When I was pregnant with twins w-a-a-a-a-y back when, few books on the subject existed. But from the handful of books that were available I quickly learned that my twin pregnancy was very different from a singleton pregnancy, and that I needed to take extra special care of myself. For instance, I had to make sure I was getting enough calories and protein each day as proper weight gain was paramount to the health of my babies. Keeping the numerous doctors’ appointments and scheduled prenatal tests was also important. It was a bit overwhelming, to say the least. So to help keep track of it all, I used a pocket calendar to jot down what I ate during day to make sure I met my caloric goals, and to notate the various doctor and clinic appointments I had scheduled throughout the month. But it wasn’t long before I was also using that calendar for just about everything associated with my twin pregnancy—to stuff photos of interesting nursery designs that I had ripped from the pages of magazines (remember, this was pre-Pinterest) as well as ultrasound photos of my growing babies. By the time my babies were born, that little notebook was bulging with pregnancy mementoes, so much so that I thought, “Hey, I should create a twin pregnancy planner.”
Fast forward 19 years.
My Twin Pregnancy Week By Week: The Ultimate Planner for Moms Expecting Twins, is now available! Nearly two decades in the making, and a true labor of love, the book is designed for moms-to-be like you, expecting not one but two. Want to know what the book is all about? Below is an excerpt from the introduction which covers the scope of the book. Feel free to tell me what you think of it by making a comment below.
Expecting twins? That is so exciting! But it is also a bit overwhelming and a little scary, isn’t it? You have heard the stories, I am sure, of how you will need to take extra special care of yourself, more so than if you were expecting just one baby. For instance, you will need to gain a bit more weight than you first thought, concentrating on getting enough protein in your diet. (Appropriate weight gain in a twin pregnancy is your Number One defense against preterm labor and delivery.) You will also need to slow down, cutting back dramatically on your exercise regimen as physical activity may increase the odds of preterm labor. And get ready for plenty of doctor visits, too, as you are going to be monitored more carefully, undergoing more tests than if you were expecting a single baby. But the payoff will all be worth it. Just imagine—two babies to love and nurture. Two siblings who will grow up together, establishing a bond that will last throughout their lives. How cool is that? Yes, it is exciting expecting twins but it is also a lot of work. But don’t worry, you picked up the right book to help you through this journey of a lifetime.
MY TWIN PREGNANCY WEEK BY WEEK
My Twin Pregnancy Week by Week is a planner and journal designed with you in mind—the mom expecting twins. Unlike pregnancy planners and journals geared toward women pregnant with just a single child (or ‘singleton,’ as we like to say), My Twin Pregnancy Week by Week zeroes in on your special needs, your unique circumstances. Everything in this planner focuses on a multiple pregnancy, systematically taking you through all nine months, helping you not only get your body in optimal shape, but also your home and family organized and ready for the arrival of twins.
For instance, the planner tracks your weekly weight gain, pregnancy symptoms, questions to ask your doctor and your prenatal test results. Checklists throughout the book help you stay on track with your diet, your baby budget, your maternity clothes shopping, your nursery room planning, and your twin layette. There is also plenty of room to display photos of your growing double bump as well as ultrasound photos of your twin babies. And finally, there’s plenty of opportunity to write down your thoughts and feelings during this exciting time in your life in the journal sections of the book.
But most importantly, My Twin Pregnancy Week by Week is a planner for the busy mom-to-be who likes to have lots of information, organizational charts, and to-do lists right at her fingertips.
HOW TO USE THIS PLANNER
Organized into chapters (or weeks), My Twin Pregnancy Week by Week is completely user-friendly. To coincide with a typical twin pregnancy, the planner begins at Week Six, the time when many moms learn that they are carrying twins (but if you first learn the news at Week Eight or even Week Ten, it is no big deal, just start tracking your progress from that point on), and concludes with Week 37. Why Week 37, a whole three weeks earlier than the standard pregnancy planner? Remember that yours is a special pregnancy, one where research has now shown that the optimal time for delivery is Week 37, not Week 40. Most, but not all, obstetricians now recommend that their patients deliver if and when they reach Week 37.
The beginning of the planner has a Fact Sheet, a ledger where you can notate important names and numbers of all your doctors such as your obstetrician, perinatologist (a doctor who specializes in multiple pregnancies), and doula or birthing coach. You can input your important health data too, such as your due date, your pre-pregnancy weight and your weight-gain goal. Next up is a good old-fashioned checklist so you can quickly see at a glance all that needs to be accomplished before your babies make their appearance (think: checking on health insurance coverage, signing up for childbirth classes, choosing two names that go together well, organizing and preparing the nursery—all different for a mom pregnant with twins).
Then the planner takes you week by week through your pregnancy alerting you to specific details to a twin pregnancy as they occur. For instance, in Week 12, the planner reminds you to ask your doctor for a chorionicity scan to determine if your twins share a placenta (a risk factor for twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome, a dangerous condition that affects approximately 15 percent of identical twins with a common placenta). There are plenty of useful charts included in My Twin Pregnancy Week by Week as well. For instance, in Week 8, you will find a Twin Pregnancy Food Diary so you can accurately track your daily caloric and protein intake—a must for a healthy pregnancy. A Twin Nursery Planning Graph is tucked into Week 14 or, take advantage of the Double Stroller Comparison Chart while shopping for baby equipment (Week 25), as the stroller is by far the most important purchase you will make. There is a Twin Layette Checklist in Week 33, and even a Daily Feeding and Diapering Chart (Week 36) to help you keep your head above water that first crazy month after your babies arrive. (All of these charts are also available to download for free at my website, Talk About Twins, http://christinabaglivitinglof.com/free-downloads.)
And although this planner focuses on organization, you will find many medical tidbits peppered throughout the planner with Did You Know, facts that are specific to a twin pregnancy that will help you thrive, and Pregnancy Tips, little bits of wisdom and advice to help make your pregnancy a healthy one. The book culminates with the chapter, My Newborn Twins, where you can post your babies’ first photos, their footprints, notate the time they were born, and record each twin’s height and weight.
AND SO THE JOURNEY BEGINS
Carry this planner with you—drop it in your handbag; keep it in your briefcase. This way you will be ready to accurately track your weight, blood pressure, and test results every time you visit your obstetrician. But best of all, once your babies are born, this planner will become a treasured keepsake for years to come, one that you will want to someday share with your twins.