30 week update / by Martha Keyes

The last few months have been a wild ride indeed. Pregnancy--a goal we worked so hard for so long to achieve--has been a type of adventure I never expected it to be, and we are now on the tail end of that adventure, probably with the hardest yet to come, though. 

Meanwhile, we added little Teddy to the mix. Teddy is our now 15-week old labradoodle puppy. I can't begin to tell you how many comments we've received about how crazy we are to add a puppy to our lives when we're expecting twins in a couple of months. Trust me when I say that nothing anyone could say would be anything that hadn't already crossed our minds before we got the pup. I know it's crazy, but for us, it's the right time. I know one thing for sure: once we have two babies to care for, getting a brand new puppy will be the last thing on our minds, so getting him while we still have time to train him was the best decision for us. We've been extremely blessed to have a very flexible schedule as a married couple, and a big consideration for us in getting Teddy was that he would assist us in transitioning toward a lifestyle more geared toward the needs of others where we can't just pick up and leave without some forethought. 
We lucked out so much with Teddy. He is such a well-behaved puppy, which we get comments on all the time. Plus, he's just adorable. 

His mom is a 4th generation labradoodle, and his dad is a standard poodle which means he doesn't really shed. He also doesn't bark (yet), and we've already crate trained him, taught him not to nip, and gotten him used to the rough treatment he'll face in a future full of twin boys. We love Teddy, and we're excited that our boys will grow up with a pet to care for and snuggle. He's growing so fast! I can't believe how small he was when we got him at 9 weeks versus what he looks like now. Here are some pictures of life with Teddy over the last few weeks.

The day we brought him home.

The day we brought him home.

Teddy has had a couple days playing at my aunt's farm in Payson, getting to know her dogs, cows, horses, and chickens.

Teddy has had a couple days playing at my aunt's farm in Payson, getting to know her dogs, cows, horses, and chickens.

He's great in the car--probably due to the fact that we've driven with him to and from Salt Lake over and over again from the first day we had him.

He's great in the car--probably due to the fact that we've driven with him to and from Salt Lake over and over again from the first day we had him.

Brandon works hard on teaching Teddy tricks

Brandon works hard on teaching Teddy tricks

We are determined to make Teddy a snuggly dog.

We are determined to make Teddy a snuggly dog.

We've been getting in our fix of sports games this fall in anticipation of it being quite some time before we're brave enough to get out for something like a football game. We have season tickets to BYU football this year, and we went to a Jazz game as well. We will see how I do sitting for such long periods with these last three games of the football season...I don't stay comfortable in any position for very long as it is. The boys are crazy active during football games, probably due to the noise level, but it's fun to pretend they feel the excitement like we do. 

I had a wonderful baby shower about a week ago, hosted by my mom and sisters. I felt so overwhelmed by people's generosity to us! There is so much to buy and plan for with any pregnancy, but with multiples, things can get crazy complicated and expensive. We are so very grateful for everyone's support and love for us and these boys! 
One highlight was getting to take a quick picture with Ali and Amanda. The three of us were in the Master of Public Health program together from 2012-2014, and now we are all pregnant with boys, due within two months of each other. 

Don't worry, Ali on the left was just 5 days from her due date at this point (can we say superwoman for making it to my shower that late in her pregnancy?!), but I'm larger than both her and Amanda (who is due January 8th).

Don't worry, Ali on the left was just 5 days from her due date at this point (can we say superwoman for making it to my shower that late in her pregnancy?!), but I'm larger than both her and Amanda (who is due January 8th).

A couple of weeks ago, I decided to take a break from social media. Unfortunately I'm not someone who is very disciplined when it comes to restricting my time on instagram and facebook. There is a lot I want to get done while I can, add into that the insanity of election season, and November seemed like a great time for a social media break. It's actually been quite lovely to separate myself from the fray. It's helped me notice how much my emotions feed off of other people's posts, and it's nice to take back that control a bit. 

It's insane that we are, at the very most, 8 weeks away from meeting the twins. It's starting to get very real around here. My body is absolutely starting to feel the weight and strain of having seven pounds of baby inside. The issues I've had in the past with my sacroiliac joint have gotten a bit out of control recently, and I may well be at the chiropractor once a week for the next two months. Reflux and heartburn are in full swing; nausea has amped its game back up (though it never left); arthritic joints have reared their head; swelling in my hands, ankles and feet is already pretty epic; congestion at night may well be the death of me; my numb/burning left thigh is still going strong; and I'm now on week 18 of the most persistent candidiasis known to man. I have no idea how my body will handle another 8 weeks of added weight and pressure--it's going to be a very interesting holiday season-but I know the sacrifices will all be worth it if it means these boys get more time to develop and grow inside. 

It has been surreal to watch and feel how their movements have changed. Up until a week or two ago, about 95% of the movement I felt was from Baby A. Baby B has an anterior placenta which acts as insulation so that I haven't felt him move as much. That has changed, though, and now the movement I feel is from Baby A about 60% of the time and from Baby B about 40% of the time. They love stretching out and going crazy when I lay on my back. They protest with movement when I fold my arms on top of my bump (like at church). My most consistent thought throughout the day is, "What in the world is going on in there?!" 
At our growth ultrasound a couple weeks ago, both babies were head down (yay!!), but within a week, Baby B had flipped breech. They are moving enough that I didn't expect them to both stay head down, but it was still good to know that they're capable of it, given all the different positions they've been in at our ultrasounds. At the growth ultrasound, we found out that they are both growing on schedule, with Baby B in the 45th percentile and Baby A in the 30th percentile. In the last two ultrasounds, we've gotten a decent 3D picture of both babies' faces which is fun. We have no idea how big Brandon was as a baby, nor what he looked like until about a year old. We have two pictures of him when he was about one, and then nothing for a few more years. Isn't he such a muffin, though?!

My belly is growing at an alarming rate, though I'm happy that it means the boys are growing! At my 25 week appointment, I measured 27 weeks (based on a pregnancy with just one baby), and at my 28 week appointment, I measured 32 weeks. I wasn't very diligent about taking weekly pictures of the bump until halfway through the pregnancy (pictures were the last thing on my mind when I was in the throes of the first trimester), but I admit that it's really crazy to see the difference that happened in just 8 weeks. 

We are getting so excited to meet these little guys. I admit that it's taken me this long to feel like my excitement level matched my anxiety level. As someone who researches and overanalyzes everything, planning and preparing for twins has been overwhelming to say the least. But I also feel so very blessed to be able to welcome not one but two perfect little babies into our family. Despite the difficulties of this pregnancy, I am very conscious of how blessed we are not to have had any major complications arise, as well. This morning, Brandon and I were laying in bed, looking at the 30 week update on all three pregnancy apps I have on my phone (haha), and I feel so blown away to think that these babies are both over 3 pounds and nearly 17 inches long! Last night Brandon got to feel a good example of the crazy intense circus that happens inside my stomach all day everday. The boys are so strong, and they move so much. Even though it's uncomfortable at times, it is always awe-inspiring and reassuring at the same time. We sure love these two little boys!