling, and General Coziness.

35. Have you ever been to Canada?
Not thus far, but I wouldn't mind a visit.

36. Do you eat out or at home more often?
We have a plan to do better, which involves going to the store for meal supplies when we're unprepared (i.e. forgot to thaw something) instead of eating out.

37. Do you know anyone with the same birthday as you?
Nope, and I never have known anyone with it, oddly enough. Though I've known someone for every birthday on either side of mine to round out the week.

38. Do you want kids?
We certainly haven't been having them by accident!

39. Do you speak any other languages?

40. Have you ever gotten stitches?
Many, many. I had 27 in my knee from one accident, and I don't even know the count from my cesarean.

41. Have you ever ridden in an ambulance?
Several very expensive and ultimately wasted times. Hopefully never again. For the record, if you ever have the misfortune to see me faint, I do NOT need an ambulance! It looks much worse than it is.

42. Do you prefer an ocean or a pool?
The ocean, the ocean, a thousand times the ocean.

43. Do you prefer a window seat or an aisle seats?
I wish either of them had more room for my knees. And it should be illegal for the person in front of me to recline all over my lap.

44. Do you know how to drive a stick?
My poor dad tried to teach me once. I had no talent for it.

45. What is your favorite thing to spend money on?
Fun outings with the family.

46. Do you wear any jewelry 24/7?
Blue's wedding band. He's allergic so he can't wear it, and his, being a man's, is wider than mine, and therefore looks nicer and more noticeable on my finger. Especially since I long ago abandoned wearing the matching engagement ring, whose diamond-on-prongs scratched both Little Blue and Big Blue alike.

47. What is your favorite TV show?
Battlestar Galactica, Stargate SG-1 and Atlantis, Lost, and Avatar: The Last Airbender.

48. Can you roll your tongue?
I can sort of curl it up on both sides to form a tube, is that what you mean?

49. Who is the funniest person you know?
Little Blue I think. Or at least he seems to make me laugh more than anyone else.

50. Do you sleep with stuffed animals?
Just one cuddly-wuddly snugglebear. Don't worry, I never actually call him that.

51.What is the main ring tone on your phone?
A fanciful little melody I never quite realize is my phone in time to answer it. I should probably change it to something more annoying and functional.

52. Do you still have clothes from when you were little?
When was I ever little? It seems unimaginable that I was ever as small as my son is now. I definitely don't have any of my childhood clothing hanging about, thank goodness, since I hoarde everything else so obsessively.

53. What color are your bedroom walls?
Robin's egg blue. Take that, Blue!

54. Do you turn off the water while you brush your teeth?
You betcha.

55. Do you sleep with your closet doors opened or closed?
"Closed, though if it gets hot, we can open it because it has a door to the attic." Which we would NEVER open that attic door because Pink would lay awake all night wondering if SWARMS of SPIDERS were SNEAKING into her very bed! Don't even suggest it! That attic door must never be opened. Never!

56. Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of killer bees?
Actually, Blue, you probably can't outrun bees. But you have more chance of rescue and successful treatment if you're stung a bunch than if you're mauled. But, y'know, try to be attacked near a hospital either way.

57. Do you flirt a lot?
I used to flirt much worse than I do now, but I still catch myself at it once in a while.

58. What do you dip a chicken nugget in?
If it's McD's, sweet & sour sauce, but if it's a real fried chicken strip, I prefer honey first or ranch second.

59. What is your favorite food?
I do really enjoy my spaghetti sauce, but I think my favorite food is cheese.

60. Can you change the oil on a car?
Uh, no. That would be really dirty.

61. Have you ever gotten a speeding ticket?
Not yet.

62. Have you ever run out of gas?
Nope, but I look forward to Blue returning the favor if I do.

63. What is your usual bedtime?

64. Do you read the newspaper?
Not generally. I like to look through the Business Journal when I get a chance, though.

65. Do you have any magazine subscriptions?
Not currently.

66. Best comedian?
Lewis Black. Hands down.

67. Do you watch soap operas?
thankfully no.

68. Do you dance in the car ?
That'd be sort of difficult, wouldn't it? But there are a couple of songs for which I will do a sort of bouncy, head-bobbing almost-dance.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007


Ladies and Gentleblues, it's a new year out there. Time for a serious look into the ol' pink matter, or brain, for those of you who insist on anatomical correctness. (If any one of you so much as thinks about commenting about the true color of brain matter, so help me I'll slap you upside the head with my big Creative License stick.)

