Thursday, March 31, 2005

Mothers of Multiples

I can't say enough about the Mothers of Multiples organization. I started going to a local chapter last month. I can attend meetings before the babies arrive and then become an official member after the babies are born.

The group is comprised of other mothers that have multiples (twins, triplets and more). They have been very supportive and have provided lots of information. It's always nice to get information from other mothers, but it's really nice to get information from other mothers of multiples. They have been there and really know what works best with more than one baby.

If you are a mother of multiples or are expecting multiples, I highly recommend you search out a local group and give them a try.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

A singleton, twins and then triplets

I found this story on the Home Truths BBC website. Being a twin myself with triplets on the way, I found the story entertaining.

The story is about Julie Ward, a twin. She gave birth to a single girl, twins and then triplets. You can listen to her story here if you have Real Player.

A Whole Lotta Kicking Going On

Yesterday was a really big day when it comes to baby movement and kicking. (I assume they are kicking. I guess it could be arm movements or headbutts.) All three of them were kicking at almost the same time. I can't be sure of this, but I think they might have been playing kickball with one of my organs.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Selecting a pediatrician

Today I'm at 21 weeks. Even if the triplets go to 40 weeks, I'm definitely over halfway now. It's time to start looking for a pediatrician.

This seems like a very complicated process. We're not sure of the best way to tackle it. We've talked to friends and got doctor recommendations from them. We've talked to other mothers of multiples and also received doctor recommendations from them. We're going to check with our insurance company and see which doctors are covered. We found an interview sheet for pediatricians on Now I guess it's time for us to start calling offices and talking to them. Are we missing anything? Any suggestions?

Wonder if pediatricians give a volume discount for multiples?

Monday, March 28, 2005

Diagnosis - Costochondritis

I have been diagnosed with costochondritis. It's an inflammation in the ribs where the bone and cartilage meet. There is no threat to the babies or to me (except for the pain).

The typical treatment is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicine, but that is unacceptable because of the babies. I'm stuck with Tylenol and the occasionally use of a heating pad.

The pain will be worth it once the babies are born.

Lots of pain

It all started at the end last week and has continued through the weekend. Pain. It's in my chest and I can't seem to get rid of it. There are few positions that are comfortable. It seems to be some type of rib/muscular pain. I'm headed back to the doctor today for a check.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Happy Easter!!!

Happy Easter to you!!!

The cost of children

We saw this article on MSN - The Cost of Raising Children. The article attempts to break down expenses based on the child's age and the various expenses (housing, food, clothing, etc). In a nutshell, the articles states that a middle income family will spend $170,460 on one child from birth to age 17.

Here's another way to look at those expenses. This came from an email.

The government recently calculated the cost of raising a child from birth to 17 and came up with $170,460 for a middle income family. Talk about sticker shock! That doesn't even touch college tuition. But $170,460 isn't so bad if you break it down. It translates into $10,027.06 a year, $835.59 a month, or $208.90 a week. That's a mere $29.84 a day! Just over a dollar an hour. Still, you might think the best financial advice says don't have children if you want to be "rich." It is just the opposite. What do your get for your $170,460?

Naming rights? First, middle, and last!
Glimpses of God every day.
Giggles under the covers every night.
More love than your heart can hold.
Butterfly kisses and Velcro hugs.
Endless wonder over rocks, ants, clouds, and warm cookies.
A hand to hold, usually covered with jam.
A partner for blowing bubbles, flying kites, building sandcastles, and skipping down the sidewalk in the pouring rain.
Someone to laugh yourself silly with no matter what the boss said or how your stocks performed that day.
For $170,460, you never have to grow up.
You get to finger-paint, carve pumpkins, play hide-and-seek, catch lightning bugs, and never stop believing in Santa Claus.
You have an excuse to keep: reading the Adventures of Piglet and Pooh, watching Saturday morning cartoons, going to Disney movies, and wishing on stars.
You get to frame rainbows, hearts, and flowers under refrigerator magnets and collect spray painted noodle wreaths for Christmas, hand prints set in clay for Mother's Day, and cards with backward letters for Father's Day.
For $170,460, there is no greater bang for your buck. You get to be a hero just for retrieving a Frisbee off the garage roof, taking the training wheels off the bike, removing a splinter, filling a wading pool, coaxing a wad of gum out of bangs, and coaching a baseball team that never wins but always gets treated to ice cream regardless.
You get a front row seat to history to witness the first step, first word, first bra, first date, and first time behind the wheel.
You get to be immortal.
You get another branch added to your family tree, and if you're lucky, a long list of limbs in your obituary called grandchildren.
You get an education in psychology, nursing, criminal justice, communications, and human sexuality that no college can match.
In the eyes of a child, you rank right up there with God. You have all the power to heal a boo-boo, scare away the monsters under the bed, patch a broken heart, police a slumber party, ground them forever, and love them without limits, so one day they will, like you, love without counting the cost.

