Sunday, February 28, 2010

Comfort from Above

I know that most (or all, lol) of my posts are about E&J but I really feel like I need to write this post.

There are times where I get this sense of comfort that comes over me. I can remember one time I blogged about it in this post. There was also the time about 3 days before my induction that I was lying in bed, nervous about what was going to happen, and then all of a sudden, I just felt better. Like I wasn't afraid anymore.

And then it happened again last night. We put E&J to bed and after Dan fell asleep, I just cried. I started thinking about going back to work and the emotions of that flooded over me and the tears just flowed. But as quickly as they started, they stopped. I felt something inside of me saying "It will be ok." I woke up this morning feeling like it will be ok. It won't be easy but then I realized that there is no promise that life will be easy. Its not. For every up, there are downs. For every joy, there are sorrows. That's life.

The promise that we do have is that, if we ask, God will give us comfort. And I do ask often. I ask for him to comfort me and to give me the strength to handle the things that happen in my life.

I heard this song yesterday and it really struck me.

There is hope for the helpless
Rest for the weary
Love for the broken heart
There is grace and forgiveness
Mercy and healing
He'll meet you wherever you are
Cry out to Jesus, Cry out to Jesus


Friday, February 26, 2010

Back to work Confession

When I went on maternity leave, I knew this day would come. Actually, before I even went on leave, my heart hurt a little then to think that one day I would have to go back to work and leave my babies. I guess I just didn't realize how hard it would be.

Im writing this post for me. I don't know what it is, but I guess I feel like I need to justify my decision to go back to work. But not really to anyone else, just myself. So here goes.

On Monday, I will watch as Dan loads up Emma and Joshua in our Odyssey and takes them to his parent's house. I will head to a job that I am not super crazy about, yet I am good at it. A job where I like the people I work with and, at the end of the day, a company that respects me and my performance. A job that I have worked at for 7 and a half years and a job where I have worked up to the top position on my team.

Here comes my confession. Most people say that they go back to work because they don't have a choice. The hard thing for me to admit is that I DO have a choice. Although it wouldn't be easy, Dan and I could afford for me to stay home. We have been married for awhile and have been careful with our money. So if I woke up on Monday morning and said "Dan, I can't do this," we would be able to survive.

So what stops me from staying home? I guess the answer is that I want to know. I want to know if I REALLY want to be a stay at home mom (SAHM) I mean, sure, I can say now that I want nothing more to be at home with Emma and Joshua. But, for me, I don't think I will ever know this for sure unless I go back to work. Unless I see if I can balance the struggles of being a working mom. Because there is part of me that thinks I will be able to do it. And it will work for me. I will be able to kiss my babies good bye in the morning, pump on my lunch break, spend my spare time between appointments with a quick visit to see them and make dinner at night while I listen to them giggle in their swings.

The problem is that my decision has so much guilt associated with it. I am choosing work over Emma and Joshua. I have looked at our budget and know we can afford it but I have said the words "I choose work." This choice places a pain and weight on my heart that I wasn't prepared for. I feel selfish. I feel selfish because I want it all. I want time with my kids. And I want time for me. It took us so long to get pregnant and these children are the answers to our prayers yet I am choosing to leave them with someone else (albeit Dan's parents, who love them like crazy)

So that's it. My confession. I know that even though I feel sadness and even though I feel selfish, I am making the right decision for me. I need to try this. And if it doesn't work, then atleast I will know.

Alright, well I am off to enjoy my last day alone with Emma and Joshua. I might even let them snuggle in bed with me for one of their naps instead of their cribs, just so I can spend that extra time with them. Hope everyone enjoys their weekend!


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Dan's Baby and Breastfeeding

I always say that I use this blog so that I don't forget things that happen. Well before I forget, I must blog about Dan's baby. Who is Dan's baby, you ask? Is it Emma or Joshua? Nope. His baby is named Pillow. So here is the story:

I must begin by telling all of my readers that Dan has become an amazing Dad. We had some bumps in the beginning as we figured out our roles in taking care of the babies but now that we are 2 months in, I can honestly say we are both doing our share to take care of E&J.

Now the one thing that Dan does struggle with is getting up when either of the babies cry. I must have some kind of crazy mommy instinct because I hear a noise and I am up and ready to feed. But Dan? Not so much. He is in a haze when I wake him up. Which leads us to "his baby" I noticed early on that when I would get up and look over at Dan, he would be holding a pillow and patting its back. When I would ask him about it, he would tell me "Im holding the baby!" Hmmm, really? But its more than just holding the pillow. I have caught him walking around with the pillow, rocking it and even trying to burp it- All in his sleep! One time, I had to have him walk down to the nursery to look into E&J's crib and see that they were both there and he was, indeed, holding a pillow. Its honestly the funniest thing and I spend a good few minutes laughing at him when he does it before giving him a good nudge and ripping the "baby" from his arms. Too funny.

