Friday, December 31, 2010

Picture Update

We hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas last week.  I haven't posted in awhile, so here are some pictures of our past couple of weeks spent in the hospital celebrating with our family over the holidays and my still growing belly.  We don't have any updates on how things are looking for my cervix.  We will go this Monday for an ultrasound to check it - praying that it has stayed the same and hasn't shortened.  I have had to increased the dosage of my medicene at night. I seem to have more contractions or an irritable uterus more at night.  They don't want to give me the increased dosage all of the time because they are afraid of lowering my blood pressure too much.  It is already lower from the meds because what I am taking is also used for lowering blood pressure. 

22 weeks - my last weekly picture before being admitted into the hospital.

Hooked up to the monitors to check the babies heartbeats and my contractions.  The nurses do this two times a day.  Everything has been looking great with the babies.  They have strong heartbeats, but can sometimes be stinkers for the nurses to find.  Baby boy seems to give them the most trouble.  He moves around and kicks a lot once put on the monitors.

Kevin hanging out in the hospital room keeping me company.

Finally hit 24 weeks on December 20th.  Big milestone for the babies for their survival. (Don't you just love my new pregnancy clothes - sweats and Kevin's bigger t-shirts)

Willms' Christmas 2010 in the hospital room.  We celebrated Christmas with Kevin's family on Dec. 22nd.  We were glad to get the chance to see them.

Christmas Day!

On Christmas day my parents came up and helped us celebrate.  It was nice to have some family up here on Christmas so we didn't have to spend it alone in the hospital room.  My parents stayed until Tuesday, Dec. 28th.  They were a great help at keeping me company, staying with me at night to give Kevin a break, and helping with things around the house.  Kevin and my dad tackled the babies' room and put together the two cribs.  Kevin did take a picture of it for me so I could see what it looked like. 

25 weeks on 12-27-10

We are soon approaching 26 weeks.  Every Monday is a new change over week for us, so we like to celebrate Mondays!  I can't believe that I have been in the hospital now for over 2 weeks.  I am sure being at home doing bed rest has some perks, but I do feel safer her with the nurses monitoring myself and the babies daily.  So far we couldn't ask for better nurses at the hospital.  Everyone has been super friendly and very thorough. 

Have a safe New Year's Eve!  Kevin and I will be bringing in the new year in the hospital hopefully staying awake until midnight. :)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

27th Birthday Day

Today is Kevin's 27th Birthday. Celebrating in the hospital room isn't really something we were expecting to do, but Kevin doesn't seem to mind too much.  To him his birthday isn't a big deal, but you know me I LOVE birthdays and want him to have a special day!  We do have our friends Edgar and Amanda coming for supper this evening.  Kevin's parents were here yesterday and we did a little birthday party with cake before celebrating our Willms' Christmas. 

This definitely will be a birthday for Kevin to remember.  I just want to say how much I am thankful for my husband...especially during this time.  He is a great motivator when I get down and has been very willing to help get anything I need while on bed rest.  I am grateful to have him as my support system!  Our babies are going to be so lucky to have such a great father and role model like him. 

Happy Birthday Kevin!  And babies...we do not want you to come today and share your birthday with your father.  It's too early for your arrival. 

I also want to say thanks to all of our family and friends for your prayers and support.  This has been a very scary few weeks.  We are thankful for the amazing people God has provided us in our lives.  Our friends up here have been like family and have visited us, given us food, and given items to occupy our time.  Even my Third Grade class has helped brighten my day by making the sweetest cards.  The cards are posted up all around my room.  It's hard not having our family close by, but we look forward to their visits and enjoy talking with them on the phone.  I know God has a plan and I need to just T-R-U-S-T in Him!

Have a very Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas with the Willms

Laura is still doing well.  No major changes to report.  The babies are still looking good.  They like to move around a lot when the nurses are trying to monitor their heartbeats.  They aren't able to always get good readings because they move so much, but they say active babies are healthy ones.

