Thursday, August 18, 2011

Two Posts in One! How Lucky Are You!?

Yesterday, I had an appointment with my midwife in her home. It went rather well; we discussed nutrition, expectations, payment options, essential oils, herbal tea, exercise, and my sleeping schedule. Have I told you how much I love my midwife!? The difference between sitting in a comfortable room in her home (with no wait, no nurses, no protocol, no needles, etc.) to waiting in a medical office was outstanding. My only regret: Not doing this with my first child and waiting until my sixth.

Anyway, it came time to listen to the heartbeat. If you're buddies with me on FB, you'll already know what happened, but here's the scenario in detail:

She moved the doppler until we heard the heartbeat --it was strong! What a relief to hear the heartbeat, eh? It's so comforting, dear reader. There truly are no words. The heartbeat was around 155. Since she knew there was a chance I could be having twins (did you know that I think I could be having twins? I've had all the "symptoms" since 7 weeks), she moved the doppler around some more, slowly, away from the original heartbeat. The first heartbeat was heard around the left side of my womb, and when the doppler moved to the right side of my womb, we heard it again. However, this time, the heart rate was 169. So, she moved it back, and on the left side, it was again, around 155. Of course, the rates changed constantly, but the left side was consistently between 150 and 157 and the one on the right side was consistently 164-171.

The look on my midwife's face was priceless! Of course, she was quick to say that it was still absolutely not a guarantee; it could be a fluke, and without two dopplers (and, of course, an ultrasound) she couldn't be sure. So, if pressed, she would say it's one baby. But she's still not sure.

Isn't that crazy!? I still don't know. It's still completely unknown. And now I have another symptom: two doppler heartbeats! Well, maybe.

Everyone asks me why I haven't just had an ultrasound to determine the twins or not, yet. Well, it's simple: I have a midwife who will be delivering my baby at my home. She doesn't have a ton of expensive medical supplies. So, no ultrasound machine in her home! We'll have to do it at the birthing center around 20 weeks, or I could just pay to go to one of those ultrasound places in the mall. But then that costs more money. So... I don't know what I'm going to do. What would you do? Wait until 20 weeks, or go find out right now? If you thought you were having twins, would you be scared or excited?

To be honest? I think I'll be disappointed if it's NOT twins. I've already accepted and resigned myself to the fact that I might have seven children, rather than six. That I might have two at once! Of course, if it is only one baby, I'm pretty sure I'll be just fine with it, too. :)


Last night we were able to attend Aspen Grove Family Camp's Staff Reunion. It was so much fun! We opted to stay in a rustic cabin for the night, as well as the activities, and my only complaint? We weren't there long enough! One night was way too short.

Brandon worked at Aspen Grove in 1995 and then we worked there together after we were married in 1999 and 2000. It was truly paradise, living there. It's changed so much over the years! It's grown, it's a lot nicer --it truly has been improved ten fold. But the basics are still the same. The mountain, the feeling, the air... as it was our home for a few years, we miss it so very, very much.

The kids were quite upset with us this morning as we left. #3 asked if we could move there! It's only 25 minutes from our house, but it's still another world. We have always talked about going to Aspen Grove for family camp; in fact, we talk about it almost every year. But then we look at our budget and the cost and we balk. We've balked for 11 years, now. Last night, however, we looked at the numbers again and I thought about it this morning. When you pay for an Aspen Grove vacation, it includes:
1. Housing and bedding (for rustic cabins)
2. All food for six whole days
3. All programs and activities which include: sports, hiking, swimming, children's counselors (who they are with all day long doing all kinds of fantastic activities), programs, guest lectures, family programs, arts and crafts (these have to be purchased separate, though), ropes course, fishing, etc. and so forth.
4. You only have to drive to one place, and then park for six days.

If you take into consideration how much it would cost for a cruise (for a family of seven or eight...or nine! (see above)) or a vacation where you pay for the condo, or hotel, and food, activities, gas, etc. and add it all together: Aspen Grove is not unreasonable. In fact, it kind of makes sense! It just looks bad because it's all at once--one big bill rather than a whole load of little/separate bills.

Anyway, Brandon and I have to talk about it more, but I have a feeling that we might actually see our Aspen Grove dream come true really soon.

Oh! And fantastic news! During the staff reunion, they had a raffle drawing, and we won a gift certificate to a Marriage Retreat! We are so excited! So, in October, we get to go back to AG for an overnighter. Huzzah! If you have never been to Aspen Grove, this is a great introduction (and it's a marriage retreat, right? So, how cool is that for a nice get-a-way?).

To end, here are some photos (that I stole from the Internet) of Aspen Grove to whet your appetite. Trust me when I say they don't do the place justice!

Have you ever been to Aspen Grove? To Family Camp? Worked there? Love it as much as I do?


FoxyJ said...

I would be anxious to find out about whether it was twins or not, but I'm anxious about pregnancy and my body doesn't do a good job with it so twins would have been a bad thing. Does your midwife have much experience with delivering twins? Or with breech births (a common issue with twins)? That's what I would find out. I have had several friends that had twin pregnancies that went full-term and delivered vaginally, so that shouldn't be a problem. My neighbor had twins for her fifth and sixth kids (they both weighed about 7 pounds!), and then had three more after that, so why stop at 7 kids? :)

We went to a marriage retreat at Aspen Grove once. It was mostly fun. The only thing I didn't like was that we registered too late to get a private room in the lodge and had to get a room in a cabin with a few other couples who were sharing the cabin too, and that just felt a little awkward.

