I've been typing up a blog entry describing our first week with the kids and for some strange reason I keep on getting interrupted. I try to reason with the kids, but they don't listen. All they do is just strain and poop in their pants. I then explain they should not copy Grandma Ichikawa's method of getting attention, yet they continue to poop. Hopefully by the next day or so I'll have the entry up, but in the meantime, I'll continue to post some pics up every day or so.
Andrew & Emma in a publicity still for a community theater presentation of "Little Shop of Horrors."
Scott tried this leg pose and is still recovering from the cramps.
Once again, here are some pictures from the past day or so:
Uncle Eric holding his...err...Scott's son.
Eva & Zsa Zsa meet the twins (Rupert is outside on the window ledge.).
Jodie & Lisa hold the kids (Emma ate her hat.).
The kids share a bed for the first time! They love it.
Umm...no. I take that back. Andrew hates it.
The kids are going to wake up soon, so let me tell you a quick Mom Ichikawa story before diaper doo-ty. Grandma and Grandpa Ichikawa came in last night to visit the kids for a few days. Obviously, the first thing my mom did is she ran straight for the kids.
"Oooooooh myyyyyyyy. Look at them. So cuuuuuute! Harrow Andrew and Emma! So cuuuuuute!'
Then she saw Lisa in bed. The first thing my mom said to Lisa was, "You look green."
Good thing Lisa was medicated.
We are checking out tomorrow so wish us luck at home!
Grandpa Ichikawa says, "Lean...lean...lean. Perfect! You're out of the picture."
Secondly, the poop. I know I'm not the only person in the world who has had a poopie diaper disaster, but here's mine from yesterday. I haven't become too proficient at the quick change diaper, but I'm good enough. I'm like the new immigrant cashier at 7-11: slow at the job, but trying really hard. Also like the new immigrant cashier at 7-11, we probably both have multiple children. And unlike the new immigrant cashier, I do not have a law degree from my home country.
Emma had a pee-pee and poo-poo diaper. A double whammie. The first poops come from all the stuff they ate from inside the womb, so it's this black tarry substance called meconium. Inside the diaper, there was yellow in the front and black in the back. Probably similar to the way Russell Simmons gets it on with Kimora. I got a handful of gauze that I dampened with warm water. Got my extra diaper out. And I was ready to go.
The black poop was hard to get off the butt because it was really sticky. I started wiping a little harder. Unfortunately, I must've hit the crap switch located between the 'gina and the 'sshole. Dark chocolate fro yo poured out. I lifted Emma's legs up to get her out of the way. I lifted too high because it started going down her back. I dropped her lower. She got in the poop. I kept her legs halfway in the air as I grabbed more gauze.
I quickly began to wipe her up. But silly me. The pee switch must ALSO be located between the 'gina and the 'sshole because pee started flying up in the air; it was a very sad Bellagio water show. I was running out of gauze, but started folding them smaller and smaller like an autistic origami artist. And just when I thought everything was under control...I reactivated the dark chocolate fro yo switch.
Thankfully, a nurse entered to check the vitals on the kids. She gladly lent me a hand to clean up this gigantic mound of urine and dung. As she was throwing away the waste, I told her how crazy that right after I wiped one thing, another thing came out. The nurse explained to me, "That happens! They're not on any schedule you know."
No 'hit 'sshole.
And lastly, Jesus.
I'm not a very religious person. I respect those people who are. And don't really care for those who force their beliefs on others. As I sat in bed last night in the hospital, this is the view I had from between my legs:
Yup. I have Jesus on a cross motioning with his arms how large the fish he multiplied were ("They were thiiiiis big! Yeehaw!"). You might recall in a previous blog how statues in the hospital were creeping me out. Well you can add Jesus On A Stick to that list too.
There's something unsettling about seeing Jesus between your legs before you go to sleep. As I looked at Him, I imagined him saying different things:
"Actual size...your penis is this big."
"Come on Apostles! Let's do the wave!"
