Thursday, July 31, 2008

27 Weeks, 1 3/4 Days!! Big Update!!

Well, this last week has been CRAZY!! I apologize greatly for leaving everyone hanging for so long! It's just I have to be having a good day to Blog or you would all be sad and worried and that's definitely not what I want!

I'll start out with Sunday, the 27th...
Matt and Hannah Noelle were planning on leaving that afternoon after dinner from the hospital and the contractions started pretty heavy and I was pretty uncomfortable so they ended up spending the night again just in case. They gave me some different medicine which calmed everything down and I was good to go by morning time.

Monday, the 28th
The family stayed until lunch or so and then went home so I could rest. Had a good nap and then my brother (Stephen a/k/a Uncle Coach), sister-in-law (Kristy a/k/a K-Pae) and nephew (Jayce) came and brought me dinner. Took my meds and off to sleep I went. Actually, I slept really good, I guess I was gearing up for the next day.

Tuesday, the 29th
This morning started out really good, but I didn't feel well enough to take a shower, which should have told me something. Had weight assessments done on the babies and my cervical length measured and it was hanging in there around 3 (I say hanging around there because as this day progressed unless I had it written down, I don't remember it!) The weights were as follows: Man in Charge, Cannon - 2 pounds, 3 oz - The Hog, Gunner - 2 pounds, 8 oz - Little Bity Lauren - 1 pound, 15 oz - Sweet, Sweet Avery - 2 pounds, 2 oz. Grow Muffins Grow!!!!!! By 11:00 the contractions started pretty heavily. Mountain after mountain is what I believe the nurse said. They immediately started an IV and had the doctor come in and check me, but everything still looked good, so the plan was to take my 1:00 contraction medicine and go from there. By 2:00 I knew I was in for it! I called the nurse and told her the contractions were back, worse and longer. They hooked me up to the monitor and the contractions were one to two minutes long and one to two minutes apart. I was in MAJOR pain at this point. I called Matt who, of course, completely freaked out! He called his Mom (Phyllis a/k/a Nana) and asked if she could pick up Hannah Noelle from school so he could head over this way immediately. Before I knew anything had happened I was on a stretcher on my way down to L&D and I had no clue what was going on. I knew if there was a way to get everything stopped they would, but if not I knew where I was headed. They gave me a very heavy sedative upon admission to L&D and when Matt got here I'm not even really sure I knew my name! They changed my contraction medicine to the next strongest which still leaves us two more before we're at the highest! I was in and out pretty much all afternoon and in pain even with the sedation. My doctor's partner made a special trip over to check out the situation and scared us pretty good when I asked if I could eat and she said, well, give me a little while to think about it. You know where our heads went, she's trying to bide time so I'm in that 8 hour window of no food so I can have a c-section. At that point I think Matt was completely over the top stressed out more than he has ever been. I probably would have been too, but the drugs were stronger than my brain at that time. She did let me eat!!! Whew!! Then came another dose of the pain medicine through the IV and when I tell you it burns, it burns... how do people do that stuff for fun, I don't get it! I was out of it more than in and very, very uncomfortable, the contractions were just SO strong! It was like the point when you see the ladies on Baby Story yelling, where is the anesthesiologist, I want an epidural! I hurt from my back to my belly down to my legs and all the way back again. My uterus was as hard as a rock and pushing up against my ribs too, which was even more painful!! By 10:00 I was done for, the meds had me talking crazy, some stories Matt will have to tell, but basically I was done for!!!! Thanks to Matt's brother (Jeremy a/k/a Uncle Jeremy) for taking HN home with him and his three daughters and managed to get them all fed, bathed and to school the next morning all alone! GO JEREMY GO!!

