I remember the first night we brought them home from the NICU. I didn’t sleep a wink. I kept staring at their little tiny bodies — just slightly more than five pounds — making sure they were still breathing. They gave us so much information about SIDS at the hospital I was convinced this was a lot more common than it actually is. Once I admittedly shook James awake because he was sleeping so deeply I could not tell one way or the other.
Now that James smacks his lips and Jackson sighs, I have a much easier time when I check on them at night.
After that first night – which I remember like it was yesterday – the subsequent five months were somewhat of a blur. I wrote stuff, I took more pictures than I care to admit, especially since I swore I was never going to be THAT Mom. Now I realize we are all one baby away from being THAT Mom, so we might as well embrace it.
I tried to remain present throughout this period that crossed ever so effortlessly between the greatest love and happiness I have ever known, to a form of torture; something I had certainly never experienced for any real length of time.
I went for almost five months straight never sleeping more than four consecutive hours, and most of it was less than three. I felt as though these little beings were testing me. Putting me through the ringer so to speak, just to see if I was cut out for this.
I’m convinced there is a big baby convention they all go to right before they are born where they learn that the one called “Mama” needs to be tested. The one called “Dada” is funny and all, but that Mama person … you need to make sure she has your back.
I guess I finally passed their test because on the evening of Thursday, March 6th, 2014 – they both slept through the night for eleven and a half hours!
I didn’t because I kept waking up to make sure they were still breathing.
On that beautiful morning at 7:07am — as if he had not a care in the world — I heard James cooing in the other room. When I arrived at his crib he had a smile on his face so big and happy it filled me up for the day. Every night since that night, it has not been perfect (James) but it has been a full night of sleep – no crying, no fussing – just an occasional bout of middle of the night babbling (James).
Now get this part. As exciting as it is, I’m a little sad. It means they are getting bigger. They’re growing fast. That
exhausted sweet time filled with middle of the night bottles and breastfeeding … it’s gone. After roughly 2300 feedings, what I wouldn’t give for just one more sixteen bottle, 60+ ounces of breast milk pumping day.
So, that wasn’t so bad was it?, I asked Jonathan
Why, you want to do it again?
I don’t know.
Let me see how things are going when their both crawling around …
I have what I like to call the “Susan Sarandon threshold.” She had her last baby at 46 and look at her. I, of course, never had such a threshold until I found myself finally pregnant at 43.
Wilcox party of 4 is good. It’s enough. After all we went through to get here, I am just so grateful. I feel younger than I have in years. I feel more alive than I have in years. Even with no sleep, I felt these things.
Having children motivates me in ways nothing else ever has. For the first time in my life I feel as though I am getting out of bed for something beyond myself. Life feels bigger. Everything old is new again because now I get to experience it though the eyes of my children.
Today was their six month birthday. I really can’t believe it. They look like little boys to me now. Their personalities are so distinct and very different, and yet they get an absolute kick out of each other.
The day before their seven month birthday they will take their first plane ride to Nashville! And two weeks later to Washington DC and then Chicago — and possibly a couple of other places in between. James has a Southwest and United frequent flyer accounts; Jackson has Virgin America.
We decided when traveling with twins you need your own row.
Yes, it’s more expensive. My sanity is worth every penny.
Happy six month birthday to my little Dumplings! This week we’re moving beyond cereal, fruits and veggies so look out. I can tell they are absolutely bored with the menu — despite the fact that I sing the entire Sesame Street classics album from beginning to end with voices!
I’m still waiting for the go ahead to feed them dumplings … and chicken fried steak. And brisket (real Texas brisket). But I think this week, we’ll start with some eggs and chicken. Not at the same time.
One more thing … a friend of mine had a baby boy about four months before I did. She also gave birth to her first book and I want to support her in any way I can. It’s such and exciting year for her! Her name is Tonilyn Hornung. She is a blogger at Pregnancy and Newborn Magazine. And this is a link to her book promo for How To Raise a Husband. Please check it out — and like her on Facebook if you are so inclined.