Life with Twins

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Cleaning, Playing, Blogging

What do these three things have in common?

Hopefully I will be doing them all this week since I have off for Mid-Winter break!

There’s a couple of lunch and dinner dates in the mix too.  My main goal is to clean out my basement which I already started today by getting the drywall pieces out of there and out for the garbage.  That’ll be while the kids are napping (fingers crossed).

While they’re awake there will be lots of playing!  Including having them play sweep and mop along with me while I really sweep and mop.  🙂  Maybe dusting too.

I’m also hoping to post a couple of times to kind of catch up on stuff and get back into the swing of things.

I’m back to running too, so I’ll update about that as well.  🙂

So…..see you soon!!!

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6 Days Until My Birthday!! (plus some news!)

No-Twin Thursday (yeah, I know, I know)

NOW: Guess what I did (ok, I haven’t done it yet, but I’m going to do it, really)!!!  I signed up (will be) for the Buffalo Half-Marathon!!!  Whoo-hoo!!!!

Ok, I haven’t signed up yet.  But I am serious about it.  I even had a couple of meetings regarding the topic.  First with Tim, then with my friend/running buddy, Kate. 

Kate and I talked about signing up for this months ago.  Then, we kind of casually talked about it a couple of weeks ago (as in; how’s your running going….not so good…..me neither…..).  But I had a training plan that a colleague had shared with me that didn’t start until February 12.  That seemed like a million miles away, so no big deal.  

Luckily, Kate is more on the ball than me.  I want to do it, I have plans to do it, I got her involved in the first place, but then sometimes I just don’t follow through.  Or I put things off until it’s too late.  Kate texted me Wednesday implying that we needed to get our shit together and figure out what the hell we’re going to do about this training plan that starts in two weeks.  Especially since neither of us has been running since our last 5K in the end of September.

I was lazy calm about it.  I said I’d talk to Tim about a good day for her and I to get together and have a little dinner and discussion.  I was thinking like next week…two weeks….

But then I said to myself; “self, get your ass in gear”.  So I did.  We met at Panera last night and planned out a calendar.  I’m a little less flexible than her as far as time because of the twins and Tim not wanting to stay home with the twins.  We decided running in the morning, 3 times a week would work for our shorter runs and then a weekend day (usually Sunday) for the longer ones.  And any day we can’t run together outside for some reason, we have to check in with each other that we got our running in alone that day.

I talked to Tim first.  He’s my workout buddy and I’m going to be abandoning him 3 times a week!  He basically said that was fine as long as I got him out of bed first so that he’ll get up and do the Wii Fit without me.  The other two days I’ll do the Wii Fit with him.  Until the sun starts coming up in the morning and then he’ll go running by himself those two days so that he can do some 5K runs this summer.

Kate and I are also going to run an 8K Shamrock Run in between.  It works out that it’s the same weekend as we are supposed to do a 5 mile run anyway and it will be good motivation.

Normally, we don’t sign up for races ahead of time.  But that’s mostly because the 5K races don’t have a big difference in price even if you wait until the last minute.  But this is a little different.  Not so much for the Shamrock Run, but the Half especially.  So, we’ll save some money (always nice, especially when she has a wedding to pay for in 6 months!) and again, more motivation.  If we’re already out the money we won’t use the rain or something silly as an excuse, right?

I feel so motivated after this little plan!  I ordered a healthier option while at Panera (garden vegetable soup as opposed to broccoli cheddar) and did not get that 420 calorie Caramel latte I wanted so much. 

Perhaps this is just the motivation I needed.  Hopefully it will stand up to Birthday Week dinners!!!  (6 days until my Birthday! Yay!)  This is now.

THEN: It was SO hard that I couldn’t drive after my C-section for 6 weeks.  I needed to get to the hospital!  Luckily, my parents took me every day that Tim was working.  He had decided he would use his time off for when the twins actually came home, rather than now.  I had to rely on my parents’ schedule but usually it was ok.  My mornings were spent at home alone sleeping, pumping, watching tv, pumping, doing some light chores, pumping, eating, and pumping.  Mostly pumping.  And waiting.  Waiting for the time when my mom and dad would come get me and take me to the babies.  It was stressful, but relaxing.  Does that make sense?

I’m not a worrier.  Whatever will be, will be.  And some things are out of my control so worrying isn’t going to solve the problem.  Was I worried about the twins?  Yes, of course.  But they were healthy.  It had been ME that was the problem, not them.  So was I worried, yes, because they were in the hospital and I had all the what if questions…..what if they didn’t gain enough weight, what if their bodies wouldn’t regulate their temperature, what if they didn’t learn how to eat, what if their oxygen levels dropped, what if a crazed nurse stole them from the hospital like a Lifetime movie?

