Quadruplets coming home next week! What do we do? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 01-27-2005, 04:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello!
As you can see from my signature line, I am not a mommy yet, but as fate would have it, it looks like I am going to be stepping up to the plate to help someone in our community that is bringing home quads as early as next week!

Rather than putting the burden on the family to come up with a to-do list and a needs list for me, I wanted to present some ideas to them based on what all of you experienced ladies know.

They already have a 3 year old at home too. Please let me know what you think and feel free to PM me if you don't want to put this on a regular message.

thanks in advance!

what is a good laundry detergent to use?
what is the most useful clothing item? (I am in So. Cal so we don't need snow suits) but what about sleepwear? bibs? do people use the plastic ones or the cloth ones?

...or.... does anyone one know of any great resources for lists? I have found some so-so ones online today, but I think MDC is the best place for this type of thing....

thanks!
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#2 of 13 Old 01-27-2005, 07:41 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail
what is a good laundry detergent to use?
what is the most useful clothing item? (I am in So. Cal so we don't need snow suits) but what about sleepwear? bibs? do people use the plastic ones or the cloth ones?
Laundry detergent - All three of my girls have sensitive skin so I use any detergent that is "Free". All Free and Clear, Cheer Free, etc. I do not spend the extra money for the specific baby detergents.

Sleepwear - I LOVELOVELOVE the "baby in a bag" as I call them. They're the gowns that don't zip or snap but have elastic bottoms which make them super easy to pull up, change a diaper and very quickly reassemble.

Bibs - My mom always fusses at me for not using bibs often enough. I usually did use the cloth ones but also found the disposable ones really useful as well.

Here are some links I've found for support of parents of higher order multiples:

http://www.tripletconnection.org/

http://multiples.about.com/od/quadruplets/

http://multiples.about.com/

Info on bf'ing higer order multiples:

http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/3681/18446

http://jognn.awhonn.org/cgi/content/abstract/21/3/221

http://www.mostonline.org/faqbf.htm

Karen - Mama to Haven (9/00) , Lillie & Faith (MZ - 12/02) and my first homebirthed baby, Willa (3/08)
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#3 of 13 Old 01-27-2005, 08:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks so much! this is just the kind of info I need!
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#4 of 13 Old 01-27-2005, 08:48 PM
 
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Oh my goodness. Terrifying yet wonderful. I'm gonna assume they're small since they're quads. With my 34-week preemie, we needed a thermometer because the room needed to stay within 70-75 degrees. Tiny ones can't regulate heat well yet.

Soap & antibacterial rinse. I know that's not popular here, but those babies CANNOT get sick till they're bigger. Anyone who even wants to touch a foot has to be healthy and have just-washed hands. My friend's 35-weeker, she's 6 weeks now, just got out of a week in the NICU from RSV.

I'm w/ 1Plus2 on the allergy free. If I remember correctly, liquid soap is better than powder detergent. I used Trader Joes. No bleach. Preemie skin is sensitive, so they'll just need to deal with little white onesies w/ spit-up stains.

Food. Best advice my friends w/ triplets got was that no one could visit w/o bringing food. Whether it's homemade organic or frozen lasagna from Costco or gift certificates to nearby delivery places, they're gonna need nourishing, sustaining food.

I'm sure there's a ton of other stuff, but that's what came to mind.
I think it's wonderful that they have people like you to support them. It's gonna be an adventure.
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#5 of 13 Old 01-28-2005, 01:20 PM
 
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I agree with the others, any of the liquid "free" laundry detergents, don't bother w/ the "baby" ones.

Definately food! Stock the freezer (a couple of my friends did this as their shower gift to me, filled my freezer w/ frozen casseroles (after checking w/ me to find out foods we like) AND usually brought something that they could warm up & feed to me while they were there when they visited.

I also really appreciated the friends who walked in & after "visiting" the babies, just walked right into my kitchen & started loading (or unloading) the dishwasher w/o even asking. I hate having to ask people to do my housework, so really appreciated it when people just saw the need & did it.

