Monday, July 30, 2012

Dear Babies,

I love watching you wake up... I love the stretches, the back arches, the lip smacks, the feet curls and the arm raises. All of it is so human and I can't believe is coming from a 7 week old infant.

I love seeing you look at the world with wonder...I love how your eyes peer out at our yard, see the sharp contrast of our big trees on the blue sky and how you turn your head when you hear the birds sing.

I love watching you feed... I love that I am the sole provider of this nourishment to you. It amazes me that my body can sustain you.

I love seeing you smile...I love that sometimes those smiles are, I think, actually intended for me.

I love hearing you use your voice... I love your grunts, your coos, your gurgles and your cries. Sometime I think I understand what you are trying to tell me.

I even love your poopy diapers, your middle of the night cries and feedings, your milky spit-ups and your fussy moments where I can't get you to be happy.

Love, Mom

Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Intensity of this Love

Almost 6 weeks old... almost half of my maternity leave over.

I need to learn to from myself and focus on these little babies and each day I have with them instead of the dwindling number of days left before I have to go back to the corporate machine.

As I write this, they are both sitting nearby in their respective 'rock n play's sleeping after their morning feed, cooing and grunting away. They continue to break my heart when I look at them and hold them. Last night, at about 10:30, during a particularly long nursing session (read: CLUSTER FEED!!!) I was looking at M&M and literally saw her life flash before my eyes... walking & talking, sending her of to school, dropping her of at college, watching Tidy walk her down the isle at her wedding...

Yes, I know, I'm getting WAY ahead of myself (AND I'm imagining a traditional life, which she may or may not have... but you get my point). Every time I hold them and look at them and hear them coo and see them change just a bit, while I want things to get a bit easier on the sleep front, I don't want them grow.

It's a weird position a parent is in with a newborn. They are 100% completely dependent on you..for everything. And somehow, even though they can not speak, you figure out how to respond to their crying and you give them love

What they give you back isn't a lot since at this point they still just think of me as that place the go to get that stuff that goes in their mouth that tastes good and stops them from crying... and oh maybe a warm chest to rest on too. But their coos and their warmth and their growing recognition of your face and of your presence and the little smiles that you think just MIGHT be in response to seeing you are more than enough to melt your heart to butter and make you miss them even when you put them down to go to the bathroom.

This love is intense.


A few little tidbits that I want to remember:

The Bean Burrito is getting so big! We don't know their weights and won't until they go back to the Pediatrician for their 2 month check, but he looks so much more filled out and has the pudgiest little cheeks. He's awake more and more during the day and has a voracious appetite. He's a good eater but hasn't had much more than a 3 hour stretch of sleep yet.

M&M is also growing but her face is changing in a different way. She had very full cheeks when born, but her head seems to be elongating a bit and so it appears her face is thinning out. She is also growing like a weed, but I suspect that the Bean Burrito will out weigh her at their 2 month check up even though she was bigger at birth. She is also much more aware and looks around her environment at ton. She's particularly fond of the light colored wall hanging we have on a dark wall in our living room.

(And we are seriously using this room literally as a living room right now. We spend 99% of our day here, with one of us sleeping on the couch most nights since they are sleeping in their rock n plays instead of their minicrib... we'll get there... ) She is also smiling a bit and it seems that it is in response to our faces smiling back at her. I think she smiled at Tidy this morning with a purpose 3 times. She is sleeping a bit longer at night and 2 nights ago slept almost 5 hours straight! It was AMAZING!!!

They both must be going through growth spurts as they are cluster feeding like champs. Last night it was me, my double breast feeding pillow (which is a lifesaver by the way), my iphone, my water bottle and a very attentive husband from about 6pm to 10pm as they nursed, and nursed and nursed. This has been going on and off for about a week now. I get a bit anxious about being tied to my couch, but then I remind myself that I want to exclusively breast feed my babies as long as I can and I know that I will miss this closeness when it is gone, and relax.

Finally, Tidy is amazing. We get snippy at each other from time to time and I think I am doing a pretty good job of not micromanaging him, but there are moments when I tell him to "do this" or "don't do that." He hates to be told what to do, so we usually have some sharp words here and there. But overall, we are working very well together as a team and he is such an amazing dad. I am grateful for his partnership in this.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Month 1 - Time Warp!

Before I start this post, just as quick reminder to VOTE in the Hope Award for Best Blog!! (Mine is a nomination. See the picture on the right...)

I think I'm in some sort of a time warp... or maybe that's just what parenting and sleep deprivation does to you. I can not believe that my babies are 1 month old already but at the same time it feels like they have been here forever.

Here's a picture of them from this past Friday when I tried to get them to sit up next to each other, without crying. M&M is on the left and the Bean Burrito is on the right:

They crack me up... Already they have very distinct personalities.

