Attached and behind.

I guess this is a 2-part post: Attached – speaking of myself, and behind – speaking of my babies.

Attached

(In no way does this part of the post apply to today. Today I wanted to run from my home screaming and waving a white flag, to the nearest liquor store ice cream stand. Today was unusual and therefore doesn’t count.)

I’ve been thinking a lot about the “right” time for a parent to leave a child for an unspecified amount of time. It seems to me that as babies get older, there appears to be this pressure, a societal pressure, for a mom to leave her kids. Maybe for a few hours (just to get away and take a break), maybe for the evening (perhaps for a girls’ night), maybe for an overnight (romantic evening with the husband). Maybe for a weekend, maybe for a week…etc. This idea is clouded in the thought that a child who isn’t away from you enough will have dependency issues later in life, or at the very least, will be traumatized when that first time ever does come.

I believe that all moms (and dads of course) want to be a good parent; they want to do the right thing. And in our heads we have 1) our intuition – what our gut tells us, 2) what our mothers and MIL’s tell us – yes, it gets its own category, 3) what our friends tell us, and 4) what we see in the media.  Frequently, all four of those sources are completely contradictory. But we make our choices anyway, and we sometimes judge those who’ve done something different. It’s hard not to do, I have to admit. I don’t see anything wrong with having opinions – not every parental choice made by others is something I would do, certainly. But judging is entirely different.

So that’s why I’m currently fighting the societal pressure that tells us new moms that we need to leave our children. Now – I’m not saying my twins shouldn’t spend some time with other people. They absolutely should. And they will. But they’re 8 months old, and this stage is temporary.

The truth is, 99.9% of the time (excluding today, which just ruined my 100%, damn.) I’m totally and completely satisfied at home, doing my job, being a temporary stay-at-home-mom. See for me, I know full well that this is something I will not be doing forever – in fact, it has an end date this summer. I’ve been lucky enough to take a full year off from work, and I’ve taken my new gig very seriously. I’m with my twins all day and all night. 24/7. And to me, my babies are still new. I still can’t believe I have them, after infertility and pregnancy scares. I don’t take them for granted for a second, and I also just enjoy what I’m doing. I find it fun to make toys and think up games, and watch the little wheels turn as my kids start to figure out their world. I enjoy the process. So I’m not in a rush to walk out the door.

I guess you could say I’m attached. Before I had these babies, I didn’t really have hobbies. I haven’t had hobbies since high school, when my hobbies were related to the clubs I joined in school – chorus, softball, band. But after that, everything else I’ve done has just been a filler – waiting to be a mom. So I no longer feel empty, and I don’t feel like I’m missing out on life by staying home with my kids. This IS my life. This is what I’ve been waiting for, it’s what I wanted.

I do believe in maintaining relationships – those with spouses, with friends, with parents..with whoever. That is very important, and if it becomes necessary to leave the kids at home in order to complete that maintenance, then fine. But I’ve tried to convince myself I need to get out, I need to do my own thing, and I just can’t figure out what I would do. Run to Target and what, buy baby clothes? Write – about babies? Practice my photography on….babies? I’ve never been a drinker, I’ve never been a shopper. Parenting is my hobby.

This sort of stemmed from a new mom’s group I considered joining. I’ve been taking the babies to playgroups and enjoy it, so I found this new one and we all went to their “member social”. What I assumed would be at least 10 moms chatting about their babies and planning fun playgroups was actually 3 moms planning multiple mom’s night out gatherings and jewelry parties and complaining about their exes. That wasn’t about the kids – that was about the moms. And that’s fine – I’m not judging…I was just surprised, and it’s not at all what I am looking for. But for those moms, they obviously needed to leave their homes and their kids, often. And as I inquired about the things that would involve children, they started to look at me as if I had three heads.

I’m just not in a rush to walk out the door. I will have to, come August, and through the rest of my working days. I will NEVER have the opportunity to stay at home for this length of time again. It’s the one and only time. I’m soaking it in, I’m loving almost every minute. I’m attached. And though I’ve been questioning myself lately, I stand by it. I’m doing what feels right.

