Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Pooh Corner

Sometimes, a NICU flashback will come to me, and I'll be overwhelmed with so many familiar emotions: fear, happiness, relief. Today, it was a bit of sadness mixed with fear mixed with gratitude. After Peanut went home, Meatball was stuck in the hospital for another eight days due to his NEC infection and recover. It was so hard trying to be two places at once, and I felt guilty for not being able to snuggle with them both at the same time. Although those around me probably wished that I would stop, I liked singing to the boys in the NICU, and "Return to Pooh Corner" was a favorite (because the words were easy to remember at a time when everything was a huge blur). But, after the boys were split up, I couldn't seem to get through the song without tears streaming down my face. Poor little Meatball will probably always hear shuddering sobs in the back of his mind when that song comes on the stereo.


When we're putting the boys to bed at night, we don't just place them in their cribs and walk away. We usually hold them until they are asleep. We'll probably regret it later, but it's just so hard to let them go! So, we're often on the couch or in the bed holding and rocking while their little eyelids droop lower and lower. As Bub gets tired, she lets out a few big sighs. Lately, when she's holding Peanut and he's falling asleep, he will sigh, too. Her big sigh is followed by a little tiny person sigh. Sometimes, we'll mute the TV and sigh on purpose just so that we can hear him. In about 15 years, he will be sighing for different reasons with accompanying eye-rolling, I'm sure. But, in 15 more years or so, he will have a little person in his arms imitating him, and I know that it will make him grin and melt a little on the inside.

plans for LEGAL marriage - Ellen & Portia are invited!

So, I can't stop thinking about how we're going to do this whole LEGAL marriage and wedding ceremony this fall when we go to California. We FOR SURE have to go now! Yes - it's going to be cheapest vacation we've ever done. Yes - we'll be eating out of a cooler instead of swank restaurants. Yes - after a year of formula and diapers FOR TWO, we're broke. B.R.O.K.E. Nope - I don't care. We have a chance to get legally married - even if it's only for a few days until the magic of a state line negates it. And, I don't care how broke we are, we're going to do it. I just have this picture in my head of the four of us on the beach in white linen shirts and khaki pants - barefoot, sand scoonching between our toes, with Momma B and Momma K declaring for a second time that they promise to love each other forever - no matter how much we drive each other crazy! (Anyone who knows us understands that this is an unrealistic - although beautiful - picture. By the time we actually get everyone dressed, ready, and on a beach for a short ceremony, Bub will have spilled something on her white shirt, someone will have barfed on my shoulder, one little male person will have fallen in very wet sand, and the other little male person will have popsicle juice on everything. BUT, it's a wonderful visual either way, isn't it?) Finally, I know that this is ridiculous and corny, but Bub and I were both SO excited for Ellen Degeneres and Portia De Rossi that we got all teary eyed when Ellen announced their pending ceremony on her show. Really, truly happy for them and every other gay and lesbian couple (and couples-to-someday-be) in California. So, in typical, sappy, nerd-girl style, I sent them an e-mail wishing them all the happiness and love that the world has to offer. Then, in a fit of extreme nerdiness, I also invited them to our ceremony. Yeah - as if they would have time to hang on the beach in San Luis Obispo with us..... BUT, wouldn't it be a RIOT if they showed up? It could only get better if Barbra was officiating the ceremony and the Indigo Girls were playing for the reception. (Ahhhhh.... When I dream, I dream big!)

Monday, May 19, 2008

First words - second glance; First steps - double glance

Technically, Meatball's first word was "uh-oh." It just started coming out one day. His next word was "hi." Bub carried him out of the bedroom where he had been napping. He looked at me, and I cheerily said "Hi!" to which he replied (can you see where this is going?) "hi!" However, yesterday was a big day. Not only did he say "cat" with a "C" sound, but he also said TIGER. He's been saying "di-do" for a couple of days, but we weren't sure what he was referring to. Yesterday, it was a for sure "tiger". And, it's soooo cute - the "G" is very soft, and the "R" is that little kid "R" sound, so it sort of comes out as "ti-gho" but cute nonetheless. AND BEN TOOK TWO STEPS ON HIS OWN!!! From the coffee table to Kelley - we were staring at him with HUGE, wide eyes. He didn't repeat it, but we can tell that it's coming. He's going to be cruising around very soon.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Planning a move to Cali?