M&M is our little drama queen. She's very peaceful most of the time, but when she wants something, say like a diaper change or some time at the breast, she goes from a little whimper to a wail very quickly.  Here's her peaceful face. Don't get sucked in, it's deceiving:

The Bean Burrito is a little less likely to get very worked up, but he makes TONS of noises. Lots of grunts and coos and gurgles. Oh, and the facial expressions on him are PRICELESS! He always looks as if there's a lot going on in his head, as if he's really analyzing the world in front of him. Here's one of my favorites:

They are both eating very well and I'm quite thankful that breast feeding is sustaining them right now. They eat every 2 or so hours during the day, mostly because we have started waking them up every 2 hours during the day if they are asleep, in hopes of shifting their longer sleeps into the evening. I know this takes some time to do, but last night we actually got some good results. They both slept for almost 6 hours! This did, however, come after a MARATHON cluster feed from 8pm to midnight last night. Almost 4 hours of continuous feeding!

I spent a lot of time on KellyMom and La Leche League websites trying to understand if there was something wrong, of if this was just some type of phase that they go through and it seems that this cluster feeding is all very normal. So, for now, I'll just resign myself to being a milk pimp for as long as I need. Hopefully the long feed will the result in more consistent longer sleeps, as happened last night.

I think I'm going to have to sign up for Net.Flix to get some good things to watch on my iPad as I spend the evening hours tied to a couch with my double breast feeding pillow and babies in tow...

As for Tidy and I, we are doing well. He is an amazing father. I simply can not say how much more my love for him has grown seeing him be a parent. He has jumped in full force, changing diapers, swaddling, rocking, trying to coddle them and letting me nap or shower. It's been a true partnership and I am very thankful.

On the healing front, I'm finally at a place where I can mostly resume normal activity. They don't want me to run quite yet, but yoga, walking, and even swimming are back on the table! The c-section wound, that was re-open due to infection is getting better each and every day. I won't go into details here of how I have had to take care of it,  but as of now, I can treat it as just a superficial wound... YAY! I will have my 6 week check with my OB a week from Tuesday and hopefully get the all clear to start some type of more vigorous exercise too (when I find time, of course... Ha!)

The exercise will also help me get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, hopefully. As of last week I had lost 25 of the 45 I gained. So only about 20 left to go. I think breast feeding twins is helping too because each day my stomach looks a little smaller... Toned? Not so much...But at least getting back to a more "non pregnant" shape.

That's about all I have right now. My sleep deprived brain is not allowing me to come up with much in the way of whit, so this post ended up being just an update of sorts, but I hope at least you enjoy the pictures.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

(Shameless Plug) VOTE FOR ME!!

I'm so very excited! I was nominated this year for the "Best Blog" for Resolve's Hope Award.

The Best Blog award is given to a blog written by someone living with infertility and whose post raises awareness about what life is like when faced with infertility. Each year, during National Infertility Awareness week, bloggers were asked to participate in the "Don't Ignore..." Blogger's unite project.

I submitted this entry, entitled:  Don't Ignore the Ignorance... Educate!  about a suburban town's debate over building a fertility clinic in their bustling main street area, near a school and a church. It was a heated debate and I tried to keep my thoughts away from the religious point of view (which was part of the protestor's arguments), but more so on a comment that one made relating children from fertility treatments as commodities...

It was a heartfelt post, especially during the later stages of my pregnancy when I was getting ready to meet my two beautiful, hard fought for, babies.

Please take some time to visit RESOLVE's website and read all of the entries for this year's Hope Award and place your votes!

I'm honored to be nominated with these other wonderful bloggers! May the best post win!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Full Circle

We took our babies yesterday to the fertility clinic where they were conceived to show them off. It was much more emotional than I thought it would be. I always felt close to my RE and when I saw her again for the first time since our 7 week ultrasound way back in early November, we hugged and I let out a few tears of joy and relief. 

I don't think it solidly hit me until we entered the clinic again with babies in our arms that we have finally achieved our dream... we have our take home babies. And this group of doctors, nurses and staff played such a monumental role in helping us see that dream come true. With out them, M&M and the Bean Burrito would not be a part of our lives.

I emailed them after we left and told them all that although our road to these beautiful babies was long and bumpy, I honestly would not have traded a single second of it for these two. M&M and the Bean Burrito are most definitely the babies that we were meant to have. 

Each time I look at them, I get a deep feeling of love and pain. It's very very striking how these two emotions fit so well together. I finally understand the statement of "I love you so much it hurts". Truly... I love them so much that my heart breaks ever time I stare at their eyes, or put their sweet faces up to mine to feel their soft skin, or hold them to my chest as they curl up and nuzzle in, or nourish them with my own body and hear them drink away at my breast. 

I am truly and utterly in love.

I am also eternally grateful to our doctors for their skill and support for all of these years. It will be strange to not really be in contact with the wonderful people in our clinic who helped us finally achieve our dream. 

Yesterday we say our journey come full circle and although it is cliche, while one door closed a whole new world has opened.