Okay, so I'm not stupid. I have always understood that babies are pretty needy. Smart girl that I am, at some point while I was pregnant with two babies, it occurred to me that my life might soon change a little.
But I don't think you can really appreciate the depth and pervasiveness of that change until it happens to you. Until your brain is puttering along on 4 scattered hours of sleep and you notice that you're wearing the same clothes you had on yesterday, and you really can’t muster the energy to care. Until your arm gets numb from jiggling a crying baby as you watch the window lighten at dawn, and you realize dimly that this is what people are talking about when they say that babies keep you up at night.
I think that the hardest thing to adjust to, though, is not a crying baby or sleep deprivation. It's the fact that I have been tossed into a completely foreign existence, and there is no end in sight. I remember hearing a mother once talk about caring for her three-year-old son who had severe cognitive impairments and health issues. She said it felt like she and her husband were surviving in "crisis mode" to get sleep, food, etc.--but that the "crisis mode" just never ended. That's sort of what I feel like, only not nearly that dramatic. It feels like I've made crazy changes to my life to get through a crazy situation, like taking extra deep breaths and focusing to get myself through the last few laps as I run on a track. But this time, when I squint toward the end of the track to see how far there is to go... there's no end! For the foreseeable future, my life revolves in three-hour segments of feeding, sleeping, and changing, with bouts of crying and rocking peppered in for flavor.
And it's not that bad--it sounds kind of depressing on the surface, but it's nice to be in a routine and know what to expect. It just takes a whole different lifestyle and frame of mind than I've ever had.
Want to know my newest revelation? I am TIRED of planning!! Me, the princess of plans, wants to abdicate the throne. Because now I'm not just planning on a large scale. I have to plan every single minute in order to get anything done. I have to plan LAUNDRY. Laundry! I hate laundry! And now I have to make advanced effort just to fit it into the day! Because if I just wait until the moment strikes me, as I've always done, it won't happen. I will think of it just as a baby starts crying, or after 10:00, when I really need to drop everything and sleep or I'll never get any rest. Because I need to plan when I will sleep, too! My life has no spontaneity at all anymore!
That's not even all, though--the real kick in the pants is that things will NEVER turn out the way I planned them! I feel a little like that Greek guy who had to roll the boulder up a hill and watch it roll down again, over and over for all eternity.
And now, because I am overly dramatic when I describe things and people reading this may think I am nearing suicidal levels of depression, let me just say that I am fine. WE are fine. If this is torture, then it's fairly pleasant torture. And there are many good moments. Both babies broke from the plan yesterday and slept soundly through a two-hour car ride, including an hour of stop-and-go traffic. Noah gave me a very cute and very real half-smile this morning. And Lily got lots of compliments on her tiny baby bracelet at church today. So I suppose we may make it after all.
Until they start teething, of course.
In other news, we are growing massive babies. As of last Friday, the kiddos were 5 weeks old. Lily weighed 6 lbs, 14 oz, and Noah weighed 8 lbs, 1 oz! So she has gained a pound and a half, and he has gained three pounds!! These kids are actually going to make it onto the growth charts! It is sadder than I expected to watch Noah outgrow his cute little newborn clothes. I’m going to have to buy outfits in three consecutive sizes when I really like them, so I can enjoy them for more than a couple of weeks.
And now for pictures! Here is Noah in his gangsta hat.
And Lily in her ladybug outfit, complete with hat. Unfortunately, the outfit is newborn sized and the hat is much bigger...