FoxyJ said...

Oh, and if you would like to borrow my copy of Spiritual Midwifery, you can. It's a lot of fun to read (I don't know if I offered this before or not).

Dorri said...

Twins!! How exciting! There are 3 sets in my family. I'm not sure on the ultrasound thing. Part of me would want to wait and part would be dying to know for sure.
My brother and his family did a family reunion with his wife's family there a couple of summers ago and raved about Aspen Grove. Our family just stayed at the Heber Valley Girls camp. I'd totally recommend that one too, though it doesn't have all the stuff Aspen Grove does, for a big family reunion it was great.
Glad to hear that things are going good with the baby/babies.

Emily said...

Oh awesome! I want to take the family to Aspen Grove some time, too! I've also looked into the marriage retreats. We wanted to do one this year, but never worked it in.

evitafjord said...

Well, since I wouldn't be able to sleep until I knew, I think I'd either go to the mall or see if I could find or rent 2 Dopplers somehow - or I guess just an extra one and see if I could swing by the MW's. Yeah, I'd go nuts with all the signs but not knowing for sure.

Julie P said...

I think FoxyJ had great ideas for questions for the midwife. As for me, there's no way I wouldn't be RUNNING to the mall store TODAY. If there was any question, I'd have to know for planning. No way would I wait until half way to know!

Julie said...

If I could request anything in the baby department at this point, it would be twins. Then it wouldn't matter that they were a caboose and they'd have a close sibling. SO, I guess I'm saying that if you're hoping for twins, I say yay!

Also, Aspen Grove looks so pretty.

Heatherlady said...

How exciting that it could be twins! You know part of me would be dying to know for sure but I've found that it is a REALLY powerful experience to rely on your own intution and spiritual revelations instead of getting fast and easy proof. I know that the one pregnancy where I didn't ever take a pregnancy test and just relied on the Lord's natural time-- eventually it become OBVIOUS that you are pregnant-- was a really powerful learning experience for me. I know that sometimes I wanted to go get the easy quick proof but by making myself rely on what my body and the spirit told me really changed my whole pregnancy. If you are having twins you will KNOW sooner or later-- eventually it will become pretty obvious. But if having twins changes your midwife's ability to attend you then it might be worth finding out. Either way it is really exciting!

Amy said...

I have twins. They are almost 9. I had them in Germany so my experience is differnt than if they had been born in the states. BUT I know that it is difficult to check on development after a certain time (like 24 weeks, maybe earlier.) Ultrasounds are not just for finding out the gender, you know! There are also lots of possible complications with twins that you don't have with regular pregnancies. I suggest getting educated about twins and make some contengency plans. I was lucky enough to have mine naturally but one was breech. We very nearly had an emergency c-section.

Having twins is exciting and exhausting. The more prepared you are before they come the better!

Rachel and Nathan Fisher said...

If you do have twins I will be totally jealous (and of course excited for you). I wanted twins my whole life, never got them, and with my last pregnancy my doctor told me that I probably wouldn't have been able to carry them anyway (because of my wierd kidney problem). The Lord always know what he is doing, right! I still think about adopting some, but my husband isn't on board (let's be honest - the 5 we already have run us pretty ragged!)

But, if it were me, I would find out as soon as possible. For two main reasons. One, as mentioned above, there are certain signs that you would want to be on the lookout for developmentally. Second, I would be thinking about and getting excited about the possibility, and if I did that for 2 months and then had the letdown that it WASN'T twins that would be really hard. If you know now you can adjust your expectations.
Good luck either way!

Kevin and Lisa said...

Oh how I miss Aspen grove. Kevin and I talk about it every year. And now, since this year we went to Disneyland and spent a fortune, I think it will be easier to convince him of this trip in the future. (When do we have to get on the wait list for 2013??) It's more outdoorsy and up his alley. It looks like it has changed so much, I don't know that I would recognize it. If my children hadn't started school the day before the reunion we might have tried a little harder to get out there. Did you know many people? The other day I listened the the Wah Posse mix, it's my long distance driving CD.

Oh, and good luck with the twins situation!! A little excitement is always good.

Cheryl said...

I would have to know whether it was twins or not..i could not wait! But then again I am very impatient in my pregnancies and have to know what they gender is etc.... And I would CRY if I had twins, I would be worried because newborns are hard for me and I get the baby blues pretty bad! But you will do great! (if it's twins)

Never been to aspen grove. ALWAYS wanted to go, but I look at that bill and CHOKE! Someday we need to go, in the next few years because my oldest is 12 and I can almost feel a mission beckoning because 7 years will go by in a FLASH!

Fisher Family said...

Man, I'm so jealous you got to spend time up at Aspen Grove. Steve and I want to take the family back there so badly!!! One of these summers we're just going to do it. You're handling the twin thing quite calmly. I would totally be freakin' out!! I'm maxed out at 4 though. You must be a better woman than me!

earlfam said...

Aspen Grove is the real "happiest place on earth."

Go to the mall and find out what you're having!!!!! It's not that much money.

Natalie said...

I would highly suggest finding out if it's twins or not. I found out I was having twins when I was only 13 weeks along. It drastically changed my birth plan! I think the sooner you know, the better. Good luck, twins are a huge blessing!

Rebecca said...

How did I miss this on Facebook???

And yes, you must absolutely find out for sure if you're having twins! You need to be prepared!!! If I put enough exclamation points in this comment, will it convince you?