Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Working from Home on a Laptop With Tots

Let go of the cord, please, K!
H, you let go now.
I know, it's a pretty screen.  Wooooooooo.   Wooooooo!    Wooooooo.  (Moving windows around.)
Okay, I'll stop for a few minutes.  Bounce, bounce bounce!

Don't you feel like a nap?  Momma thinks you might need a nap.

Wait, just a sec, sweeties. Just need to send this email.   Wait!  It wasn't ready!

Where's my Alt key?  K, what's in your mouth?

(On the phone) Beg pardon?  I'm sorry, can you repeat that one more time?  Once again?

K, let go of the cord please.

Where's my Enter key?  Oh, in the plastic train, of course.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Best Thing in the World

The Best Thing In The World is watching your twin babies laugh at each other.

When K first started noticing faces, he would sometimes sit and laugh at H.  H would just stare back, always being slower to laugh.  Then they went through phases that included smiling at each other, sticking their hands in each other's mouths, biting each other, (Directly related to the sticking-the-hand-in-the-mouth thing,) taking toys from each other and crying, taking toys and then taking them back, climbing on each other, shoving each other out of the way, using each other's heads as drums, etc.

Now, however, we have the laughing.  They sit in their high chairs and as the meal comes to a close, they look at each other and giggle back and forth.  In their side-by-side stroller, one will peek around the divider at the other and they will both laugh.  We have a piece of 'cat furniture' that has a tunnel at just the right height for them to stand at each end, look through, and poke and laugh at each other.  (Yes, we are crazy cat people.)  It is astounding.  I am in love.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I Hate Sleep Training

Right now, the guys are in their cribs, crying.  :(

I really thought I wouldn't have to do this -- that they would magically start napping at regular, synchronized times.  They kind of magically started sleeping through the night, so . . .

No such luck.  They still nap 3-4 times a day, for 10-20 minutes at a time, often not at the same time as each other, and must be rocked to sleep.  I love rocking them to sleep.  Sure the housework was NEVER getting done, and hubby was having to cook dinner every night, but it was okay and temporary, right?

Well, two things have happened.
One, I got some work, and it involves phone calls that can't have babies running around in the background.
Two, the guys are getting crankier and crankier, and I think it's exhaustion.  Most babies at this time, from what I understand, are taking two naps of 1-2 hours a day.  My guys, I believe, just aren't getting enough sleep.

I have turned the volume down on the monitor so their wails sound less intense but I can still hear them.  I am also trying to mute my own crying.

I can see them in the video monitor.  I put them down when their eyes were droopy, after rocking them for about ten minutes.  They played for a while but now are angry. 

I know from experience that I hate how it feels when they give up and fall asleep.  I feel like they are learning that Mom won't always be there to comfort them, and I don't want them to learn that lesson ever. 

I know this is best for all of us.  I really tried to not do this, but I suppose there's a reason that everyone does.  Ugh.  Hopefully it will only take a couple of days, right?

Friday, August 6, 2010

My Babies are Wireless! (No more apnea monitors)

It's a big, big day for us.  Hubby is dropping off the apnea monitors at this very moment.  The TV trays next to the cribs are now empty and unneeded.  I'm a little weepy.

Okay, okay, I admit.  We wussed out and bought some of those over-the-counter monitors that have the mat under the crib mattress.  We know we will have a lot more false alarms, but feel we need this step to wean us off.

The truth is, really, that we haven't needed the monitors for at least three months now.  I went into every pediatrician appointment expecting him to say that it was time to get rid of the monitors, and every time Hubby and I would discuss how much we should fight to keep them.  Well, the pedi I was using wasn't super attentive about checking the records before seeing us, so he never realized we were still on the monitors and we never brought it up.  (We've changed pedi's partly for this reason.) 

Recently, however, we have realized we are done with the monitors.  The guys' skin has started reacting to the sensors, causing little rashes on their backs and on their chests.  We've gotten creative about where to place the sensors, which has led to false alarms.  We have realized that we do not react to the alarms the way we used to do.  We still go immediately to the nursery, but we don't leap up, heart racing, and run to the bedside.  Every time we go in there, the alarm is blaring and the kid is clearly breathing.