Wednesday, the 30th
I woke up that morning and felt even more horrible than the day before. I didn't remember much from the night before except for the pain and was still rather groggy from the medicine. And anyone that knows me knows I speak my mind pretty good without meds, so when my nurse that day made a snide comment and I was still a little loopy, I probably responded a little too fast! Nothing ugly or of a foul way, just snipped back at her snippiness...Matt ducked his head and I knew that meant it was no good!! I knew then to just sit here and be still. By the time my doctor came that morning I was an emotional, mental, psychological wreck!! I was at the point I never wanted to be at, but I was ready to give up! He is such an awesome doctor he said EVERYTHING I needed to hear to pull me right back off the ledge. He said, you've been your own cheerleader long enough, quit being a hero and let everyone else be your cheerleaders!! He said I'll even make up a cheer, but I'm not putting on a skirt!! I stayed miserable until a little after lunch and the life just started coming back to me! I took a shower, still wasn't up to washing my hair, but took a shower. Everyone knows how that will make you feel better! By that afternoon I was almost back to normal and sent Matt on his way to pick up Hannah Noelle because I knew she had to be afraid because the day before was off her normal schedule and she really likes to know who's picking her up, where's she's going.... I felt pretty good that night except for the contractions which were still one to two minutes long and four to five minutes apart, but aren't affecting my cervix so it's just my uterus saying, hello, I've got over 8 pounds of baby in here, let me rest and my cervix is saying, no, no, it's four babies at 2 pounds something each and they need to stay in there! So, needless to say, Go Cervix Go, you win that battle! I can handle the pain of contractions until night fall and then I request pain medicine to help me sleep so I'm ready for the next day. Dr. Hole said he'd rather me stay hopped up on the pain meds 24/7 so I stay in a happy place and don't get discouraged, but I think being knocked out is what makes me discouraged so I battle through the days with a Tylenol or two! Oh yeah, did I mention I failed my 3 Hour Glucose test on Monday so I can't even have a Coke, I was drinking Caffeine Free Coke before, but I can't even have that! I have to have diet drinks, unsweet tea or Coke Zero... trust me it's not the same!!! This day was the first day I failed my finger prick two hours after eating and had to have Insulin. They blamed it mostly on the fact that the had given me a shot of steroids for the babies that morning and it could have affected the results.

Thursday, the 31st
I woke up in a very good mood, felt great, was ready to face the world! Matt was here by 8:00 and was here for the BPP's on the babies which all checked out great! Fluid is great, movement great and heart rates, great!! Yeah Babies!! My doctor came in shortly thereafter and was pleased to see I was in much better spirits! He informed me that at this point, it's day by day, not week by week anymore. We will be paying close attention to Lauren to make sure her weight continues to go up and that there are no problems there since she is the smallest. He said that could be one of the many reasons to deliver soon is that she needs to be out and have medical attention. At this point being 27 weeks, we as a family and team have decided that if she starts failing, get them all out, don't let her suffer inside. The second of many reasons would be that the contractions just get out of control and we have no other option because the cervix becomes affected. Next, we concentrate on Pre-Eclampsia which as of right now, I'm having no problems with. Today was the best day all in all that I've had since I've been in L&D, which is where I will stay until delivery so that we can do 24 hour contraction monitoring. I even took a shower and washed my hair!! Woo-Hoo!! My spirits are up and I'm pushing for next Wednesday, 28 weeks! Then I'll focus on 29, then 30. After that I'm not going to make any promises!! At this point, I need to focus on two weeks at a time. I'm in a rush now because it's almost med time and once that medicine hits my IV, I'm completely out of it in about 2 minutes!!

In summary, I can do this, I know I can!!! I need cheerleaders, leave your comments, they make me smile!!! Every day wake up and say, she did it, one more day the muffins are in the oven!!! Please don't ever take offense to not getting calls when things go bad, when things are bad the only thing we're concentrating on is my health and babies, not making sure that every else knows what's going on. Sometimes it's better that not everyone knows because then they don't worry, they're staying positive which is what we need during bad times. Pray very hard that the move down to L&D will be okay for Hannah Noelle, she's not allowed to spend the night here. She came and visited today and this room is much bigger and has way more things to get her in trouble. My sister will be in town this weekend which will make things easier for HN and myself! I love having my sissy around!! Every day is an accomplishment, I think I've said that a couple hundred times in my post, but it is! Stay positive for me, stay positive for my family and the babies!! When I hear the scared sound in your voice, it makes me scared. When I hear your happy and positive voice, I'm automatically happy and positive!!! You will never know how much each of you have grown to mean to me in the last few weeks. I couldn't have done it without you!!!! I'll try to never make my posts this long again, sorry!!! Love To You All ~ Sandra

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

26 Weeks, Here For The Long Haul!!

First and foremost, thanks to everyone for leaving comments, they all brighten my day! Especially the ones that say I look good for having four babies! I feel massive!!

