Friday, February 11, 2011

It takes a village

While DH was out of town for three days this week, everything went well! I had lots of help -- a friend brought me lunch on Monday, another friend came over after work Monday and stayed through the babies' bedtime, a mother/daughter team came over Tuesday evening and even spent the night, and then on Wednesday, another friend came for the afternoon. DH was back home that night. The babies were simultaneously fussy for a few hours on Monday, but other than that, there really weren't moments of extreme frustration.

I was not only grateful for the extra hands; I was thrilled to have the company. I am learning more and more that two keys to my sanity are a little bit of variety in my days and interaction with friends. The wonderful thing is that these friends were all really happy to help out. They all adore the babies and seemed to really enjoy the time with them.

The babies are sleeping fairly well overnight, for about 6-7 hours. We keep fine-tuning our bedtime routine to figure out what works best. Tonight we actually put the babies down and there was no crying!! Yahoo!

Thanks to those of you who commented on my last post with encouraging words. It's so great to have this community!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Truly flying solo

I found out today that DH has to travel out of town for work on Monday. He won't be home until the middle of the night on Tuesday or on Wednesday morning. I'm pretty much freaking out. Can't decide whether I should hire a night nurse to help me out or simply go with it and see how things work. I mean, how many women in the world have managed twins alone? Plenty, for sure. One of my best friends has agreed to come over to help out during bath and bedtime on Monday night. I can probably find someone else to come over on Tuesday night, if need be. If I can just get them down for the night, I'll be fine. Making that transition from daytime to nighttime sleeping is the great challenge these days, typically involving several rounds of crying and soothing.

I am thinking the trick to managing this is to mentally prepare myself to be exhausted and at moments, very frustrated. I had one of those moments of frustration earlier today and started to cry while holding baby boy. DH had just left for a run -- the house was peaceful, with both babies napping in their cribs -- but baby boy started to cry uncontrollably. He'd been crying like that about 30 minutes earlier, off and on. I had hoped he'd sleep through his entire nap. But I think he's having gas pains, despite the baby gas drops we're giving him on a regular basis. So I freed him from his swaddle and the crib and brought him downstairs. As I did this, I started to cry -- feeling like a failure for "giving in" and worrying about what it will be like without DH. I wondered what he thought about my own crying. He actually stopped for a moment and looked up at me like, "What's wrong??"

Well, we will see how things go on Monday and Tuesday. I can do this! (I will keep telling myself this.) I think I can, I think I can . . .

Friday, February 4, 2011

A big anniversary and an even bigger birthday

I just realized -- as I was going to write a bit about my very happy 40th birthday last weekend -- that yesterday was the one-year anniversary of our fantastic retrieval at CCRM -- the day my 11-week-old twins were conceived! The day came and went and I didn't think about it once. I think this means I've lost all concept of time, but there's a pretty good explanation for that!

I need to find some good resources for multiples. Does anyone have any blogs or books to recommend? I'd love to connect with some twin moms who are bloggers and I also am looking for practical information about how to handle twins when you're alone with them. I'm trying to implement a schedule for the babies and it works pretty well when DH and I are here to do things simultaneously. It's those times when I'm flying solo that I get overwhelmed and very frustrated.

Speaking of the schedule, we are following some of what they recommend through Moms On Call. They're an Atlanta-based group of pediatric nurses who are also moms. They have a couple of online courses that are only $30. I did the infant one and it was quite helpful in terms of thinking about a schedule, but it didn't offer any suggestions for how to implement things for twins. Apparently you have to do an in-home consult ($350 for twins) to get that information. I'm trying to avoid that expense because there aren't many things we need help figuring out at this point. We learned a LOT from the NICU nurses.

So my birthday. It was great! The past few years have been depressing because of infertility. This year would have been super-depressing had we not finally achieved success. My unspoken goal was to have a baby before 40, so I was just deeply contented about the whole birthday thing. I have an old friend who's turning 40 in a few days and he is totally dreading it and freaking out. I had none of that, thankfully. It was a really good day, highlighted by the fact that it was 70 degrees in Atlanta and we got out of the house with the twins to go somewhere other than the pediatrician's office. Everything was casual and spontaneous, just the way I like things.

The babies are doing well, letting us sleep a little bit more. I actually got 6-7 hours last night in two separate "shifts." Thanks to Moms on Call we are letting them "cry it out" a little bit. One baby is a big crier while the other one is not. Makes for interesting bedtimes and naptimes. Thankfully the non-crier also can sleep through just about anything!

Okay, I gotta run. Thank you in advance for any blog or book suggestions!