Thursday, March 29, 2012

Fading Memories

I asked my husband the other day if he felt like he was losing Peyton. He nodded. I admitted that I felt it, too.

Peyton hasn't been replaced. She hasn't been overlooked, or intentionally forgotten, or fallen in any way down the rungs of love in our heart, and yet my husband and I, two parents who think of her multiple times a day, have felt our memories of her slipping further out of reach.

We started talking about the memories that we hadn't lost. The sweet, minty smell of her. How she let out a little kitten-like sigh when she would lift her head to readjust against my chest. I mentioned her hands, how they were exactly like my mother's but on a tiny scale, and how her entire life there was goo on her knuckles and a bruise on the back of her hand from that very first IV.

We talked about the emotions that follow us along certain drives--the drives down the roads away from our house on the way to and from the hospital. I remember in crisp detail what life was like the day before the fungal infection was discovered. How full of hope we felt. I remember conversations about the Fall, and stopping at Dunkin Donuts on our way to see her that first time. If I close my eyes, I can probably replay every moment of Peyton's short life in my mind.

My husband shared his memories, too. He said he didn't think that his were as crisp as mine--something he attributes to the fact that he didn't see Peyton's death coming. I saw it coming. I didn't want to, and wouldn't have admitted it even to myself at the time, but I did. In my heart of hearts, I knew she wouldn't survive and I am disgusted by that.

I started to say that I thought the reason we felt like we were losing the details of our daughter, Peyton, was a self-preservation thing--because to stay there, in that dark, early, abyss of grief would be so crushing we couldn't possibly survive. I do think to some degree that that's true, but as I was saying it to him, it hit me. My memories of Peyton aren't numbing or disappearing, so how can I say that I am losing her when every detail, every-single-detail of her tiny life, is burned into my brain?

No, it's not that I am losing her. It's that now that I have had other children, healthy children, growing and changing and doing-by-the-day children - the magnitude of just how brief, just how robbed, just how un-lived a life my first child had-- it's overwhelming. I only have so many memories of Peyton, because there only are so many memories of Peyton. Twenty-eight days of life is not enough.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A Day in the Life of a SAHM of Infant Twins!

One day last week I decided to document a "typical day" as a fun exercise to stick in my journal, or the Snowflakes' baby books, or whatever. 

So here you have it. 24 hours in the life of a SAHM of one year old twins.


11:00PM Breastfeed twins, change diapers, put twins back in their own cribs.

11:30PM Finish up the writing I was working on, brush teeth, head to bed.

12:20AM Nighty Night.

1:30AM Snowflakes wake up. Husband brings them to me to breastfeed (my side of the bed is against the wall, so it's easier for him to get in and out) then we put twins back in their own cribs.

3:30AM Snowflakes wake up. Husband brings them to me to breastfeed. Too tired to move. Both babies fall asleep on my arms.

5:30AM Oh God! I can’t feel my arms! Nudge husband with foot who wakes up and helps me reposition the babies back towards my boobs to breastfeed. Change diapers. Bubba rolls over and snuggles up to my pillow. I don’t think so kid - back to your own bed!

8:30AM Where am I? Hear children playing peek-a-boo and laughing in their cribs. Sneak into the bathroom to pee and brush my own teeth before being discovered. Go to the nursery and turn on the lights. Sing “Good Morning, Good Morning, the best the best the best to you this morning. Good Morning. Good Morning. The best the best the best to you today.” Ask the kids what they dreamt about. Change two blowout diapers then head, with one baby under each arm, back to my bed to breastfeed. Squeaks likes to stand, kick, twirl, twist, and bite while nursing. She also makes farting noises against my boob. Bubba finishes before Squeaks is done. He rolls off of my arm and crawls over to the wall and starts slapping it as if to say, “good wall. Nice solid construction here.” Next, like a flash, he crawls over to our curtains and tries to tug them down.  With one free arm I wrestle him back to my side (Squeaks is still latched on.) Bubba  heads back to the wall. More “Good construction,” slapping. Squeaks finishes and joins him. She starts laughing, jumping on the bed, and slapping the wall. I grab one child in each arm and head downstairs to start the day.

9:00-9:30 Play with toys in babyland (Play Room). Throw in a load of laundry.

9:30 Serve breakfast of Organic Blueberry Waffles with Peanut Butter, and Sliced Banana. While babies eat, I sit at the table in front of them and work on sewing straps onto the crib rail guard I am making since the babies have started using their fancy new teeth on the furniture. Look up. Squeaks has put all her food in her hair. Bubba has fed a large portion of his breakfast to the dog.

10:00 Breakfast over. Wash hands AND Squeaks’ hair in the sink. Change Squeaks into second outfit of the day, as first is completely covered in food.

10:20-10:30 While babies play beside me, I log onto the computer, check email, learn about a new writer’s conference coming to the area!

10:45 Back upstairs to breastfeed them, check diapers, one requires changing. Put babies down for nap.