Secondly, I started having contractions last night around 9:00 that were different than the normal ones I had been having. It was time to do my nightly monitoring, but I took my contraction medicine and waited an hour hoping the contractions would slow down. I started monitoring around 10 and when I got done I already knew I had failed. I've gotten pretty good at knowing which ones are actual contractions and which ones are just uterine irratibility. My home monitoring company called me back to let me know I had 8 contractions, needed to drink tons of water and retest in 30 minutes. I started monitoring again and knew where I was headed. Hannah Noelle was sound asleep so I text my brother to put him on standby to meet us if we had to head to the hospital. When Matria called back I was a little shocked to hear I had 11 contractions and needed to be getting ready to head in to USA. 10 minutes later the doctor on call called me at home and told me to come on in.

Leaving home was especially painful! I laid in the bed for 10 minutes after I got off the phone with the doctor knowing it was the last time I would be in that bed pregnant. Then, telling my sweet baby goodbye was like ripping my heart out! We woke her up enough so that she wouldn't be scared in the morning when she woke up at her Uncle Coach's house. She was groggy, but definitely didn't want me going back to the hospital. When we pulled up at the Chevron to meet my brother I lost it, but didn't want her to see me so I just ducked my head and said I Love You, Bye in the strongest voice I could pull together. I'm crying typing this even though she's sitting two feet from me!

When we pulled up at the hospital I was expecting an hour of waiting, sitting in the screening room for three or four hours and then either getting to go home or being admitted to L&D. Well, we walked in and were immediately admitted and whisked away to L&D. Within 30 minutes I had an IV, that she had to do twice because "I can't believe I did that." That's what she said when she stuck me and then yanked it back out. At this point my contractions were about 4-5 minutes apart and excruciating. I mean, the mother of all contractions!! They were killing me!! After numerous meetings with nurses and the resident on call we still weren't sure what was going to happen. The ultrasound tech came in around 10 and checked on all the babies and they all looked great. She also measured my cervical length and it had shortened to 2.7. At that point I figured I would be here for a while, but I wanted to talk to MY doctor. I knew he was leaving for vacation on Thursday and wouldn't return until Monday so I was determined to see him before he left. He came in around noon with lots of information. If I haven't told you I LOVE HIM!!! He is just awesome! After about 25 minutes of talking I managed to ask the fateful question, "Am I going to be here until I deliver." Without hesitation he said, yes, ma'am, you will be. At this point you are 26 weeks with a cervical length below 3.0, which is prefectly fine, especially with quads, your contractions are now painful and closer together and all in all you and the babies are safer here. He said he has no doubt we will make it at the minimum two more weeks because there are so many more medicines we can use. Again, he told me everything could change on a dime. We're still pushing for 30-32 weeks, but for right now we're focussing on 28 weeks. I took the news well, I knew it was inevitable!

As of right now the contractions are better under control, still a good bit painful though. My old room that I lived in for 4 weeks, 2 days was taken, but they put me in the next best room and told me they would move me as soon as that patient left. Well, I actually like my new room better. The view is not the best, but it's at the end of the hall so I'm not so close to the nurses' station which means midnight laughter won't wake me! Also, there is no one behind me so I don't hear them paging the nurse, etc.

Matt went home and grabbed all the bags, we left them packed when we went home last Monday and picked Hannah Noelle up from Uncle Coach's and they have been here since. They are going to stay the night tonight and go home at some point tomorrow. I want her to go to school Friday because it's pajama day and she loves wearing her jammies to school!! I'll miss her open house for preschool, her first day of preschool and several other things in the next few weeks, but the good thing is she's got an awesome daddy that will be there with bells on!! Andrea is coming into town next weekend so she will make sure there are two special outfits laid out for HN to wear to those two big days!