These thoughts were in my mind, yes.  But they were always in the absolute back of my mind.  They didn’t stop me from enjoying and appreciating everything else I was given.  Especially my sleep and freedom.  I had two newborns and I was sleeping through the night and had loads of freetime.  I try to look on the bright side.  🙂  That was then.

I have a Confession…..

NOW: I love Christmas.  There, I said it.

Prior to Thanksgiving I was pretending to be one of those people that dislikes the Christmas decorations being up in the stores already.

So, when Thanksgiving was over, I could finally give in to my true nature.  Phew, what a relief.

Then, I started reading/hearing all kinds of people complaining about Christmas in general…..especially in regards to Santa Claus.  So, I’ve been debating about this post for a while, but I suppose it’s my right to give the other side of the debate.  I don’t think anyone is “wrong” in their beliefs, just like to give my opinion too!

I love Santa.  I believe in Santa.  I truly do, at 30 years old.  Does Santa magically drop presents down the chimney for Tim and I?  No, not technically.  But I believe in him as the spirit of Christmas.  The idea that my twins will wake up on Sunday morning and be in awe of the fact that not only are there presents under the tree……but the milk, cookies, and carrots are mysteriously gone.

I know it’s a lie.  But I suppose I lie to my kids all the time.  Not big lies.  But……when there’s blackberries going bad in the fridge and there’s new bananas on the counter and they ask for bananas and I tell them they’re not ready to eat yet so they’ll just have to make do with blackberries.  Could they eat the bananas, yes.  But I want them to eat the blackberries first.  But they won’t go along with that line of thinking.  So, I tell them the bananas aren’t ready yet and they suddenly become perfectly happy with blackberries.  Just an example.  But I digress.

I try to explain as much to my kids as possible.  Even if anyone else would think they’re too young to understand.  And I tell the truth; I don’t blow them off with a simple answer.  It gives me credibility for when I do stretch the truth.  Plus, I’m a firm believer in asking questions in order to learn.  Even when I have a group of 22 children in front of me all day….each with their own set of questions.  That’s my job; to answer them.

Back to Santa.  Early in November, Will and Ariel saw a commercial featuring the man in the red suit and inquired about it.  I, being the over-explainer, immediately went into a detailed description of Santa, with his sleigh, reindeer, and sack of toys coming down chimneys on Christmas Eve.  I was excited.  Even back in November.  As a result, we they have been talking about Santa for almost two months now.  Not incessently.  But occasionally.  And more so now that the big night is almost here.

<It’s hard to put joy into words.  I think it’s much easier to express negative emotions, so this post might get rambly.  I apologize in advance.>

Santa is magic.  End of story.  Obviously I’m excited because this is the first year where the twins really get what’s going on for Christmas.  If nothing else, they know what presents are for and they are looking forward to recieving some, I’m sure.  But they are also excited about the tree, the ornaments, the decorating, the driving around looking at Christmas lights, the snow (what snow?), the shopping (yay, my kids like to shop!) the making cookies, the holiday movies.  I could go on and on.  

They are just full to the brim of excitement and positive emotion.  Same way my 2nd graders at school feel.  And I like to think that it’s coming partially from me.  They are excited because I am excited.  And I allow myself and them to give in to the excitement.  I don’t pretend Christmas isn’t coming, I embrace it.  And every year I get the same question from my 7-year-olds at school…..is there a Santa Claus?  They are at the brink of not believing.  Others have told them it isn’t true.  But they trust their teacher.  Maybe more than they trust their parents.  Because their parents might tell them the truth if they ask.  Plus, when they’re being egged on by 20 other kids, this seems like the perfect time to inquire.  School is for learning, right? 

And I don’t lie.  I tell them yes.  There is a Santa and I believe in him.  Let me make this clear; I am not lying.  And that’s part of the magic.  They know I’m not lying.  And so do my twins.

When I was little Santa filled my living room with presents.  And my sister and I always made sure to say “Thank you Santa, wherever you are!” while we looked up at the ceiling (because North is up), after we were done opening our gifts.  We were grateful.  Were we grateful to the wrong person?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  Because even though it was technically my parents’ money, and technically my parents (mom) who went out and did the shopping, and technically my parents (mom) who stayed up late into the night wrapping……it was Santa who brought those gifts.  And my parents heard the thank you and took it as their own.

