Solo Travel 2018

And maybe the last ever. I should clarify; the solo travel means the kids and I sans Viking. Just me, 3.5 year old twins and an almost 1 year old. Oh, and I’m about 4 months pregnant. Even I think this might be totally crazy!!

  • For the record though, I booked this trip before I knew I was pregnant. I know for certain I would NOT have ventured across Canada with 3 kids under 4 years old without my husband while pregnant. I also would not have booked our flights to depart at 6am. Since we live approximately 1.5hrs away from this airport (without traffic) we’ve decided to stay at a hotel nearby the night before. That way the Viking is sure to be able to help me get all our luggage in, car seats checked, boarding passes together, stroller and pieces tagged, and heading in the right direction towards our gate.
  • The twins aren’t new to travel. I think they’ve done close to 30 flights each now. They’re seasoned little flyers. The babe though, this is her first go. And let me tell you, this girl has a set of lungs on her! Part of that comes with being almost a year old and not being able to speak English yet (as opposed to baby jabber), partly that she’s number 5 in this family and if you need something, you need to make you needs heard. And that she does well.
  • What actually has me the most nervous about this air travel is the potty breaks. I’m one adult with three kids. Airplane bathrooms are micro sized. I’m sure we will make this work, somehow, but the thought of having to get everyone up each time someone had to go, sounds exhausting. And what if someone’s sleeping? I don’t want to bother the fight attendants, they have things to do. I like to have a plan for things so I can have an idea of what to expect. This area is grey for me and that’s a little stressful. The Viking thinks I’m wasting my time worrying and he’s probably right. But that’s not really going to change me from thinking about it. A lot.
  • So why am I still doing this? I could have called and gotten a credit or maybe even a refund because I knew so far in advance. But I didn’t cancel because we’re going to see my mom, Nana, and my kids adore her. She had the best relationship with our kids of all the grandparents. She’s engaged, she FaceTimes, she’s constantly trying to nurture a relationship with them from a distance. And truthfully, she’s the only one of our relatives I’d leave the kids with overnight. Which we did once and that was when I gave birth to Annika. Nana came and stayed for two weeks, stayed with the twins for their first time away from mom and dad. When the twins were born, she came for almost a month; she got up at night and helped keep me awake to nurse the babies, helped me pump, she bottle fed Kiera when she needed to gain weight. She did the 3 hour cycles with me day and night In and out. She doesn’t have a lot of money and we’ve paid for her flights before, so when she does come, it’s a big deal. Looking back at all that she’s done for us and our kids, how could I cancel? This has been her dream to have her grand babies all at her house (my 3 are her only ones) and it’s over Thanksgiving which is icing on the cake. So as much as I may be struggling with the details and nuances of flying with my mini entourage while 4 months pregnant, she’d be secretly so sad if we cancelled. So….here we go next week. Off on yet another adventure! Wish us luck šŸ˜‰
  • Consistently inconsistent

    I think I’ve come to the conclusion that I use this blog only when my brain is maxed. It’s not like a have a huge following or that I’m looking for a following, momma just needs things out of and off the brain some days…when time prevails. My posts are not as detailed as a dairy but still more open then I’d ever post on social media. I’ve thought about stopping, maybe closing the blog but I do enjoy looking back and reading old posts. It’s hard to remember the details, even the painful ones sometimes, I like seeing progress and growth. So for now, my brain dumps will continue, randomly and ad hoc.

    Buy 3 get 1 free

    After 13 years together, 2 rounds of IVF, 5 embryos transferred, 3 living babies, not to mention the money and alternative therapies I’ve tried, God apparently thought we deserved a freebie.

    Honestly, I have no idea how it was even possible. I have endometriosis and my left left ovary is apparently overrun by the disease. I was getting my period every 2 weeks. Literally every 14-16 days. I had started using a natural form of Progesterone to see if that would help my periods. I also started a ketogenic diet. Little did I realize how powerful it is to decrease inflammation in the body through restricted carb and sugar intake! Like the perfect storm. And somehow, someway, here we are….naturally pregnant with baby number 4. That just feels crazy to write!

