Thursday, October 1, 2009

Without running out the door screaming?

Sometimes people say to me things to the effect of, "I don't know how you do it with twins." Well, to be perfectly honest, there are some days where I wonder how too. Especially those first months...phew! (I do need to give credit where credit is due, however, to a wonderful husband and amazing family who gave me much needed reprieves and sleep.) Well as I was feeding the boys their lunch today, which is a very interactive time, I had to laugh again at this thought. Most days we make it through without me having a melt down, but there are definately times having sweet potatoes spit in your face invokes a little craziness. I fend off food spit irritation by just putting on an apron. I try to streamline meals with side to side high chairs and alternating bites. Finger foods are a nice anti-screaming item while I spend a whole 30 seconds warming up food. Today I had to actually laugh at the antics and decided to share them with you.

The older they are getting, the more they like to help. I was say about one in three meals they end up with food in their hair and eyes. I spend a lot of time cleaning up because I hate bugs. This brings me to another necessity:

The jumperoo and exersaucer. These things have been worth their weight in gold! The boys spend about 15 minutes in them after each meal because they have reflux. I usually put on a Baby Einstein because they're not big fans of me leaving the room to clean up after the meal-tastrophe. I know you're not supposed to let babies watch tv. However, I don't think a crying baby is any better off than a happy baby watching tv. Sometimes, you have to wipe up bananas off the floor, take a 3 minute missions trip shower, or just go pee (shock). And if your children are anything like my children, they think the sheer gall of my desire to do these things equals abandoment. So I distract them with a little Baby Eistein. And I think I'm a better mom for choosing that over a heartbroken child. Just like when I'm having a losing-my-mind meltdown and I choose to put a Baby Einstein in so I can go in the other room for a half an hour and read an unimportant book so I can gather up what's left of me, I think I'm a better mommy for it. Crazy mommy with the babies who are crying...or...happy reading mommy while babies watch tv. It's just reality.

Right now, the boys are napping. Here's naptime for this season of their life.

I give them a bottle until they're sleepy (I sit between them) and plug in a paci. This happens around 10 or 11 am for about 1-2 hours, and then again around 3 adding up to about 3 hours of napping a day. The first half hour of their nap they're pretty conked out so I sneak off the couch to the computer, which is right by the couch. Sometimes I just stay there and read or watch a little tv. I think it's very important to allow myself this bit of downtime during their naps even if I'm not napping because I'm more ready to be a mommy again when they wake up. This supermom ideal that we're supposed to adore being a mommy 24/7 with no desire for anything else is an impossible goal and only leaves us feeling beaten down and like a failure. So I'm here to tell you, don't feel guilty for allowing yourself some mental rejuvenation throughout the day. We need it.

Oh, the point of this was to sing the praises of the boppy. Hands down the best invention ever. When they were little I used it to nurse them, and they also slept in them because they were so teeny tiny. I still use one under my arms when I rock them because it takes the pressure off my elbow.

This was how they slept for awhile.

This is how we fed them with a bottle. I did the same thing when I nursed, with a little rearranging :) I did actually nurse for 6 months, which was very very hard. I wear no badge of honor and don't declare it a heavenly experience. There were some days I wanted to just quit, but I felt guilty because I knew it was what was best for them, especially being 7 weeks early and I didn't want to be selfish. Along about 6 months though, they got very difficult to control at the same time and I knew I couldn't just leave one alone every 3 hours, so, I weaned. They are doing great however, and never lost an oz since the day they were born. You can tell from the pictures how chunky they are :) They stand and crawl and play now, so I am extremely grateful for the play yard.

We cornered off an entire section of our living room, which was a big sacrifice, but totally worth it. We spent around $130 on a new heavy-duty gate (after researching) because I just had this feeling a used plastic gate wouldn't last 2 years with twin boys and I'd end up having to buy another one (or two) anyway. This is great because it gives them a totally safe zone that's fairly large and free of hanging stuff on the walls, trashcans, bookshelves and electrical cords. I can usually cook dinner (when I'm feeling like it) around the corner without too much trouble.

This certainly was not every wonderful thing we came up with for survival, but just a glimpse into our 'double' world. Thanks for all the times you've complemented me for raising twins. I know God never gives you more than you can handle, but sometimes I wish He didn't have so much faith in me :) He's had to give me quite a large share of grace...and I suppose I've grown in a lot of ways through this amazing experience.


Carolyn said...

As a mom of 8 kids ages 33-11 yrs old, I totally agree, you are NOT required to love being a Mom 24/7!!I also know beyond a doubt that God gives us children so we can learn how He loves us, and how many attributes He'd like for us to learn. Without all these kids in my life I'd never have learned so much about the love and care of God!

Lauren said...

I agree about the Baby Einstein. And now, Sesame Street is just about the best thing in the whole world according to my two. :)

And my mom always said, 'If Mama ain't happy, ain't NObody happy.' ;)

Laurel said...

Just found your blog from Lauren's ... i'm having fun looking back over different areas I've found in the archives.

When my twins were born ... my "older" kids were 2, 3, and 4. Life was CRAZY! But ... I didn't stop there. I am now the Mama of 13 (ages 8, 8, 9, 11, 13, 13, 16, 19, 21, 21, 23, 24, 25)


:) :) :)

LeeBeeP said...

Wow! Power to you Laurel, that's very inspiring. If I'm reading the ages correctly, it looks like you have 3 sets of twins? Or are those overlaps from the adoptions?