I don’t even remember finding out that mom and dad were buying the gifts all along.  I guess it wasn’t that big of a deal.  I vaguely remember mom telling me not to tell Melissa, 5 years younger than me, and still going strong in her Santa-belief.  I think I kind of felt like I was just in on a secret, not a lie.  How fun it was to keep this secret going year after year…..until eventually most of  the presents were just labeled “from mom and dad”.  But never all.  There were always a couple from Santa.  Even though we “didn’t believe” anymore.  And the pile?  Didn’t get any smaller.  Don’t get me wrong.  My parents were not rich.  My dad worked two jobs so that my mom could stay home with us, and then later when my mom developed back problems and “couldn’t” work (that’s another post for another day).  They were probably living paycheck to paycheck.  But I never would have known it come Christmas morning.  Was I spoiled, yes.  But was I taught how to be rich in Christmas Spirit and thankfulness, yes.

I guess I’m lucky too because there are a lot of factors that don’t make me see “playing Santa” as a chore.  I love shopping, and shopping for the perfect gifts that I know will make my kids’ eyes light up is so rewarding.  It’s not work.  And I loved wrapping this year.  I picked out two different sets of paper and made sure Will and Ariel each had the same amount and wrapped and wrapped.  And the “leftover” gifts that didn’t have a “match”?  They are from mommy and daddy.  And in a third type of wrapping paper.  It was like a puzzle!  Making sure that they each had the same amount of gifts wrapped up.  (That reminds me, I have to figure out somethings to unwrap and rewrap so they each have a gift for each other). 

I guess it just boils down to this; I have fond memories of Christmas and of Santa.  I want my children to have fond memories of Christmas and Santa.  I want them to share in the Christmas Spirit and be merry and cheerful.  Everything Tim and I do with them is an experience that will shape their whole world as they grow up and I guess I just want them to have this wonderful, joyful Christmas/Santa experience.  Even if it is a lot of work.  And technically a lie.

I’m lucky too, in that I have the means to be able to do all of this work to build up the lie.  It’s worth it to me.  Because I love Christmas.   And because I believe in Santa Claus.

Happy Holidays Everyone!  Enjoy your time with yourself, your friends, your family, your joy. 

And your presents…..I know I’m looking forward to opening up my one-piece footie Cookie Monster pajamas from Tim!  (They just better be waiting under the tree and not being saved for my upcoming Birthday!)  This is now.

THEN: (A short one): The twins were born on a Sunday.  I was allowed to stay at the hospital until Thursday morning.  You might think that’s strange….whoever wants to stay in the hospital, right?  But I was glad because that was where my babies were. 

On Wednesday night, before Tim left to go home, I was sobbing.  I thought my heart would break.  He even climbed into the tiny hospital bed and held me.  I had been holding in all of my negative emotions for almost a week….even before they were born.  But now, on the eve of my homecoming, I broke down.

I didn’t want to go home the next morning.  I couldn’t leave them.  It was “bad enough” that they were being taken care of by “other people” but now I got to go home and they didn’t.  It wasn’t fair.  All of my other fears came out….basically…..what if they never came home?  I cried and cried and cried.  And he held me.  And he cried a little too.

A nurse came in.  I stopped right away.  I couldn’t be weak in front of her, she’d think something was wrong.  I told her I was just afraid to leave the twins.  But, she was trained to deal with crying, new moms.  She was afraid it was something worse; I could see it in her eyes.  She left and I knew that she would be sending people to check on me up until I left the next morning.  And maybe even watch me when I came back to visit the twins.  It might be post-partum depression.

I got angry.  Did I not have the right to get a little sad?  After all we had been through?  I was keeping it together and upbeat for a long time!  Didn’t I have the right to cry a little when I didn’t know what I was facing and how long I would have to face it and didn’t know what was going to become of my babies, but just knowing I wasn’t able to be in the same building with them 24/7 anymore?  I just wanted to cry a little.  I just wanted to be held by my husband who was the only one who even came close to understanding.  Was that so wrong?  That was then.

Whirlwind Weekend

NOW: We had such a flurry of activities and emotions going on this weekend! 

Saturday morning started with our normal swim class….although we were running a little late because Tim and I got up and exercised and then had to pack up the car for tree-hunting. 

We met our friends, Katie and Erich, for breakfast, and then we were on our way to the Field Of Dreams Tree Farm!  YAY! 

I had put the twins in boots because of the mud/snow and so they were very excited to be going outside.  Apparently BOOTS = OUTSIDE.  Makes sense.  When we got there, we were happy to see a small layer of snow on the ground.  This meant we could use our sled!  YAY!

We bundled the kids up in snow pants, hats, mittens, and scarves and plopped them on the sled.  I volunteered to pull them for a little while.  Big Mistake.  Why did I not realize that it was uphill?  I told Tim I shouldn’t have bothered getting up to exercise that morning, this should have counted.  Oh well, a little extra workout never hurt anyone, right?