All in all, I can't complain! I had 8 nights at home, longer than I thought when I went home last Monday, but still painfully short! The longer I'm here though, the less time Cannon, Gunner, Lauren and Avery will be here in the NICU by themselves. HN understands that I'll be here for a while and that when I come home there won't be babies in my belly anymore. She's excited about wearing her "duck mask" so she can go in the NICU and hug the babies. I'm not sure how she'll react once she realizes she can't hold them, but that's one of the many bridges we'll cross when the time comes!

Please continue to pray for the babies and myself, Matt and Hannah Noelle. Pray that I make it to at least 30 weeks. Pray for safe travels for everyone going and coming back and forth to Mobile to visit. Pray that we hit the jackpot and can afford gas and food for the next 4 or so weeks that I'm here! (Really, God took care of us before as far as that was concerned and I have all faith that He will take care of us again.) Thanks for everything, Love to All - Sandra

Thursday, July 17, 2008

25 Weeks, 1 Day... Great Doctor Visit

If you're wondering why I always put how far along I am in the title, it's for future quad moms who want to browse by how far along they are. I find myself on my friends blogs counting on my fingers and toes trying to figure out how far along they were at that point. Plus, I'm just proud of myself!!

I'm still home!! Yay, yay, yay, yay!! It's been great getting to spend direct time with my family without nurses, the ice lady (anybody that came to visit knows how often she came in, especially at 4 a.m.), students, etc. coming in! Hannah Noelle has done really well adjusting to the disciplinarian being back home too, she's had more time outs in the last 4 days than the whole time I was in the hospital. She has slept on the floor in our room every night though because I just want her close!!

Here's how today's doctor's appointment went. The initial visit with the nurse was all normal, blood pressure good, weight excellent! Then we had the ultrasound for growth and cervical length. This was Hannah Noelle's first time to see them on ultrasound. We wanted to wait until they didn't look like aliens so it wouldn't scare her and we also wanted to just bring her with us to my regular OB instead of specialist so it wouldn't be such a long visit. Well, before we knew it, we weren't going to my regular OB anymore. She did so well at the hospital when doctors came in we decided to give it a try. She was on her "Best Bemaviour." She did so well she got ice cream when we left! The babies looked awesome!!! They are getting so big! They did 3D on them just for Hannah Noelle and she was amazed! She actually knew what she was looking at sometimes before I did because she would say, oh, there is Avery's hand and her fingers! We got good looks at Cannon and Lauren's face and a good shot of Avery's arm and hand. Gunner is too squished to even get a shot of anything!! Their estimated weights are as follows:
Cannon Gregory - 1 pound, 10 ounces
Gunner Cole - 1 pound, 13 ounces
Lauren Kathryn - 1 pound, 11 ounces
Avery Caroline - 1 pound, 12 ounces
They are all in the 50th percentile which Dr. Hole said is absolutely amazing for four babies!! He said he has never had a quad mom at 25 weeks have all three issues under control, preeclampsia, cervical length and baby growth. He said there is normally always one that is lacking, but I am standing strong. HN asked him when he was going to cut the babies out (yes, she knows WAY too much) and he said 8 weeks! I almost fell off the table. I said, I can't do 8 weeks! He said, everything can change on a dime, but I see it happening! I personally, for my sanity have to take it in smaller chunks than that. I have to say, okay, 28 weeks is good, which is 3 weeks away, then I'll shoot for 30, then 32. Right now saying 8 weeks wants me to just throw my hands up and say, I surrender, I'm done! My back is killing me, my belly is huge, my face is now full, my hips hurt when I sleep and when I walk and I could go on for days and days! Despite all that, I wouldn't change it for the world, I'm here, right where I'm supposed to be for some strange reason and God will one day show that reason to me. Even if he doesn't, I know there is a plan, much bigger than I could ever imagine!!
My cervical length is still holding strong!!! It was so good I felt confident in asking Dr. Hole if I could go out to eat, not take out, out to eat on the way home. He said, yes, only because next week you may not be able to and then it'll be a long time before you'll get to go again once you have 4 babies and a 3 year old!
All in all the visit was great! I go back next Wednesday and have to do the Glucose screening test. I continue to be on Strict Bed Rest and monitor twice daily. The monitoring sessions I have had have been great! I've had no more than 2 contractions in an hour. If they were to increase above four or five I will be back in the hospital on different meds so let's pray they stay low!!
Now, I have a favor from you! I post as often as I can and then I see only 3 or 4 comments and it makes me wonder if anyone really reads this! Could you please, even if you do it as anonymous, leave me a message? I need things to do during the day and reading your encouraging words would mean the world to me!! Bye for now... Love To You All!!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

24 Weeks, 5 Days... I'M HOME!!!

You read the caption right, I'm home!!! Here's how everything played out!