Enjoy your kids and grandkids and thank God for them.
The best things in life are family and friends!

False Alarm

We've had our first scare with the triplets. Around 1am the past two nights, I noticed a tightness across my abdomen. It didn't last long and didn't really match the symptoms for preterm labor, but it was concerning anyway.

I talked to the doctor's office and they agreed that it probably isn't preterm labor, but they want me to keep a closer check on the tightness. I'm supposed to start monitoring when it happens, how long it lasts and how often. That's a bit difficult to do when my belly feels tight most of the time from the three babies. We'll just keep praying that it isn't preterm labor and that it doesn't occur during the pregnancy.

On a lighter note, last night was the first time I could definitely feel one of the babies kick when my hand was across my belly. Not an internal movement, but a definite kick that was felt externally. Now that's exciting!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Are they taking karate lessons in there?

Last night was bad. The babies were more active than they have ever been. Lots of moving, kicking, bouncing, whatever they could do. How could they have that much room in there? It's a small place and there are three of them. I think my ribs are sore on the inside.

Today's entry inspired by the amount of sleep I got last night - a very small amount.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

"Where Everybody Knows Your Name"

"Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name and they're always glad you came." - Cheers theme song

We're starting to feel like Norm on Cheers when we go to the doctor. Everybody there seems to know us and that we're expecting triplets. It's such a nice feeling.

Everything looked good at the doctor yesterday. The babies were active and the heartrates were good - 153(boy), 147 (girl), 156 (girl).

They did another quick check on the sexes and they are still thinking 2 girls and 1 boy.

Here are the scans. Two nice profiles and one with a baby looking at you.

Baby A

Baby B

Baby C

Monday, March 21, 2005

Back to the doctor

Well, it's back to the doctor this afternoon. Just another quick check on the babies and me. I'll be at 20 weeks tomorrow and that's when the tighter restrictions will start limiting what I can do.

This weekend the babies were more active than they have been in a long time. That must be a good sign. We also met with the lady that's making the curtains for the nursery. Maybe the babies were excited because we were talking about the nursery decorations.

Friday, March 18, 2005

How could it be any other number?

The idea of having triplets no longer seems unusual. We now seem to be thinking "How could it be any other number?".

Sure, it didn't start out that way. It seems like we went through different stages before we got to this point. We had prayed for children for a long time and the idea of having just one was something we had hoped for. When we first found out there were triplets, it was shocking. Disbelief was what we experienced.

From that point, the fear started. The mother was thinking "How can I carry three babies?" and the father was thinking "How are we going to afford this?". It was interesting to see how we came at the idea of triplets from different angles.

We seemed to move between disbelief and fear for a while. After that ran its course, we just laughed everytime we thought about triplets. The ideas we initially had about one baby started to change and we started thinking of everything in triplicate - cribs, car seats, high chairs....

After lots of different ideas and thankful prayers, we're now to the point that total acceptance has set in. We still get comments like "Three? Are you kidding?" or "What are you going to do with three babies?", but they don't seem to phase us anymore. It seems unnatural now to think about not having three babies at once.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

We (They) Have Cribs!!!

The nursery is beginning to take shape. We've been given three cribs and they've been set up. It was a funny feeling watching them go up. When you see three of them assembled, you suddenly realize you are outnumbered. It seemed to be a bit more startling this morning when we saw them and started thinking "Hey, that's for our three babies".

We've planned on co-bedding the triplets for a while once they arrive at home. There seems to be lots of evidence to support the fact that it's good for the babies (as long as one isn't sick or doesn't keep the others awake). It seems like it would be more comfortable for them because they've already been together for a long time.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Books on Multiple Children

We've read lots of books on multiple children. Some are full of funny stories, some are full of helpful facts, and some are a combination of both.

There are three books that we've found to be the most helpful. The first is The Multiple Pregnancy Sourcebook. It's full of helpful facts and medical information that you should know while you are pregnant with multiples. It also provides some information for after the birth.

The second one is Raising Multiple Birth Children. This book provides lots of helpful tips to help you cope with multiples. Things like how to bottlefeed all of them at one time and what things are necessary for the nursery. There are funny stories mixed with the tips, so it's a lot of fun to read.

The third one is The Multiples Manual. This book is full of helpful tips. Each chapter covers a different topic and there are lots of tips for each topic.

All of these books have been written by parents of multiples. It's good to read what tricks worked with their children and which tricks did not.

The funniest thing we've read so far came from The Multiples Manual. "What's one of the good things about a multiple pregnancy? One pregnancy and it's usually shorter than average."

