Hey you guys!
In an effort to up my blogging game – uhhhh, I know… WHAT game? – I’m going to share with you the thing I know the most about these days:
not sleeping, poop on the wall, juggling two babies, living life with two amazing brand new humans. Yep…that’s the one, though if you ask me, I also know quite a bit about those other three things by now, and they may or may not come up.
Seriously, though, I know I’ve been totally MIA, and I’m sorry for that. As you can imagine, the last 9 weeks have been busy with Jude & Luca showing up a little earlier than expected, and before that I was basically working on just being able to stand up straight while carrying almost 50 lbs of babies. I mostly failed at it.
So what the heck is this blog post all about?
Well, it’s safe to say it’s a PSA to let you know that yes, you will be seeing a lot more baby/twins/family focused stuff here on The L.O. and it’s also just a general update on what’s been happening lately, in case you don’t follow along on Instagram, which you totally should if you want to see my ridiculously adorable babies on a regular basis!
That entire last paragraph was ONE SENTENCE LONG. I am one wordy son of a gun, eh? K back to life with babies…
So that’s what this post is about. How life has changed for the
crazier BETTER since we welcomed our boys into the world!
This story starts with the happiest day: the actual birth day of the boys, but I am in no way ready to dive into THAT crazy story just yet. I’m still processing so much of what has happened to me physically and emotionally, and I’m definitely not prepared to relive the details of my week in the hospital just yet, so that’s going to have to be a tale for another day. Maybe another month. Or year! Who knows.
So we’ll begin with the second happiest day: the day we all got to come home! It was Saturday, December 19th and we (me and the boys) had been in the hospital for one week. My husband had been staying there with us for about 3 nights. Or was it 4? I don’t remember. So much is foggy about that week!
I hopped…wait…hahaha no, I didn’t hop anywhere! I was 7 days postpartum after a c-section. I sloooooooowly got into the backseat of the car so I could sit in between the two car seats. New mom. Teeny tiny 5.5 lb babies. I was SO not sitting in the passenger’s seat! I stared at my boys all the way home, my husband driving in the right lane of the highway, which he has literally NEVER done in the 8 years I have known him. My parents were at our freshly cleaned house (thanks to my mom and MIL) waiting with warm food and balloons. It was surreal walking into the house, seeing two sleeping babies that now officially lived here, finally arrive. Home. The 4 of us. As a family! It still, almost 10 weeks later, boggles my mind that we’ve doubled in size.
The first two weeks felt something like a dream. Sleeping in my own bed was amazing. The babies literally did nothing but eat, sleep, and poop. They ate every 4 hours, so we had about 3 hours in between feedings to rest, watch SO. MUCH. NETFLIX. and just generally enjoy being at home. I felt like I was on top of the world! My babies were amazing, and although we were tired from the night feedings, I was just so elated to be at home that I didn’t care!
We had a lot of visitors and some amazing people to help us out by bringing food. I seriously didn’t cook for like a month! Honestly, I can’t even tell you how much it meant to us to be so well looked after by our family and friends in those first few weeks. It’s a huge part of the reason I felt like I was so on top of everything, which was great for my mama confidence.
By week 3 they were starting to fuss a bit more and sleeping less. The adrenaline did slowly wear off and by the time the boys reached their due date (January 10th), things started to change. They no longer fed every 4 hours, but every 2-3. The feedings also took a really long time because I was still figuring things out, trying to breastfeed two babies, pumping, and now getting about an hour in between feedings to either cook, eat, shower, sleep or clean something. There was no way more than one of those things was happening before a baby started to cry out for food again.
Confidence levels went down. Waaaaay down. Exhaustion set in. I felt like a major failure for not being able to exclusively breastfeed my babies, something I now realize is incredibly hard to do with one baby anyway, let alone two. We made the decision to stop breastfeeding. I say we because my husband and I are partners in everything, and although he isn’t able to provide the breastmilk, he was always there to help me with feedings, especially when I tried tandem feeds (feeding both babies simultaneously), which is like something only superheroes can do, I’ve now realized. And when I was in tears saying “I can’t do this anymore,” he was the one saying “ok, so don’t do it. It’s ok.” Just remembering that conversation makes me cry because it was such a detrimental moment in my motherhood journey to hear him say those words, to have them followed by “our boys will be ok if you don’t breastfeed them. They will still be loved and taken care of, and you’re no less of a mother for making this decision.” I mean…this guy GETS me, you know? He literally said exactly what I needed to hear. Anyway, breastfeeding guilt is an entire blog post in itself, and I know lots of moms can relate to that.