I also wanted to comment on the adventures breastfeeding. Man, I don't think I realized how hard it was going to be, especially with twins. I have had so many emotions with this experience. I've enjoyed the closeness that I have felt with E&J. I have also been frustrated by the time commitment that it takes to either be the sole feeder of the babies or to have to pump in between feeding another baby so that Dan can feed the other. I have also been frustrated by the fact that I can't always pump enough milk for both babies now that they are eating 4+ oz each. But one thing I have learned is that whatever I am able to do for E&J, its enough. I don't need to be SuperMom. It's ok to supplement with formula. I don't need to get up in the middle of the night all the time just to pump while everyone else in my house (babies included!) are sleeping. I don't know if I was try to prove to myself that I COULD be SuperMom but I can tell everyone, that in the end, its better to be realistic and to do what's best for yourself, too. A Happy Mama= Happy Babies.

That being said, I am going to continue breastfeeding and pumping when I return to work next week. (And wow, going back to work is going to be a blog post that Im not quite ready to tackle) My goal is 3 months. And after that? Who knows?! We'll see how I (and my boobs) are feeling then.

Tomorrow is Josh's belly button surgery. We talked to the surgeon's office today and since they are going to have to put him under, there is a chance he will have to stay overnight. Please send him some thoughts and prayers. I will be sure to update after his surgery is done.

Hanging out and Playing with Mommy. And YES, Joshua is smiling! :)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Growing babies!

Dan and I took Joshua and Emma to their 2 month appointment on Friday. Their stats are:

Emma- 9lbs 10 oz, 22.75 inches
Joshua- 11lbs, 24 inches


Emma is in the 50th percentile for height and the 25th percentile for weight. I expected her to be in a lower percentile for weight, she is just such a peanut. Josh is in the 50th percentile for weight (but can we note that he has DOUBLED the weight he was when we brought him home? What a little piggy!) and he is in the 75th-100th percentile for height! The pediatrician was happy with both of their progresses and we were, too. They both cried when they got their shots but they were consolable and ok the rest of the day. They were, however, both absolute terrors yesterday and I cant figure out if it was a delayed reaction to the shots. They were fine for today's morning feeding and slept 7 hours last night so I guess we will see how today goes.

Remember how I talked about Emma wanting to suck her thumb? Well she figured it out. And its so funny because her thumb is so tiny but she puts it in her mouth and atleast tries to suck. And Joshua has gotten alot more expressive. He is kicking his legs all around and smiling, especially when I give him kisses. Oh and he looks so much like Dan, I can't even believe it. I think its the eyes.

This is my last week before I go back to work. I have very strong and mixed feelings about this and have plans to blog about it soon. So stay tuned!

Here are some new pictures. Enjoy your week!


Emma always looks so sneaky

Napping in our bed with Dan

Before their 2 month appt

Playing on their mat

Emma

Joshua

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

2 months

I am a day early but tomorrow, Joshua and Emma will be 2 months. It is amazing to look at them and see how much they have already changed in the past 2 months. Heck, our whole lives have changed but its great. Its not always easy but at the end of the day, being parents is such an amazing job.

Here is what's new with the kids:

Joshua

1. Although he is not as expressive, he does love to smile, especially when he hears my voice or Dan's voice. He also kicks his feet like crazy to show how excited he is.

2. He still has the infected belly button and actually has to have surgery on it on Wednesday the 24th. Its a quick procedure but its still surgery in the hospital and Im not happy.

3. Joshua is very content, that is the best way to describe him. He does cry and fuss but mostly when he wants food. After he eats, he is happy to just lay and look around. He will also lay in his crib for awhile before falling asleep and not even make a peep.

4. He is still eating good and when he gets a bottle, he is up to 4oz. And man can he BURP! He seriously has the loudest burp I have ever heard. Sometimes he even scares himself!

5. Josh loves to lay on his side and I catch him doing it often. I keep trying to move him onto his back but if he is not swaddled, he will go right back to his side.

Emma

1. Emma has become a little chatter box. She will make tons of noises and move her little mouth around. Dan and I also caught her laughing early this morning! It was so cute

2. She has started to straighten her legs out more and isnt rolled into a little ball when we hold her. It turns out, she isn't so short-looking when she stretches out!

3. Emma loves to look around at everything. Last night, Dan was moving his finger over her face and she was following it like crazy (He did it to Joshua, too, and he followed it but then got bored. Emma followed it for like 15 minutes!)

4. Emma has been drinking more bottles as I prepare to go back to work. She is eating 3.5-4 oz and she actually eats faster than Josh. The downside is that she is spitting up, sometimes alot. It happens after she burps or when she lays back down. It doesn't happen alot all the time but she is struggling with it.

5. Emma loves her pacifier. When it falls out of her mouth, she will crane her little neck and try her hardest to get it in her mouth. When that doesn't work, she is still working on cramming her thumb (or all her fingers) into her mouth.


Dan and I took some new photos of E&J. Enjoy!