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Baby Clothes

We have our (or should I say their) first baby clothes. The clothes just look so cute in the room we've designated as the nursery. We washed a few of the items to have them ready for the babies. How delightful to open the dryer, start folding the clothes and see those little items. Right now we have the pieces neatly folded away in the nursery waiting for someone to come along and wear them.

Some of the clothes seem so tiny. We've been around babies before, but I guess we've never paid attention to just how small the first articles of clothing are. It's hard to believe they will be that small. Of course, our three will probably be smaller than the average baby because there are three of them.

I guess we should enjoy washing and folding the clothes now before we are overtaken by the avalanche of dirty items that have to be washed.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Having a cold and being pregnant do not mix

It's been a long weekend. I've been sick with a cold. It all started during the day on Friday and it's still going today. The worst time was Saturday when I had a fever. Thankfully I was able to keep it around 99 degrees with the help of Tylenol. That was 2 degrees below the triggerpoint of 101 degress. At that temperature, I was to inform the doctor and follow the recommendations they had.

Having a cold is bad enough, but it seems to be even worse when you are pregnant. There are limitations to the medicines you can take. I want to get rid of it as quickly as possible, but I don't want to take anything that would affect the babies. It's a true test of patience and endurance.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Famous Before Birth

The triplets don't know it yet, but they are famous. Everywhere we go we hear "Here come the triplets". It's as if we've lost our identity and have just become the parents of triplets. It's funny in a way.

Every Sunday I'm late to church because people want to stop and talk about the triplets. Don't think I'm complaining though. It's actually a lot of fun. I just have to remember to leave earlier before anything that has a definite start time.

Wonder if this is the way parents of celebrities feel?

Thursday, March 10, 2005

And Now For Something Completely Different

Can you imagine this with three babies? Oh my goodness!!! Don't click on this link if you would be offended by seeing babies spit up. It's a video clip from America's Funniest Videos.

Family and Adopted Family For The Babies

Our babies are so blessed. They have such loving and giving families that are awating their arrival. In addition to that family, they are going to have a large extended family made up of friends that we have that have been adopted as our family.

Even though the babies don't know it yet, they have adopted grandparents, aunts and uncles that are eagerly awaiting their arrival too. How exciting!

Thanks to all our family for all you've done and the support you've given us.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

A NICU visit

Last Monday, March 7, was our last Birth and Beginnings class.

The last night was a wrap-up session and a chance to tour the nursery at the hospital. After the tour, the couples were dismissed except for two - us and another couple. We were invited to tour the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Both couples, because of their babies, have the possibility of a baby (or babies) going to NICU. We were given the tour in order to help prepare us for what it's like.

At first, it's alarming to walk in and see all the tiny babies in the incubators. The babies are so small and they have so many things connected to them - oxygen, IVs, monitors...

We saw babies that were just a few weeks premature to one that was born at 24 weeks. It weighed only 1 pound and 4 ounces. Even though it was born that early, it had gained weight and was making improvements.

It's scary to think about a baby having to be in there, but it makes you more comfortable having visited and to see how well the babies are cared for in the NICU.

If you are interested, here are some links about NICUs.
Procedures and Equipment in NICU
Common Diagnoses in the NICU

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Results of the anatomy scan

Yesterday at the doctor was the anatomy scan. They were checking for certain organs and limbs. They were also trying to determine the sex of the babies.

Everything looked normal during the scans. The babies had heartrates of 138, 150, and 167. They all weighed approximately 8 ounces based on the measurements taken. We did discover during the scans that one of the babies is in a breech position. That can change though during the pregnancy though.

Here are some of the scans from the appointment.

All 3 together

Baby A

Baby A

Baby A

Baby B

Baby C

Baby C

Sibling Rivalry - Here you can see one baby kicking the other in the head

Monday, March 07, 2005

The verdict is in

Based on the scans this afternoon, it's a girl, a boy, and probably a girl. More details tomorrow.

And the sexes are....

You'll just have to check back later this evening after the doctor appointment to find out. They'll be checking that and the sizes of the babies at the appointment today. We can't wait to tell you what we find out.

Friday, March 04, 2005


"Do they make strollers for triplets?", we were once asked. Of course they do and they are huge. If you've never seen one, take a look at some. They aren't cheap either. It's almost like buying a minivan that's exclusively for the babies.

They come in different seating styles - front to back and side by side. I'm sure both have their own problems. With the front to back ones, you would have a difficult time keeping an eye on the babies in the front. With side by side ones, you would never be able to get through aisles in a store. Those are just the first things that come to mind. Who knows what other issues could arise.

We have been advised to have a triplet stroller and a single and double stroller. With those options, one person can take all 3 babies out (triplet stroller), or if you want to split up, you can use 2 strollers (the single and double).

