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10 to Twins

By Jessica T

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About this blog: I'm a late thirties mother of a ten-year-old and infant twins. My family moved to Menlo Park 6 years ago from Virginia - where I grew up, went to college, got married, had my first born, and got an MBA (in that order). I'm a manag...  (More)

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Twin pregnancy tips

Uploaded: May 13, 2014
I never thought I'd be the mother of twins. From the moment that I found out I was carrying two embryos, I was worried about carrying them to term. My sister, a midwife, assured me that any woman can carry twins. But I was nervous nonetheless. We live in a high-stress environment, and I've been surprised at how common pre-term labor seems to be in our community.

In preparation, I took a wonderful "Multiples" class offered by Lucile Packard Hospital; reached out to a mentor with twins; and of course followed my doctor's orders. Here are some additional tips about twin pregnancy that I'd like to pass along (all borrowed from others before me):

1) Gain as much weight as possible in the first trimester. I put on at least a pound a week. By the time I told my team at work that I was pregnant, I couldn't believe they hadn't noticed! Along with indulging in ice cream, I ate big breakfasts (and lunches and dinners!) and had snacks mid-morning, mid-afternoon, and sometimes before the evening commute. I also sometimes woke up in the middle of the night famished (which has never happened before or since). I would eat an apple in bed, loudly, which my husband said was like being in a dark barn with a hungry horse.

2) Eat protein - lots of it. I thought my mentor was crazy when she told me to get creative and eat the equivalent of six steaks per day. I'm not sure I did that, but I ate eggs and yogurt and peanut butter toast almost every morning, and I tripled my meat consumption.

3) Drink water - at least 64 oz in addition to all liquids at mealtimes. When I failed to drink two tall water bottles per day, I often had Braxton Hicks contractions. Staying hydrated keeps your uterus from contracting, so do it.

4) Speaking of contractions, stay away from them. At the end of my pregnancy, I avoided too much activity - even driving to and from meetings around Google's campus. Anything that might cause Braxton Hicks contractions, I stayed away from (including people who stressed me out!)

5) Swimming - I really had no interest doing this activity in the winter, but at my mentor's urging, and with the encouragement of a good friend who was dragging herself to the pool in the morning before work, I went. And it was wonderful! I swam twice a week throughout my pregnancy and on the day before the twins were born. (At which point the lifeguards appeared to be watching me like a hawk, lest I have an unplanned water birth.) I've continued to swim post-partum, and it's been so easy on my body after everything it's been through (although finding a bathing suit that fit me post-pregnancy was less easy).

6) Prenatal yoga - Read more about it here.

7) Know when to stop working - at some point, you may wake up and realize your full-time job has become keeping your babies inside and healthy. Honor that, and make arrangements to put your growing twins first.

Thanks to my wonderful and understanding co-workers and my supportive and caring friends, my twins pregnancy was one of the happiest times of my life. I hope it will be for you too!

Comments

 +  Like this comment
Posted by Eva_PA, a resident of Ventura,
on May 15, 2014 at 3:48 pm

Eva_PA is a registered user.

I would also add be ready for anything during the pregnancy and take it one step at a time. Most of my friends (myself included) had some medical issue during pregnancy, or bedrest requirements. But these cannot be predicted and should be taken in stride. I laugh about the 4-week birthing class we took at Stanford, only to have a C-Section. Luckily we took the C-Section class too.

I'd recommend not reading any of the "scary" books about issues you "could" have (What to Expect, etc.), it's enough to make you super paranoid. Instead read books that will help you after birth, like books on sleep training ("Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child") and scheduling (keeping a schedule will save what little sanity you have :-)

Finally, make arrangement to get as much help as you can (afford) after birth. If you can afford a night nanny it will be the BEST money you've ever spent.

Enjoy the twins/multiples. It's such a wonderful experience!


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Jessica T, a Almanac Online blogger,
on May 16, 2014 at 3:51 pm

Jessica T is a registered user.

Eva_PA - Great tips. Anyone expecting multiples is in for an unpredictable journey! I'd agree that anything you can do to keep your mind at ease is key. We managed without a night nanny without any trouble, but to each her own!



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