Behind –

On a separate note, I’m a little concerned that my babies are behind. Now – I’m well aware of the cliche phrase, “Every child develops at his or her own pace”. I know. I also know that my twins will not go off to kindergarten in their current state. I know the changes will occur – that is not the question. But I do wonder if they are behind in when those changes happen.

Like I said before, we’ve been to a lot of playgroups lately. I read the forums and the blogs. I watch Kate Middleton’s baby play with those New Zealand babies (by the way, he’s super cute, but WHO CARES what toy Prince George stole from another baby?) All of these children are my kids’ age, 8-9 months. My twins will be 9 months next week, so we’re close. And they don’t do NEARLY what these children are doing.

My twins don’t really do much, to be perfectly honest. They don’t crawl, they don’t roll around, C doesn’t even roll over and B only does in his sleep. If they fall over, they are beetles on their backs, legs kicking. They don’t have a pincer grasp, they don’t stand up while holding onto things, they don’t clap their hands, wave good-bye, or understand peekaboo. They don’t show a real desire for “adult” food. Therefore, they don’t eat finger foods and when I try, they 1) can’t pick up the food and 2) if they happen to get a piece in their fingers, they don’t know to bring their hands to their mouths and eat it.

I’m just a little worried – again, not as in “will my babies ever do this?” Obviously they won’t eat pureed fruits and veggies forever. But it’s just…unnerving to be with other babies who are so, so much more advanced than my twins. It’s just a weird feeling – it’s hard not to question myself and wonder if I should be doing more.

That all said, they were born 5 weeks early. Okay, sure. But they’ve physically closed that gap, for sure (C is 20 pounds, B is 23 pounds) and other milestones have been reached. 5 weeks behind isn’t THAT much, is it?

Here’s what they DO  do – they sit. They grab toys with their fingers. They lean way over to try and reach something. B jumps, and jumps, and jumps. When on his stomach on a hardwood floor, he pushes with his hands, forcing his whole body backwards. C has done this once herself, though she hates being on her stomach, still. C examines items closely – she’s currently obsessed with our cabinet doors. B laughs hysterically at the dogs. They respond to song. C gives kisses. B has a third tooth coming in (C has NO teeth still!). They babble. C finally puts the pacifier back in her mouth herself. They shake rattles. They laugh at each other, they cry when the other cries. They look real adorable when we go to playgroup and I put them in a sitting position and they sit next to each other, not moving the entire time, except to stretch out to reach for a toy.

So it’s not like they don’t do things, it’s just that – they’re so BIG, and they just don’t do much. I know, enjoy it now before they’re mobile..etc. But that phrase is similar to “enjoy the quiet on bed rest before the baby comes” – yeah…not so much. You can’t enjoy something that concerns you.

Anyway, is it 100% out of my control? And if not, what should I be doing to encourage these milestones, besides just more tummy time?

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Still Sick!

This “cold” the babies have is finishing up its 6th day. Last Sunday it started as sneezing, fussiness, one afternoon of a mild fever and then a runny nose (and projectile vomiting..damn Tylenol) and as the week went on, I thought we were in the clear. But then a cough took over, becoming a very wet cough and then last night it turned into all-out barking. They are both having coughing fits that wake them from their sleep, poor babies. I hate to see them sick.

The barking was my cue that it was time for a doctor visit. So instead of going to playgroup (a good move for sure), I schlepped the babies to the doctor.

Diagnosis – Bronchiolitis for B, double ear infection for C. Geez – no wonder they didn’t feel good!

I felt terrible I hadn’t gone to the doctor sooner, but the P.A. did say that if I had, the babies might not have shown these symptoms and it would’ve been written off as “just a cold”. Regardless…terrible!

And I’m a newbie with sick babies, this is the first time they’ve been ill. So it’s hard to see, and at the same time, they want extra love that is hard to give with two. And there’s snot EVERYWHERE in my house. Separating toys is a challenge, but I do wash all the plastic ones every night.