    I’ve got a whole mix of emotions on this miracle. For now I’ll just say I’m still kind of in shock. I’m around 11 weeks and looking forward to being done the first trimester.

    We welcomed a….

    GIRL! Our surprise baby girl arrived on September 25th, perfectly healthy via planned c-section that went according to plan (so weird…but that’s for another day). Ms. Annika came in at 7lbs8oz and 21 3/4in long…and she looks NOTHING like the twins. I’m not sure if I was in shock more over that fact that she had dark hair or that fact that she has a lot of hair! I’m still wondering where all this hair came from…but does explain the heart burn. 

    Twins are obsessed. Seriously. Especially Kiera! It’s so cute. My boobs hurt and sleep is seldom but I feel like the fog has lifted a bit and I’m so so happy she’s here and in love šŸ’œ 


    Photo cred: Kiera. 

    35w

    How far along?  35w4d
    Prenatal Activities: I haven’t been to yoga in two weeks because life. There’s no established activities now. The Midwife just wants me to rest more…apparently I’m not good at taking it down a notch (shocker?!!)

    Gender? Still don’t know but I think the ultrasound tech the other day was about to call baby ‘she’…. 

    Stretch marks?  Oh ya. I mean, I’m not sure if they’re new ones but I can definitely see the belly ones jay are back now. 

    Sleep? Usually pretty good surprisingly but that always depends on the Bugs. 

    Best moment this week? The Bugs, especially Kiera, love hugging and rubbing and taking to the baby. It’s not even something that I introduced to them. One day, they just started. Kiera has it all planned out though; her friend is going to hold the baby first and then she’ll hold baby after lol. 

    Miss anything? Cleaning the house in a reasonable amount of time. It’s painful for me how long things take to clean right now. 

    Movement? Yes still Plenty of Movement. Although it is starting to slow down. 

    cravings? Not really. 

    Anything making you queasy or sick?  Poop. Anyone’s, dog or human. Instant vomit. 

    Symptoms? Cramping and contracting. This has been going on for awhile and I actually went off work at 33w. 

    Labor Signs? Preterm labour has been a concern for awhile. I had a few scares and the midwife was able to convince me to stop working. It’s honestly been the best decision. I can feel how less stressed I am, I can rest when the cramping starts and I get to spend time with the kids; quality time not just the end of day rush time. 

    Belly Button in or out?  Definitely out

    Wedding rings on or off? Off

    Happy or Moody most of the time? Much happier now that I’m not working. 

    Looking forward to? Hopefully making it farther then I did with the twins, which was 36w2d. Nesting more – honestly, I haven’t packed a bag yet nor have I washed any newborn clothes! We’ve been so busy with renos and I’m tired and need to take it easy so the bare minimum is getting done. But nursery is now done so I can start getting clothes together. 

    29w

    How far along?  29w3d

    Prenatal Activities: Prenatal yoga  

    Gender?  not finding out.  And still leaning more towards girl although I keep having dreams about boys. Well, not multiple boys just the male gender but multiple dreams. The old wives tale says that if you have dreams of one gender, you’ll give birth to the opposite. We shall seeeeee!

    Stretch marks?  The ones on my stomach are visible now but they’re leftover from the twins. Which I didn’t get any stretch marks with the twins until about 34 weeks. 

    Sleep? Im still averaging about 4-5hrs a night but I am able to hold my pee the last week til the morningso that’s  nice. 

    Leg and foot cramps still present albeit intermittently. They’re painful as heck!

    Best moment this week ā€“ i think this week it’s just a reminder for me to find calmness and happiness in the simple things. Like how much the kids love putting their faces and cheeks on my bare belly. Or asking the baby to wake up and play. They’re also very excited for baby to come because that also means Nana comes on a plane too! 

    Miss anything?  Poultry and a full nights sleep. 

    Movement? Still the busier I am, the less I feel. As soon as I stop and sit, baby starts grooving. And Iā€™m starting to see a pattern. 

     cravings? No not really. 

    Anything making you queasy or sick?   Poultry.  Too much sugar. 