So I’m pulling them up the path and we come to a fork in the road.  Now, let me tell you, we have been going to the same Tree Farm for the last few years now.  I knew we always went straight at the fork.  Tim insisted we go left and seemed so sure of himself that we all agreed.  Big mistake.  

Luckily the twins were THRILLED to be in the woods.   I pulled them on the path for a while, but then we decided to go off-roading a little bit.  By that time they decided to get out and proceeded to trip over every tree stump they could possibly find.  Not to mention getting stuck in brambles and hit in the face with tall weeds. 

Ariel was dantily moving each and every branch out of her way as she walked.  Oh my goodness, we were going  to be here all F%$#%ing day if this continued.  Will was just plowing through. 

We convinced them to let us pick them up.  I kept reminding Katie that she was the one who pitched the idea of bringing them.  Of course, she grabbed Ariel, and even taunted that I had to carry the heavier one.  Bitch.  🙂

So now I’m plowing through the brambles, trying not to trip with the boy in my arms who honestly now weighs at least 10 times as much as his normal 27 lbs.  Probably because he ate 1 and 1/2 pancakes, a piece of bacon, a scrambled egg, 2 pieces of toast, a sausage link, and had a full cup of milk with breakfast.  And some of Katie’s waffle.  Plus, his jacket and snow pants have to weigh like 20 pounds each I think.

 And he’s insisting that HE wants to pull the sled.  So, I have it draped around my arm, but then also draped around his arm so that he thinks he’s pulling it.  Of course, he also keeps wanted to manuver himself to peer over my shoulder and constantly reassures me “sled still there mommy.”  Ok, thanks bud.

We get back to a path and I practically drop him.  He probably would have bounced, but I might have would have felt bad.

Now, here’s where we realize for sure that we do not normally go left at the fork.  To the right of our path there is a very scary-looking foot bridge that I have never seen before in my life.  Tim now insists that we should have listened to him and gone straight at the fork.  I almost strangle him, but I still need him to cut down and drag a tree to my car.

Well, we have to cross the bridge now, he says.  Um.  No F-ing way.  It is over a small creek, no railings. and there’s a big sign that says “slippery when wet”.  No way.

Well, we had to.  Katie and Erich went first, with the empty sled.  Tim and I each carried a child.  It wasn’t really slippery.  But it was a little scary for someone who is afraid of heights and has a 2-year-old in their arms.  But of course we were fine.

All this while we were looking for trees, but Tim finally spotted one that might work for us.  It was 10 feet tall.  BUT, there was a big gap in the middle…..so we took the top half of the tree! 

Katie and Erich found one soon after we did.  We made our way back up to the front.  Luckily, we only had to drag the trees a short distance and then the workers came and got them with a four-wheeler, so we just had to get ourselves up front.  By now, the twins were done wandering, and just sat in the sled all the way back.  We paid for our trees, got some hot chocolate, and ate some yummy cookies Erich had made the night before.  It took some time to get the tree secured to the top of my car, but then we were on our way home!

Twins fell asleep for about 15 minutes on the way home.  🙂  We got them out and fed then lunch while we set up the tree and they watched safetly from their high chairs.  Then, we put them down for nap.  Will cried for a while, as usual, but then was quiet.  Ariel was talking to herself, as usual.  I left to do a little shopping.

Tim called me. 

Tim: Guess what else we need to buy for Christmas gifts?

Me: What?

Tim: Bed rails.  And Guard Rails.  Guess who just climbed out of the crib?

Me: Oh my gosh, is HE OK?!

Tim: Oh yes…..he’s fine…..SHE’S the one who climbed out!!!!!

Never would have guessed it.  Even Tim, when he heard the THUMP, went running into Will’s room and found him sound asleep.  It wasn’t until a couple seconds later, when he heard Ariel wailing, that he even figured out what had happened.  She was on the floor.  Crying, but fine.  Tim was a little shaken up. 

Then when he did go get Will, he discovered poop paintings again.  Poor Daddy.  He had a rough couple of hours.  So he was a little stressed. 

The next morning, there were more poop paintings.  So Tim had Will jump in the shower with me to get washed off.  I helped him clean up his room, and he went and got Ariel while I got dressed.  She’s screaming at the top of her lungs when he walks in; “NOOOOO, WANT UPPY MOMMY!!!!!!!”  So our morning started off a little stressful also.  Then they were fighting during breakfast, and dumping food on the floor.