As much as it is has been nice to have this extra insurance against SIDS, the truth is that we no longer have an apnea problem, and the cords and sensors are causing problems for the guys.  Time to go.

Last night for the first time, we put jammies on the guys and put them to sleep without wires, tape, and beeps.  When K woke up wet in the middle of the night, I was able to change him and put clean jammies on him without fighting wires.  I didn't have to pull tape off their backs this morning.  Delicious!

When we were getting close to going home from the NICU, it was becoming apparent we would need to go home on monitors.  I remember seeing other families leave without monitors.  The nurse would take the wires off the babies and hand them to their parents.  Sometimes I would be so jealous I would cry.  I know it's awful, since I had so much to be thankful for, but I couldn't take it.  They wouldn't have to revive their babies.  They weren't hooked up to machines.  They were taking home 'regular' babies that were born early.  I knew that when we took our guys home, we would not be bringing home unfettered guys.  I dreaded the moment when I would take off their hospital monitors and put on the home monitors for the drive home.  I hated the moment I had to put the home monitors on them. 

As we needed the monitors less, however, we started to like them more.  When the guys only needed them at night so we could have them out and about during the day without worries, that was the big turnaround for me.  Until that point, I felt like the guys had to stay in their cribs and felt imprisoned in the nursery.  For the past four months, however, we only hooked them up at night and it was so blissful to know that if anything happened to them that we would immediately know.

It's a bittersweet day, but it is way past time and I am ready.  We now have wireless babies.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Grocery Shopping Encounters

Here are three unfortunate encounters with other people I recently had when shopping with my guys:

First, I was with Hubby and the guys, when a woman approached us.  The woman was older- probably mid-sixties, and totally blinged out.  She wore big, multi-stoned rings, multiple necklaces, and had bright hot-pink nail polish that any nine year old girl would be proud to wear.  She approached us the way people usually do:  "Oh how adorable.  Twins?"  Then she TOUCHED them. Most people seem to know better.  Nobody pitched a fit because of her rings.  Both boys were in awe of the shiny sparklies on her hands.  As K gingerly fingered a particularly large ring, the woman proceeded to tell me, "When I was young and five months pregnant, my ex-husband punched me in the stomach.  After that I had three more miscarriages, but I've always loved kids."

Okay, that is a horrible sequence of events in her life, and I am not making light of it at all.  Who tells this story to someone they've just met at the grocery, though?  Seriously.  It put me off my day.

On a separate occasion, I was leaving the grocery store with my guys in the cart, and a man shouted out to me, "You shouldn't have these babies out in this heat!"  Really, Sir?  Really?  I blew it off like he was kidding, but I don't think he was. 

On even a different occasion, I was going through the checkout line, when the neighboring checker ran out of customers and turned her attention toward us.  By this time, I was tired and cranky, and so were the guys.  She didn't touch them, but she was right in their faces.  I'm just hoping we can get checked out and out of there.  (Plus, by the way, I really had to pee, and couldn't get the sopping cart with the guys into the restroom so was practically floating.  This did nothing to improve my mood.)  Well, K noticed her glasses and reached for them.  She let him touch them, then pulled them away.

He started to scream.

Now, K has something I call the Omen scream.  It literally sounds like four voices yelling at once.  I have no idea how he does it.  The first couple times I heard it, I checked him all over for broken bones, bites, bumps, positive that he was in agony.  Now I'm somewhat used to it, as it is just the sound he makes when he is angry.  This is the scream he pulled on the lady at the grocery store.

Is it wrong to be happy about this? 

My kid was screaming, but not hurt or anything.  The lady was beside herself, thinking she had done something terrible.  I thought two things.  One was a mental congratulations to K for letting her know she was annoying him.  The other was that she will think twice before poking at someone's baby next time.  I picked him up and he stopped crying instantly.  We all enjoyed water on the ride home, and I enjoyed their nap as I put away the groceries.