Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Never Say Never

Someone, and I am not naming names, (Madeline) decided that nighttime isn’t for sleeping for the second night in a row. I don’t know if this is because Nicole was away (loss of her sleeping buddy) or if because she has taken to taking a late nap around 6 at night (too much of a good thing) or if because she just feels like hanging out at the wee hours in the morning (early signs of a party-girl). She is a mystery wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a riddle. Or is it a riddle in a mystery in an enigma??

On a positive note, this two-night disruption has given me perspective. Turns out they have been sleeping pretty okay, with only two wakings a night, usually around midnight and then again at 4. And this had made me a happier and better-rested person. So our sleep (read: mood) is getting better as theirs improves. But now, for the second day in a row, I am exhausted. I was up so much last night that I am not sure what my longest stretch of sleep was. It is going to be a very subdued day for me. Maybe it is good it is raining. I have an excuse to do nothing so I can hopefully recharge.

This whole mothering thing is getting better, but in such tiny increments. Sometimes I feel like I am robbed of the special moments of newborn-ness and infancy and that precious bonding time because I am too busy just trying to keep my head above water. I sound like a broken record, but this is hard. Hard hard hard.

I feel like I am constantly letting the babies down, literally and figuratively. One cries. I pick her up and settle her down. She is calm and the other one cries. I put down the first baby, pick up the second, calm her down and the other starts the cycle again. If I can’t break this cycle I am in for a rough couple of hours. Maybe I need to toughen up, but I hate to hear them cry. A little whining is ok, but once their faces start changing color, I think enough is enough.

I am still trying to figure out balance. How I am supposed to take care of both of them and take care of our home and take care of myself. It still takes me days to respond to emails or messages. And I am still writing thank yous. And I never sent out birth announcements. My list of Things To Do gets longer by the day. I used to be so efficient and organized and orderly. It will be a long run back to that.

And the babies first smile was to the ceiling fan. Both of them. That’s gratitude.

I really am anxious about what happens when these girls grow up and digest the fact that they aren’t like most other families. There aren’t enough “alternative” families in our immediate circle (in other words, that we hang out with on a regular basis). I worry how this will affect them. Where will they see there own family paradigm reflected back at them?

When we were TTC I was obsessed with the Rosie O’Donnell gay family cruise. I couldn’t wait till we had our own children that we could take on a trip, an entire boat filled with families like our child’s (or, in this case, children). Each failed cycle became “Great. Guess we won’t be taking a cruise this spring/summer” (said in a very sarcastic tone). I think it was my way of dealing with disappointment by transferring said disappointment to something less tragic than a failed cycle. A missed vacation is awful but yet another failed cycle was catastrophic. I deal with awful better.

Now that we have children I feel like we can go, like we deserve this trip. Next summer there is a cruise to new England and Canada that I really want to go on. The boat leaves from down the street from us, literally. We could walk to the boat if it weren’t for 1,000 pounds of luggage. However, it strikes me that they girls won’t really be able to process this alternative-family-palooza at the ripe age of one. Is this trip for me or them? I went on one cruise with a friend 5 years ago and it was not my most favorite type of vacation. In other words: I am not a large cruise ship kinda girl. Nicole isn’t really either. But we think being surrounded by all these families might make it bearable if not fantastic. How great it would be to spend an entire week feeling like you are not being judged. Has anyone out there ever been on one of these cruises? Are they spectacular? Or over-hyped?

Will global warming affect this year’s crop of Macintosh apples? I am so tired of slumming it with Braeburns.

When I found out it was twins and then that it was twin girls, I said I would not dress them alike and I would not dress them in pink. Flash forward almost three months after birth and these I actively seek out matching outfits and they wear pink an awful lot. Pictured above are Mad and Avery in cute little whales dresses given to them by their Aunt Jenni.

Countdown three sleeps till our Cape Cod getaway!!


lagiulia said...

I hear you, I hear you, I hear you. On pretty much everything.

I remember when my boys started only waking 2x/night. It felt great! Hope your girl goes back to that schedule rather than staying up at night.

My boys first smiled at the light on the ceiling and the CD rack. They first laughed at the blank wall next to their changing table.

Your girls are adorable. You are a great mom and just a great woman all around. Finding balance is really a long-term process. Keep on truckin'.

RebeccaL said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RebeccaL said...

ps. by the way, I'm a twin and my sister and I never minded wearing identical outfits, even when we were old enough that it probably really wasn't cute anymore!

Shelli said...

We already made our reservation about 2 weeks ago.

I'm trying to convince other bloggy friends to go.

You SHOULD come, too - SO WHAT if it's for you. They'll TOTALLY get that there will at least be other kids to play with, and they will register seeing two moms and two dads together.

It's all good.

K J and the kids said...

I have said it once and I will say it a million more times. THEY ARE SO DAMN CUTE !

Congrats on the sleep time.

There are a bunch of blogs that just got back from the R-family cruise and they are all planning on going to the next one. They said it was the BEST experience of their lives.

Cape cod sounds like a blast.

RebeccaL said...

Hi Jennifer,

I came across your blog sort of randomly. I remember meeting you a long time ago at a Center meeting. First of all, congratulations on the birth of your twins! They are beautiful. My partner and I have a son, I think he's about the same age as your daughters (8 weeks old now), actually his name is Avery too!

We are also thinking about going on the Rosie cruise next year. A good friend of ours works on board as a performer, and he is trying to get us to go. The fact that it is going up to Canada next summer (as opposed to the Bahamas or something) is appealing to my partner and me since we're not really beach people (overweight + pale + sun and swimsuits= bad). Our son will only be 1, but our friend assures us that babies have a good time too! I imagine you've seen the HBO documentary "All Aboard!" Maybe we'll see you there next summer.

Good luck with the sleeping! You have my sympathies.

-- Rebecca

Jeannette said...

Oh your girls are so cute! You're doing a great job. And I agree with Shelli, go on the cruise. So what if its for you. It can be your reward for making it through the first year. I hope the girls get back on the schedule for you.

Shannon said...

Your girls are adorable.

The first time my son smiled, it was at a dirty diaper I'd just taken off him.

amy said...

adorable baby girls!

we too are planning to go on rosie's cruise to canada next summer. our daughter will be 2.5 but i think it will be more for us as you suggest to surround ourselves with similarly situated families since we don't hang out with very many regularly.