It has officially been one week (or technically 8 nights). June 1, 2012.
My boys have not been nursed before bed in 8 days. It has passed without fanfare and feels terribly strange.
I was not as emotional about it as I thought. And it stopped naturally. I didn't know how I would wean them, and was perfectly ready to let them take the lead. And it was just like that. Little Man just forgot about it one day. Then the next. And then the next. And by the time he remembered it, it was day 5 and I just said no. He was very unhappy about it but we distracted him with something and it was forgotten about. Little Big Man was neither here nor there about it really, when LM was crying for it on day 5, LBM seemed to remember it too and started to tear up and whine but again, it was easy to distract him and move on.
Don't even ask.... I went back to work on March 19th and since today is May 6th, I honestly can say that posting here has been probably the last thing on my mind. But....
I wanted this day to be memorialized and float into the cyber-world, shouting to other twin-moms.... it happened! Our boyz, after waking from a nap, stayed happily in their cribs, talking, playing, and laughing, screaming, giggling until they decided that they wanted others to join in on their little party. It was the happiest feeling, I actually teared up. Yes I did. Miss VF, who NEVER cries or gets emotional-teary, teared up and had to walk away from the eavesdropping because I was so excruciatingly happy and proud.
There is honestly nothing like walking into a nursery with two boys in their cribs who are smiling and so happy to see you. Seriously. It's so joyful and uplifting, any other negative feeling that might be simmering inside instantly melts away.
This past weekend was difficult for me, and I guess husband too but I don't want to assume to know exactly what he's feeling. I know what I am feeling and it is hard to describe. We are so happy to be a couple and to have two beautiful children. We feel so blessed and fortunate to be living with my mother and to have my aunt so generously take care of our boyz while we work. We have nothing to complain about or to worry about. And yet, family dynamics are so difficult to manage for us. Especially me. I think perceptions are difficult to overcome and such is the case, especially when there may be a misunderstanding. What sucks is that it's like the big elephant in the room that no one really wants to address. I don't want to because I don't think it's my place and the other party despises conflict. It is a vicious, vicious, circle of passive aggressive-ness (is that a word?)
There's a point in your life when you decide that you need to make decisions for yourself and live by your own rules. Rules that allow you to live the life you want to lead, without seeking approval from every significant person in your life instead, knowing that those significant people will stick by you and with you and live alongside you throughout your journey. They aren't living your life; you are. So you should make yourself as happy and fulfilled as you possibly can. It sounds so selfish. But it is how you preserve your sanity. Believe it.
I think we try to strike a balance. Husband and I are from two completely different familial backgrounds who came together and began a family. We have made it a mission to live our lives as a family, on our terms. It is necessary to establish boundaries and to create meaningful connections for us, not me, not him. Has it been difficult? Yes. Extremely. Are we confused? Absolutely yes. Are we happy and proud? Yes and yes. A million times yes. THAT is what's most important. To hell with all the other superfluous, petty, inocuous bullshit that families go through. Forget about the past and move on, people!
That all said, this post is supposed to be about the most beautiful day we've had in a while. It truly was. It was not only a beautiful, sunny spring day, it was so much fun! We played outside almost all day, we bbq'd, we played inside, and the boyz proved they can sit in their room and play together despite being in separate cribs. That was the best part. Seeing them interact with each other outside, inside, in their rooms - it's all such a blessing. It's so truly unique.
I have have have to write about this thing the boyz have been doing for the past while. I am sorry that I didn't write about it sooner, so I could document the date of when this first began. It was definitely late last year, I just don't know if it was in November or earlier or later. Oh well. Time kinda just melds for me these days.
Anyway, the two of them have been hugging and kissing each other. A lot. Especially in the morning, when they're still a little sleepy and still fuzzy and want to be held. LBM likes to slobber kisses all over LM's face, leaving him looking a little like a wet dog and LM loves to cuddle and press his (fore)head into whatever part of the body is closest to it - shoulder, ear, eye, stomach, leg, arm, you get the point. It's actually something that I am so proud of. That they recognize one another and realise that they love each other so much. Sometimes we try to get in on that action and sometimes we are permitted to participate, while at other times, we are not welcomed. Sometimes they want their own private time, I guess. I've also tried to get LBM to kiss me and he will only do it when he feels like it. Like when he's not mad at me and throwing a kicking tantrum. LM on the other hand, will cuddle and kiss whenever requested.
