Monday, March 22, 2010

Dear Margot



Dear Margot,

For the last few weeks, you have been asking your father and I to read your picture Bible to you. You drag the heavy book off the shelf in your bedroom and then after lugging it across the bedroom, heave it up onto our lap and take your place there with your soft, listening expectantly. We read each page to you. You pay close attention to each word and the pictures on the page, pointing out various characters and animals as they appear. We have almost read all the way through this Bible (or "Bi-buh" in your words) in the last three days. This morning, we reached the page where Jesus is crucified. When you saw the picture, you reached down and touched the tender soul of your tiny foot. You noticed Jesus' wound. You seemed to have made the connection between yourself, your body, your foot.. and Jesus, Jesus' body, Jesus' foot. It struck me as such an intimate moment in your life. I felt so blessed to have been there with you in that moment.

With more love than I will ever know how to express,

Mama

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Visit from Papa


Papa and his motorcycle buddy stopped in for a visit today. The girls were thrilled. Ada set to work showing him her farm animals.


Margot requested a story and Papa was happy to oblige.


Then Margot brought Papa her soft and she and her crazy curls sat in his lap for awhile.. starting to get sleepy and ready for nap time.



Magot also baked Papa a pizza.

The girls stood with us on the sidewalk waving bye-bye as they roared away down the road, and started looking around for Papa as soon as we got back inside. They ran to the back window and peered out, saying "Papa?" with their shoulders shrugged in that questioning way kids do. So sweet.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Guess what we did today..


..we went to visit one of Stephen's students at a horse show at the State Fair Grounds. She and her sister were showing today and her sweet mom asked if Margot wanted to ride Cabbage here.. Margot literally jumped at the chance. She sat up there patting that patient pony and looked very much at home.


For those of you who don't know this, I rode for about 10 years when I was growing up. I rode hunt seat so that means I did flat work and some minor jumps. Mostly I just loved being in the barn, in the stall with the horse, on the horse.. anything having to do with them. For awhile I took a silly pride in wearing my tall boots around running errands after leaving my weekly lessons. When I was about 10 I refused to wash my hands after having been around a horse because I loved the way they smelled. I was absolutely thrilled beyond belief when I actually got to teach Equitation at camp and spend each and every day in the barn for 2 months straight. So.. yeah.. I like horses. What you see here is one happy Mommy as she dreams of a future filled mother/daughter barn days. No pressure but...omg.. that would be pretty much the most incredible thing I can think of at the moment. She was absolutely fearless and completely comfortable... good signs I think.



Now for the surprise. Ada, whose absolute favorite animal is the horse.. who sees horses everywhere we go.. who squealed and tried to drag Daddy to the barn when she saw all the horses around.. was terrified. She patted the horses but was absolutely terrified when Stephen tried to let her sit up there. All is not lost though. As someone who initially took riding lessons as a terrified 12 year old who was head over heels in love with everything horsey.. I can sympathize with loving something from afar and being less than thrilled with actually being astride a "mighty" steed. I kicked my fear and so can she, if she wants to that is. I can help her with that.

Fun morning.. really, really fun morning.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Stacker

video

Magot has been on a stacking kick lately. She stacks her breakfast, she stacks her babies, she stacks her farm animals.. anything that can be stacked.. Margot can stack it. She is a pro. This tower ended up being 13 blocks tall. Though it looks like I am helping her keep it from falling, if you look closely you will see that I never actually touched the block. She needed a lift to get the top ones on once it got above her reach. Still, I think that is pretty impressive.

Ada is more into knocking down.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Doing Uncle Nathan Proud

video

Yeah, our kids eat with knives.. what? Got somethin' to say? She will cut you.

.. and Margot has an ear infection .. happy Thursday.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

2 minutes of sunshine

video

..a few more sunny days like today and I will get better at this... just need longer arms I think.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Mural







It's nice to see these happy pictures. A happy end to a day that has been sad for me.. for no reason in particular. I tried on a dress that I was looking forward to wearing this summer to make sure it still fit. It did. I was really looking forward to being pregnant in that dress this summer.

We Skyped with Uncle David right before bath time tonight. The girls were pointing and waving at him, telling him that they were about to go take a "bap"(Margot)/ "bass"(Ada). We are really excited to do this more often and with more people. Love that my kids are going to grow up being to video chat for free with their friends and family that are far away. Seems so futuristic and yet completely normal. Liking the normality of it.

Monday, March 15, 2010

because if I don't write this down now..




.. I won't be able to laugh at myself later... and I really need a laugh right now.

