"What is your favorite thing in the whooooole world?" My almost 5 year old Emma asks my Dr. and each nurse when she comes into the hospital to visit me. When they tell her replies such as flowers, family, chocolate, a pet...Emma says, "Ok! Then I will draw you a picture of it and bring it back next time!" When she comes in each time to visit, and I swear she prances in here more beautiful than the last time I saw her, she brings me intricate drawings she has worked on for me while we are apart. Drawings of girls playing instruments like violins and tubas and flutes with musical notes, dressed up rabbits, happy pumpkins. She draws pictures of her and I hugging on the white board in my room. These things, in addition to some other things, are sweet reminders that she is still happy and still thinking of me, and understands that I am being taken care of by the nurses and doctors.
While Abigail still screams and cries for me down the hallways when we have to say goodbye, my tears are less over it and she is also showing signs of adjustment that make me feel more peace. She is becoming closer to her daddy, and recovers from her detachment of me quicker than at first. She talks to me on the phone more (she is talking more in general these last few weeks!). "Hi mom! I pwaying bocks! I make tower! I knock tower ober!" I feel like as she approaches her second birthday next week she is becoming more "kid" and less baby, but I am going to enjoy her as my baby while she still holds the baby spot! I'm sure once I hold my preemies Abby will feel like a giant and not a baby anymore! We have tried Skyping and while I was afraid that her seeing my face on the computer screen would be frustrating for her and make her upset, she actually loved it! We make silly faces at each other and she can point to mommy's nose, eyes, hair etc...just like she likes to do at home. I am now not allowed to lift or carry her, which she is not going to like, but at least I can hold her in my bed.
One of the things I am learning in here is that I can not always have control over everything, and even if things go differently than I would like, the world goes on just fine. I admit, I tend to boss my husband around and like to run the show my way. I fear change and I like my schedule to stay the way I like it. Interruptions give me anxiety! That goes for my children, my daily agenda, when my meals will come, how long I will be on the monitor, when appointments will be made for me, etc...I literally have no control! I admit I thought I would come in here and read a book front to back every few days, take long naps, learn a new hobby or two, watch all kinds of TV shows, and enjoy tasty desserts with every meal. With the monitoring, nurses coming in and out, phone calls and visitors my days fly by and I have only read about 5 pages of just one of the books I brought! A friend came in to teach me to crochet and I am failing miserably right now haha! You would never know I am an Art Teacher by degree if you looked at my sad single row of crochet knots! Hopefully I will figure it out so I can make some cute baby things! But a few days ago I had the epiphany that I don't need to feel pressured to read books while I can, or learn a new hobby while I can, or really do anything at all. This is the only time I can just have kid-less visits with friends and family where we can talk without interruption and I don't feel the need to clean the house before hand! There is no reason I should make myself feel guilty for literally accomplishing and doing NOTHING. Because when in my life will I ever again be confined to a room and have to do nothing?! There is no pressure and no responsibility on me and I can be a bump on a log while I have the chance!
Another thing I am learning is that so many of the people in my life who I knew were great people are even more amazing than I knew! My counter is chock full of flowers, decorations, cards galore, gifts and package goodies from close friends, family, friends from the past, aquaintaces, and even strangers who have heard about us and chose to take the time to encourage and pray for us, or send some cheer! Through these acts of love, through kind and supportive emails, visits, phone calls, and prayers, I am humbled and inspired by the kindness poured out upon us and me! I almost feel unworthy because I am not sick or dying, but it is cool how a sometimes trying time as this, which can bring fears and unknowns and new challenges, brings to light all the awesome blessings and people that surround me. I hope that I can be such an encouragment to others as they have been to me! I believe God has so many purposes through this situation and it is clear that one of them is to show me that I am more loved and not alone than I ever imagined! Thank you everyone! So many people keep saying my blog or my attitude are inspiring but it is actually these people who are in fact inspiring me with the time they have taken to uplift little old me!!! My husband actually has become quite the domestic, and has been doing adorable things such as taking the girls to the craft store to buy craft projects, buying Hello Kitty party items on his own (he took a picture of a Hello Kitty Microwave and admitted he kind of wants it haha!), and bringing me fall decorations for my room :) I've said I think I am becoming spoiled and didn't do anything to deserve it!!
Regarding the babies, they are doing well! I had my ultrasound at Maternal Fetal Medicine today to check their growth (to check for Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome) and cord blood flow. The babies are 2 pounds! This is a HUGE milestone and I am so happy! Although there are definite cord twist/knot areas, the cord blood flow looks great for now. They are busy little jumping beans and give these nurses a run for their money during monitoring sessions! I stare at my favorite ultrasound picture of them just in amazement that they exist and move and breathe inside of me, and dream of what their little faces will look like. I can't wait to share with them one day what miracles they are. I look forward to getting past the uncertainty of this pregnancy, delivery, and fragile NICU time, to when they will be safely here, growing, and healthy. I look forward to life becoming "normal" and settling into a routine. I look forward to getting to know each of them, despite the fact that they are identical, to love each of their own personalities. I look forward to them becoming part of the family and not just imaginary babies to Emma and Abigail. It is also exciting to know that Ava and Aubrey will complete our family, this is it, this is "us"! There will be no more babies after this, and to anticipate welcoming the final tiny members excites me. Through the craziness of having four kids under 5, I hope that I can savor those baby moments that I will never experience again. The pregnancy chapter of my life is closing forever and I am so grateful that it is something I was able to experience. That said, I am very fine with not being pregnant again!!
I've had bronchitis or something for the past week, and it has me up coughing all night and makes monitoring sessions more difficult. I can't wait to be over it, and it terrifies me to think I could have a bad cough while recovering from major abdominal surgery. Thanks to the coughing fits and lack of sleep, headaches are a constant and my lower stomach and back are not feeling too great! It worries me that I could pass something to preemies who can't breathe on their own and already have respiratory distress. I am just praying it goes away soon and it is another reason I just want the babies to stay in there until 32 weeks!!! Two weeks are down though, six to go, and each week gives the babies more strength and gives everyone more hope. I am a member of a few mono mono mom groups on facebook and it is encouraging to see all the stories with great outcomes, and pictures of beautifully healthy (and adorable) Momo twins. Occasionally someone posts that they have lost their babies and it makes me even more grateful to be feeling mine moving around with vigor! Two Momo mommies lost their babies this week on one of the groups I am in, and it is a reality check that the risks are real and I am blessed to feel my babies full of life inside of me! Just five and a half more weeks if I am lucky enough to make it that long without an emergent C Section. I feel like we are nearing the finish line! Thank you so much for your prayers!!!