With their elephants


Sweet Emma


Cool Shades (bought by my mom)

Josh is so awesome, lol

Getting bigger!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

2 sets of eyes and 8 weeks

I got done feeding Emma and Joshua this morning and as they both lay on my bed, their eyes seemed to look into mine. 2 sets of eyes, touching every part of my heart and soul. As they looked at me, I realized that I will look into those eyes for the rest of my life. Someday those eyes will look at me on their first day of Kindergarten. And those eyes will beg me to buy them some candy at the store. I will look into those eyes after a dance recital or t-ball game. Behind those eyes are the children that Dan and I always wanted. The children that I feel lucky to be the mother to.

Its been 8 weeks since Emma and Joshua were born and they are growing and changing every day:

Emma's hair has gotten lighter, she has turned into such a good sleeper, she sticks her bottom lip out when she cries and she is desperately trying to stick her thumb in her mouth. She is bigger, of course, but she is still so dainty. Although she wears some 0-3 month clothes, some of her newborns still fit. She loves to be held, especially by me, and she still curls up in a little ball on our chests.

Emma trying to suck her thumb

Joshua is getting to be such a big boy. He is easily into his 0-3 month clothes and some of the pants are not long enough on him. He is so serious and intense with his eyes but I have caught him smiling alot, too. And he is so strong! He will grab onto anything, including my hair, and hold on for dear life. He is in love with his FP Seahorse and will even cry if it turns off and he has not fallen asleep yet.

Could he be any more serious? lol

Both of the babies are so good. Sure they scream, fuss, spit up and refuse to sleep at times but overall, I really feel lucky. I know that there will always be challenges with raising them but I am confident that I will always feel blessed to be their mom.

So Happy 8 Weeks, E&J! The time has been filled with so many changes and I look forward to even more changes to come.



Hope everyone is enjoying their week!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

More Loves

I did a post a few weeks back about baby products we love and those that we could do without. I wanted to add a few of my MUST HAVE items:

1. Diapers.com I love, love, love this site. Their prices are the same as Target, you can mail in coupons and they credit them to your account and they often run different promotions. I ordered from them last week and got 500 pampers points, woohoo! Oh and if you spent $49 or more, your order ships free OVERNIGHT. You can't beat it. If you try them out, use my referral code DGRX5046 and you get $10 off. (and I get $5 off, which is awesome since we go through so many diapers!)

2. Swaddleme Blankets. I know how to swaddle but man, these things are easy to use. Even Dan can do it!

3. Sheet savers. Both Emma and Joshua have spit up spells and using the sheet savers helps me not have to change the sheets every time they puke on the bed. Its so nice.

4. Homedics Sound Spa. Best. white.noise.machine. EVER. For $20, it has several great sounds that help the babies sleep and they also LOVE the projection feature. It projects pictures onto the ceiling or wall and E&J are huge fans



Ok, so those are a few more of my favorite items. I hope everyone is having a good week. Check our Emma and Joshua in their new Babylegs- how cute are they!


Emma-bear
Joshua (clearly not digging the babylegs yet)


And this is how most of my pictures end up. One baby looking annoyed and the other screaming

Saturday, February 6, 2010

J&E&Family

Dan and I are lucky that both of our families live close by. We both talk to our parents often and get to see them often, too. Here are some recent pictures of Joshua and Emma with our family:


My dad with Emma (I love this picture more than I can even say)


My mom and My sister with Josh

My Grandma and Grandpa with Emma

Dan's Mom and Dad with Emma



Dan's Mom, Dad and Aunt with Emma

Nothing else is going on here. Its snowed ALOT last night, even though we were only supposed to get 2-4 inches. It didn't really bother us though. We just spent the day hanging out inside.

Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Poop Happens

Yesterday was a funny day. First, Emma and Joshua are eating me out of house and well, boob. They must be going through a 6 week growth spurt a few days late because I can't seem to get enough food in them. I am literally nursing and pumping and then pumping and nursing all.day.long. Hopefully this passes soon!

Back to the story. When I do a feeding alone, I do it on our bed. Its easiest for me because I have plenty of room to prop up one baby and feed them an expressed milk bottle and then nurse the other. Yesterday, I was nursing Emma and I had Josh propped up in the Boppy.. We were just getting into the feeding when I heard Joshua take a poop. Now this is pretty common around my house. My babies love to poop while they eat. This is why I rarely change diapers before we eat because honestly, its not worth it. Anyways, I hear Joshua poop but it doesn't seem to phase him. He just keeps on eating. And then I smell the poop. Like really smell it. I look over and he has pooped RIGHT ON MY BED. He must have lifted his leg up or the diaper must have gapped because the poop clearly didnt stay where it belonged.

Well when I saw this, I immediately jump up and start to clean it up. But of course my super hungry babies begin to scream like crazy because, well, they are famished. So I make an executive decision. I leave Joshua sitting in the poop and just keep on feeding both of them. I mean, what's a mom of two hungry babies supposed to do? lol

And in true Shannon fashion, right before I clean it up, I take a picture because it was just so darn funny. Here you go:


Joshua (and now he is crying because he realized he is sitting in poop)


Emma "Um Dad, we have a bit of a situation here"


So yeah, that was my day yesterday. Hope everyone's February started off as good and funny as mine!