We had a great week at the hospital, the babies really cooperated! Contractions were only coming about 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after my Procardia which is the contraction medicine I was on. It's one of the weakest there is so that was a great thing too! My cervical length two weeks ago was 3.1 which was not too great, down from 4.7 the week before. That was not good news. Last Monday morning we were anticipating having to have a cerclage (where they stitch the cervix closed.) When they measured me last week we were up to 3.6-3.7 which meant the bed rest was working, it had taken the pressure off the cervix and allowed it to lengthen. (I know this is probably too much info for some of you, I'm sorry, I'm just so excited!) Well, today was go or no go, we couldn't have a cerclage past Wednesday, which is 25 weeks! I didn't sleep last night in anticipation for the ultrasound. She normally comes around 8, but of course today she showed up at 10:30. She measured and said, what was it last week and I said 3.6. She said, well, it looks long. I said, I'm not going to breathe until you give me a length. She said, how does 3.9 sound? I almost jumped out of the bed with excitement! More bed rest had done my body good!! She then checked the baby's heart rates, fluid, etc. and everything was great! My nurse came in and said, what do you want to do and I held back the tears and said, I want to go home! Even if it's for one night, I want to go home! She left and got the resident doctor who came in and said, I've started your discharge papers. Once again, I almost jumped out of the bed. Then she told me she had not talked to my doctor yet. I bounced back to reality and told her to please call him and if he had any reservation whatsoever about me going home, I would stay, I trust him more than anything. She came back and said, as long as you're willing to give yourself shots at home, you can go. Well, duh, I gave myself shots to get this way, so heck, yeah, I'll give myself a shot! Normally discharging a patient takes hours as I'm sure most of you know, but we had the BEST nurse we've had the whole hospitalization and she said, don't order lunch, I'm going to have you out of here by 11:30! Matt couldn't pack fast enough!! It was so surreal leaving the hospital, getting in the van and smelling the new car smell that everyone else said they could still smell but I had gotten used to, well, today it smelt like it was just off the lot! The sun was brighter, the trees were greener and nothing, I mean, nothing was going to make my smile go away today! We had to stop at the pharmacy and get the new 8 meds they have put me on over the course of the last 4 weeks, 2 days in the hospital and then it was off to the daycare to get Hannah Noelle! Keep in mind, I have on one of Matt's t-shirts and a pair of hot pink pajama pants.. I would have gone home naked if I would have had to!! Matt went inside the daycare and two of the people that have helped raise my daughter for the last 4 weeks came out to see the HUGE belly! Go ahead Kelly, leave a comment about it, I know you want to!! When Matt walked out the door holding HN she looked at Mandy and Kelly like who are you talking to. When she saw my face she said in the sweetest voice I have ever heard, Mommy! I melted!! She smiled the whole way home!!! Then she commenced to showing me around the house like I had never been here before! I am on the same restrictions I was in the hospital, I can go to the bathroom and take 1 shower a day...well, guess what, I can take a bath because I'm home! That was so awesome!!!!!!!
Please continue to pray for our family! I will be going to the doctor twice a week and I'm not able to drive so thanks in advance to everyone that signs up to take me! Please pray that I get a week or two or three or four at home!! I will monitor for contractions twice daily and that will determine how long I stay home along with cervical length and baby's growth! Grow Muffins Grow!! Thanks so much for all of your support and prayers!!! I'm going to snuggle with my daughter tonight and eat with real silverware!!!!!!!! Love to you all!!!