In the last 15 minutes:

I undressed screaming Ada and Margot who were covered from head to toe in pear sauce and yogurt. Held Ada while she screamed and gagged. Put her in a safe spot on the carpet while I helped Margot attempt to calm down and got Josie down from her lunch. Josie was calm and pleasant as ever. I held both girls as they bucked and screamed and Margot whacked me in the eye with her flying noggin .. really hoping that it doesn't turn black. Put ice on my eye. Ran to the kitchen, leaving screaming Ada and happily playing Margot and Josie, to clean up the mess at the table before little hands find it and make it worse. Started bleeding (the bleeding had stopped about 3 days ago). Ran into the bathroom to access. Heard giant crash and screaming. Peaked out of bathroom door only to find a terrified little Josie underneath the play kitchen that she had pulled down on top of herself. Naked Ada and Margot now having a screaming fight over Ada's soft. Yanked up my pants and ran to Josie's rescue. Yelled (something I have never done) "It's NAP TIME EVERYONE!!! UPSTAIRS WE GO!!!!". Carried screaming children up the stairs one at a time. Changed diapers in an silent flurry, taking calming deep breaths. Closed curtains, kissed exhausted smiling babies and made it back downstairs without completely losing my cool. Why, I say, WHY doesn't McDonald's deliver?!?! I need greasy french fries STAT.

I will laugh at this later.. right?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

From Kate to Dolly


Notice: Dad.. you might want to skip this one...or anyone else who doesn't want to read about me talking about my boobs...and being very self indulgent/self centered.

So yesterday while out with Joyce, we stopped in at Old Navy so I could pick up a couple of new t-shirts. I was lucky enough to also find a cardigan as well and that was just lovely. The t-shirts are your basic solid colored numbers, the sort of thing that a SAHM mom like myself wears. The cardigan is your basic grey as well (I like grey ok..) and was a bit of a splurge but a necessary one. You see.... I used to be a bit like Kate Moss in a certain area.. and now.. I am definitely Dolly Parton-esque. I have been attempting to deny this fact since I first left the hospital with my new friends, and a back bent under their weight. I trusted that they would return to their pre-nursing size once the girls were weaned. I was thrilled when my lower half did actually return to pre-pregnancy size. So I squeezed into the pre-pregnancy tops when they worked and wore my nursing tops the rest of the time, thinking it was only a matter of time before I would be back to my old self. Then we went through the weaning thing.. and they got bigger than I thought was humanly possible. I was actually apologizing to my friends when I was forced to be around them in a bathing suit. I looked as though I might burst free at any moment. Frightening. Not sure why anyone would actually pay for that look. SO relieved when they they finally went back to a much more normal size. More normal, yet none of my pre-twins bras would fit properly. A helpful teenage Vicky's employee informed me, upon taking my measurement, that I had in fact grown 2 cup sizes. How lovely (heavily leaden with sarcasm here). I had these new friends and they were not going anywhere. Here to stay. Still in denial, I continued to squeeze into my "XS" tops (sports bras are a girl's best friend). I bought a couple of "S" t-shirts that fit better and have almost worn them out from overuse. We are fast approaching sun dress season. I realized the other day that I really need to accept my new size and behave accordingly. This meant purchasing an "M" cardigan. Having worn said cardigan around all day, I felt it time to take it to the next level. That meant a closet purge. I have loads of beautiful dresses that I stalked in my previous life at JCrew and Banana until they went on sale. I have loved being able to quickly dress for any occasion and the confidence that comes with knowing you have a closet filled with only the clothes that you absolutely adore. And now I have a pile of dresses and tops lovingly laid across the end of our bed, awaiting their fate. It has been wonderful to keep them in the closet all this time.. but after having tried on each and every one of them tonight in the hopes that one or two might actually fit up top... I know definitively that the time has come. As this is not the sort of thing that any amount of working out can change, I am going to embrace my curvaceous new self and bid farewell to the wardrobe I worked so hard to build. Obviously we no longer have the income to replace these lovelies, so it's good-bye JCrew..hello Old Navy. Not much of a sacrifice I'll admit, but something about this makes me feel a bit old and very matronly. One step further from the "polished" professional woman I had become, and a leap closer to the make-up-less, jeans and t-shirt pony-tailed Mommy I am today.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Manic



Today was a good day. I woke up knowing that I was going to have lunch with Joyce and then we were going for massages. That is a good thing to have on your mind first thing on a rainy Saturday morning. So I spent the morning with my girls (who still aren't feeling their best) and Mr. S and then bid everyone farewell, jumped into the suburban and away we went.

