Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Welcome to the Twiniverse

Exactly two months ago today the twins were born. The passage of time has been both glacial – as only time with an infant can be – and, strangely, very rapid.  I guess having three children, 1000 pounds of laundry per day, and only two hands has a way of making time whiz by.  Have I mentioned that all three of my children have adopted the pastime of hollering and screaming?  Ila is easing off on the fits now, though she is still pretty touchy and easy to set off.  And I get her sadness and confusion.  This is a big adjustment for her.  But, seriously, these two infants cry more than seems wise considering their survival depends on me, the person who is slowly going crazy and, thus, being rendered incapable of taking care of anyone let alone needy and exhausting infants because of all their shrieking.  

I know they’re tiny babies who can’t help this very questionable behavior…blah blah blah.  All I’m saying is that I think infant deportment is pretty much an argument against intelligent design.  It’s a wonder we weren’t all set out on rocks to be carried off by large birds of prey when we were little mewling newborns.  As I said before, I don’t think they scream and cry more than an average baby.  I think they scream and cry about as much as an average baby…but there are TWO of them!  How is that fair?  And, the better question, why on earth did I think fairness would enter into this whole experience?  Why, for instance, did I believe they would somehow not each, individually, be as difficult as a single infant?  I guess I couldn’t face that possibility.

Okay, fortunately, I think I see light at the end of the tunnel.  Pippa, who was rapidly becoming the least popular resident in our house due to her 3 AM hollering, is getting all coo-y and gurgle-y and smiley and adorable.  Actually, she has always been cute.  She’s one of the those babies that came out looking pretty freakin’ cute…it’s just that looks only get you so far when your favorite hobby is waking up at 4 in the morning every day after nights of crying at all too frequent intervals.  Now, she’s actually napping a little, swiping adorably at mobile toys, and making unreplicatable lovely little baby sounds.   

Actually, they are both smiling and cooing.  They both started smiling pretty early – 4 weeks - and with more frequency than Ila.  They also both seem to enjoy tummy time and vigorously pump their legs up like they’re going to just up and crawl.  Ila was a little loungey, reclining, not-crawling-early baby.  The twins' more active demeanors are exciting and sort of terrifying.  What if they really do start crawling early and just run me ragged with their infant crawling antics?  When do they start amusing each other like twins do in all the anecdotes everyone loves to tell me?  Seriously.  This is not a hypothetical question.  If anyone knows, please tell me.  I’d like to mark that date on my calendar and cross days off as we get closer.  

Several people said it took about 6 weeks to adjust to the insanity of the twiniverse.  Ha!  I must be a slow learner because I am just now, at a little over 8 weeks, feeling sort of barely adapted to this strange new world.  Maybe a few days in the last week I’ve felt like I can kind of juggle it all.  Wake up, keep Forrest asleep by nursing him, get Ila up, nurse Pippa (who has been napping with Kiyomi in the living room since some ungodly hour), pump so I have breast milk other people can give them in bottles, help Kiyomi get Ila ready for school, get Forrest (who is now crying), change both babies and hope they don’t each scream through the whole process, and then spend the next 5 hours alternately tandem nursing them, individually nursing them, coaxing one to sleep while keeping the other one calm (hopefully).  If I am lucky, like today, I have a few minutes with both hands free to type this up.  Or fold laundry (more likely past time for me).   But, after the rushed bathroom visits and dashes into the kitchen to feed myself, I don’t actually have time even for laundry most days.  Or anything.  Even eating is a challenge, which, considering they are being exclusively breastfeed, is a bit dicey.  I get to 4 in the afternoon, and I’m ravenous.  And probably not the most pleasant person around here. 

Still, I can tell it’s getting a little better (please, gods, don’t reverse this trend!) because I spend more time looking at them and thinking they are sweet and cute and less time looking at them with confusion and misery because I can’t figure out how to keep them both from screaming at the same time.  My current mantra: This is a very short period of their lives. Others have survived this.  This is a very short period of their lives.  Others have survived this. This is a very short period of their lives. Others have survived this... 

It's a good thing they are both cute.