I quite honestly think watching that interaction makes every single difficult moment worthwhile. Everything. And someday, I'll write about everything. But just understand: the early days were ugly. That the boyz love each other and express themselves like that makes my heart sing.
Oh and tonight, LM was asleep within 2 minutes. Hardly any crying. LBM did not cry at all. Just rolled around and tried to get comfy before falling asleep quite abruptly. Big relief for us.
Okay, so yesterday was "the Day." The Day when I had to let my LM go back to his crib, his room, back to be with his brother. And it was horrifyingly horrible. Like, I purposely ran all kinds of stupid errands so I didn't have to listen to it. Although I certainly felt like I was there with him. I was in a terrible mood; grumpy and unhappy. I went to Costco and Loblaws and bought a bunch of stuff we didn't really need all that desperately and used up a bunch of PC points that I had only been saving for the past 10 years only to buy diapers that were on sale that weren't even the right size but I didn't even notice because obviously my mind was elsewhere... it was that kind of night.
Husband said that he only cried for an hour and a half. Okay. That would be okay if he didn't wake up at 12:55am and proceed to cry for another hour and half. I was horrified. I kept nudging husband telling him, it's been 20 minutes, it's been 40 minutes, it's been AN HOUR before I fell asleep momentarily, only to wake up and hear more crying until it stopped again... I didn't realise that husband was completely asleep the entire time I was freaking out.. of course my eyes were glued to the monitor so I didn't even have the courtesy to turn my head to see if he was also awake.
So in total, out of an 11 hour sleep, LM slept for all of 8 hours -- because he cried for 3 of them. In the dark. Doesn't that sound so painful? It makes me feel so awful!
Like I have probably written before... Crying it out sucks ass. And I think it's more torture for me, yes, but it seems so counter-intuitive. I have to fight every intuition in my body and that doesn't seem normal to me. It doesn't seem like it's supposed to happen that way. Why, when the very few times I actually feel my "woman's intuition," do I have to ignore it? I always think that the way we do it is wrong. And actually, husband does agree with me. If we had one kid, I think we probably would be cosleeping without really questioning ourselves. But with two, there is this overwhelming sense of guilt. All the time. And there is also a very real need for structure and some sort of control. Making sure they are on the same schedule and under very similar environmental conditions allows us to have some semblance of order in the household. So, putting them down at the same time and then freeing me for the rest of the night is something that is precious for me. Because down time is so important. For my mind.
It gives me a chance to re-set. It's all about the re-set. Again, something LM knows much about. We had to re-set him so many times in the early months -- a simple re-set would lead to a calmer sleep later. But before that re-set? Holy moly, it was a scary place. So sometimes (okay, all the time) I need a re-set. I need to be alone to do nothing and to be allowed to do nothing. And to let my mind wander.
Or maybe I just mean, I need sleep. My eyes are closing even now, as I type. And it's not even 10pm. Wow.
Anyway, the whole point of this post was this: LM and LBM both went to bed at 7pm tonight. LBM without a peep. LM with about a 2 minute sob-fest and then lights out.
That would be me, husband, LM (as per usual), and LBM (!). LBM woke up, crying in a panic because somehow he got out of his sleep sack and was absolutely freezing. Poor thing. He's been trying to get comfortable in our bed (I don't think he can) for the last 45 minutes. I had to come down to get a drink and can hear him coughing and moving around...
I hope we can sort this out. I'm not sure if I want to continue this pattern, I sort of do, but I sort of don't. Always torn. There's so many conflicting opinions. We just have to somehow figure it out ourselves.
I love that I found out how to blog-post from Pinterest. Makes the blog look better and makes posting easier.
Why is it so hard to get my ass in gear and out for a run?
Lots of stuff going on lately. Husband has been looking for work and we've got some options on the horizon but it's so hard to make the wise decision. I know he'll make the best decision for our family but it's still quite confusing as to which to take. It's hard to know or predict which will give us the best future.
Boyz are doing much better - thank goodness for modern medicine!
The only real issue we've been having lately is LM sleeping with us every night in bed because he cannot sleep in his crib (it's been too many months of him used to my smell and the comfort of our bed) and the nap issue during the day - very very difficult. And I don't know what to do to fix it.
I participated in a webinar last week and the speaker said that her kids stopped needing a morning nap at the age of one. So we tried that yesterday. Yeah. Not happening. I find that right now, they do need that short morning nap but I'm going to try to push them again for as long as I can. We're going to a baby shower tomorrow and I want them to be in good moods!