We decided to call Mema and Papa to see if they’d babysit while we got some shopping done.  We just needed a break.  I put the lights on the tree while Tim entertained the twins with Elmo Saves Christmas.  Very cute movie!  They loved it.  Then, while we were out we started looking into our options for big-kid beds.  I’d rather change them over while I’m at home a little, so we were originally going to do it February break.  Looks like we might need to do it a couple months early.  I know she only fell out once, but I really don’t want to risk it now…..knowing that she knows that she can get out.  She’ll get over the scare in a few weeks, I’m sure. 

After finishing our shopping, and then going to a nice dinner at a new restaurant in the mall, Gordon Biersch, and having a beer, we went home refreshed.  And ready to put the ornaments on the tree with the twins.  We put Muppet Family Christmas in because we had watched it already, so we didn’t have to pay super-close attention and answer a million questions.  But they loved it the first time so we figured it would serve as an OK distraction while we put on some of the fragile ornaments.  Everything worked out very well.  After a while, Will started to get a little crabby because he was tired and Ariel wasn’t content with the stuffed ornaments we had deemed ok for her to put on, but we were almost done by that time anyway.  I love sharing all of these traditions with them now that they kinda understand what’s going on!  This is now.

THEN: My children were born at approximately 3 and a half pounds each.  Pretty good for 31 week twins actually.  When I was wheeled up to their incubators in the Dogwood room, I thought they were the smallest people I had ever seen.  They were so fragile-looking that I was almost afraid to touch them.  But I was their mother and I couldn’t be afraid.  Besides, Tim and our families had, and they were fine.

I went to see Will first, because he was closer to the door.  His lungs were a little more underdeveloped than his sister’s, so he had a CPAP machine and a mask on his face to help him maintain his oxygen levels.  It wasn’t helping him breathe, just making sure he got what he needed.  Other than that, he was hooked up to monitors in three different places.  A clip was on his foot, monitoring his heartbeat.  There were two different needles in his hands.  And there was a feeding tube down his throat.  He couldn’t open his eyes because of the mask.  He was so beautiful and precious and little.  I couldn’t take my eyes off of him, but I had to see his sister.

She was hooked up to all the same machines, except the CPAP.  She had been on the CPAP for a couple hours when she was first born but that was it.  I thought the’d be enclosed, but instead they were on heated platforms, surrounded by blankets.  They only had diapers on, so that they wouldn’t get too warm.

They couldn’t eat, that’s why they had the tubes.

They couldn’t regulatre their body temperatures, so they had the blankets and the heated pad.

They had to be monitored at all times and couldn’t be held yet.  All I could do was lightly stroke their backs or touch their hands and feet carefully to let them know that Mommy was there.   Finally.

That was then.

Being Thankful

NOW:  I’m sitting here trying to think of what I’m thankful for.  In a creative way.  I’m thankful for so much, but it’s all kind of cliche and boring.  Family, friends, health, job.  That about sums it up.  But, expressing what you’re thankful for seems the thing to do these days, so here goes nothing……

I am thankful first and foremost for my husband, Tim.  He is my everything.  Sometimes I get so caught up in living life I forget to think about how I got here in the first place, but it’s mostly to do with him.  I am thankful for his sense of humor, his love, his daddy-skills, his cooking skills (Thankful mostly because then I don’t have to cook!), and for making me want to be a better person…..but still putting up with the parts I’ll never change.  He is my best friend and my soulmate. 

I am thankful for my twins.  It’s hard to believe there was a time in my life when I thought I didn’t want kids.  Now, sometimes I believe I was put on this earth to be their mommy.  It’s a full-time job….and it’s definitely WORK, but it’s also the best job in the world.  Even if I forget that sometimes….like when Will’s walls, crib bars, sheets, and stuffed animals are all painted with poop when I go to get him in the morning.  But when I think back….especially when I’m doing a “THEN” post…..well, it just helps me remember how much I need them.

My friends….they are just always there for me, or just there to be with me, or just there to talk to me.  I am so lucky to have each and every one of them.  Even when they are so drunk they spill gluten-free beer all over my husband’s white Sabres jersey.  Oh yeah, I’m also thankful for Stain Stick.

I think in this economy, most people are thankful for their jobs.  I am. 

My family.  And Tim’s family.  They are just so great and helpful.

But I am more thankful that I love my job.  I can’t think of anything I’d rather be doing.  I would hate to be stuck in a job just because I had to make money, and I know that’s how a lot of people’s lives are.  I am blessed to be working in a good school, with good people, a good principal, and pretty good kids. 