Today, the California Supreme Court overturned the ban on gay marriage! How fantastic is this?!?? Their ruling says that providing two systems of family recognition, one called domestic partnership and one called marriage, “realistically must be viewed as constituting significantly unequal treatment to same-sex couples.” The state does not have a compelling interest in “limiting the designation of marriage exclusively to opposite-sex couples, and in excluding same-sex couples.” Excluding lesbian and gay couples from marriage “works a real and appreciable harm on same-sex couples and their children.” OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ARE YOU READING WHAT I'M READING?!?!?!?!?!??!!?!?!?!?!?! Two different (but theoretically equal) things might not be equal after all and could result in unequal treatment? (DUH!) The state has no compelling interest in continuing to discriminate? (GLAD TO HEAR IT.) Excluding whole groups does harm to those groups and their families? (NO FRIGGIN' SHIT!!!) A change is happening - slowly but surely. Gays and Lesbians could begin getting married in as little as 30 days from now! Of course, DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) ensures that even though we could go there and get married, our wonderful home state would not be required to recognize the union. And, the opposition is already starting the actions for a constitutional amendment. But, still, it's a start. ********I will be the first to admit that I've spent at least 30 minutes browsing jobs in California and trying to determine the difference in the cost of living. Just the thought of a legal family unit is extremely compelling. If Bub and I could get married, then she could legally adopt the boys not long after that. What a great piece of mind that would bring!

First words?

A friend of mine classifies the "first word" as the one that is repeated several times. In that case, as I've mentioned, Meatball's first word is CAT (pronounced "at" right now). I subscribe to the REPEATED first word theory because I don't agree with Peanut's choice. He was squirming and wiggling and trying to wrestle his way out of the car seat. After Bub finally got it fastened, she said "Oooo! You're being a little turd!" Peanut promptly replied "TURD." Thankfully, he hasn't repeated it since.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Leave me alone - no wait, don't....

Completely different people...... When Peanut woke from his nap today, he was G.R.U.M.P.Y!! He whined and complained and whined some more. He just wanted to be held and loved. Meatball, on the other hand, didn't want to get up at all! So, when I woke him at 6pm, he gumbled for about 10 seconds, and then promptly pulled the blankets over his face and wouldn't come out of hiding. He peeked out a couple of times. I eventually got the best of his sense of humor and peek-a-boo led to getting up. I can't beileve how different they are! (I still can't believe that we have two!)

First Mother's Day

In so many ways, this was just another day. We had to get up and clean the house. I worked in the yard. We had to change diapers. We fed the dogs (and managed to play fetch with them for about five mintues). We need to fix the sprinklers. We need to fix the tile in the laundry room. The sink faucet is driving me nuts. WE HAD TO CHANGE DIAPERS?!?!??? We drank margaritas for the first time in TWO YEARS!! I can't believe that we're moms. This is the most incredible and insane and exciting and emotional and amazing time in my entire life. The little men are getting so big. Meatball is trying to say "cat" but only "at" comes out. Peanut is trying to say something, but we don't know what it is; he remains insistent. Oh my god. Just last year, they were tumbling and kicking me from the inside out. Today, they are living, breathing, laughing, pooping, squealing, practically walking human beings with completely different personalities. We are moms. For the love of Pete, WE ARE MOMS! It completely blows me away.

Friday, May 9, 2008

A published poet in the family

We just received a late night call from JWC to inform us that she will be a published poet! She submitted a poem to the Young Poets Guild (or some such group - it's late and I don't have all of the details yet) and has been chosen for publication. Even better, she is in the running for a $3000 prize! But, to top it all off, the poem she wrote was dedicated to her paternal grandmother (my mom) who died from cancer ten years ago and to her maternal grandmother who is currently fighting her 2nd bout of breast cancer. Our poet is only 13 years old! I'm so proud of her! She has plans to write while she is someday travelling the pro-rodeo circuit and sell her cowboy poetry books when she retires from rodeo. She informed me that her goal is to never work for someone else a day in her life. I wish her all the best with that dream; it sure wouldn't suck! Congrats, JWC!

David Archuleta Day - or as we will remember it......

