Mostly, life with twins has continued to be good. However, things have gotten more difficult in the past couple of weeks. Leo's reflux got worse again. We've upped his dose of Zantac and we'll see how it goes. Zoe has started spitting up more, which is not really that big of a deal, but it caused a problem the other night. She had spit up through her nose a couple of times and the milk and mucus got dried up in there and caused her to have trouble breathing. We ended up calling our pediatrician's nurse line around midnight. (There is nothing more important in choosing a pediatrician than the availability of 24 hour advice and weekend appointments. I don't care how good the doctor is.) Anyway, we just had to put some saline drops in her nose, but it made for a terrible night. And we've been having company and visitors over, which is wonderful, but ends up throwing us off our rhythm and putting me behind on jobs like laundry and paying bills. I think that no matter how boring the baby duties are, I need to limit my outings and visits so that I can maintain that discipline I wrote about earlier. Keeping the routine is the only thing that allows me to sleep, shower, and eat well enough so that I can feel like a human being.
Speaking of outings, I finally got Leo and Zoe out for a walk in the stroller last week. We've had fabulous weather lately and I've been wanting to take advantage of it, but for a long time I just didn't feel ready to go through all that hassle. But I finally took the plunge and we all enjoyed the walk. My Baby Jogger stroller was well-worth the money.
On Friday I took Zoe and Leo to the doctor (by myself!) for their 2-month checkup. Zoe is 8 pounds and Leo is 9 pounds 8 ounces. They are on the growth chart now. For weight, Zoe is 2% and Leo is 7%. That sounds terrible, but that is compared to all two-month-olds, including full-term babies. Their adjusted age is just 3 weeks, and they are both around 50th percentile on the adjusted chart. They are growing exactly as they should be. Leo has one health issue besides the reflux which I'll keep private, but which is not a big deal. And Zoe has something which will resolve itself but is pretty funny right now. As Adam wrote on Facebook:
Yesterday, Zoe's pediatrician told us that her narrow, square-shaped head is a preemie condition the doctors and nurses call, "toaster head." Jeez, just our luck that one of our twins is a cylon!
We finally have the doctor's permission to let them sleep longer at night. We had been doing it anyway, but now we'll start to try to actively encourage longer stretches of sleep. Cluster feeding them at night seems to help a lot. They can go about 5 or 6 hours between feedings now, but that doesn't happen consistently. We're limited by the lowest common denominator - the baby who gets hungry first sets the schedule. And there's always someone who is going through a growth spurt or not feeling well or whatever. It really keeps us on our toes.
Leo is just a monster - we can practically see him growing. And he feels so solid. I guess it's a boy thing, because he feels about twice as heavy as Zoe. She feels delicate and almost hollow compared to him, but she's really not that much smaller. In fact, in length she's only half an inch smaller. But everything about her is dainty - her hands, her eyelids, even her tiny little butt. Leo is a football player, a bruiser, a solid mass of muscle, in short: a boy. And his butt is huge! It's so wonderful to have a boy and girl at the same time; I love seeing the differences between them.
And are they different! They are becoming more and more different as they get older. When they were born, they looked somewhat similar. There is even one photo from the NICU which we can't identify as of Leo or Zoe. But now it seems like they got exactly the opposite genes from each side. Leo seems to have Adam's eyes but The Italian's face shape. Zoe has Adam's face shape but The Italian's eyes. Their noses are different, their ears are different, their coloring is different, their body-shapes are different (even given the boy-girl differences), and their personalities are different. Overall, I think Zoe got more from The Italian and Leo got more from Adam. And maybe this is why I had trouble bonding with her early on, more so than because of the breastfeeding. From the start, she's just been more alien to me. But now, I'm in love with her alien-ness. She is a mystery to me and I can't wait to find out what she'll be like when she is older. Of course, Leo is a mystery too, but he is so much more like Sammy that it feels familiar. Then again, he's a boy, and that makes him exciting and new, too.
I can't imagine any more perfect set of children than the three that we have. And of course, that is how every parent feels. Because once they arrive, they are yours and they are perfect and you can't imagine life without them. Not just life without children, but life without your particular children.