Can I take a minute to be thankful for ridiculous things?  I am thankful for the yummy risotto my hubby made for dinner last night.  I can still taste it, and that’s a good thing.  I am thankful for my new salad spinner.  My old one broke after a good 8 year run, and I don’t think I could have lived without one.  If you don’t have one, you need one.  It’s the only thing I like to do in the kitchen!  I am thankful that International Delights already started selling their Pumpkin creamer so that I can stop spending $4.50 for pumpkin lattes.  And thankful for the coupon in the paper last week so that I could get an extra bottle.

There are lots of other little things I’m thankful for too; Disneyworld, Disney characters, and Disney movies, books, TV, baby wipes, my hair straightener, pizza, crayons, play-doh, my Fraggle Rock snuggie.  The list could go on and on. 

I guess I just am thankful for a lot.  And I know, even when I’m feeling not-so-thankful, I can use one of the many things in my life that make me happy to remind myself how lucky I truly am.  This is now.

THEN:

I am thankful to the nurses and doctors who took care of me and my children when I couldn’t.

I am thankful to my breast pump. 

I am thankful to my support group, made up of family and friends who love me.

I am thankful that I got heartburn that ended me up in the hospital, because without it, the outcome might have been a lot worse.

I am thankful that my children were relatively healthy and that, with the help of modern medicine and science, they could become stronger and healthier.

I am thankful for my husband taking extra time off of work while I was in the hospital, while the twins were in the hospital, and once the twins came home.  I don’t know what I’d do without him.

That was then.

P. U. (potty update)

NOW: I haven’t updated on the potty situation in my house.  It is still ongoing.  It’s certainly a process.  It’s nice because I don’t feel the need to rush.  My deadline is pretty far in the future (DisneyWorld: July 2012) so I’m confident they will be potty trained by then.  And if not, oh well, luggage full of diapers here we come!

They have their days.  And so do we; we being the caregivers.

In September, when I went back to work after summer break, my dad decided he’d like to switch things up and come to my house to watch the kids during the day.  I had previously been dropping the kids at his house.  But, rightly so, he didn’t really want puddles of pee all over his carpet.

Then, about halfway through September, he told me he was quitting.  No more potty stuff.  They’re too young he said to me.  I told him, quite frankly, it’s a little late for that. 

Point 1: They know what to do.  They can get to the potty. 

Point 2: They have no problem doing their business on the potty. 

Point 3: They love their underwear.

Point 4: They’re smart enough to figure out that diapers are easier.  So putting them back in diapers is just going to make it that much harder in 2 months when we try to reteach them. 

Point 5: In 2 months there will not miraculously be no more accidents.

Point 6: In 2 more months, he’ll be teaching them, not me.

So, he agreed to keep trying.  He tried to quit again mid-October.  I reviewed points 1-6. 

I know it’s frustrating.  I am also frustrated at times, and I’m with them less.  All of the sudden they’ll be standing there, in the middle of the living room, peeing.  And telling you they’re peeing.  Then, while you’re helping one in the bathroom, the other is playing in the pee that you haven’t had time to clean up yet.  It’s a mess and a half.  Plus, we really are trying to keep them off of the furniture, but of course that’s the first place they want to go when they think you aren’t watching.

So we started reminding them more often.  It’s even more frustrating when you ask them if they have to go potty, they say no, and five seconds later there’s a stream of urine heading for the carpet. 

Then we started making sure they go every hour or so.  Like, you can’t play anymore until you at least TRY to go potty.  This sometimes involved bribery, pulling them or carrying them to the bathroom, letting them bring books or stuffed animals, or watching a grown-up go to the potty at the same time. 

Tiring, to say the least.

But it’s getting better.  The worst right now is the constant reminding and asking and then still making sure they physically get to the potty instead of just pretending they’re going to go and then running down the hall past the bathroom, laughing hysterically.  And if you’re not constantly reminding them, they forget and just pee on the rug.  I just don’t understand why they get the whole concept but just won’t do it on their own.  Even if they have an accident, I ask them where the pee pee should go and they tell me in the potty.  I even ask them if the spot where the accident is looks like the potty and they laugh and say no, the potty is in the bathroom.  And I say, then why didn’t you run to the potty?

I don’t get it.  They get the whole idea.  They like the idea.  They like wearing underwear.  They’re getting better at pulling down and putting on their underwear.  I don’t get why they need SO MUCH prompting to get to the potty.  I understand that even older children (or sometimes adults) need reminders to go, especially if they are in the middle of doing something fun.  But this is like every time. 

This week, Ariel has actually just started stopping what she’s doing, and running to the potty.  Hallejujah!  She’ll be playing, and all of the sudden either tell you “Go Away” because she wants to go to the potty herself, or “Come Too!” because she wants you to come watch/help.  Or, she’ll be mysteriously missing from the room and you hear the faint sounds of the potty music coming from the bathroom!