I don't have any older children, but I would imagine that spending some one on one time w/ the older child, maybe take her out for ice cream or to the park even, would be special. And if you're bringing "gifts" for the baby, bring something for her too (regardless of multiples, IMO this is a good idea, older sibs tend to feel left out when everyone's making a fuss over a new baby (or 4 LOL)).

I also LOVED those gowns. Easy for diaper changes & doesn't matter that they don't "fit" right. My girls were right around 5lbs & lived in those gowns until they grew into the nb clothes.

Unless the parents specifically want you to hold the sleeping babies, don't. It bothered me that the grandparents were around all the time the first couple of weeks & got my girls used to being held while they slept & then once I was alone w/ them they still expected it & I had trouble juggling 2 by myself when they wouldn't sleep w/o being held. If that's the only way they'll sleep, fine, but if I had it to do over again, I'd at least try laying them down as soon as they were asleep for those first couple weeks when there are extra people around to get them for me if they do wake back up.

And remember to let them be the parents. A family in my MIL's church had triplets a few months after my girls were born & MIL went over to "help" quite abit early on & she would tell me how the mom was doing such & such so she (MIL) had to tell her to do thus & such instead. Annoyed me *for* the new mom, especially since they seemed like little things that were personal preference to me. If they ask for advice, opinions, etc. give it but otherwise let them do things their own way.

HTH
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#6 of 13 Old 01-31-2005, 04:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The info you have provided here is just what I am looking for! I was even thinking of presenting her with some options about having a pp doula and setting up a fund as opposed to having a parade of strangers in the middle of flu season float through their home.

I think one of the most important things for me to do here is to present the mom with options, but not tell her to do anything. I can't imagine that any mom wants someone else running the show for her and I think that it is insensitive, rude and frankly kind of dumb because at the end of the day, I may only be there an hour or two a week. She is the one who will be there 24/7 and it all has to fit her needs.

I know that for some people if you ask to "take over" a job related to their children they think great... I'll go take a nap or get something else done... while others may think....."what? don't you think that I CAN do it myself???!"

so I am treading very lightly.

If you can think of anything else please don't hesistate to add it here. This is all a great lesson for me in hopes that one day I will have at least one of my own!
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#7 of 13 Old 02-02-2005, 05:52 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail
I think one of the most important things for me to do here is to present the mom with options, but not tell her to do anything. I can't imagine that any mom wants someone else running the show for her
Except me in the first few weeks of having my twins home from the NICU. :LOL You sound extremely thoughtful and smart and I'm sure anything you do for her will be wanted.

In addition to the great ideas so far:

1.) A schedule for someone (known & trusted) to take the 3 year-old to the park or museum, or even just in the backyard for an hour or two.

2.) A mother's helper (think teenage girl, not a professional) who can do laundry, sterilize bottles, feed/burp a baby, etc. for cheap. Have her come as often as possible at first.

3.) This one does need asking first.... buy them a small deep freezer. They are very cheap actually (well under $100 at Sears) and can store food (and breastmilk!) for a year or more. I know our tiny side-by-side couldn't handle more than one or two prepared dishes at a time, but this way, you really could tell people to come with a casserole or lasagna and it won't go to waste.

4.) Infant baby seats. Four different ones (different toy bars, music, "games" etc. on each) to mix it up a bit for the little ones and b/c each baby could do better in one than another. Allows mama to feed all babies at once and provides a safe spot to put them down. Also, preemies frequently have reflux and the semi-upright position helps with this after a feeding. Examples:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...=glance&s=baby

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...=glance&s=baby

5.) This isn't something I'd ever consider just for twins, maybe even triplets.... but quads... well, eventually when the well-wishers and helpers go home, this mama is going to have to be able to feed them ALL at the SAME time. Obviously she's going to bottlefeed (all or in part) and there's going to be some bottle propping going on, which I believe can be done in a safe and "attached" way, meaning, no she shouldn't leave the baby with a propped bottle due to choking concerns and she can be down on the floor in front of the babies, interacting with each of them as they eat, etc. But I'd consider checking out something like this:

http://www.bonnybabies.com/feedinghf.htm

6.) Along those lines, she'll almost certainly need to use formula at some point. The one thing formula companies love is free advertising, and nothing advertises as well as high-order multiples, so use this to her advantage. Some formula manufacturers will give formula FOR FREE to mothers of high order multiples. Or at least send dozens of free cases of the stuff.
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#8 of 13 Old 02-03-2005, 08:26 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Periwinkle
5.) This isn't something I'd ever consider just for twins, maybe even triplets.... but quads... well, eventually when the well-wishers and helpers go home, this mama is going to have to be able to feed them ALL at the SAME time. Obviously she's going to bottlefeed (all or in part) and there's going to be some bottle propping going on, which I believe can be done in a safe and "attached" way, meaning, no she shouldn't leave the baby with a propped bottle due to choking concerns and she can be down on the floor in front of the babies, interacting with each of them as they eat, etc. But I'd consider checking out something like this:

http://www.bonnybabies.com/feedinghf.htm

6.) Along those lines, she'll almost certainly need to use formula at some point. The one thing formula companies love is free advertising, and nothing advertises as well as high-order multiples, so use this to her advantage. Some formula manufacturers will give formula FOR FREE to mothers of high order multiples. Or at least send dozens of free cases of the stuff.
While I don't know any mothers of quads, I *do* "know" a couple mothers of triplets on another board & I know at least one of these mothers, mostly, if not completely breastfed her triplets (they're older than my kids so I wasn't on the board when they were babies, but she's talked about it some). She said she'd just try to "catch" one of them before any were too hungry & then feed the other two after the 1st was done, seems like the same system would work w/ quads. And assuming healthy mom & healthy babies, the "supply demand" system of breastfeeding should work the same as w/ anyone else, so there should be enough milk. If the mother wants to breastfeed, I'd say encourage her!!! Don't go in w/ the assumption she will fail (there are plenty of people who will tell you that it's "impossible" to breastfeed twins too & lots of us have proven that wrong).
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#9 of 13 Old 02-03-2005, 10:07 AM
 
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Hey, not trying to cause a stir, just being realistic. Twins yes, triplets much rarer, and I figured quads was a near impossibility to exlusively BF with zero bottles - one or two anecdotal reports notwithstanding.

Of course encourage her to BF as much as possible!! -- hope nothing I said took away from that. But just trying to be realistic and not assume that she's going to be slinging 4 babies at once, and nursing them on demand after the helpers disappear eventually.
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#10 of 13 Old 02-05-2005, 08:39 AM
 
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I don't know if it can be done or not, but I do know that I was royally pissed at the people who told me that "obviously you're going to have to suplement with twins", so I don't think anyone should have to hear that, if she wants to try, more power to her, I don't think anyone should tell her she's going to fail. If she's trying her hardest & it's not working & she's stressed to the max, then is the time for someone to lovingly tell her that it's "ok" to supplement, that the overall health of the family is better if mom's not so stressed about nursing, etc. But I definately would NOT go in there saying "obviously you're going to need to use formula/bottles . . .

JMHO
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#11 of 13 Old 02-13-2005, 04:15 PM
 
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I am wondering how Abigail is doing, they should be home by now.......
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#12 of 13 Old 02-18-2005, 03:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello there!
I am happy to report that Miranda, Racquel, and Aurora are home.(3 of 4 girls) Nathania should be home soon. She still has some apnea issues.

I have taken so many suggestions from you guys. Thanks so much. I go by every Thursday and help with what ever I can and drop off donations.

People have donated over 600 diapers, bassinets, cribs, laundry detergent, clothes, toys, antibacterial soap, surgical masks and countless meals to help the family.

The mom says she is still pumping away however she fears that once Nathania is home full time, she is going to have to start supplementing a bit. I say no judgement from my end. Brava that she has been able to nurse 4 babies for 2 months while undergoing the stress of having them at 2 locations, the fact that they were early and shes got a 3 year old at home too.

She is still wonder woman in my book!

thanks again for all of your positive support. I will keep you updated on their progress.

As for me, I have my myomectomy scheduled for April so hopefully I will be able to report my own good news before the end of the year.

Best Wishes!!!
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#13 of 13 Old 02-18-2005, 04:10 PM
 
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I have nb sposies I would love to donate. Also a pack of sz 1.

I exclusively use cd and received these as shower gifts.

Let me know!!!

Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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