    Symptoms?  Braxton hicks. More round ligament pain. Feet looking a little swollen some days. 

    Labor Signs? I lost part of my mucus plug on the weekend. My Midwife wasn’t too concerned but she does want me to cut back at work. So working 3-4 days per week. I’m trying to work from home one day a week so see if the cramping and what not does down. 

    I’ve never had anxiety before. I could see how people struggled and am very sensitive to individual struggles. But the last few days, I’ve been hit with anxiety. I can’t breathe, my heart is racing, I’m crying and can’t focus. I fixate on things in my brain. And I know this is largely because of my work load. It’s jam packed and if I wasn’t pregnant my weekends and more evenings would be filled with work. But I simply can’t right now and the pressure, the stress is giving me anxiety. Last night it took a few hours to go away. I used essential oils and ice packs to try and get my breathing under control. And then I get even more worried about preterm labour due to the cortisol levels spiking and staying spiked for long periods of time. I don’t want another NICU stint! I want a healthy baby with no breathing problems and a good weight. I will be very upset with myself if something goes wrong. My midwife is already concerned about preterm. I just don’t know what to do. The Viking wants me done sooner rather then later. 

    Belly Button in or out?  A halfie!?

    Wedding rings on or off?  On but not sure for how much longer. 

    Happy or Moody most of the time?Definitely moody this week. Not a lot of patience. The anxiety is getting to me. 

    Looking forward to? I just want to spend some time with my husband. Having trouble finding a sitter but I’d even settle for kids that go to sleep early just so we can hang out. 

    27w

    How far along?  27w4d

    Prenatal Activities: Prenatal yoga is back on now. I love it. There two instructors for this class and while both are good I actually prefer the one I have now. She’s gentler on the body and less about a work out and more and stretching and listening to your body and it’s energy. Also, I love shavasana.   

    We are also potty training, did the 3 day method, and now about a week and a half in. I fee like potty training twins is exercise. 

    Gender?  not finding out.  And still leaning more towards girl. 

    Stretch marks?  No new ones yet. Although I can see some of the stretch marks on my stomach becoming more visible now. 

    Sleep? Hit and miss but not because of pregnancy. Kiera has a hard time holding her bladder at night and seems to have an accident every night around 1am. This is the only accident she has now. She’s about 60% self initiating bathroom visits. Anyways, she cries every night when this happens so I change her undies and she comes into our bed and is dry the rest of the night. Gunnar’s also started doing this too. I’m ok with it for now but everyone needs to be out of my bed by the time baby comes lol. 

    Pregnancy is causing me some leg cramps and spasms that aren’t routine but definitely wake me up at night. I may need to up the magnesium. 

    Best moment this week ā€“ honestly it’s been a really, no insanely busy week. I don’t have gestational diabetes so that’s awesome!

    My mat leave replacement started Monday which is great but also bitter sweet. It’s likely that she’ll stay on after as our company is expanding by another 100+people this year. I’m glad we have significant overlap but I still have mixed emotions. 

    And the fires. I live in BC and it’s a pretty crazy time. One of our plants is curtailed, people are displaced and the city I live in has already accepted 3000+ people. I’m volunteering tonight for 5 hours (which the Viking thinks I’m nuts at 7 months to do) but I feel strongly that it’s part of our civic responsibility to volunteer AND if someone is getting out of the house to do it, it me hahaha. 

    Miss anything?  Poultry and a full nights sleep. 

    Movement? Still the busier I am, the less I feel. As soon as I stop and sit, baby starts grooving. And I’m starting to see a pattern. 

     cravings? No not really. 

    Anything making you queasy or sick?   Poultry.  Too much sugar. 

    Symptoms?  Braxton hicks. More round ligament pain. Feet looking a little swollen some days. 

    Labor Signs? I thought I was have some preterm signs last weekend so I was laying down any chance I could and drinking lots of water. The back pain and cramping is what scares me sometimes. 

    Belly Button in or out?  In but starting to migrate out. 

    Wedding rings on or off?  On

    Happy or Moody most of the time? Pretty happy but definitely low on patience some days. And emotional, more than normal. I’m not used to crying!