"You think you had it hard, Scarecrow? Look at me!"
Slowly these thoughts faded away due to my lack of sleep from the past days. With a new day today, I think Jesus won't affect my sleeping schedule. Maybe I'll even ask Him for a little help with these diaper changes today.
Oh as a quick note, I guess I'll continue to do this blog with our dealings with these new little people in our lives. Eventually I'll go back to Week One, Week Two, Week Three, etc. And maybe I'll eventually change the header of the blog too. But the address will still be the same!
I'll try to post some pictures of the kids later today. Everyone seems to be doing great still!
7:50pm: Going into the OR in 10 minutes. Wish us luck. In about an hour we will be a family of four.
6:55pm: LOOK AT MAH BEHLLEY!!!
6:20pm: Lisa is having a delicious dinner of IV fluid. The nurse said it was made special by the head chef. The hospital has been busy with babies today. There has been 6 babies delivered by c-section and just as many natural births. And all healthy so hopefully that is a good sign for us.
Lisa is still very calm and ready for these babies to come out. She is just knitting away at her feeble attempt at a blanket. She is also extremely excited to get the drugs. Hopefully she won't have to be put into a halfway house after delivery.
Also today is Yom Kippur which makes my gut instinct that Eric Goldberg is responsible for these babies even more likely. If these babies come out hairy with little yarmulkes that puts the final nail in the coffin!
5:33pm: Lisa has started to feel more contractions again. It's a bit weird because all day she felt nothing until she got in that weird robot bed here at the hospital. I blame the bed...and Lisa's body.
I myself am pretty relaxed. So much so I was able to doo a number two. Didn't eat much all day, but grabbed some grub down the street. Maybe I should try to take a nap right now cause I don't think I will ever sleep again.
We hear that the epidural is usually done right before labor. I guess that should happen around 7pm.
Oh. And Lisa's mom is flying down to LA right now. Since it's actually raining a little bit right now, I hope she isn't wearing any inappropriate clothing like a thong.
TODAY IS THE DAY!!!!
As you can see Lisa is just talking away having a grand old time because her bloated belly is about to become manageable again.
We went in for a doctor's appointment this afternoon, and the doctor told us that she's around 4 cm dilated, the cervix is hardly there, and she actually felt a hand (HIGH FIVE!). She admitted us so she could monitor Lisa to see if she was contracting, and she was. So after discussing it with the doctor, the nurse, and us we decided it was now time. Actually I was the only one voting for another few months, but I was vetoed :(
I'll try to keep an ongoing hour by hour log here at the hospital telling you what's going on in all it's nasty, surgical glory. They are planning to perform a c-section between 8-9pm today. So stay tuned!!!!!
I was talking to a friend who has been reading this blog. He commented how he finds it interesting because I tend to talk about the seedier side of pregnancy with all of its biological messes. Then he goes, "Does your wife know you write about this kind of stuff?"
Absolutely, she knows I write about this stuff! And as a matter of fact, sometimes she even flames the fuel...just like now.
We were sitting on the sofa the other day watching a bit of Tivo and she goes, "I have something to tell you that I think you'll find fascinating."
I thought she was going to tell me another Baby Story episode because she watches them every day now. When I ask her the generic "What did you do today?" she answers with the now generic "On A Baby Story today..."
Lisa explained how on top of peeing more often, it has come to the point where she has very little control of her...umm...stream of consciousness. Even the short distance from our bed to the bathroom is far enough for her to leave a trail so she can find her way back.
Because of her leaky pipes, she asked me to buy a box of panty liners at the grocery store. With a $2 coupon in hand, I went to Ralphs to seek her coveted leak savior. All these years with Lisa, I have never been embarrassed to purchase feminine hygiene products. I'm only embarrassed when people find out I enjoy wearing them.
