Lucky Number 7

Theo the masked man

Theo the masked man

Friday we surpassed yet another milestone! The babies have been cooking for 7 months, which means we are now above the average gestational age for quintuplets. All of the babies were measured on Friday and they are all measuring within a day or two of the recommended size for babies at this point in pregnancy.

The picture below is a cool diagram that my sonographer drafted for us, which depicts where each of the babies are located in my belly, along with their current weights and percentiles.

28wk_Diagram

The weight of each baby is estimated based on the length of the baby’s humerus (bone in upper arm) and femur (bone in upper leg), the circumference of their abdomen and their head circumference.

Baby B's Abdomen and Kidneys

Baby B’s Abdomen and Kidneys

The biggest one in the bunch is Baby B at 2lbs and 12oz at the 62nd percentile. Little Elle Rose (Baby E) is the munchkin, but not by much as baby D and Theo (baby A) are also the same weight (2 ½ lbs) but just a bit longer. At this rate, when the baby’s are measured again at 32 weeks they will be about 1lb heavier each. Let’s just hope this Mama can keep up!

Baby C's Brain

Baby C’s Brain

Theo's Heart

Theo’s Heart

All of their organs (kidneys, bladders, hearts, brains, stomachs) look great and are also appropriate sizes. The blood flow to Elle has improved and has stabilized.  All heart rates remain within normal limits, and are often on the higher side, which is probably because they just can’t sit still.  We are truly excited to meet our little wiggle worms!

Baby D

Baby D

Elle Rose

Elle Rose

I am also doing well. It seems I am stretching by the day, but my body is adapting.  Pregnancy is definitely a physical challenge, but the emotional, mental and spiritual journey that accompanies gestation is truly a blessing!

28weeks_belly3

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The Quint’s Domain

The quint’s domain is nearing completion thanks to Frank and our invaluable friends! This past week Frank coordinated the rearranging of an abundance of furniture, cleaning of closets, and construction of all of the baby furniture and shelving!

I cannot thank Jake, Bethany, Sean, Jenny, Liz, Brad, Ryan, Hayley, Sam, Angela, Sunghee and Jo enough for their generosity. We have been so blessed by their friendship and support since day one. I can’t explain the peace that it brings me to know that our babies will have a place to lay their little heads when they arrive back in Madison. Thank you!

Here are some more snapshots of the action!

Sam cleaning out the closet

Sam cleaning out the closet

Liz reconstructing our guest room

Liz reconstructing our guest room

Our reconstructed office in the basement!

Our reconstructed office in the basement!

Sam, Ryan & Jo building a crib

Sam, Ryan & Jo building a crib

The new cribs constructed by Frank, Sam, Jake, Ryan and Jo!

The new cribs constructed by Frank, Sam, Jake, Ryan and Jo!

Hayley cooking up a storm for our hungry helpers!

Hayley cooking up a storm for our hungry helpers!

 

These shelves were built in mere moments as Sean moved about like The Flash

These shelves were built in mere moments as Sean moved about like The Flash

 

Foreman Manny overseeing the project

Foreman Manny overseeing the project

 

Fuzzy Wuzzy was a Baby

Thank you for everyone’s prayers for Baby E, Elle Rose, because God is answering every one of them. At today’s appointment we found out that her Doppler readings from her umbilical cord were in the normal range, with only one reading just above normal! She is our little fighter. I also shared with Dr. Elliott that we name little Elliott (Elle) Rose after him and I think I saw tears well up in his eyes. I love the heartfelt compassion of my doctor!

Baby E_Dopple

Additionally, at today’s visit we got to see almost everyone’s little face, and most of them have what looks to be a full head of hair! The sonographer asked me if I was having heart burn and nausea and I answered with a resounding yes! She said it is most likely due to the amount of hair on their little heads, because the hair protein can irritate the GI tract. Theo and Elle have the most hair and the rest are little fuzz balls at this point. I’ll let you see for yourself!

Chubby Cheeked Theo

Chubby Cheeked Theo

Baby C

Baby C

Baby C's Profile

Baby C’s Profile

Elle Rose

Elle Rose- I think she’s smiling!

Elle Rose's Profile

Elle Rose’s Profile

Baby B & D didn’t want to come out to play at the photo shoot, so unfortunately we don’t have any images of those two little ladies.  But, from what we saw today everyone remains on track with healthy hearts, brains, organs and blood flow.

My doctor also gave me a warning that this is the point where growth really picks up.  Amazingly, all of the babies have shifted to a transverse position with their heads to my left and little feet to the right.  Theo still has his little noggin tucked into my pelvis but his feet swing left. So, they are in ideal positions to bulk up…which of course Mama is going to need to find some XXXL shirts pretty soon! Muumuu’s here I come!

Again, thank you to everyone for your prayers! We appreciated every single one of them. We also want to send a special thanks to our friends at Culver’s who threw us a baby shower. Now our little ones can sport their little Culver’s onesies on their way home!