That’s all manageable, but it’s the coughing fits that are so sad. With B, his breathing was actually a little labored so he is using a nebulizer for the weekend. C just has her antibiotic.

A quick look online told me that bronchiolitis usually comes from something else – mainly RSV. As a former NICU parent of preemies, those three letters were something I was praying my children didn’t get. In preemies it can be extremely, extremely dangerous. I am so thankful that mine were born in July, not during the main season, or we would’ve been on lockdown. That said, all children under the age of 2 get RSV at some point, but it’s not severe and disguises itself as a cold. So the likelihood that my twins have RSV is quite high, leading to bronchiolitis for B and a double ear infection for C. I shudder at those letters…but I’m SO grateful that it’s happening now, when my babies are hefty and healthy, and not when they were so fragile. So thankful for that.

Fun fact – bronchiolitis has a correlation with asthma in children. Researchers aren’t exactly sure how this connection came to be, but many children who have bronchiolitis as a baby go on to have asthma later in life. This sucks, but wouldn’t really surprise me as my husband had asthma as a child and B is an EXACT mini version of my husband, including all of his (minor) health issues.

In other news, the babies were weighed today for the first time since their 6 month check up and I’m happy to report that B is only 22.5 pounds! This means he can still use the doorway jumper that has a weight limit of 25 pounds! The jumper is his absolute favorite thing…and I’m dreading when he outgrows it, way faster than I would have expected. So he’s still got 3 pounds to go, thank goodness.

And Lil C isn’t really so little either – she’s certainly more petite than B with tiny feet, hands, and stubby legs, but she’s 19.5 pounds, and for an 8 month old, I think that’s not too bad.

We survived the week, despite the illnesses and not being able to go to 3 baby events that would’ve kept me sane. Next week, I’m hoping we can at least attend one and get out of the house.

What we did do, though, is go to Costco, where the babies enjoyed sitting in a cart for the first time. Did I pack wipes? Yes. Did I leave them on my kitchen counter? Yes.

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And then decided it was time to go home…

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Holding hands…so presh.

And then they promptly melted down in the car on the way home. No picture of that one.

Not much to go on this week, but here’s a few:

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Digging through the picnic basket – that’s their favorite toy right now.

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Just practicing being a man, rubbing the gut, while trying out his new baby leggings.

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I just place her in things and she tolerates it. Thanks, C.

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DIY baby/toddler toys: Sensory Bottles and Treasure Baskets

Sick day(s)!

I think I remember calling my twins’ first illness “a cold” in my last post. As in, just a cold. Some sneezing and sniffles, nothing a mom can’t handle, right? Well. Not 10 minutes after I published that post on Saturday night, Lil C woke up crying. When I went up there, I found she couldn’t take her pacifier because she couldn’t breathe through her nose. While B lay in his crib a few feet away, I tried suctioning out C’s nose which not only didn’t work, but made her cry louder. Then I panicked, thinking she might be in some pain, and gave her Tylenol, which in my arms, she projectile vomited that and her bedtime bottle of 9 ounces all over the babies’ floor.

With C now really crying, my husband is trying to clean up the milk/Tylenol mess because the Tylenol is RED, and the carpet is TAN. (Ah, that’s why we should’ve chosen a darker color rug) He’s using a flashlight to scrub, C is screaming and now B’s awake, crying as well. I’m COMPLETELY covered in vomit.

Good times. And she was up all night, coughing and gagging on what was dripping down her throat.

Now, a few days later, we are skipping playgroup but slowly on the mend. Still lots of mucous of all colors, stuffy, coughing, terrible sleep – these babies are a mess. What little cold was I thinking of? Two nights ago, I found that C could breathe better if she were straight up and down. Elevating the mattress wasn’t enough. So I pulled up a rocking chair in the next room, and we snuggled in for the night. I got no sleep, but C was breathing better. Last night, she luckily was okay in her crib.

Anyway, this isn’t a little cold by any means. It’s so hard to see your babies suffering and being so sad. There wasn’t any fever though, just strictly a nasty cold with lots of tears and yuck.