Monday, July 7, 2008

23 Weeks, 5 Days!! GREAT NEWS!!!

Today was a big day! My doctor had prepared me that if my cervix was below a certain number we would be doing a cerclage first thing in the morning. Needless to say, I've been a little stressed out! Well, my cervix is hanging in strong so as of this week, no cerclage. They will measure again next week and that will be the last opportunity to do the cerclage. They will not do it past 25 weeks. We will probably be changing or "tweaking" some of my meds in the next few days for contractions. Other than that, I'm just hanging in here! I had the shots for the baby's lungs and it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be! I was scared it was going to hurt terribly bad, but it honestly wasn't painful at all! Okay, probably shouldn't have said, at all, but you get my point!

This week was very busy! Hannah Noelle and Matt came over early Wednesday and stayed until late Friday, left went to the fireworks show and then came back early Saturday and stayed until late last night. It was so great to have them here for that long of a time. We had a picnic downstairs (McDonald's on a Barbie beach towel) but it was enough to wow a 3 year old!! We had several visitors on Saturday and more on Sunday which was very nice! The air in my room went out for about an hour or so and anyone who has visited knows I keep it about 60 in my room so I thought I was going to sweat to death! Matt went and told the nurse and she said the whole hospital's air system was down from when the power went out...we obviously slept through that!! She said, don't worry, Midas is on their way. Matt and I both looked at each other and said, aren't those the brake people? Well, we trusted the Midas touch and wala, we had air!! I will have more nights alone in the next two weeks because my brother, Stephen, had to go out of town for school and Kristy won't be able to come stay with me. She normally stays one to three nights a week. By the way, K-Pae, I can't thank you enough!! And Jayce, my nephew, thanks for letting your mommy come take care of me!

On an AWESOME note, my sister was here last week as I shared and had her Level II interview with SRH. Congrats, Congrats, she got the job!!! I cannot explain to anyone how awesome it will be to have my sister back in the same state with me, let alone the same city!! She is going to live with us for a while, which everyone says she's crazy for! She's moving in the first week of September and I can't wait!! I'm so extremely happy she is coming and sacrificing her life to help with the babies and myself!!!

And those of you wondering about my weight, as I sit here with a jumbo size bag of Doritos, I have officially gained 39 pounds!! I am up to 152!!! Go me! Thanks to everyone that brings snacks, fast food, etc. They weighed me this morning at 5 a.m., which I still don't understand why that was worth waking me up for, but once I saw the numbers, I was glad they did! That also means I have gained 14 since I have been in the hospital!! If you've seen any of my trays that they bring you know it's not from eating that, it's from all the support that everyone has given me! I think I should have put McDonald's Gift Cards on my baby registry!!! Wednesday which is 24 weeks, which is HUGE, I get to eat anything from anywhere I want!!! I'm really thinking about crab legs! We all know that is my favorite!! Oh, and Leighann and George, I'm still holding out on my blackened chicken salad from Scranton's!!!!

Please continue to keep us in your prayers!! Love to you all!!!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

23 Weeks!!

Well, we're one week closer to breathing a little bit easier! I obviously want to make it way past 24 weeks, but the viability rate of the babies goes up so much more each day after 24 weeks, it's just one of the many milestones we'll celebrate!

We had an ultrasound yesterday and they did estimated weights on all four babies and to everyone's shock all four babies are estimate to be the exact same weight!!! 1 pound, 2 ounces!! Grow Babies Grow!!

My cervix is still hanging in there, but it did go down a little bit. My length last week was 4.5, this week it was 3.1. We will remeasure again next Monday and as long as it's not below 2.0, no cerclage!!! My doctor also said that it's okay that it's shortening because we know what's causing it, the contractions that I have the thirty minutes before and after my Procardia (the medicine to stop them.) They are not able to up that dose because it makes your blood pressure low and mine is already as low as it can be. If it was just shortening for no reason, he would be more concerned. He said we know what we're dealing with so we know how to deal with it! I feel very confident and very comfortable with any decisions he makes and agree with him on everything!! If it continues to decrease throughout the week, they will start me on another contraction preventing agent!

Pictures will be coming soon!!! Thanks for your continued support and prayers!!!