It's like State of the Union time in my mind, summing up opinions and venting those festering pools of irritation, folks, and there is a LOT of CRAP going on, let me tell you. And a couple of kudos, too. So let's get started.

Great big, fat, hypocritical pusspool oozing nasty things like persecution and the doctrine of hate all over my rosy-colored dream of utopian America. What is UP with these Christian fundamentalists shoving their petitions and their prayers and their group meetings all up in my email and my office and my schools?? I got one today asking me to support the ideals of prayer in school and Christian television programming. I get invitations at my workplace to participate in weekly prayer meetings in the conference room, which, even in the most comfortable, caring work environment such as mine is hard to graciously decline. Uh, hello? Is anybody thinking out there? Not everyone in America is a Christian. And while those who call themselves Christian (and I don't think all of them are living up to the name) are certainly entitled to the same free speech rights as everyone else, that doesn't mean they have the right to force feed their dogma to the young and impressionable in an environment where I have no parental oversight or ability to protect the developing mind of my child: namely, school. I happen to be one parent who gratefully accepts whatever protections are offered that will keep my son from being biased toward any one religion. I don't expect them to ban all religious expressions. I DO expect them to refrain from forced participation and coercive pressures to embrace said expressions. Feel free to keep "under God" in the Pledge, America, but don't make my kid recite it. It's my choice to keep his mind open to many possibilities until he's old enough to evaluate which spiritual path rings true in his heart, and then to accept his choice even if it's different than mine. I want him to self-educate on religion, to follow where his curiosity leads him, to read books, question spiritual leaders of different faiths, and decide for himself what feels right, not blindly accept the only "truth" he's been allowed to experience during his formative years. And I want a few freedoms for myself as well. I want to not be afraid to declare my religious choices. I want to not feel ostracized for walking a path outside of the mainstream. I want to be able to wear the symbols of my faith in public without fear of repercussions within my family or colleagues or friends. I want to trust everyone I care about to accept me the way I am, but every day in the news I read things that terrify me and make me question the real meaning of "freedom of religion." Because I think it doesn't just mean freedom to practice the faith of your choice only if you keep it secret and outwardly pretend you agree with the majority. I think it should mean freedom from persecution, freedom from judgment, from slander, from the slinging of insulting and hurtful labels that have no basis in fact. It should mean equal recognition, equal respect, so that no one faith is held above all others as the superior, most righteous, most legal or most normal. /rant

On to the attaboys (and attagirls, as the case may be):
A big hat's off and salute to our troops at home and abroad, no matter what their current assignment may be or whether you agree with it's motives and means. My earlier commentary on freedoms I lack does not mean for one minute that I ever forget or am ungrateful for the many, many freedoms I DO have. Those men and women put on a uniform everyday and proudly display our country's symbols in a world that isn't always happy to see them, that boos and hisses on one side of the scale and shoots and bombs them on the other, but they persevere and give their all to keep us safe and secure. May your 2007 be safer than your 2006, wherever it takes you, and may all your homecomings to friends and loved ones be sweet and long-lasting.

Three cheers to bloggers who tell it like it is and for anyone to see - to cancer fighters, infertility chroniclers, civil rights watchdogs, recipe geniuses and personal friends. Your blogs educate, empower, inflame, inspire, and otherwise ignite my thinking and feeling responses and I thank you.

So, here's to 2006, with all its ups and downs, goodbye, we love you, we'll miss you, and don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out. 2007, bring it on!