    And I’m struggling with some stress and anxiety. Out daycare has been a struggle to get on board with potty training; she’s 60 and set in her ways, ways that don’t work for my kids. It gives me anxiety every day going there and listening to her. We’ve had some firm discussions a few times and that’s the worst because I do t want to have to stress about my kids during the day like that. 

    And then I get worried that the extra work and daycare stress is impacting the baby. We had a crazy birth with the twins but I’m still very afraid of having a baby with colic. I just don’t think I can handle having toddlers and then a colicky baby?! I might go crazy. 

    Looking forward to? Potentially camping this weekend. Sounds weird to say that with all the fires going on but northwest of town is clear of any risk and the kids are so pumped! Were tenting it this summer (all the renos trump a trailer purchase) so we’ll see how that goes. 

    I also decided to take the meeting with the OB to discuss the risks, numbers, definition of risk, etc. I know I’m going to elect for a section but what if I go into labour like I did with the twins? I went very fast with them and I wonder what will happen if I go fast again, if I go into labour. I want to know what the risks are if by chance things happen and I delivered naturally. I also decided that as much as I don’t want to, I need to go to the OR when no one is there. I need to figure out how to get over the fear. I’m not sure if this will do it but it can’t hurt. 

    Delivery anxiety

    At my midwife appointment today, we discussed a number of items pertaining to the upcoming delivery. Granted we still have some time on our side but we do need to get the ball rolling and I have a few decisions to make. 

    I originally chose to go with a midwife over LD physicians because I wanted to explore the possibility of a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). Now I had to have a t incision (due to unexpected and unknown fibroid placement) with the twins delivery which increases the risks associated with a VBAC. Being a numbers person, I want data. I want to know what exactly those risks mean or equate to. Are we talking 5% risk or 50% and what’s the definition of risk ? Are we talking about serious complication and if so, what does that mean? C-sections have risk to do I want those numbers to evaluate as well.  For me, the decision is/was about informed consent. I’m simply not willing to accept broad undefined terms. 

    As time has progressed throughout my pregnancy, it’s also become clear that my fibroid is much lower in my uterine segment then originally anticipated making it likely more difficult for baby to get into position into my pelvis and head hand. Pregnancy hormones cause the fibroid to grow so currently it’s not that big at 5cm but I’ve still got 12 weeks to go. 

    The midwife has recommended a consult with an OB. This consult will be with the one OB in the city she believes is open to having the discussion with me. I’m realistic that the OBs recommendation will be to have a repeat section but this OB will at least have the conversation with me. 

    My second option is to have a repeat but scheduled cesarean. This option, ideally, gives me more control. I can pick my OB to do the surgery, I can pick my anesthetist, I can, hopefully, have a ‘gentle cesarean’ where baby can be placed in my chest post birth and we can delay cord clamping. If all goes well, I can also have placenta encapsulation completed. On paper, my second option is much more favorable to me. 

    You see, I can talk and think about have a cesarean from the mechanical perspective just fine. But every time I think about having to walk into the OR by myself, not knowing anyone and I mean there was a Plethora of people in there with the twins, being rushed in because I was about to deliver, having an anesthetist that didn’t listen to me when I said the spinal wasn’t working and was forcing narcotics into my cheek while forcing my head to the side as I continued to vomit with vomit pooling in my ear, hearing the screaming going on between the doctors and nurses and this anesthetist and the fighting, struggling to get Gunnar out, barely seeing my babies before they were rushed out and taken to the NICU, hearing that my daughter had a seizure and I wasn’t there and being left in the ICU for hours before an angel being the head of the nursing department told off the anesthetist and brought me to my babies. I can still smell the OR. I know that I have an almost debilitating fear of the deliver room OR. I don’t want to think about that place. But I have to. I thought I was over this but I’m not. I want this delivery to be different. I desperately need this delivery to be different. I need it to be healing. I need it to be a calm but a sublimely joyous occasion. I want to be with my baby. I need it to be the complete opposite of the twins birth in the most positive ways possible. And I think having more control over who’s in my team, may allow for this to happen. I apparently just need to spend more time processing this anxiety. 

