So excited to be blogging during my 24th week of pregnancy! It's amazing how much better you feel each week - safety wise- for the babies! At first you just want to make it to week 12. At week 12 your risk for miscarriage goes down drastically. And although anything can still happen, every week these babies are in here is a bonus! They are so strong. Unfortunately I am still throwing up but it is about every other day now. I have been working and resting lots. I have done about 31 photo shoots and 9 weddings during this pregnancy. My clients have all been a blessing. They have been very understanding of me being sick, and working as hard as I can. I have been truly blessed.
We went in on Wednesday for the 24 weeks ultrasound and the twins looked amazing! Both babies were growing at 24 weeks right on schedule. Their heart rates and weights were perfection, exactly where they should be. Something amazing happened while we were there, James and Natalie were able to feel their sons move for the first time ever! My husband was right there and video taped the moment. I for sure teared up. I have been feeling them very early for almost 12 weeks now and each day they get stronger and stronger and I have been hoping for a while that James and Natalie would get to feel them and it finally happened! My belly (uterus) is growing at a lovely 35 weeks! No wonder so many people come up to me in pubic and say "Wow, you are about to give birth ANY second!"
24 weeks with the twins. I am sucking in.... okay fine, not at all.....
My Braxton Hicks started last week. Maybe one or two a day, nothing worth noting. I increased my fluid just as a precaution and my ultrasound from Wednesday showed a nice long cervix with no signs of labor. On Saturday, we drove from Bellingham to Seattle, I had a wedding the next day at the zoo. Well, the whole trip down my contractions started becoming 10 min apart until they were 3-5 minutes apart. They were VERY mild, but the fact they were so frequent made me call my doctor after about 3 hours of consistent contractions. They wanted me to go in to be checked, just in case. They said that it was much too early for the twins to be born, and although it does not sound intense right now, it could easily turn that way and it's much better to be seen so they can stop the labor if need be. We went to Swedish Hospital and checked into the OB triage unit where they were amazing! I told them how silly I felt since I KNEW my body was not in labor, but of course wanted to be safe. I was there for about four hours with the babies on the monitors. They were doing perfect. Although I was contracting the entire time I was there, I was not dilated and they felt pretty confident about releasing me after monitoring and checking. We left around 3am and the contractions continued until about 6am then finally slowed. I just feel them now a few times a day and feel so much better after going in! Still feel silly about going in, but overall very glad to have eased my mind and James and Natalie of course.
I have been getting a lot of questions lately about my connection to the twins and if I would ever do this again knowing now how hard it has been (since I have been so sick). I would love to address both of those now! :)
Honestly, I do not feel as connected to the twins as I have with my previous children. I don't know how I feel about that yet. Part of me feels very guilty, as though I don't love my nephews enough. Although I DO love them! So much! Another part of me feels satisfied, as though I should feel exactly how I do. I am unsure and a little fearful to admit these feelings. I am not sure what normal is here. I am not sure this is a "normal" situation. I hope in the end, I will have a different connection with them than I have my own children, and that I don't try to escape to Mexico with them. :)
Speaking of, let's peek in on how cute they are this week!
As far as would I do this again? I have given this a LOT of thought. No, I will not do surrogacy again, but that was never the plan to do this again. The plan was to do this just one time for my brother. But would I repeat this choice, knowing now what I know? Knowing how hard it has been on my family, knowing how much I have missed of my children, my own life, my marriage? It took me a long time to come to this conclusion and my answer is yes. Yes I would make the same choice. Because without that choice, these children, these little babies, would not exist in this world. I am sure there were many hard decisions that led up to our own existence in this world, and many hard times our own parents had to face in order to get us here. For those hard times, I am grateful. For THESE hard times, I am also grateful. Some challenges in life are just that, challenging and hard. I signed up for this and although I may not have known everything about it, I can only hope I am strong enough to get through this a better person than when I started. This process is changing me in so many ways. So many ways I am grateful for even though it has been hard. So yes, yes I would do it again in a heartbeat. Maybe with more ice-cream involved :)
As always, thank you for following and sharing our story with others! We love getting all your emails and Facebook messages and hearing about your journeys as well. It really does keep us stronger. As you may know, we are filming a movie on the whole process. We have been on borrowed equipment and are needing to fund this movie now. It takes a LOT to make a movie. We need to pay for crew, equipment, sound, music, storing, backing up etc. We need your help! Anything you can give to fund our movie helps! Really, even $1. You know it all adds up. We have loved sharing our story and want to continue to tell this story about love and family, surrogacy and the medical side to IVF and the struggles we face to build our families and meet the children we have only dreamed about.
Here is the link to our campaign. Stop by, watch our video and be apart of our movie!
Here is my youngest showing me how proud he is of his OWN baby in his belly, warms my heart!
“Life's challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they're supposed to help you discover who you are.”