And of course, all four of us have this cold now. In the future, I’m wondering how parents possibly avoid getting whatever illness their children have. I don’t think it’s possible – especially with babies who need to be held and snuggled. So we all feel crappy.

 

Since we are home and have been recuperating the last few days, I decided to bring out some new toys for the babies to enjoy. I’ve been on a DIY kick lately, and have a few projects in the works. I have to give credit where it is due – the majority of the projects I’m working on come from The Imagination Tree – this woman is amazing. Her ideas are cheap and easy, and awesome for kids. Here are a few completed toys:

Sensory Bottles

I’ve been working on this one for a while. For a cheap set of toys for babies or toddlers, sensory bottles are a great way to change up what your child plays with every day. You can be really creative, make many bottles, or just a few, but it’s so easy to do.

First, I collected water bottles. We only had the larger, standard size at the time which is fine for older babies, but the younger ones can grab onto the smaller bottles easier. After washing the bottles and caps and letting them air dry, I filled them with an assortment of items I either had around the house or bought at the dollar store. Some have water added and some do not. I super-glued the caps on, and I keep them in a basket. SO easy!

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From left to right, here are the bottles I made:  1)Water with pink plastic hearts and small beads, 2) Pompoms of different sizes, 3) Water with silver glitter (you need a lot of glitter for a good shake!), 4) Pipe cleaners, 5) water with standard colored beads, 6) small bottle with plastic buttons of different colors, 7) small bottle with plastic necklaces, and 8) Water with yellow food coloring and dish soap

*Another great one that I haven’t yet made is ripped up pieces of tin foil – so shiny!

Again, you can be creative or not, add whatever you’d like, but the idea is to stimulate the different senses. I have a few bottles that make loud noises when you shake them, a few that are great for future color identification or counting, and a few that show slow movement and are great for visual stimulation.

So far the babies love to shake the two smaller bottles, and hold onto/look at/try to eat the bigger bottles.

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Part of my reason for making some of my own toys is that I can keep them for years and use them for different purposes as the babies get older. Right now, they’re all about making the bottles crackle and looking at the colors and shine, but in the future I’m hoping to use the bottles for counting, rolling, and that sort of thing.

 

Treasure Baskets

What I like most about this idea is that you can store these baskets away and bring them out on a rainy day or when the babies are fussy. Or, in this case, on our Sick Day when we need a pick-me-up.

Using cheap baskets from the dollar store, I filled one with regular items from around my house that are safe for babies. We have so many light up, sing-song toys in our house that are great but also do the work for the babies. Treasure baskets are supposed to be for exploration – you put in items that aren’t toys, giving children the opportunity to feel and discover different materials.

I’ve only made one basket so far, but I’d like to make a few with different themes. The Imagination Tree shows baskets full of wood products (like a wooden spoon, wooden blocks, etc), soft textures, crinkly textures, and so on.

This basket has a variety of items from around my house but not with any theme to it.IMG_4242

As you can see, there is a pot holder (clean and new 🙂 ), a bath mit, two fake foods, measuring cups and spoons, etc.

I gave this basket to the babies for the first time and it kept them happily engaged for a good half hour, which in baby time = forever.

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Checking out the basket for the first time..

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They seemed to really enjoy the contents of the basket. And it was great for their fine motor development, as they had to use their fingers/whole hands to pick up oddly shaped items. For the first time, I witnessed C with something in her right hand but an item on her right side she wanted to grab. She transferred what was in her right hand to her left, and then grabbed the object on the floor.

It’s the little things.

Treasure baskets are awesome for different textures and sizes. As the babies get older, you can still use these for toddlers but can switch out any of the items for things that might be more appropriate for their level.

With sick babies who only took a half hour nap (ugh) this is all I’ve got time for at the moment! I’m hoping to make more toys – it’s very satisfying for me and good for the babies.