    25w4d

    How far along?  25w4d
    Prenatal Activities: Prenatal yoga but that’s on pause til mid July until all the holidays are done. I think the pool is my friend for the next little while, even if it’s just playing wth the kids. 
    Gender?  not finding out.  And still leaning more towards girl. 

    Stretch marks?  No new ones yet. 

    Sleep? Not bad. We were on vacation for the last week…well it felt like a working vacation as the Bugs were in a wedding and I answered the phone for the first two days until the Viking asked me nicely to stop. 

    The kids went to bed far too late but thankfully slept so well and slept in late each day that it didn’t matter. I however seemed to wake up at the crack of dawn regardless of how late the Bugs went to bed at. 

    Best moment this week ā€“ the Bugs were in a wedding and honestly, they were so cute and did so great! They walked down the isle like champs and Kiera LOVED getting ready with the big girls. So cute šŸ’œ

    Two of the Vikings cousins are also pregnant; ones about 6 weeks ahead of me and the other is about 10 weeks behind, both with their first. Seeing them out their feet up a lot or simply relaxing, hearing them comment frequently to me that they don’t know how I do it (energy wise) I think put some things into perspective for the Viking. Not that he takes me for granted but … I don’t think he really got how tiring it all is some days. We haven’t talked about it but he seems much more willing and quicker to get up to manage the kids then before. 

    Miss anything?  Poultry. A full nights slee but let’s be honest, I haven’t seen one of those in 3 years now…

    Movement? Yes! Singleton baby confirmed to have an anterior placenta! Although the busier I am, the less I feel. As soon as I stop and sit, baby starts grooving. 

     cravings? No not really. 

    Anything making you queasy or sick?   Poultry.  Too much sugar. 

    Symptoms?  Braxton hicks. Going for my GD test next week which I’m pretty sure I’m going to fail even with my dietary changes. 

    Labor Signs? NO!

    Belly Button in or out?  In but starting to migrate out. 

    Wedding rings on or off?  On

    Happy or Moody most of the time? Pretty happy but definitely low on patience some days. 

    Looking forward to? Honestly, not working. I feel lazy saying that but career gal plus mother of dragons…I mean twins…is tiring. I’m likely just more tired because of all the festivities from last week but my brain is mush today and I have no drive. 

    23w

    How far along?  23w5d

    Activity? Prenatal yoga still but the walking has not been great the last week. I’m tired and there just ain’t enough time.  

    Gender?  not finding out.  But last night I had the craziest dream. I dreamt that in gave birth to fraternal boys. One was bigger then the other and the bigger one grew rapidly to the same size and hair cut as Gunnar. He had 7 teeth at birth. The other, had brown hair, I can still see his face, but had 11 teeth. Needless to say, I didn’t nurse. 

    So weird!!!!!

    Stretch marks?  No new ones yet. 

    Sleep? Not bad. I wake up at least once a night to pee. Usually around the same time Kiera wakes up to come in our bed. 

    Best moment this week ā€“ movement is pretty steady now. In the mid and around 9pm. Kiera hugs and kisses my belly all the time. And Gunnar wants to use the Doppler first on me and then on himself haha 

    Miss anything?  Chicken and a full nights sleep. 

    Zen. Is that possible? Work is crazy busy right now. Last week there was a lot of anxiety. I hate feeling like that being pregnant. 

    Movement? Yes! Singleton baby I feel more movement because my placenta is at the back this time. 

    Food cravings? No not really. 

    Anything making you queasy or sick?   Poultry. And potentially sushi/seaweed now

    Symptoms?  Braxton hicks started too. Dizziness and seeing stars. Midwife thinks it’s because I run low blood pressure and likely my blood sugar is low too. I’m going to try and do my 3 hour GD test before we vacation next week. 

    Labor Signs? NO!

    Belly Button in or out?  In but starting to migrate out. 

    Wedding rings on or off?  On

    Happy or Moody most of the time? Pretty happy!  

    Looking forward to? Vacation next week!!! This will be the Bugs 20th fights I think and their first in their own seats. This momma is soooo happy for that šŸ˜Š