I did purchase panty liners once at Costco. It wasn't too difficult to find; they were in between the maxipad display and the bruschetta sample table (don't get those two confused!). But my trip to Ralphs was a little overwhelming. I never knew there were so many choices of vagina socks! Regular, long, short, extra coverage, chlorine free, lavender scented, ultra coverage, unscented, thong-style, wings, no wings, breathable. The list goes on and on. And to my surprise there are even reusable panty liners. No joke!
I found myself fumbling from box to box trying to figure out which one would be the best for Lisa. Would I be insinuating that Lisa was too leaky if I bought the extra coverage liners? Or would she be insulted if I got her the long pad implying that her vagina is vertically inclined? I took the safe route and purchased two boxes of regular panty liners.
Walking back from the store, I began to think how great Lisa is doing and how our lives will change with the birth of our kids. I opened the front door and saw Lisa getting up from the sofa. I put down the groceries and gave her a hug. And in return, Lisa smiled back and peed on my feet.
Just like last Saturday, Lisa made her weekly outdoor excursion to the doctor's office for another check-up. After her pupils adjusted to the bright sunlight, we made our merry way to Cedars over Beverly Glen.
I must say witnessing Lisa undress for these doctor appointments is a noisy experience. First of all, as she braces her body against anything that will support her (i.e. steel beam), every move is accompanied by a guttural sound. And around her belly is this support belt she wears everywhere she goes. There are velcro straps all around this contraption that she tears and rips off with a vicious grrrrreeeeeeep! So this undressing becomes this percussive aural event: uuuuhhh greeeeep eeeeeee greeeep oooooofffff greeeeep.
The doctor told us the kids are over five pounds, and Lisa is dilated at three centimeters. Our doctor also felt up inside Lisa's privates and told us the girl's head is so low that she was actually able to touch the top of her head. It would've been poor form if I told the doctor my penis could've told her the same thing.
Ever since our hospital stay, the doctors keep telling us the babies could come any day. Well, four weeks has past and still no babies. Lisa's last contraction was almost a week ago. We were a little concerned that the contractions went away, but the nurse said that this sometimes happens to people who take terbutaline (the pill Lisa took to control her contractions), and it's actually good news for Lisa. Where does this leave us? Just waiting as usual.
For the rest of the day, I did some errands and a handful of household chores while Lisa sat her sweet, lazy ass on the couch. I did witness seeing Lisa getting up from the floor after lunch. It was quite the ordeal. She had her legs underneath the coffee table. Then she grimaced as she swiped her legs out from the table. I asked if she needed help, but she refused. Lisa tried to pull herself up, but was unsuccessful. Another grunt and grimace.
"I need to get on my knees," Lisa whined.
Putting her feet under her butt, she finally got on her knees. With one hand on the coffee table and the other on the sofa, Lisa took a deep breath and hoisted her baby boulder up from the floor. Collapsing on the sofa, she released one final groan. I went to pat her on her head, and she was sadly sweating from all of this. For the next few minutes, Lisa took a tissue and kept wiping her face. Who would've thought just standing up would be the new five minute work-out?
After dinner, I went for a jog and stopped off at Borders on the way home. Walking through the children's book section, I heard a man singing to his little baby. But not a whisper. A full blown vocal performance of "Old McDonald." Worse yet, it was an Asian man with an accent. More worse, he didn't know the words to the song. It went like this:
Ol Mahk Dahnald had a fahm E I E I Ooooo An on dat fahm he had a chicken E I E I Ooooo Wi a chik chik heah A chik chik dere Chik chik chik chik chik chik Chik chik chik chik Chik chik chik chik chik Chik chik Chik
Yes that's right. He just started saying "chik" over and over again. It was so annoying I wondered if he did this with other songs.
Dere's Dis girl dat's been on mah mind All da time Sussudio oh oh! Sussudio sussudio sussudio sussudio Sussudio sussudio Sussudio sussudio sussudio
Roxanne You don't have to put da red right on Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne Roxanne
And people wonder why more Asians don't move into the Valley...