For now, it’s time to bring out the basket again I think, this cold has them quite fussy…

More firsts = more pictures

I wonder if I’ll continue to take as many pictures of my twins in future years as I do now. In the moment, I’m always thinking, “Oh! This is the first time they’ve ______, I need a picture!” But there will always be firsts – so I guess there will always be pictures. I don’t scrapbook, I don’t write letters to my kids (though I really should and would love to) – I take pictures. I have always enjoyed using a camera, even as a child making albums of nature pictures and trips to the zoo, and now I have these cute little subjects that live with me and spend all day with me, just tempting me to take their pictures. Most of them I keep away from the internet (surprising, with the number that still are put on the blog and facebook), but after I take them all (hundreds a month) either on my phone or my camera, I transfer them to my computer where I pick the best from them and add them to an “album” folder. In every group of 30 pictures I take of a situation, I try to pick the best 1 or 2. Then at the end of each month, I print out all of these keepers at Walgreens and put them into an album. For reference, I recently finished the album for 0-6 months, about 450 pictures. I’ve started the new album of the same size, 6-12 months. My recent trend seems to be between 80-100 “keeper” pictures a month that make the album. If I continue this pattern – well, by the time they’re 18, that’s a lot of albums.

This seems insane – thinking of it this way makes me feel a little nuts. I have ONE album of myself as a baby/toddler – I know I looked through it many, many times growing up, but are my babies going to want to browse through 837 albums of them eating peas, biting toys, sitting in the stroller, trying to roll over naked?

Probably not. But I can’t help myself. I feel compelled to TAKE the pictures, and then to keep them as I can’t bear to delete a memory I would otherwise forget, print them out, and look at them multiple times. I guess I’m crazy. My guess is that years from now, I’ll go back through these albums and take out pictures that right now seem essential to an album, but might not be later on. And when I go back to work in September (sniff) I won’t be around the babies all day and won’t see the cute things that make me whip out my camera (SO sad) and therefore – there will be fewer pictures. UGH. The thought of that – of missing something, doesn’t make me feel good. I wonder if my nanny can take pictures for me…

Anyway, this week proved there’s no stopping my camera adventures as the babies experienced more firsts, both good and bad.

B popped his first tooth finally, at 8 months old. It’s still small, a little spike, but it’s there and he’s making the weirdest faces and noises, trying to figure out what’s in his mouth. I was surprised by the lack of drool – I expected buckets to just pour out – but that never happened. He drooled a little, but barely even enough to warrant a bib. He didn’t seem to be in a ton of pain either – maybe a little fussier for a few days but that was it.

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I made this picture large; you can kind of see it on the bottom as B goes in for the kill on that plastic fork. No teeth for C still, but she’s definitely teething. I would expect her first to come out soon.

They both got their first “real” cold this week. At 3 months, they had a minor cold, with sneezing and more naps and just generally looking glazed over, but it lasted two days. They (thankfully) went all winter without being sick. Now that we’re out in the world more, seeing and touching more people, I’m not surprised they caught a cold. B has it worse – yucky gunk just pouring from his nose, down his throat and making him cough. C has some mucous but it’s very deep in her nose – I hear it when she breathes but nothing comes out. Lots of sneezing, glassy eyes…etc. A cold. I have the humidifier cranked up and I’m using the suction thingy on B’s nose. He absolutely hates it. But it does work, so it’s a necessary evil. (Sidebar – anyone use that suction hose thing that you put in your mouth to suck the gunk out? I’m COMPLETELY grossed out by that but it’s supposed to be all the rage.) He was super fussy a few days ago as this cold was coming on, but he was better today.

 

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No smiles for a few days, he didn’t feel good! But better now:

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My babies are finally showing some small signs that when I say certain things, they understand me. There might actually be some basic communication between us, and that’s a BIG first. It makes me realize that as they start to really understand what I’m saying, I’m really parenting. I’m not just taking care of two little dolls who poop and eat and cry. It’s cool and crazy all at once. B and C both demonstrate this, but C seems determined to make sense of what I’m saying. She watches everything I say and do like a hawk.