Yes. Today has been declared "David Archuleta Day" by the actual governor of Utah. The adorable teen has captured the hearts of all Utahns, and people across the nation in his bid to become the next American Idol. This adorable youngster wearing the skinny jeans will likely take 1st or 2nd place in the big show, and go on to successfully finish high school, attend an arts college for a couple of years while releasing some crooner albums (that will be strikingly similar to Clay Aiken's) and will then go on to star in some very big shows on Broadway. He really does have a career ahead of him. And, he's humble and sweet. Who doesn't love that? AND, he has distracted the nation from the FLDS fiasco happening in Texas since everyone seems insistent to remember that "the FLDS freaks are actually an off-shoot of the freaks in Utah and what's up with Utah, anyway?" So, here we are on David Archuleta Day, also known as my 38th birthday which will heretofore be regaled in the parental history books as THE BARFING BABY BIRTHDAY INCIDENT OF 2008. During a nice Mexican dinner at La Puente (yum...), Peanut got fussy and fussier and quite grumbly. So, after sitting on my bouncing knee (big mistake) for a few minutes, I decided to stand and rock back and forth with him. After about 90 seconds of that, he proceeded to barf down the back of my shirt, my skirt, my shoe, the floor, the shoes of the man at the next table - oh - and himself. We rushed to the bathroom to clean things up where - feeling just fine now, thank you very much - he played in the water from the sink faucet while I washed vomit out of the clothes. Luckily, he had clothes in the bag, and Bub had an extra t-shirt in the car. Looking back, we may want to reconsider mixing his foods too much. This is the 2nd time this has happened. His little tummy doesn't deal with too many flavors, and his palate really hates new textures. I guess the re-fried beans (which made him gag) and the coating on the fried ice cream (which also made him gag) were just too much for our sensitive little guy. Read "gag" 2x, moms. Get a clue! UNphased by the entire situation, Meatball continued to happily eat anything that Tante Siddie gave to him while pushing grated cheese and broken tortilla chips onto the floor. Remember the days when we drank so much that we threw up on our own birthdays?

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

My Twinspirations (intro to co-workers)

I just found the e-mail (with pictures) that I had sent to my co-workers so that they could, of course, discuss just how adorable and smart my kids are. Here are some of their replies:
Subject: My Twinspirations!
Hello friends!
I apologize for not sending pictures sooner, but I've been a bit busy. Here are some of my favorites.
Our first picture as a family - in the NICU on 5/31. As you can probably tell, we were exhausted. S (with KB) weighed in at 5lbs, 2oz - B (with me) weighed in at 3lbs, 6oz. I'm very happy to say that in the past 2 1/2 months, S has doubled his weight and B has almost tripled his! (B spent three weeks in the hospital; S spent 4 1/2 weeks there.)
The picture of them together was taken at two weeks. Does it get cuter that this? (To answer my own question: YES! They have both started to smile, coo and even laugh a little bit! My heart is melting just thinking about it!)
B's close up was taken on the day that he went home. The preemie clothes were still way too big. S's close up was taken at about 5 days - right after he was diagnosed with NEC (bad and scary intestinal infection). Everyone is happy and healthy now!
PS - I'll be back to work soon and ready to brag endlessly about these handsome guys. You've been warned! :)

From: Alicia H
Those are the most beautiful babies ever!!!! Thank you for sending pictures. I am happy for all of you. Bring in lots of pictures when you come back.
I miss you.
From: Candis F AAAAAAAAAAAAAAWwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So Cute!
If you ever need a babysitter give me a call. I would be happy to help out. I'm sure you could both use a break!
From: Carol B
The pictures are precious. Each day that goes by they become more and more part of you if that is even possible. We miss you and will look forward to more pictures. Your a good mom.
From: Cathy F

Thank you so much for including me on your list to see these. Many congrats on such cute little boys. They will be so much fun! Glad you are feeling better to.
Take good care of you and see you when you get back.

From: Cindy P
Your babies are so darn cute! Thanks for sharing and keeping sending us more pictures. It truly brightens my day!
From: David H

Congrats. They are sooo cute.
From: Dawn S
I am SO very happy for you! And yes, they do only get cuter and more loveable every single day of their life!!! I think every mother should have a son, as they enrich our lives in SO many ways. A son loves a mom in a very special way. Treasure every single second!!!
Much love,
From: Debbie P

Thank you so very much for sharing these! You have two beautiful children who are very lucky to have the parents they have!!
I'm so grateful that everyone is healthy and happy now!!!
Please continue to send pictures as I would love to see them.

From: Dianne P
cannot tell you enough how happy I am for you both ... two beautiful children for very deserving parents ... you both should be very proud as these two treasures!! Hugs and best wishes for health and happiness for you and your family always!!! Dianne oxox
PS ... keep the pics coming !! ")
From: Emily W
What handsome little guys! Congrats, I hope you and KB are doing well and at least getting a few hours sleep!
From: Jan H

They are such handsome boys. They look absolutely perfect. I can't wait to see them in person. Thanks for sending the pictures.
From: Jeff W
What a cute family my friend. I had no idea you were even pregnant, see what happens when I move out of Virginia to Atlanta, all communication stops. I am so happy for you and KB and the boys, what an experience you are embarking on. They are too cute, and you have earned the right to brag when you get back, we all do it.
You look great and the boys look healthy, and I hope for much happiness, fun, sleepless nights, and all that comes with those little angles.
Way to go,
From: Jenni B
I know everyone is saying this, but they are so adorable! It made my day to see the pictures. Congratulations again to you and Kelly.
From: Juliana G
They are SOOOOO cute!!!!!! I hope things are going well for all of you. I bet it's hard to think about coming back to work!
From: Karri A

Thank you so much for including me on the update of the boys. I am so glad to hear that all are doing so well.