Again, it's my obsession -- sleep. Twins and sleep. Twins and sleep. Twins and sleep.
I thought it would be cool to repost this message I sent to our cousins in Cali. They had twins in April 2011 and so it's been pretty amazing to share experiences with family. I wanted to repost this mainly for my own posterity -- it's a good recap of things that have been going on for the last little while.
Oh man, T, it's been utter chaos over here!!
First of all, however, I would like to commend you on your endurance! Congratulations on the pumping - you are an amazing woman! I have officially weaned babes from boobs during the day and plan to nurse morning and night for as long as possible (selfish, huh!). The eating is still hit and miss, although S seems to be ravenous all the time. I am becoming a little braver at offering our "human" food - I'm always so concerned about the sodium and sugar content... am I being stupid? I don't want to give them too many refined sugars yet and we all know about sodium...
I love how you said that you have a time out playpen for C! Where did you hear of that? I have yet to try anything like that for the boyz - I agree though, it is very difficult to teach them the concept of sharing or taking turns. I'm trying and it is quite hilarious - as soon as I take something away, one cries and then vice versa as soon as his turn is over... But, they'll learn someday! So far, it's just been fights galore and lots of grabbing and pushing away, turning of bodies, stuff like that. Very interesting.
What's Little Gym? A play gym for kiddies? You guys are awesome! I totally would love to do something like that. It gets so boring doing the same thing hour after hour after hour here! hahaha. Don't worry about I though, she'll catch up when she's good and ready! S started crawling in August/September and E didn't start until the middle of November! And E started walking a few weeks after he started crawling! S was a couple of days faster but it was like E was just watching and learning. It's amazing.
The boys have been off/on sick since the beginning of November. On new year's day, S got really sick - like fever and massive congestion - which lasted about 4 days. I took him to the doctor and really, there was nothing we could do except wait it out... he was SO out of it. We were really worried. I had to hold him, no joke, for three days. Like, he was NEVER out of my arms and he slept with us. I had to break the no nursing ban during the day because he was not eating. At all. And yet he was parched. I was beside myself! Anyway, eventually we figured out that his upper molars had popped out and only because he threw his head back while thrashing and had his mouth open. My face just happened to be in the right spot to see his mouth and the four little pillars ripping thru the skin. Poor fella. I felt like the worst mother. Ever.
anyway, the next day was Sunday (just past) and it was an awesome day - everyone was smiling and laughing and playing. We had our kids back!
Then Monday came.
And I then proceeded to hold E for three days because he was so weak and sick. He literally did not have ONE bite of food for three days. Again, 40C temps. At the same time this is happening, S's eyes are crusted over every morning and red and swollen. Wtf?
We took them to the doctor yesterday and they both have eye infections and E also has an ear infection. They're both under 20lbs now -- although S is starting to gain again, his appetite is coming back thankfully. E is starting to smile again too, antibiotics rock!!!
All this, while trying to wean them. Seriously. And they won't drink homo milk. At all. They barf. Or gag. It's so gross. So, they don't drink anything during the day, T. I don't know what to do. To be honest, I'm a little worried about that.
I've given up for now - I figure if I offer other sources of calcium, they'll be fine. It's just the hydration part I worry about. They definitely don't drink enough water during the day and Elijah just hates drinking water, unless it's to blow bubbles in or play with in his mouth until it's all dribbled out all over his clothes. Yeah, that's fun.
So, that's the saga of this household since January 1st, 2012 hit. Massive sicknesses and crying, whiny babies. Oh! And did I fail to mention that E has been my bed-mate since, oh, November?!?!?!? omg we are so dead... We tried to put them both in the crib tonight and he proceeded to cry for 55 minutes! I took him out, only to figure out that he poohed and that's why he was crying so hard. I changed him and then he rolled over onto his spot on my bed and fell asleep. Like, instantly. Husband is going to try to transfer him later, but I don't think it'll work. Yes, it might initially, but I think he'll still wake up in the middle of the night and he'll end up with us again. Ahhhh the joys!!!
So that's it. That's been our lives in a nutshell.
This is all while my husband is working on the house, fixing things, renovating, moving, tidying, doing doing doing. What a great guy. He's so amazing and I'm so lucky.