This week, she learned to give “kisses”. I know, not a big deal, but after many times of me kissing her and saying “kiss, kiss” while her mouth was open, she all of a sudden does it on command. If I ask for a kiss, she leans in, open-mouthed, like she’s going to bite my face but she doesn’t, she’s gentle. It’s SO cute.

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I don’t have a picture of that, so instead I’ll give you a picture of C getting kissed by the dogs. B gets kissed by the dogs, too.

DSC_0342I know..it’s kind of gross. I can’t completely prevent it, and I’ll allow it when it makes for a good picture :-p but then I’m there with the wipes…

C was very good this week and allowed me to play with my camera settings one afternoon while B was sleeping (which is what C should have been doing)…

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I’ve been using baby sign language for 2 months now. I kept it simple, being consistent only with “eat”, “more”, and “all done”. I’ve occasionally used “jump”, “diaper”, and “water” as well, but not enough for the babies to learn them. And no, they haven’t signed back yet – for the most part.

Yesterday and today, C wasn’t into her solids, and when I would ask if she wanted “more”, instead of opening her mouth excitedly she would clamp her lips shut. First of all, that tells me she might know what “more” means, which is exciting. I had a feeling the babies might be getting it a little, because when I first ask if they want to “eat”, they both move their lips like they’re chewing. But anyway, yesterday and today C suddenly threw her hands up and down. Like an excited baby, except she wasn’t excited to eat; she didn’t want to eat. I took it and ran with it yesterday, calling it “all done” – it was close enough to the sign, waving my hands side to side. Today she did the same thing, she threw her hands up and down and refused to eat anything else. I called it “all done” and took her food away. She MIGHT be signing “all done”. Or I might be completely insane, but I’m going with it.

My husband has been working crazy hours, both during the week and on weekends, so finally today we decided to go on a family date, which we really have never done. We had 2 “firsts” – we went on a walk through the woods and then out to eat, like at a restaurant. I know it sounds crazy to think I’ve not taken my babies to a restaurant yet but when you have two…it’s just too much. Too much work, too much crying, too many carseats to lug..etc. I’m sure many other twin moms have done it sooner and more power to you. The thought of it, up until now, just did not appeal to me. We chose a quieter place for their first time and plunked them in highchairs, and it went SO smoothly. They happily played with toys and never fussed. I definitely feel more confident to do this, though I’m not digging the idea of doing it alone. It’s a two-adult job for sure.

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I have no doubt that next week will bring more “firsts” which of course means…..more pictures.

 

The last day of breastfeeding

When my twins were born 35 weeks ago today, at just about 35 weeks into my pregnancy, I told the lactation consultant that I wanted to breastfeed. I have always wanted to breastfeed. Honestly, it’s all a blur now but I know I pumped. I remember pumping in the hospital. I recall doing it in the middle of the night. But both babies were also automatically put on preemie formula as well, right away. I was so concerned with them being small, I didn’t care. And I still don’t.

I could never have counted on my hormone issues getting in the way of my milk production, or how exhausted I was that I did not pump around the clock like I was supposed to. I think I did – for a few weeks maybe, but I honestly cannot remember. When the babies were eating every few hours all night long – I don’t know if I pumped after that. I didn’t realize at the time that I wasn’t helping my milk supply out in the slightest. I think it would’ve been a battle anyway, as I never really got a normal supply. It never fully came.

Luckily, I had some milk. At its peak, I was able to provide the twins with about 1/3 of each meal in breastmilk and the rest in formula. I’m also very lucky that there wasn’t any nipple confusion – they both took to breast and bottle. C had some latch issues for a while, mostly related to sucking/swallowing. But she got the hang of it.

B has always been a great eater, and my trickle of milk wasn’t cutting it for him – he wanted lots of milk and he wanted it NOW. So at 6 months, after fighting with him at the beginning of every feed only for him to cry and turn away, I stopped breastfeeding him. I gave him my pumped milk, but that was not enough for much at all. I didn’t sweat it too much because he was growing at this rapid pace, and I still had C.