I have lately been struggling with feeling very boring and uninteresting, particularly to myself. I am tired so much of the time and I feel I spend too much time watching movies or sleeping when I do have a few moments to myself. I feel like my brain is turning to mush, has turned to mush. I long for adult conversation and then when the circumstances are right, I have absolutely nothing to talk about. Today was different. Sweet Joyce listened patiently while I yammered on during lunch about the three topics that had been in my head all morning:

1) How impressed I was last night when CBS highlighted the need for domestic adoption in the US, particularly the need for people to adopt older children (Please know, that I think international adoption is amazing and I would love to do it myself one day, honestly I think adoption itself in any way shape or form is such an incredible thing and I am honestly jealous of each family I know or read about who is going through this journey. I just thought it was really neat of CBS to highlight another side of adoption, that being adoption of older children currently in foster care. Who know why certain things speak to your heart and for some reason this story spoke to mine.)

2) The struggles of children afflicted with schizophrenia and other serious mental illness (20/20). Think of those words.. children.. child.. schizophrenia...schizophrenic. Yet again this special just reached right into my chest and tore out my heart. I wanted to help. What could I possibly do for these families struggling with children who beg to be put into the hospital ? I wanted to bring them dinner... take the other kids in the family for ice cream..sit with the parents and just hold their hands...

3) The fact that our buddy MKD just resigned from a job that was not worthy of him and is about to start an exciting new job that holds so much promise not only for him, but for the future of his budding family. Knowing someone who has taken hold of the reins of his life instead of plodding along in a bad fit for monetary reasons or for whatever reasons... is exhilarating. Just knowing that he left on his own terms and for far better situation makes me smile and feel a little giddy. Happiness!

I know these topics could not be more varied but that was what was playing in my brain.

The sun was warming our faces as we sat on the sidewalk chatting way. It feels like a long time since I held a conversation I was really excited about. Manic about even. We talked pretty much non-stop for the rest of the afternoon (breaking for fabulous massages around 1pm). It was so rejuvenating to get excited about life, about possibilities. Such conversations leave me feeling hopeful and filled with a desire to go and do and be...love that.

It was a very good day.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Doctor Margot

video

18 month appointment today...gettin' in some good practice.
PS: I have no idea why the recent videos look black before you press play but I promise if you press that play button.. it will work.. and you may even chuckle.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Today



This is not a great photo but I just love that whenever Margot is playing mommy, there are almost always two babies.. on in each arm. Amazing what kids pick up on.

Thanks for all the encouragement on the food front. Glad to know I am not alone. I used to wonder how I would afford to feed them when they ate as much as they did and now I get excited to see them take a few bites.. the last few days at least. Bottom line is I am not going to fight it. I am not into the whole power struggle thing and that is just what this has the potential to become. The last two mornings they have eaten a huge breakfast and then not much for the rest of the day other than milk and some goldfish. I am ok with it. There is also a bit of a special circumstance.

The last 3 mornings in a row, Margot has had the most insane blowouts I have ever seen let alone changed. Bath territory. Double bath with lots of good smelling lotion territory. Throw away the jammies, open the windows, boil the sheets kind of blow outs. Holy frijoles it has been bad. Poor sweet baby just stands there when I go in to get them in the morning with a sad look on her face saying "Poo poo, Mama.. poo poo!" Poo Poo indeed dear Margot. Sheesh. I thought this might be teething (even though they have never had bad diapers with teething) but now I am sure it is some sort of tummy bug. It's not only in the morning, it's all day. I called the doc and they said something like that is going around. So this could explain the total lack of interest at meal times, that and the fact that she and her sister are 19 months old and this is super par for the territory. Enough said. Life rolls on and kids will eat when they are hungry.

As far as my head goes, I had a migraine yesterday.. but it was manageable with meds.. then the meds started making my skin hurt. It normally only makes my lips feel bruised but yesterday it was all over.. ugh. Still it was a very nice and productive day... as was today. Got lots of cleaning done and had a really good time playing with the girls. We watched Sesame Street yesterday after nap and Elmo was at Karate Class and I asked the girls if they could "kick" they both started saying "Kick!" and doing a karate style kick with a big grin. SO cute.

More cute moments.. Margot has not been feeling her best this week and Ada has been in full comfort mode... coming over to her when she is crying on the floor and patting her tummy or head and saying "ok GoGo.. ok". Yesterday I asked Ada to go give Margot a hug because she was so sad and Ada went, sat down next to her, leaned her head on Margot's shoulder (this is a hug on some occasions) and then looked her straight in the face, reached out and wiped the tear off her cheek. Be still my heart.

