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15.

I am a hot, curvaceous mess.

All women/humans have struggled to feel like themselves in their skin. I refuse to believe those that say they haven’t. That’s cute, but you are all liars. Dirty, dirty liars.

Pregnancy can be a special foray into body image/personal space hell.

(I say this with such love and unwavering devotion, present and future children of mine.)

First, you’ve got 9 (but let’s be honest, really 10) months of your body going haywire. Hair sprouting here or falling out there, ever-generating spit, nasal congestion, bloody gums, headaches, backaches, ligaments-deep-inside-your-body-aches, heartburn, constipation, itchy skin, the joy that is “lightening crotch”. All that peeing, all that tossing and turning. That puffy face; that newly outed belly button. All those words you can’t remember.

Goodbye, Dignity.

This is a cruel, cruel world. A world where things leak without warning. A world where you’ve considered the pros of catheter, if only it means you can sleep and sleep, crowded bladder be damned. A world where you are so nauseous, but also so hungry, but then someone says “chicken” and you think you’ll just go lie down to die. A world where your very humble chest doubles or triples in size, but is too sore even to look at. #BurnAllTheBras

When I was pregnant with Carter or Jack, of course there were points in time when donating my body and mind and hormones to growing a baby got real, real old.

Twins, I think, are the ‘Nam of pregnancies. I’ve seen things. I’ve felt things.

Two things, moving independently inside of me simultaneously, as a matter of fact.

(There are 20 toes inside of me right now. Growing toenails. So let’s not even pretend. There is nothing normal about this.)

Thank you, everyone, for asking how I’ve been. I usually say “tired” or “ehh…” with a long pause and a shrug. The truth: I’ve spent the past four months clinging to the side of my bed, in desperate need of some basic attempt at hygiene, listening to the silky vocals of Bob Ross or a podcast episode of The Splendid Table, hoping to sleep away the weeks.

Don’t feel bad for me. Feel bad for my husband. He made me baked potatoes for every meal for weeks and served them to me in bed without batting an eye.

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14 Weeks

I thought I had this down — once you’re a mother, you aren’t really your very own person ever again. You split, and part of you lives outside of you, and it’s awe inspiring and wonderful and frustrating. It’s love.

In this pregnancy, more than my insides are growing. I keep finding these very stubborn pockets where it is so, so hard for me to be selfless. It’s been an eye-opener; I’ve got some work to do.

There are some really wonderful, perfect things about pregnancy. I love all of those things. And I love these two things, these babies, so much. Already.  Like, heart-bursting-at-the-seams already.

The very most honest truth is that these babes are healthy and the pregnancy is healthy and God is good, all the time — so no matter what (and this is definitely a No Matter What), everything’s gonna be alright.

Especially once I have more of a say over my bowel movements.

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13 and some change.

I am so sick, still.

A little bit better, I sometimes think. And then the headache comes on or my back seizes or my lunch slides up my throat — or whatever. I’m so sick of the constant reel of complaints in my head. I wish I could ignore them, ignore the symptoms. Push through. But when I do, I end up in bed for two days.

2016: The summer I stayed in bed, ice pack 15 minutes on the hour, and waited for this, too, to pass.

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This was 10 weeks… 10 WEEKS. 

Had first visit at perinatologist this week. Had no idea what to expect. There was a nurse who took vitals, an extensive ultrasound, a blood draw, and a meeting with a doctor. All went really well. I’ve had my fickle blood drawn 3 times already this pregnancy, and that doesn’t bother me at all. The doctor was very familiar with my file, thorough, and had an awesome handlebar mustache and photos of him riding a cattle horse on his ranch. The ultrasound tech was great in that she, too, was thorough and clearly had been doing her job for quite some time. She referred to babies’ sex as genders, which rubs me wrong, but overall I really liked her and everyone in the office.

Everything looks on the up and up. Each baby has its own sac and placenta (dichorionic-diamniotic), which we were pretty sure of before, but got a better look this round. This is a big plus, since it’s less risky than other types of twins. Both heartbeats were strong (160’s) and measurements were on target and/or in the good range. Both babes were flipping and turning.

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Carter starts first grade tomorrow. He made sure his alarm clock was set and has a new hair cut and fresh threads. My heart hurts and leaps. Carter Patrick, you make my world turn.

Jack is all no-pants and toothy cheese grins and sign language these days. He’s got words and belly laughs and (so. many.) screeches — the kid has great lungs. Between now and January, I’m looking forward to some Mom & Chumby time during the day. As long as he stops head butting me for snacks.

I’m so tired, as I might’ve mentioned. This entry took me over an hour. Words and breathing, man. Hard.

Signing off for sleep. Eff editing.

H.Lynne

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Red, white and du..o.

At my first ultrasound last week, I swore.

“Holy. Shit.”

It wasn’t my classiest moment.

At 8 weeks, I haven’t even had the energy to shower as of late, but U/S day is a big day, so I got up, put on my best #casualpotter shirt, mascara (later revealed to be a horrible life decision), and began the circus of getting the kids ready, packing them into the car (good thing we got that minivan after all), driving to pick up the babysitter, driving to pick up my mom, driving back home, unloading the kids and the sitter, picking up Jesse, and driving to my appointment.

30+ minutes of paperwork.

Wait another 30 minutes.

Get set up on ultrasound table. Jelly on the belly, eyes on the screen.

“Ok, here’s the first one… and there’s the second one.”

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Holy shit, indeed.

I felt the blood drain out of my face and big, fat, hormone-charged tears full of allllll the feelings welled up.

Two.

I am not ready for this. I am not capable of this. My body cannot handle this. THIS IS SO COOL. Jack will maybe be two. And he’s Jack. Do we have enough room? Money. Sanity.

Here I am, writing this down. I can’t imagine that I’ll get better at logging in and journaling about our family like I’d aimed to. Will bullet point lists suffice for record keeping? And thought I felt guilty for not writing about Jack the way I did for Carter. Oy.

I won’t be shouting this from the roofs of Facebook quite yet, so for anyone reading — please let’s just keep it here.

This next part is kind of just for my own remembrance.

Weeks 1-9:

I found out I was pregnant at 4 weeks, and right about 5 started feeling really sick. I came down with an intense sinus infection that piggybacked onto all-day nausea, fatigue and a headache. It got to the point I’d nap during Jack’s nap and then wait for Jesse to get off work so that I could go back to sleep.

I really thought I was a wimp. We took a family vacation to California for Legoland and the beach during week 6 and I pushed through, but several times went back to the hotel early or needed to sit down for breaks. #wetblanket

By the time we got back, I spent the next week almost entirely in bed or on the couch. Actually, not much has changed since then. Then there was the 8 week appointment.

Since then, though I do feel a little relieved that the crazy symptoms are “normal”, that’s about the only relief there’s been. It’s been the same headache (going on a month now), nausea, dizziness, shortness of breath, congestion, foggy brain (words are hard), trouble sleeping, constant need to pee, acne, food aversions, and my least favorite — lower back pain. And all of them are turbocharged and I’m frustrated and scared and excited and achey and weepy and so tired.

Basically, I’m a picnic.

My husband and my mom are up for sainthood and you should buy them a pony or at least a mixed drink. I love you guys.

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8 1/2 Weeks: Dirty house, haggard Heather, toddler Jack. It might be mostly bloat, but yes, yes that is a bump.

Ready or not, here we go.