Well…C’s appetite has grown as well. I could always count on her to latch on, close her eyes and snuggle in – clearly comforted by me. THE BEST. I never got that with B, so I’m thankful to have experienced it with at least one baby. But the 1/3 of the meal turned into an ounce or two, which turned into me counting gulps (15-30), which turned into a few gulps, which turned into sips. The milk isn’t there, and C doesn’t need the comfort as often as she used to. She’s pulling away, smiling; nothing comes out.

As I’m the type of anal retentive person who likes to start new things on Mondays, or the 1st of the month, I like to end things on a rounded date too. So at 8 months old two days ago, I let breastfeeding C go. What I’ve done since is put her to breast if she’s calm, usually in the mornings, and give her the chance, just to hang out for a minute. But I’ve mentally let it go (I feel like I should be singing that “Frozen” song) -allowing myself to release the guilt if the rest of the day I don’t do it. If it seems like a good time, I will. But otherwise, we’re about done. It’s not even about the milk at this point, as she’s not getting any, but that experience that’s coming to an end.

So it’s sad. As someone who formula fed, who wanted to exclusively breastfeed, I’ve come to see that other side of things. People can be very critical of those who don’t breastfeed, but my babies are healthy. To date they’ve had one minor cold at 3 months (knocking on wood..). I keep them safe, comfortable, I show them new experiences,  I throw dance parties and sing lullabies, I couldn’t possibly love them anymore than I do. But I didn’t breastfeed like I wanted to, and now I’m just sort of…trying to let that go.

Probably what is sadder isn’t that we’re done breastfeeding (though I’ll always miss that snuggle session) – but that C and B are at an age where this is even a discussion. They’re BIG. Those with toddlers would look at my babies and note how tiny they are. But to me, they are giant creatures to be picked up using your knees and not your back. They lose parts of infancy, but gain new things too. It’s part of life – it’s just sad, sometimes.

We went to a playgroup for the first time, the day after the library meltdown from B. This group was quiet, with only 3 other (older) kids. It was calm and relaxing. The babies had a GREAT time, and I did too.

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But now I look back on these pictures and feel like these babies look like preschoolers. When did this all HAPPEN??

B has turned a few corners. He now sleeps on his stomach, and we’re officially done with the swing for naps. It was a tough transition into the pack n play (two babies both napping in the same room = disaster), but he’s got it down now. So cute!! If only he could remember how to roll BACK, that would be fabulous.

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And just today I felt the tiniest little spike and saw a small, sharp white line on his bottom gums – boy’s getting his first tooth! So precious! There’s not a lot of drool yet or anything so I’m sure we have a ways to go. But once it’s in – there will never be another picture of him without teeth, ever. Better enjoy that toothless grin now.

He wants to crawl so bad. He reaches for toys very well well, and does a floppy “fish out of water” thing but doesn’t go anywhere. In his sleep though, he manages to scoot all around the crib at night. We put him down in the bottom corner, and he ends up in the top, crying because he’s stuck. He’s turning very serious, but so excited to jump and jump and jump.

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C isn’t there yet with most of these physical milestones. She still hates tummy time for more than a few minutes and she doesn’t roll. She has rolled before onto her back, but never the other way around. She’s not physical like B is – she doesn’t want to jump or kick her legs like crazy. She really enjoys sitting. She is really good at picking things up, though. B’s hands still shake as he awkwardly grabs toys, but C uses individual fingers with careful precision. She’s great with smaller objects.

IMG_3819She is all smiles – such a very happy baby. Easy to make laugh, she’s constantly smiling and being so good-natured, which is funny, because it’s the exact opposite of how she was when she was a refluxy newborn. She’s social and good in new situations. And she’s FINALLY learned how to put the pacifier in her mouth by herself. Thank goodness.

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At 5 months we transitioned out of the swaddle and into the magic sleepsuit, and now we’re transitioning out of that into a normal fleece sack. It’s still a work in progress.

It’s just crazy how quickly that newborn period passes – and some terrible things go away, like the lack of sleep, but some amazing things go away too, like breastfeeding.