One more and then I promise I will go... yesterday, while helping me dust the bedroom, the girls found their sunglasses from Aunt B. They wanted help from me to put them on. So I obliged, gently reminding them to say "Please" when asking for help. I was then treated to a chorus of "Pweeeze!" and "Peeze!" as they came back time and again to have those sunglasses put on their little faces. After the 2nd or 3rd time, out of the clear blue sky, Ada said "Thank you, Mama!" as clear as day and un-prompted. I stood frozen in my spot and just smiled ear to ear. You are welcome Ada!!! This is the not the first time she has said something like this but it is the first time unprompted. On Sunday, when reminded, she said "Thank you, Daddy!" for the first time. Does that count as a first sentence? She has also been saying "Hi GoGo!!!" and getting in Margot's face to make sure she is seen and acknowledged.

Ok .. enough baby talk.. I am just so excited and surprised by them each day. If they aren't frustrating the stuffing out of me by refusing to eat, they are making my heart burst with pride with their language leaps. Ah, parenthood. It's all they said it would be and so much more.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Why..

Why have my children barely eaten anything all day? Why are they refusing even Goldfish and bagels? Why are they screaming every five minutes? Why is a beautiful day out there when I can't get my girls to stop going boneless for more than 5 minutes so we can play in the sunshine? Why didn't I think of giving them Motrin earlier in the day.. are they teething? And last but certainly not least.. why the hell am I getting a migraine on a completely cloudless, gloriously sunshiny day like today?

Am I the only parent of twin toddlers (toddlers in general for that matter) that can't seem to get their child to eat anything lately? I have tried every tactic I can think of and one day they will love something and the next throw it across the room or straight into Ollie's gaping mouth. The food thing is seriously starting to get to me. They used to be such good and happy eaters and now we are fighting just get them to the table... Please.. please tell me mine aren't the only ones out there that have this issue!!! Anyone?

I need a nap.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Taken Care Of







While our darling girls played with Nana and Papa, we spent the weekend in an adorable retro hotel right on the water in Emerald Isle. We walked on the beach, sat on our balcony, cuddled in beach chairs and talked.. and talked and talked. There wasn't a cloud in the sky during the day and the sky shone with stars at night. It was chilly, but we like it that way. We ate fluffy diner waffles for breakfast and fresh guacamole with fruit and cheese for lunch. And for dinner.. ah dinner. We had grilled Mahi-Mahi in a delightful lemon caper butter sauce at our favorite waterfront restaurant in Beaufort. I had called ahead and asked for a seat by the water and when we arrived we were seated at the best table in the house. We sat and sipped our wine and watched the sun set over the bay. While we waited for our food, and this is going to sound very Disney but stay with me.... we watched as dolphins played in the glow of the sunset. Sigh. It could not have been more incredible.... and then the check came. Our sweet waitress came to the table, and said "Everything has been taken care of." She smiled and handed us the receipt, on the back of which was written "From Ned". My sweet Daddy called ahead and not only ensured that they gave us the very best seat in the house, but also took care of the check. I wonder how he got those dolphins to perform? Kidding. Thank you Dad, and Mom, for a much needed break, for taking care of our babies, and for always being one step ahead of us.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Bubbles and Hospital Socks: Ode to Rex Hospital





I am pretty sure it's not legal to be this cute or this excited about chasing bubbles.

I am wearing my hospital socks, even as I sit here and write this. They are so comfy and they pretty much sum up my experience this morning.

