Thursday, December 1, 2011

Lessons Learned in the Last 48 Hours

1) Identical means identical.
I can't tell these two babies apart from each other, despite my best efforts! They look exactly alike from their tiny little noses to the swirls of their hair. The pediatrician said they were the most "identical" identical twins she has ever seen. This morning, my confusion only escalated when I discovered the nurses had actually switched Ezra and Elliott in the nursery and that the baby I was nursing was actually "Baby A" instead of "Baby B." Needless to say, we are constantly checking their name bracelets to make sure we have the right baby in the proper bassinet.

2) Adrenaline only last for so long.
After delivering the boys, I felt like superwoman. I was tired, but I had a seemingly endless reserve of energy. I was awake for over 24 hours and couldn't find a way to come down from the emotional high of birthing. Two days later, I am exhausted. Yesterday was spent constantly nursing the boys and by our 8 pm feeding, my body decided it could no longer keep up with the pace my mind had decided upon. I fainted and was out for a while as a team of nurses carried me to a bed, started me on an IV, and tried to wake me up. By the time I awoke, I had been readmitted to the hospital. Today, I plan on resting. Considering the fact that it is only 7 am and I've been awake for over two hours, I don't see this plan happening as easily as I imagined.

3) Nursing twins is more than a full-time job and definitely one of the most difficult things I have ever done.
The twins are supposed to eat 8-9 times a day. Nursing the babies takes 1 to 1.5 hours. The babies have been incredible about latching on, but my body hasn't been able to producing the amount of milk needed just yet. The babies are already small, so if we want to avoid feeding tubes and PICC lines, they have to consistently eat well. Of course, this lack of milk has been a source of anxiety for me. I have been doing everything possible to increase my milk supply and things are already improving. I'm lucky to have a friend who is a lactation consultant! She gave me some great advice yesterday and helped alleviate some of my fears. The hospital staff has also been amazing and has encouraged me to continue nursing. I'm sure things will improve with time.

4) Being away from Eliza is the worst thing ever.
Before this week, I had never spent a night away from Eliza. I hate not seeing her smiling face in the morning and hearing her say, "Hi, Mama!" when she sees me. My heart breaks when she comes to visit because she is obviously having a hard time adjusting to the idea of two new brothers. She is too little to understand what is going on and only knows she is no longer receiving the attention she used to. As soon as I get home, I am making it my number one priority to smother her with love and attention. Goodness. I love that little girl.

5) Changing a girl's diaper is much different than changing a boy's diaper.
This morning, Elliott managed to pee on my face. Need I say more?

6) We're going to need help.
All I can say is: I am so grateful we live with family. Yesterday, two nurses and Nathan helped me feed the twins. I nursed one twin while the other was burped, we then switched babies, I then pumped while both babies were burped again, and finally the nurses helped supplement their feedings by giving them a few cc's of formula through a syringe (the syringe allows us to avoid bottles and the potential for nipple confusion). I couldn't imagine going home without the security of knowing help was available. I've said it before, but my in-laws are amazing! I really wish South and North Carolina were closer to Washington.

7) It's amazing how much you can love.
When we learned we were pregnant again, I remember thinking the usual questions associated with a second pregnancy (usual in my mind, at least). I knew I would love my second baby as much as I loved Eliza, but I did wonder if it would feel different or diminished in some way because I wasn't becoming a mother for the first time. I remembered the magical feeling of knowing I was a mother, and it just didn't make sense that I could feel that much emotion ever again. Well, I was wrong. When they wheeled me into the nursery, and I saw the babies sprawled out and breathing together in rhythm, my heart nearly jumped out of my chest due to the powerful surge of emotion; I was glad I was sitting. I love these babies so much that I can't stop smiling as I write this post. (I also find it hard not to cry, but I am sure that is just my crazy hormones right now).  I love having two baby boys.


  1. Oh my goodness they are adorable. I love that they are all tangled together. So sweet. And yes, boys are much different when changing diapers. Gabriel peed on many walls when he was a baby. haha Enjoy these two little angels. But get some sleep! :)

  2. That picture of the intertwined arms made me cry. Sweet babies!!

    You're going to have to do the sharpie dot to make sure you know who is who! Or keep the bracelets on them.

  3. They are absolutely beautiful. I honestly can't look at pictures of them without getting teary. I can't wait for my girls to someday meet those boys. Love, love, love it.

  4. Nursing them and juggling everything WILL get easier. You can do this! We had nursing issues and had to do the tube and syringe thing for awhile and I thought, "How can this ever be a one person job when it takes 3-4 people right now?" I know it's different with twins, but soon it will be possible with just you, or just you and Nathan. You can do it! Thank goodness for all the amazing nurses, and for family! You're doing an AMAZING job. You're such a fantastic mom!!

  5. Um again you are AMAZING! I love you and your blog post about your babies. Your boys are adorable.
    Good luck with the nursing! You are super amazing it will all work out!
    As a side note, Jackie had a really hard time with Abby (I believe Eliza is about the same age Jackie was when Abby was born 26 months) while we were at the hospital. She wanted nothing to do with her and just wanted me to come home. The minute we came home something filliped, and she fell in love and wanted to constantly help me! She just seemed to get mommy had to help Abby and wanted to be a part of it all with me. And then came the want to smother baby with hugs and kisses.

    Good luck! When do you guys get to go home?

  6. What a feeding schedule! No wonder you're exhausted. I can't even imagine all the eating they must be doing to get bigger. Those boys really are TOO similar looking. Hopefully one gets a birthmark in a spot the other one doesn't or something! Haha.

  7. I've been following your blog for sometime. We share a couple of friends even though you and I don't know each other... I think you are amazing! And your babies are so beautiful. Good luck on your journey mothering twins. I can tell you are going to be a great mother to your sweet boys. I'm sure Eliza will adjust soon enough. It took my son a little while to come around when his sister was born, but he loves her to death now.

  8. I can't even believe you're updating your blog, but I'm so glad you are.

  9. Congratulations on two healthy baby boys! I have seven-month-old twin boys, Miles and Elliott. Our two Elliotts are in for a lifetime of saying, "That's Elliott with two Ls and two Ts." I know, because it was my maiden name.

    Good luck with those boys!

  10. be still my heart. The pictures at the end brought me to tears. They are perfect, and I am so glad y'all are all doing so well!


A Penny For Your Thoughts