Very exciting stuff.  Will is better when she’s around.  Because she’ll get all kinds of attention for running to the potty by herself and then he wants to do it.  That’s fine with me!  However, if Ariel sleeps late or is in another room, or has “held it” longer than he can……accident. 

But, it’s a process.  I think they’re doing very well, especially for their age.  I certainly didn’t expect miracles this past summer.  (It would have been nice…..but unrealistic).  I know a great number of people don’t start potty-training until 2 1/2 or 3……and even then it can take 2 days, 2 weeks, or 6 months, or more.  So, technically it’s been about 5 months, and over the summer they were outside in bathing suits a lot where they didn’t have to worry so much about running to the potty.  Or, we’d be on an outing (to the zoo, a friend’s house, papa’s house) and I’d put them in diapers.  So those first 2 months weren’t exactly consistent.

We’ve even been taking them on short trips in underwear.  Every Saturday, after swim class, we go to Wegman’s for groceries.  At first Ariel refused to sit on the “big potty” even with the little ring attached, so she had to wear diapers.  And Will would insist on going to the big potty 3-4 times while we were there, but that’s better than having accidents in the shopping cart.  Then, Ariel suddenly decided it was safe on the big potty, so now she’s been going shopping in undies too.

Saturday night we went to dinner and had them in their underwear!  This was the first time Ariel actually announced her need to go to the potty and was immediately rushed there and rewarded!  No accidents at Applebee’s!

It is quite a milestone.  And I can’t wait until it’s over.

This is now.

THEN:  My heart broke, and yet was filled with so much love and hope.

It was breaking because I couldn’t hold, or even touch, my little miracles.  A kiss on the forehead and Ariel was whisked away.  I didn’t even get that with Will.  Then they were gone.  It was as if they never were there.  I got to see them each for less than a minute.

Tears were streaming down my cheeks in floods.  I was such a blur of emotion and the drugs certainly were not helping.  I felt weak and vulnerable and sad and happy and sorry for myself and thrilled that my babies were pretty healthy considering the circumstances.

As they sewed me up and helped me out I just kept inquiring about my babies.  I wanted details about their health.  The nurses assured me they were going to be fine.  But it wasn’t enough.  I just wanted to see them again.

I had heard and seen so many instances where, even with a C-Section, the baby was placed in the mother’s arms when it was born.  I wasn’t expecting that with my current situation, but I couldn’t help but feel that this was so unfair.  I felt so sorry for myself, and my longing to see them and touch them and hold them was so strong, clouding my feelings of relief and anxiety.

I felt robbed.  I had waited for them for so long and I just wanted them.  They were mine.  And they were gone. 

The dramatic (and drug-filled) part of me thought about how they were ripped from my abdomen and rushed away from me without time to even tell them how much I loved them and wanted them. 

And I was so angry.  My weak stupid body.  The twins would be cleaned up, moved to the NICU and limited people could visit them in about an hour.  But not me.  I had to rest.  I couldn’t be moved.  My own body was failing me again because I had to waste time recovering from surgery.  I wouldn’t be able to go down to see them for at least 24 hours.

But guess who could go see them?  That very night.  Who could go see MY babies?  Everyone else.  They hadn’t gone through over 2 years of fertility treatments, including needles they were terrified of and IUI’s that were extremely uncomfortable.  They hadn’t carried twins in their bodies for 7 months.  They hadn’t had to be on bedrest.  They hadn’t had to be pushed around in a wheelchair.  They hadn’t been stuck in the hospital for the last 4 days and then finally had to be put through emergency surgery 9 weeks before they were due.  But they got to go see MY babies.  And I couldn’t.

The next morning.  Guess who got to see my babies?  Not me.  My family, my extended family, a few friends.  All before me.  That afternoon?  Not me.  Everyone was coming up to see me after going to see MY babies and telling me how beautiful they were and how well they were doing and how soft their skin was and how they opened their eyes and how Ariel was already responding to the sound of Tim’s voice and saying “oh, just wait til you see them, you will be so happy.” 

 I had met my own children for less than a minute.  All these other people were getting to see them for hours at a time and listening to them and touching them and learning about them from the nurses that were taking care of them.  I had gotten to see them for less than a minute.  So, after waiting to conceieve them, waiting for them to be born, and waiting to find out how healthy they would be upon being born 9 weeks early…..I was waiting again. 