Before it's way way too late... here's how 2011 went down for Verity:
1. Learn how to sew and complete at least one sewing project by July 1, 2011. Perhaps something simple for the boyz? Fail! I did attempt sewing bean bag letters for the boyz but it just wasn't consistent... and no project was completed. 2. Write at least 3-5 posts per month on this blog. Fail! Or, maybe Pass! But I'm not sure and I'm too lazy to count. But I think I have 77 posts or something for the year, so that's an average of what, about 6 a month? 3. Run a half marathon or another 10K by October, 2011. Potential race to be posted later. PUHAHAHAHAHA!!! Ask me if I worked out for 5 minutes last year? Okay, actually, I went for 2 or 3 runs in November. And that was it. And I've signed up for a 10K relay on March 25, 2012. I apologize now to my team-mates. It's going to be a sad, lonely day for moi... 4. Go on a family vacation to the Rockies or somewhere in Canada in the summer. I'd like to go to Banff again. So gorgeous there. FAIL! I swear I tried to make this happen but it didn't even come close to coming to fruition. Lots of talk, no action. 5. Make at least 1 extra payment on the mortgage (Gotta start small and remember I'm on maternity leave! and I have to figure it out with my husband). Even one payment makes a difference! Pass!!! We put $5000 down. Now, to figure out how to get some cash into the RRSPs... that's going to be a little more difficult. 6. Create a family budget and stick to it. This will be completed by the end of February, 2011. We've been trying to establish this for awhile now, and I think this is my opportunity! Ummm... well, I did do some of it but we haven't followed it nor have I even looked at the budget since I filled it out.
Let this list of resolutions be proof that RESOLUTIONS are BOGUS. How about trying to make a 'change' everyday of our lives. This list basically just made me feel like a failure. And to be honest? I completely forgot about them until 10 minutes ago when I was looking at last year's January posts and came across it. So there. 2011 was a failure for Verity's resolutions. Big deal. 2012 is going to be awesome. You wanna know why? Because 2011 was FREAKING AMAZING!!! How could it not have been?
Poor LM. He's been running a fever these past few days and it's not getting better. He's shared our bed for each of those nights plus a few and every night there's nothing we can do but listen to him cry and watch him thrash until he's so exhausted he passes out. At 1 am. That lasts for an hour. Or more. But when your fever is 40C and you're hot and your mouth is throbbing, what can your parents expect?
LBM has gluey eyes, and lots of discharge coming out of them. I am taking both to the doc tomorrow if she has space. It's just never-ending. And then I've been holding LM non-stop for 2 days so LBM is feeling tres left out and bummed out. I feel bad for him - it's like he doesn't know what to do with himself if his partner isn't doing something with him.... even though they don't necessarilyplay together yet.
I'm tired only because I've been up at all hours of the night and then basically attached to the hip with one dude, while trying to care for the other. Thank the Lord husband has been around to help... most of the time. He's been really busy, trying to get shit done both personally and around the house. Still, it's a true blessing that he's been home to help. I truly appreciate it. It's so hard to care for a sick baby. Both emotionally and physically. Sometimes I can't take the crying.
Naps have basically been thrown out the window. LBM should be able to go down but it's just been an absolute mess since molars started on New Year's day. Because LM started a week later, it's been difficult to be consistent with LBM and so I've pretty much screwed myself for the next little while. Thank goodness, again, for husband, who's been able to be around to help... although I will admit, sometimes it is easier for me when I'm alone -- it's quiet in the house and there's no doubting or discussing whether we're doing the right thing... when I'm alone, I just do it and if it works, it works, if it doesn't, I learn for the next time.
I'm really hoping that the fever goes away tomorrow. It's just been too much disruption in the routine. Even for me.
It's been one week in 2012 and LBM has been inconsolable. He started off the new year very sick, feverish, congested and lethargic. Not his normal, kooky self. He needed to be held constantly and cried. A lot. And I didn't really know why or how he got so sick.
And today I found out. His poor, poor teeth... he cut two molars (top). OUCH! And I had NO idea. How does that even happen? Explains the massive amounts of drooling for months on end now... And the total crabbiness. We had a conversation (husband and I) about the amount of pain we, as adults would feel if we were cutting new teeth at our age. Then at a party today (our nephew's first!), someone mentioned that there was actually a study about that and it concluded that as adults we would have to be hospitalized for the pain. HAHAHAHA... don't know if it's true but no matter, the point is, teething is incredibly painful and totally affects every part of our daily life these days.
My poor, sweet boy.
And then, there's LM. And he's been waking at all hours with his finger stuck inside his mouth. He's a lucky little guy, because we figure out what it is before it happens to him because LBM seems to go through it first....