I was talking to my mom on the phone today while driving home. She told me that my dad was laughing and laughing at yesterday's blog when I wrote about her inability to differentiate a child from a grown midget.
"You know," said my mom. "I have much funnier story to tell, but now I not tell you."
After a short five seconds of silence, my mom broke down and just had to tell me her funnier story.
"So this story much funnier! We had garage sale at home last weekend and this lady looking at nice leather shoes. She come to me and asks if she buy for one dollar. I tell her that these shoes are leather and they are two dollars. She tell me that nobody will buy shoe for that much at garage sale. I tell her sorry two dollar. So then she get nasty and THROW shoe back in box!"
Notice the large space I left between this sentence and the last sentence? That represents the gigantic amount of room needed to store the shocking silence of my mom's unfunny story.
Now if I was her, the story would've gone something like this:
"So this story much funnier! We had garage sale at home last weekend and this lady looking at nice leather shoes. She come to me and asks if she buy for one dollar. I tell her that these shoes are leather and they are two dollars. She tell me that nobody will buy shoe for that much at garage sale. I tell her sorry two dollar. So then she get nasty and THROW shoe back in box! But she miss box and hit midget with backpack."
And as for Lisa's condition today, she is doing as well as a person carrying two midgets can be. For some reason she hasn't had a contraction for the past 3 days; the previous record was 2 days. She still feels the occasional ache in her back or on her sides, but luckily the painful spasms have subsided for now. One of the kids has the hiccups now. I guess I'll end today's entry and figure out a way to stop the hiccups. I'm either thinking sticking a teaspoon of sugar up Lisa's cooch, or just randomly shouting "BOO!" at Lisa's vagina.
Yesterday we had a doctor's appointment over the hill at Cedars. For the past three weeks Lisa has been on bed rest, so these days are also known as the day Lisa gets to see the world. When you are bedridden there are many things you don't notice...like the new 50" television in the living room, the PS3 hooked up to the new 50" television, and the prostitute who is passed out on the sofa bed.
After a quick 20 minute drive, we pulled up to the hospital and went right into the office. The doctor entered the exam room and before the routine ultrasound, he wanted to do a culture test of Lisa's chunnel. As he took the sample, Lisa winced and gasped in pain. The doctor quizzically looked at her and said, "You know. It was only a q-tip. Your baby's head is going to be much larger." I laughed, although I don't know how much Lisa enjoyed the doc's attempt at vagina humor.
Everything was fine with the kids and Lisa, and the doctor predicted that the babies should arrive within the next two weeks. Additionally, the doctor said Lisa's bed rest doesn't have to be as strict anymore. I suppose it's somewhere between bed rest and house arrest. Still no house chores and she can't go clubbing like the lush she is, but if she needs to get up from bed to grab the phone or her favorite porno dvd (her current favorite is "Rattypoontie") it's okay for now.
Since Lisa is within the safe zone of 35-37 weeks, she no longer has to try to deliver the kids naturally. We asked the doctor the pros and cons of natural birth versus a c-section. He basically broke it down this way: a natural child birth is tougher for the babies, but easier recovery for the mom; a c-section birth is easier for the babies, but hard recovery for the mom. And even though both of the heads are in the right position ("Look! I see a coochi!"), there are slightly more risks of complications for twins. For instance, it is not unusual that when the first baby comes out, the other baby inside flips the other way causing it to be breech. In which case Lisa would experience the pain of natural birth and a c-section. And for a guy analogy, it would be like taking a gigantic dump out of your butt and your penis hole.
Now we wait day by day to see if there are any signs of labor. Plugging away at the blog, I turned my head to find both of Lisa's breasts exposed. She was wearing this special t-shirt with openings on either side for easy milk access. I must say it was quite bizarre to see Lisa's boobs squeezed out awkwardly of the shirt resembling the gigantic head of a cross-eyed person wearing a ski mask. It was even more bizarre to see Lisa manipulate her hands as if they were the heads of the babies asking "More milk, mama." I have yet to see her manipulate her hands as two heads coming out of her birth hole, but you can be assured that will be a blog I will quickly post.