One Happy & Thankful Daddy!

One Happy & Thankful Daddy!

We are simply overwhelmed by everyone’s generosity and support. Please know we could not do this without you!

The Name Game

name

With about 9 weeks to go, Frank and I have decided to let the names be known!

Our little boy, previously known as “Baby A” will be Theodore Joseph. Both, Frank and I, believe that Theodore is a strong name, and acknowledge many Ted’s, Teddy’s and Theo’s who have made their marks on history. Also, I came to find out that Theodore is also a family name. Joseph is also a very significant name in the Turzy family and has been passed down for four generations. It is my dad’s middle name and my brother’s first name; two men who I am proud to name my son after. The meaning of his name is: God’s Gift (Theodore) and “He will add” (Joseph). There is no doubt that this little guy is a gift from God who will hopefully continue to add to history as his Theodore forefathers.

We are unable to assign names to our little girls (Babies B-E) since upon delivery the docs simply grab whoever is next in line and we won’t be able to tell who was who. So, we have preferenced the names:

The first girl will be Isabella Marie, which means “Devoted to God” (Isabella) and “Wished for child” (Marie).  Marie was also the name of my Grandma on dad’s side. Baby Bella has definitely been a wished for child who we devote to God.

The second girl will be Lillian Grace, which means, “Pure” (Lillian) and “Grace” after the mercy God has shown us in this process. She will be a reminder that each day can be a new day. I also found out that I had an Aunt Lillian who was married to my Uncle Ted.

The third girl will be Kali Mae, which we will pronounce like Kaylee, also means “Pure.” Mae is my middle name, as well as, my great Polish Grandmother’s name. Mae is a derivative of Marie and thus also means, “Wished for Child.”

The fourth girl will be Elliott Rose, which means, “Jehovah is God” (Elliott) and “Flower” (Rose). We chose Elliott after our current doctor, who has been so understanding, compassionate and supportive in this process. We found out after sharing this news that I also have a Great Aunt Rose, the sister of my Grandma Marie. Little Elle Rose will be a reminder that the Lord is God and He deserves the glory for leading us through these testing times to a beautiful testimony.

Naming these little miracles makes this experience all-the-more real. Also, I loved learning what each of the names meant and about our family history after we had unknowingly chose the names. It is even more evidence for me that God’s fingerprints are all over this story.

Happy 3rd Trimester!

We have reached yet another milestone in this pregnancy! In just a few days we begin our 3rd trimester!

I did thisAlthough the third trimester often brings aches, pains, and discomfort from gaining half of your original body weight it also brings the joy of knowing that- for me- in 9 weeks or less, I will be holding each of these beautiful miracles!

24 weeks, or 6 months, is a critical milestone because it is the point in the pregnancy where doctors will consider your pregnancy viable, or in other words if you give birth after 24 weeks your doctor’s will help to save your babies. Therefore, from this point on the babies are coming, it’s just a matter of when.

The average gestation for quintuplets is 26-27 weeks, which for me would be in 1-2 weeks. However, my current perinatologist’s average for quint pregnancies is 33 weeks and 1 day, and of course my personal goal is 34 weeks! When it comes to high order multiples average just isn’t good enough.

So, how does this compare to a singleton pregnancy if we make it to 34 weeks? Well, being born at 34 weeks for 5 babies is about the same as being born at 30 weeks for 1 baby. According to all of the statistics, the risk of brain bleeds, respiratory distress, cerebral palsy, etc. all plummet at 28 weeks (you can read more about this in my previous post, entitled Visit to the High Risk Clinic).

Our outlook is pretty good. At my last doctor’s visit on Tuesday, I was informed that I might be able to stay out of the hospital for another 3-4 weeks. This was music to my ears because:

  1. Most make it another 4+ weeks after admission to the hospital before giving birth.
  2. Our pregnancy is stable enough for me to continue to enjoy the perks of living in a home.
  3. Hospital food doesn’t even come close to my mom’s delicious and nutritious cooking!

We also learned at our previous visit that all of the babies are growing at a similar rate now; they are all between the 60th-70th percentiles. My side of the family is known for making big babies, so we’ll see how this plays out. The only difference was that Baby B’s legs were much, much longer than everyone else’s. It looks like she takes after her Daddy and will be the speedy queen of the bunch. We also learned that everyone’s hearts, brains, kidneys and circulation look great!

The only concern from the visit was that Baby E’s umbilical cord did not insert centrally into her placenta, which is correlated with causing distress later in pregnancy. Right now, baby E is as playful as the rest, so my prayer is that her circulation stays strong. She has been the doctor’s concern since day one, so I know she is going to be our little fighter.

Baby E has got her dukes up!

Baby E has got her dukes up!

Now, for those that have bared with me to the end of yet another lengthy post, I plan to present to you the names of our five little miracles…with a bit of explanation of course in the next post!