I can't wait until the first time we go out with a triplet stroller. I'm sure we'll be the center of attention. And that could be good and/or bad. How would you react?

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Our New Job - Parents

We were talking the other night about being parents. As we wait on the babies to arrive, we've occasionally discussed how demanding, and a bit scary, it is to be a parent. The following came in an email from my Dad. It seems to sum things up pretty well. I just hope we can fill the position as well as our parents have.

Mom, Mommy, Mama, Ma
Dad, Daddy, Dada, Pa

Job Description
Long term, team players needed, for challenging permanent work in an often chaotic environment. Candidates must possess excellent communication and organizational skills and be willing to work variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends and frequent 24 hour shifts on call. Some overnight travel required, including trips to primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in far away cities! Travel expenses not reimbursed. Extensive courier duties also required.

The rest of your life. Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily, until someone needs $5. Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly. Also, must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat in case, this time, the screams from the backyard are not someone just crying wolf. Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges, such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zippers. Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and coordinate production of multiple homework projects. Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings for clients of all ages and mental outlooks. Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, an embarrassment the next. Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices. Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst. Must assume final, complete accountability for the quality of the end product. Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and janitorial work throughout the facility.

Possibility for Advancement and Promotion
None. Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills, so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you.

Previous Experience
None required unfortunately. On-the-job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.

Wages and Compensation
Get this! You pay them! Offering frequent raises and bonuses. A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because of the assumption that college will help them become financially independent. When you die, you give them whatever is left. The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.

While no health or dental insurance, no pension, no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered; this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth and free hugs for life if you play your cards right.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

The Quest for the Perfect Pillow

Sleeping is starting to be a problem. It seems almost impossible to get into a comfortable position. Once I actually get into one, the comfort doesn't last for long. Sleep seems to come in small increments as I shift and move pillows around.

I'm currently using a wedge pillow to help support my belly as I sleep on my side. It doesn't seem to be working very well anymore. I can't sleep on my back because I've been told sleeping on my back is a big no-no. The doctor suggested I sleep at a slight angle if I want to try and sleep in a position close to back sleeping.

Currently I'm looking for a pillow that will help me sleep more comfortably and for a longer period of time. There are lots of choices available. The wedge (that I currently have), a pillow that looks like 2 pillows with material between them, the full body pillow... the choices almost seem endless. All of them promise to make sleeping easier and better. And why shouldn't they with names like the "Comfort-U Body Pillow" or the "Snoozer Full Body Pillow"? If only you could try the pillows out before purchasing them. Someone should open a store where you could take a nap with the various pillows and see which one/ones work best for you.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Bare Necessities

When you start thinking about a baby, or 3 babies, you start to think about all the things they need. Of course they have to have food, cribs, car seats, clothing, necessities like that. But do they need everything you see in a baby store?

In our Birth and Beginnings class last night we talked about all the baby items on the market and how most of them aren't needed. The instructor was discussing how some companies convince people that their product is best, or needed, when it really isn't.

That made me start thinking about how easy it is to get caught up in buying everything out there for a baby. If you aren't careful, you could have a house full of baby items and no room for the babies. I remember a time when we were traveling with our nephew. I created a toy for him by dropping a penny into an empty 2 liter bottle. He seemed to really enjoy running around and shaking the bottle to make noise. So much for store bought toys.

I ran across this article from the Washington Post. It's from the "Tell Me About It" column by Carolyn Hax. I think it really helps put things into perspective.

Tell Me About It: Baby's bare necessities are basic
By Carolyn Hax

Monday, February 14, 2005

Dear Carolyn: I just found out that I'm pregnant. I am psyched for all the obvious reasons, but also dismayed with myself. I'd planned to do so much more before becoming a mom. I had always promised myself that I'd make a lot of money so I could give a child everything; that I'd be living in a nice house in a nice suburb, etc. Well, I work at a nonprofit, as does my husband, and we live in a rented condo, not a house, and I'm just so worried that we won't be able to provide for our baby the way I always fantasized we could. I also feel thoroughly guilty for thinking this way.Help? Advice? - Massachusetts

Dear Massachusetts: "Everything" to a baby is love, food, warm clothing, dry pants and, in a few months, some measuring cups to play with. Stability's nice, but not if it's at the expense of love, food, warm clothing and dry pants.

This question really isn't about those things anyway.

It's about things we promise ourselves, envision, fantasize. There comes a point in all lives when it's time to release them, like helium balloons, and go back inside and embrace the lives we actually have, because we actually chose them, for reasons we may not have given much thought lately.

So think about them, now. You and your husband went the condo-nonprofit route for reasons that probably make sense to you, probably brought you together, and definitely say something about you both. I bet it's something you like about yourselves.

That is what you'll be giving your baby. Add life insurance, a will and even the tiniest savings account, and you can call that everything, too.