By week 6 we had sort of figured out how to do things. I’m not good with late nights, so my husband and I tackle the 10-11pm feeding, then he either stays or gets up for the 1-2am feeding while I sleep. He’s not a morning person, so I tackle the 4-5am feedings and let him get some rest. It’s a way to make sure we don’t go completely insane, and it works – we each get 4-5 consecutive hours of sleep. If for whatever reason the person feeding the boys alone has some trouble, we can always wake one another up. It’s a beautiful thing to have that kind of support.
Have I mentioned that my husband is on parental leave with me? Yeah…he took 4 months to stay home with the boys and I. I’m telling you, this guy…he’s a great one! I absolutely could not have survived these last 9 weeks without him. No way Jose. Ok, so I would have survived, but I would have been extremely stressed and WAY more sleep deprived! I also may have ripped out all of my hair by now because, you guys, twins are a ton of work. Like, a TON! I mean, I have nothing else to compare it to, but as far as I can tell, having two newborns is way harder than having one – even with two people at home because we hardly get breaks these days.
Let me go ahead and clarify something: I’m not saying having one baby is easy. I’m not even saying it’s easier than having two…oh wait…yes, I am saying that. Because, DUH, obviously two babies is harder than one. What I am most definitely NOT saying, though, is that I’m somehow a better mom because I have twins, or that moms of singletons have it easy, or anything that would in any way diminish how incredibly hard it can be to take care of these little people – whether you have one or one hundred. But thankfully we don’t have one hundred. Because that would be totes craze.
Here’s what it’s like: if one baby is asleep, the other is probably awake. If one has stopped crying, the other will probably start. Sometimes they’re both awake and crying at the same time, so that’s super fun, and let me tell you that being by yourself when that happens is also hard. Especially for me. I say ‘especially’ because I REALLY struggle with hearing them cry and not being able to do anything about it (another reason having my husband here is my saving grace), and up until about week 7, I didn’t feel totally comfortable picking them both up out of their cribs at the same time. Now? Now, it’s like second nature. I pick them both up and rock them, and 9 out of 10 times one of them will fall asleep and I can put him back down while I keep rocking the other one. And being able to get one baby to calm down is a major victory, because then I only have one upset baby in my arms and my back is no longer burning from juggling two squirmy babies.
And sometimes…sometimes they BOTH sleep at the SAME time, and my heart swells to about a million times its normal size and I just stare at them in awe of how much love one person can feel so purely and equally for two teeny tiny people.
These days, the boys change daily, making cooing noises and smiling at us one moment, and screaming louder than I’d like to admit my children can scream the next. And in all of it, my husband and I find ways to laugh. And in all of it, we love these boys to forever and ever. And MOST importantly: we LAUGH! Because if we didn’t, we’d have a lot of really hard moments.
This isn’t me saying there aren’t hard moments, because there are plenty, but we’d have a lot more if we chose not to laugh. If we chose not to see the ridiculous moments for what they are – the moments at 3am when Jude farts so hard he poops on the wall or when Luca just can’t seem to keep his soother in his mouth and won’t sleep unless we keep putting it back in for him over and over and over. If we didn’t laugh in those moments, we’d be truly miserable people, and we’d way rather see the joy in as much of this journey as possible. Though, in all honesty, the poop on the wall really wasn’t THAT funny in the moment. I mostly laughed because I just could NOT believe that I was cleaning up poop off the wall at 3am, or that this tiny baby just did this super gross thing.
So, in under 2000 words, what has having newborn twins been like for the past 9 weeks and 4 days? The best and worst, the easiest and hardest, the highest highs and lowest lows of my whole life. I absolutely would not change a thing about these boys. They are the best thing we will ever, ever, EVER make. Our bestest DIY project.
I could say so much more because these words don’t even begin to scratch the surface, but they’ll do for now.