11:00 Ahhhh. This momma is finally getting her first cup of coffee. Swap laundry. Check email. Start to write an article for Still Standing magazine about parenting after loss

11:30 Second cup of coffee, wait what was I writing about again? Eat a handful of cheerios. Check out a website about another writing conference coming to the area. Facebook distraction – squirrel!

12:30 Uh-oh. Babies are awake. Go in to find that Bubba has pulled a fabric belt that was sitting on the rocker off of the chair and into his crib by reaching through the slats. Lovely. Pull chair away from crib. Better thought, pull crib into center of room so Bubba can’t reach anything. Diaper time. Head back into bedroom to tandem breastfeed. While breastfeeding attempt to read a book to the babies – they fight over the book – we only get through two pages.

Head back downstairs to play. Start cooking lunch. Throw in another load of laundry. Read books. Babies start to fight over pacifier –they don’t even like pacifiers! Bubba sticks Squeaks in the corner.

1:00 Lunchtime! Pasta, green beans, carrots, o’s. More food in Squeaks’ hair. More food thrown to the dog. Attempt to sew a few more straps onto the crib guard while the kids eat. Run out of straps. Make more. Bobbin runs out. Refill bobbin. Bubba does NOT find watching me sew entertaining and lets me know, at 10,000 decibels, that he is bored. "All done! All done!" Shakes head no. "All done!"

1:30 Back over to the sink. Wash hands. Wash Squeaks’ hair – again! Head back into baby land. Diaper change. Set kids up with toys, then back to the kitchen where I grab their leftovers, pour pasta sauce over it, and call it lunch for myself.

1:40 Sit down(next to them) to eat my mish mosh of a lunch. Apparently I am not close enough. They want to be held and start to cry. I inhale my lunch. Sit with them. Try singing a song. A book. Not working. They need a nap.

2:15 Back upstairs to Breastfeed and cuddle.

2:40 Babies are in their cribs, playing. Hopefully they will fall asleep soon. I head downstairs and turn on the TV. Get sucked into a Kardashian show.  

3:45 Babies spent the last hour playing in cribs. They NEED to nap if we are gonna get any sleep tonight.

3:50 Okay,  clearly they never got the napping memo. Peek a boos and tossing toys at each other has eaten up all of nap time. Back upstairs. Change them. Breastfeed. Bring downstairs to baby land. Read books. Bubba learns to push his car walker. Pushes it into my leg. I say “Ow” very dramatically. He laughs and pushes it again. “Ow.” Laugh. “Ow. “ Laugh.  Squeaks wants in on the action. Sneaks up behind me and pulls my hair. I say, “Not nice.” She pulls harder. Joy. Divert attention to crawling through a tunnel. Play peek-a-boo. Read more books.

5:15 Pack kiddos in the car.

5:30 Meet daddy at the trail after work. Throw kids in Ergos and go for 45 minute walk along the river. Bubba says “hi” to all the trees we pass. Squeaks peeks over my shoulder like the Travelocity gnome.

6:45 Dinner time!  Broccoli pancakes. Avocado. Apple. Daddy handles this meal. I swap the laundry and check facebook.

7:15 Time for a bath. Splash Splash Splash. Daddy does bath while I put away laundry.

7:30 brush teeth. Sing songs. Breastfeed.

8:30 Snowflakes in bed. Ahhhhhhhhh. Mommy and Daddy go downstairs and start thinking about our own dinner. Thank god for Once A Month Club recipes. Take out premade ground beef mixture and mix with vegetable barley soup, cumin, red pepper, salt, pepper, onion, garlic – Instant Chili!

8:30-10:30 this is a blur of TV/Internet/Email/Working on novel

11:00 Squeaks wakes up wanting to be fed and wakes up Bubba by throwing her lovey into his crib. 

And the cycle begins again...

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Hello Blog World!

Hello blog world.
It's me - Kristin.
I've missed you.

I have so much to write about.

My Snowflakes are one! I can hardly believe it.

We still aren't sleeping over here. Which may or may not be contributing to my lack of posts. I think if you took the last three nights, my husband and I may possibly have hit a combined total of five hours of sleep. It's exhausting. I'm not entirely sure why the babies are so off their usual 1-2 feedings a night schedule, but they are.

Let's see... what else?

My little Snowflakes are now 20 and 21 pounds, which explains why my knees pop when I carry them up and down the stairs! Bubba is talking up a storm saying "hi," "momma," "dadda," "hi dadda," and "all done!" Squeaks surprisingly is not one for making small talk, lots of noises and squeaking but only a few words - "hi," "mom," and "dadda," but she has been getting busy walking - she takes six to eight steps when she feels like it, then goes days in between when she doesn't.

Writing has been keeping me busy, busy, busy - or I should say attempting to write has been keeping me busy, busy, busy. I am in a mad dash to complete editing my novel in time for a writer's conference coming up this spring, although 'mad dash' may not be the right term because most nights, by the time the babies are put to bed and I sit down to type, I realize I am too tired to formulate coherent sentences and I give up. In fact, right now, I'm giving up. The babies are napping. I think I should be too.

Till next time...