My sister Jenny stayed with Laura for the last 3 or 4 days, helping Laura and giving me a chance to do a little work.  My parents drove up today to pick up Jenny, and we had a little Willms family Christmas celebration in the hospital room.  It was different kind of Christmas, but one we will definitely remember.  If the weather allows, we're hoping to have a little Christmas with Laura's parents sometime in the next few days.

Laura is continuing to enjoy visitors stopping by and reading everyone's Christmas cards.  We wish all of you a Merry Christmas and want to express our gratitude for all of the thoughtful friends and family who have extended their well wishes and prayers.  We feel very blessed this Christmas season.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Still stable, enjoying company

Not much has changed over the past few days.  Laura continues to be stable.  She is continuing her daily routine of spending most of the day rotating back and forth from laying on one side or the other, only getting up to go to the bathroom, shower or eat.  On it's own it's about as much fun as it sounds.  The constant laying down is starting to make her hips sore, but she's starting some massages and treatments to help her with that.  On the bright side we've had a number of visitors over the past few days.  Some have brought flowers, movies, and food which has been a nice change up from the hospital food (although it's really not too bad).  Laura's friend Lindsay also made Laura a few calendars so she can cross of the days and track her progress in making it to each new week.  Laura's dad left today to go back to Iowa, but my sister, Jenny, is up to stay for the week.  So far Jenny has been a great go-fer and even takes orders from me. 

So really, there isn't much news medically speaking, which is just the way we want to keep it for awhile.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Off to the hospital earlier than expected

(An update from Kevin)

Tuesday Laura went in for her first checkup and ultrasound at a specialist center for high risk and multiple births.  During the checkup they determined that Laura was already having some contractions and that her cervix was a little shorter in length than they would like to see.  Since too many contractions can continue to shorten the cervix they decided to send her over to United Hospital in St. Paul for further monitoring.  So Tuesday afternoon at United they looked at her more and ultimately decided she needed to be admitted to the hospital to start medications to get the contractions settled down.  In addition to the medicines, Laura was ordered to be on bed rest the remainder of the pregnancy.

Tuesday evening was very scary and we didn't get much sleep.  The doctors and nurses were giving Laura Magnesium Sulfate (Mag) and Terbutaline to control the contractions and a couple steroid shots that are meant to accelerate the babies' lung development in case of early delivery.  It took awhile to find the right balance of Mag.  Too little and the contractions were too frequent, too much and her blood pressure dropped.  Eventually they found the right balance and the contractions slowed to an acceptable level and the last few days have been pretty stable.  Many women have very bad reactions to Mag such as nausea, but Laura did pretty well with it.

After 48 hours on Mag, they took her off of it and started giving her some lower strength medicine.  So far the lower strength stuff is doing the job, which is a great sign.  Now that the contractions seem to be under control, our biggest concern is the length of the cervix.  As we understand it, the longer the better, as the shorter it gets, it can mean she is closer to delivery.  On Friday afternoon they check Laura's cervix for the first time since Tuesday and it had shortened somewhat.  While it wasn't the good news we were hoping for, it wasn't the worst news either.  The doctor said she has seen many others who were shorter and already partially dilated who held off delivery for several weeks and even months.  Laura isn't dilated at all yet.  However, because it shortened, they do want to keep her at the hospital just to be safe.  We don't have a good idea of how long that might be, but we are preparing for an extended stay.  The hope is that continuing the bed rest will minimize the pressure on the cervix from the weight of the growing babies.

Laura and I are in decent spirits.  Obviously these developments have been scary, but we know we are in good hands and have prayers and support from so many of you.  The hospital we are at has one of the best pregnancy and neonatal intensive care units around, so if there is anywhere we'd want to be, it is here.  In fact we are lucky that Laura had a checkup on Tuesday due to switching doctors otherwise we may not have caught this as early as we did.  Laura's dad is up staying with us now, and we are starting to see a few visitors which has been nice.

The good news in all of this is that the babies are looking great!  The ultrasounds and heart monitoring is showing them as developing right on schedule.  We just need them to stay put!

I'll try to post occasional updates here as opposed to sending out a bunch of individual updates.  Please continue to pray for us.