Let’s get back to some twin Q&A! And if you have a minute, go congratulate Mr. and Mrs. Blonde, who just found out they’re having twins!
Where are we? So far we have:
Could I perhaps have come up with a more intuitive titling system? Such as, perhaps, #1, #2, #3? I mean for heaven’s sake.
Oh. Wait. We don’t seem to have any more twin questions to answer. We do have some miscellaneous questions, though, and I’ll just go ahead and answer them here since they came about because of the twin Q&A posts.
Ruthie: “I have a question that’s not exactly twin related but I hope you’ll still answer. I’m about to have my 3rd C-section, and my doctor has been not exactly adamant, but let’s say strongly recommending, that 3 is the limit. My husband has taken this to mean that not getting my tubes tied at delivery is the equivalent of a suicide mission. You mentioned that the twins were your 3rd C – did your doctor recommend no more children for you after that point? Did you have any problems with your C for Henry (assuming it was a 4th C)? I’ve read your archives and it seems like you weren’t sure for awhile whether you would have more children after Henry … did the C section thing enter into your decision?”
So far all my obstetricians (I go to a practice with 6-8 of them, plus I had another one for my first pregnancy) have answered the “How many c-sections is okay?” question on a case-by-case basis: part of what can make subsequent c-sections risky has to do with the complications that caused the woman to need the c-sections in the first place. But so far all of them have agreed that the default answer is that the risks increase slightly for each one, but that as long as everything is normal (and continues to be normal) you can have as many c-sections as you want. “Sure, be a Kennedy,” said one of my OBs, referring to whichever Kennedy woman it was who had 9 or 11 c-sections or whatever it was.
What my OBs do is check things out during each c-section and tell me if things still look okay for another, and so far it’s always been yes. Definitely it’s not standard to say three is the limit. If I were you I’d tell the OB right before the c-section begins that I didn’t think I wanted any more children but could he/she please investigate while in there and see how things look just in case you change your mind.
During the twin pregnancy I did worry a little about uterine rupture: the uterus gets soooooo stretched for twins, and I’d already had two c-sections. But everything was fine, and then I had a fourth c-section and the OB still says everything looks fine if I want another. So for me, it’s not something I consider an issue; I’m more worried about my increasing age. (In fact, one theory for why the risks go up for subsequent c-sections is that the mother’s age is also increasing.)
Megan: “I have a personal one for you, but I understand if you don’t want to answer….how much weight have you gained with each pregnancy and how much did you lose before getting pregnant again? Did you try to lose weight or did it just happen? I’m overweight and about to try to get pregnant.”
I’ve gained such a different amount with each pregnancy, and had such different experiences losing it. For my first pregnancy I gained 40 pounds and most of it came off quickly but it seemed to take AGES to lose the last little bit. For my second pregnancy I gained 15 pounds and lost all of it fast and then some (and then afterward I gained back the extra I’d lost, and then some). With the twins I gained about 50 pounds and lost it all in a week (a LOT of it was water retention—my legs were swollen up to my hips) and then kept losing. With Henry I can’t remember what happened, perhaps because my brain hit the limit of how many details it could hold. But I seem to remember it going about the same as my first pregnancy. I always think I’ll use an upcoming pregnancy to inspire me to lose weight, but it never works!
Eleanor Q.: “Independence training? I’d like to hear more about that. How did you pick what activities to start with? How did you coerce a toddler into doing something that YOU wanted when YOU suggest it? Did you see any regression of abilities once the babies came home?”
Several of the biggest trainings were things I probably should have already done by then anyway. My friend Astarte and I have oldest kids the same age, and her oldest was already long since showering on her own when I was all, “Oh, hey, I wonder if mine could learn to wash his own hair?” And when I finally got around to teaching William to dress himself, the quickness with which he learned indicated I could have done that earlier.
I don’t remember meeting any resistance. This may be because I was too tired to hear any. Or it could be that they were just the right ages: Rob was 6 and has always liked Being a Grown-up, and William was 4 and has always liked Doing What Rob Does.
I chose activities based on the things I was finding overwhelming during pregnancy. I was spending a lot of time in the morning dozing, so I was motivated to teach them to get their own breakfasts, and this made me think of having them also learn to make their own lunches. I was having trouble kneeling at the tub and getting past my tum pressed against the side, so I was motivated to teach them to wash themselves.
Some of it was just teaching them to PITCH IN. They weren’t really able to gather up the trash, and having them lug it to the porch wasn’t much of a help to me, but having them do it took away some of my I’m The Only One Who Does Any Work Around Here feeling, and that was helpful.
I didn’t see any regression, though definitely the Fun! Of! Independence! wore off after awhile.