And now let me end this entry with a quick Mom Ichikawa story. My mom loves to walk to McDonalds to get a cup of their premium coffee. Last Friday morning, she took her morning exercise walk towards the golden arches to grab some java. At the crosswalk, she noticed a little boy next to her with a backpack strapped neatly to both shoulders. She checked her watch; it was 8:30. Quite late for a child to be going to school.
"My aren't you going to be late for school? Where's your mom?" questioned my mom.
The little boy turned up to her and said, "I go to college."
Realizing the little boy was a midget, my mom cannily said, "When you get old everybody looks young to you."
At least she didn't offer the midget a Happy Meal toy.
For those of you not living in Los Angeles, the past week or so has been extremely hot. For instance, last Friday night I walked to this little Chinese restaurant nearby to pick up dinner. It was 7:30pm and the temperature was still around 98 degrees. Lesson to be learned: When hot outside, do not wok.
On a more serious note, the heat was so bad that there were a number of deaths down here in Southern California. And on a less serious note, Lisa just farted.
Yesterday, Lisa's mom, Mom, called to see how she was doing. And the conversation went a little like this:
Mom: Hello? Lisa? It's Mom.
Lisa: Hi, Mom.
Mom: I was reading that in LA it has been very hot.
Lisa: Yah it has been hot down here.
Mom: And some people have died because of the heat.
Lisa: I know.
Mom: Well...I was just calling to see if you were dead. Okay. Bye.
As for the last one, 40% of you believe the babies will be born this week (you have three more days to prove yourself correct). 20% believe the babies will be born next week and 10 % believe the week after. As for the rest of you, the defiant strength of Lisa's cervix foiled your guess of an early birth.
This week's poll is Lisa's idea! And it's all about the size of her vagina. Well not, really...but since we have a doctor's appointment this Saturday, how many centimeters dilated will Lisa be? And no cheating (not because it's wrong, but mainly because that would just be plain nasty).
I don't want to make our three day hospital stay into this gigantic boring blog entry, so I'll try to summarize our last two days and end with some quick observations.
When Saturday morning came, we were anticipating the doctor to come and let us know what exactly was going on. At this point, we had no idea whether or not Lisa was going to give birth to our little doppelgangers. Just before 1pm, the doctor came in and was ready to inspect. I even got to help him out by tearing a bag of lube for him. I tried to make a joke about how we rarely have to lube, but he just stared at me. Un..com..fort..able.
So Lisa's on the bed surrounded by the doctor and a nurse while I stayed on my little pseudo-bed near the window. With one gigantic thrust, the doctor jammed his fingers up Lisa's coin purse. You'd think it was the entire hand by the face Lisa made (think leg cramp with a touch of constipation). After pulling his fingers out of the taco shell, he proclaimed, "Eighty percent effaced and 2 cm dilated."
Unfortunately with this diagnosis, he wanted us to stay one more night in the hospital and would check Lisa again Sunday morning. At this point we still weren't sure what to think. The doctors and nurses reinforced to us that even if the babies were born in the next few days everything would be okay, but it would be better if they could stay in a couple more weeks. I interpreted this to mean that if we waited a few weeks the kids would be completely healthy, but if they came now they might be missing an eye or possibly a few fingers.
The remainder of the day consisted of watching tv, reading, and waiting for the next contraction. Some of our friends (Paul, Michelle, Bernard, and Joyce) came to visit and brought us food and things to entertain us. Before you knew it, I had another sleepless night and Sunday morning arrived (as well as that damn seagull).
Surprisingly, the doctor arrived at 9:30am. Not surprisingly, the doctor did not ask me to help him open up a tube of lube. I think the doctor was a little more gentle this time with the handling of Lisa's innards because she only did a quick gasp and a wispy sound like a deflating clown balloon. Doctor's diagnosis? NO CHANGE!