I was so hungry and thirsty this morning that when I left, I felt sick and my throat was on fire. Got to Rex and got checked in, slowly made our way through the various stations and areas until Stephen and I were finally in our own little area, curtain drawn.. hospital gown and fresh socks waiting on the bed. Spirits were high, despite the reason for our visit. My nurse was a precious grandma with a grandson who is only a few months older than Ada and Margot. She gave me a shot to numb the area before she put my I.V. in .. didn't feel a thing. She offered me a warm blanket and then brought me an actual warmed blanket that felt like it has just come out of a sterile dryer or something. The bed was comfy, the I.V. felt fine and I was under layers of warmth and I started to forget about my churning stomach and my throat started to feel ok. They had to move me to another O.R. area so I got to take that embarrassing ride through the center of the hospital with everyone looking.. I kinda hate that mostly because I have no idea where to look and end up just smiling at everyone which comes off a little odd... I also have a hard time not giggling when I am being wheeled around because I feel silly.. I could walk after all. Anyway, we made it to the next area and into our second private curtained nook. Now I started to feel a little more nervous. I cuddled down underneath my warm blanket and asked Stephen to pray with me. He did. Then he pulled the laptop out of his bag, hopped on the "IloveREX" wireless network and played me my current favorite video of Margot playing Mommy. The doc came and and discussed things for a few minutes, noting that she was not surprised that I made this choice and she was so glad that things would be over soon and we would be able to move on. The anesthesiologist and another nurse came in and it was time to say good-bye to Stephen. One long and comforting kiss later, he was on his way to the waiting room and I was being wheeled away again. The anesthesiologist gave me something in my I.V. " to relax me". The next thing I knew we were in the O.R. and the lights were starting to be a bit wavy. They helped me onto the operating table and the last thing I remember was someone telling me there was a place to lay my head. Then a long, deep, comfortable nap. Supposedly I was "awake" for the whole thing but they promised I would have no memory or recognition whatsoever.. they were right. I woke up with another warm blanket and feeling very sleepy and comfortable. The nurses told me everything went great and the only thing I could think of to say at the moment was "Was there only one?".. "Yes.", she assured me with a gentle hand on my shoulder, "There was only one." They took me to recovery and soon Stephen arrived with his wide smiling face, saying the doctor said everything could not have gone better. I can honestly say, overall, it was an extremely pleasant experience and I owe it all to the loads of prayer that went up today and the wonderful, caring staff at Rex Hospital.
I have napped quite a bit today, but other than that I am feeling fantastic. So much better than yesterday.. so much better than this morning. Just feeling good and feeling well on my way to healing in every way. Much love to all of those who sent us emails and messages, left comments here.. brought us meals.. watched our babies for us. We are overwhelmed with this multitude of blessings and oh so grateful. Thank you, everyone.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Defeated

Warning.. this might not be the happiest post on the block. I am feeling pretty defeated today. Rewind to this past weekend so everyone will be up to speed.

I used the dreaded meds on Friday night ( can I just say that I stood in the bathroom for about 20 minutes taking deep breaths before finally doing the deed.. it is unbelievably counterintuitive to do something to make your body get rid of a "pregnancy" ). Crawled right into bed and waited. I had all my pain and nausea meds already on my night stand, ready and waiting. Even a pad of paper and pen to record when and what I took so I wouldn't lose track. Woke up Saturday morning and things seemed to be progressing ( I flatly refuse to bore you with the gory details ). Things progressed all day with one exception - I had no cramping.. at all.. none. I prayed this was a blessing from above and by the evening it seemed that the medicine had done it's job. I stayed home the next day and took it easy, and yesterday I was feeling very confident and hopeful that perhaps this was all behind us.

Today, I went back to the OB for a re-check. It seems the meds worked, but not all the way. The "event" never took place. Sinking feeling. Sweet doctor suggested another two rounds of the medicine and return next week to see if it was successful, this time there would most definitely be the afore mentioned pain and nausea. Or .. the D&C. Stephen was not there this time, home with the girls. I just sat there in confusion. What to do ? I even asked the doc what she would do if it were her ? Hard to say. Personal choice. Good chance the meds will finish the job this time.. yet a D&C could be performed tomorrow and it would all be over. I told her I would probably tough it out with the meds but would talk it over with Stephen. I got dressed and walked down that long hall towards the check-out counter. Passed 4 pregnant women on the way. Standing there, waiting for the nurse to schedule my re-check for next week .. the tears began to well up in my eyes. I tried so hard to hold it in, but by the time I got to the parking lot I was sobbing. I climbed into my little red car and sobbed to Stephen over the phone. See... we have a little trip planned to the beach this weekend... to get away.. but mostly to just be alone and reflect on what has happened.. to get some clarity and maybe some closure. Mom and Dad have offered to watch the girls for us so we could do this. If I take the medicine, that means no trip.. as I will be stuck in bed most likely for the rest of the week. More to the point.. I just didn't feel like I could face doing that again.. what if it didn't work.. again? Any emotional strength and resolve I had to try to do this the natural way.. has shattered. I feel like a wimp. I feel like I am not strong enough. But I need this to be over. Now. I need to have the rest of Stephen's week off be a good time of visiting and playing with our girls. I need to go to the beach with him this weekend and listen to the waves and read books together and go out to eat in Beaufort. I feel selfish for these things but they seem so important right now... so.. I called the doctor back and scheduled a D&C for tomorrow morning.. 9am. I hope I am making the right decision about this... I thought I was the sort of person who could handle this type of thing but it turns out I am just a mommy who is just so sad about losing her tiny baby.. and I need all the help I can get to move past this hurt. So.. I am getting help.

Monday, March 01, 2010