Tim was obviously splitting his time between me and our children.  He would come up to me at regular intervals to tell me how they were doing and what machines they were on, and what the nurses and doctors said.  Then someone else would show up to visit and back down he would go. 

Upon proof-reading this post, I just want to clarify that it shouldn’t be read as if I sound like a whiny b**ch.  🙂  Thanks.

That was then.

I know I’m getting out of sequence because I skipped right to the day after they were born.  I am still just filled with so much emotion when I remember the pain I felt knowing that I couldn’t go see them.  I’ll skip back a little next time I post.

Morning Routine (no-twin-Tuesday)

I’ve done it.  I’ve accomplished something marvelous.  It might only be temporary, due to any unforeseen circumstances but the fact that it is currently happening is nothing short of miraculous.

Tim is getting up early with me and exercising.  And likes it.

I have been trying to do this for a long time.  Even when we would have an event planned in the evening and we would know we weren’t going to exercise he would refuse to get up early. 

But we’ve been slacking off as of late and I decided it was time to try something new.  Not only were we skipping days, but we were so tired by the end of the day that we weren’t putting a lot of effort in when we did exercise.

So, last weekend I broached the subject again.  I said we’d have more time at night to just relax.  One of the reasons I didn’t like exercising after the kids were in bed was because that only left about 2 hours before we went to bed.  So, we’d get ready, we’d exercise, we’d shower, and we’d have maybe a half-hour before I was falling asleep on the couch.  Plus, I was just plain exhausted after working all day, dealing with twins while trying to start dinner, and then playing after dinner. 

So he agreed to try.  YAY YAY YAY!!!  Last week we got up every morning.  Well, he was on death’s door Thursday and Friday so he skipped, but whatever.  And this week we are still going strong!  We even got up Saturday morning before swim class. 

I feel like I have more energy in the morning, both as I’m exercising and then after.  I feel like it adds more time to our day….which it really does because we’re getting up an hour earlier.  Plus, I don’t feel so guilty making evening plans because I still get my workout in.  I also think it is helping me control my eating again because I can’t tell myself that I’ll just work it off later.  Nope, too late, you already exercised for the day.  I also read an article about morning workouts that said you need to give yourself at least 3 weeks to readjust to your new schedule.  So as of right now, that’s the plan.

Last week I don’t feel like I was any more tired than usual because of this new routine, but this week I’m feeling it a little more.  But that’s more due to our busy weekend. 

We stayed up late Saturday because we went out to dinner and then spontaneously decided to catch a showing at 11 PM of The Rocky Horror Picture Show……complete with props!!!!   I was so excited!  It was a lot of fun, but it has sure taken it’s toll on me as far as being tired.  Friends of ours and Tim and I decided to visit a restaurant called Tantalus.  AMAZING!!  The only bad thing was that the menu was enormous….and everything sounded so good!  It was hard to decide.  We started with a seafood appetizer and I had a glass of red wine.  Then, I tried a cup of their Apple Pumpkin Goat Cheese Soup.  I wished I had ordered the bowl instead because it was SO yummy!  Then, another glass of wine.  For dinner, I had a pasta dish called The Tuxedo.  It was linguini, and linguini infused with squid ink.  Then it was mixed with a spicy red tomato sauce, chunks of tomatoes, kalamata olives, pine nuts, and anchovies.  I’m not normally an anchovy person, but I sure was with this dish!  To end the meal, I tried their hot apple cider “kicked up” with a shot of Van Gogh Caramel Vodka.  It was heavenly. 

After dinner we were walking across the brick street to a small bar to finish watching the Sabres Game.  On the way we passed by the local Theater…..which was showing Rocky Horror that night.  We went in and inquired about props, found out they were allowed, and left the boys at the bar while we ran to Tops for supplies!  When we got back we rounded them up (not too hard to do because the Sabres game was done) and invaded the theater.  I have ALWAYS wanted to do this movie in the theater with the props and my experience was not disappointing.  It was SO SO SO much fun.  And as my friend said……it was one of those spontaneous things we used to do more often before I had kids.  Which was not meant in a bad way at all, and was very true! 

I spoke to Tim about it afterwards.  We don’t get a lot of nights out where we can be spontaneous.  Usually we get a babysitter for a specific event, we go to the event, we go home.  This was such a nice night because aside from dinner, we had no agenda.  We could have done basically whatever we wanted.  And we did.  What a treat!

Then Sunday we carved pumpkins, and yesterday we went out trick-or-treating. 

So, as I’m writing this, I am exhausted.  The last few days were exhausting.  Work was exhausting.  Kids are exhausting.  I’m ready to get a good night’s sleep (and it’s only 4:00) and start fresh…….with my morning workout!!!!!!!