He told Lisa she could return home and a prescription would be written for pills to control her contractions. But the biggest surprise for us is that he strongly recommended to us that Lisa delivery the babies naturally. We always planned a c-section because Lisa's pelvic bone was broken years ago and healed in a way that might cause the birth canal to be blocked. The doctor poo-poo'd the broken pelvic bone because he says that is rarely a problem and if we did deliver soon the babies would be small enough to squeeze through. I could tell Lisa was taken aback by this because there was a quiver in her voice when she asked the doctor, "You're expecting me to f(*&ing push two g(*damn babies through my g*^damn vagina? F*^* you, Dr. McF^*%face!" And within the hour, we packed up our stuff and made our way back home on the crowded 405.
And now for a couple of last random observations:
Statues are freaky. All throughout the hospital corridors were these freaky little statues of saints and sisters and nuns and little men in robes (yes, kind of like jawas). Try taking a walk at night when the hospital is totally quiet and it's only you and a porcelain nun staring you down with a switchblade underneath her habit.
CVS sucks. Every time I have gone to CVS to pick up a prescription the wait has been long and the experience quite unpleasant. The 45 minutes I was at CVS waiting for Lisa's prescription I saw two verbal fights. The most interesting one happened to the woman standing right in front of me swaying to the piped in tunes of the Four Seasons. This rather large Persian woman came barreling down the aisle. Now don't jump all over me because I'm guessing the woman was Persian, but not only did she have an accent, but she was eating a kabob and smelled like saffron. She started yelling at the lady, "You are a baaad driver! You scared me! Why you do that to me? I have your numbers! You are a baaaad driver. Oh yes oh yes! I am going to call and report you to the police. You should not be driving. Baaaadbaaaad!" It was like a bad Middle Eastern Lou Costello impersonation.
Lisa likes drugs.And she can tolerate them really well too! We have a friend who wasn't able to take the pills that Lisa is taking because it made her too jittery. But not Lisa. Bring it on, Lisa says! You need to shoot steroids into my ass? No problem! Bring it on, home nurse!
I could go on a little longer, but will stop now cause I feel like I've been rambling on. Since we are both rested after this hospital trip I 'll try to post a little more regularly again. I'll put up the next poll tomorrow and will give you a brief explanation of our doctor's appointment last week!
Several hours past before our doctor came to give us the lowdown on Lisa. The printout from the monitors showed that Lisa had irritability. I asked the doctor to leave Lisa's personality out of the diagnosis, then he corrected me explaining irritability in this case was the uterus thinking of contracting but does not (Although he did agree with me in the hallway that Lisa was a bit irritable.). Because of this he wanted to have Lisa admitted for the night for observation.
So off I go back home to back up an overnight bag. The one thing I learned while packing Lisa's bag was the difference between maxipads and panty liners. I opened up our bathroom cabinets and was assaulted by a visual array of vaginal accessories. All of this cotton product that's taped, padded, and inserted in womanly parts is beyond the average male intelligence. I took my chances and grabbed whatever looked like something that would soak up turkey drippings.
When I returned to the hospital Lisa was hooked up to an IV to hydrate her. At this point she must've had half a dozen wires and tubes encircling her rotund body; she looked like a fat marionette.
Most of the night was fairly uneventful: we ate dinner; we watched television; we played a quick game of flag football with the nursing staff. But around 2:30am, even with ear plugs in my ears, I heard moaning. I turned around hoping to find porn on the tv, but Lisa was in pain! The nurse came in and explained she was having contractions. They monitored her for an hour to count the contractions and around 3:30am she received a shot to stop the contractions which worked wonders.
As a noisy seagull outside our window welcomed us to our second day in the hospital, Lisa hit the bathroom first as usual to relieve her overworked bladder. Upon exiting, she thanked me for packing up an assortment of maxipads and panty liners. But explained to me that there was no reason to pack a loofah in the feminine hygiene bag. Oh well. Average male intelligence, I guess.