From: Kevin S
Very cool - Congratulations.....
From: Leona F
Thanks for including me on your email. Love to see the proud mama and those babies are absolutely precious!!!!
From: Leslie TK

They are just darling. I am glad that all is well with you and your new family.
From: Lori JY
Beautiful babies! Thanks for sharing. Congratulations!
From: Mark L

Congratulations what a miracle!

From: Michele H

Oh my word… They are absolutely beautiful. Congratulations to you and Kelley!
From: Nicole N

I bet you love motherhood. The boys are so cute.. I bet everyday they grow and change so much..
Are you going to be able to bring them in I would love you see them. If you need a babysitter please let me know.
You need your time too!!
Congrats they are two beautiful boys!!! You'll soon see that boys ROCK!!
H. is off to 1st grade on the 27th. Wow time flies...
From: Paulette J
Congratulations they are beautiful glad everyone is doing well!
You are both blessed with two wonderful boys!
From: Rachelle J
They are just so beautiful. Great things do come in SMALL packages!

From: Rob C
They are so cute! Those boys are going to give you a run for your money.
From: Roland L
Thank you for sharing. These are precious. Can't wait to see you again and say hi.
From: Sharon C
Wow! Congratulations !!!!!
They're absolutely beautiful!! Send more pics please. So glad everyone is doing well. You'll have to fill me in.

From: Scott B

You are correct! These are great looking babies! Congratulations!
Very Happy for you,

From: Steve P
How very cute! Congrats!
From: Terri B

Congratulations to you, and KB!
They are beautiful (just like mom). I can not wait to see more pictures, and hear you brag.
From: Wendy P
Awwwww..... how precious!!! Happy to hear all is well & everyone is healthy! CONGRATULATIONS!!!!

And again, and again, and again

Here is an e-mail that I sent to a co-worker 14 days after the boys were born:

"Oh my god. I've fallen in love all over again x2 - with guys!

Then, of course, there is Bub.... I've fallen in love with her all over again in the past two weeks, too! She is going to be the best mom in the universe! The other night as we were leaving the NICU to go home (which sucks, by the way), I was saying goodbye to S and she was saying goodbye to B. She was holding him and whispering to him with tears running down her cheeks. I didn't catch it all, but I did hear her say to him "Where have you been all my life?" Good grief. I'm tearing up just remembering it......

OK - I could go on and on about this for ages, but I won't bore you, and it's time to get back in the NICU and see my guys!

Hugs to everyone. (I actually DO miss work and everybody there.)

Falling in love all over again

I received the following voice mail from Bubba five days after the boys were born, and I just found that I had written it down:

“Just me. When you get your phone back on, I just want to tell you thanks for giving me such a great thing. And, I can’t stop crying (apparently). But if I would have known that it would have been like this, I wouldn’t have waited so long. This is, like, the coolest thing in the whole world, and I don’t think that I’ve ever been more in love with somebody since… you! So, thank you. And I love you and I love my sons so very much. Anyway, I’m all done being a chick now. (Arrgh!) I love you very much. I’ll talk to you later. Bye.”

You know you're a grown up when:

Our little people are becoming grown-ups as evidenced in the following ways:
#1: YOU CAN EAT ANYTHING PUT IN FRONT OF YOU. (Meatball stuffs everything possible into his mouth and then “chews.” He doesn’t really seem to mind that most of it falls out and eventually ends up inside of his shirt or pants or on the bottom of his socks or mashed onto the butt of the diaper.)
#2: YOU ARE SEATED WHEN THE POOP IS CLEANED UP. (This was a stand-up diaper change, so that was mom’s first mistake. Then, Peanut decided to sit down half-way through the process, so the doody was conveniently wiped off of his bum by the bath mat.)
#3: YOU CARE MORE ABOUT NUTRIENTS THAN APPEARANCES. (Meatball has decided that the liquid vitamins are like candy even though they make both moms gag. So, when Mama K approached him with the vitamin bottle, he immediately spat out all of the food that he had stuffed into his mug – see #1 above.)
#4: YOU PEE STANDING UP. (Peanut needed a diaper change during a road trip. Since it was windy outside, we tried to accomplish this on the car seat. It didn’t take long to realize that the seat wasn’t big enough. So, another stand-up diaper change was the plan. However, as soon as the diaper was off and the cool breeze “surprised” him, his emptied his bladder all over Mama K’s purse and the mat on the car floor.)
I can only wonder what other experiences await us over the next 17 years!