Pictures: taken on Nov 16th
Here is the reality of having a child: you rarely get a break; here is the reality of having twins: you never get a break, when you are on your own.
We have somewhat adjusted to the routine: getting up at 6am (unwillingly but because Lin and Li have excellent biological clock, there’s no need to set the alarm in the house any more), feeding, burping, changing, and I make breakfast while Michael watches them, thankfully almost always at least one of them goes to sleep before Michael heads to school at 8:15am; by 8:30am, both of them go to sleep, I vacuum the floor, clean the plates, hang up the clothes, check my emails; between 10 and 10:30am, the boys wake up and I change their diapers, play with them, between 11 and 11:30am, they get fussy from hunger, I feed them (now I try to feed both of them by myself which can be challenging at times) then Michael comes home at 12:10pm, just on time to take them off and start the burping, changing, playing routine again. Then they will fall asleep between 1 and 1:30pm, sleep for another 2 hours, then we feed them between 4 and 4:30pm. Then 7:30pm then 11pm. After 10pm, electricity bills cut in half, that’s when I wash two loads of laundry, one filled with the soiled burp cloth, clothing, etc. The other is our regular laundry, usually also soiled with spit-up. Somewhere in the daily routine, we squeeze in showers, cooking, eating and an episode of “the Big Bang Theory” or “Star Trek”.
They boys are almost 5 months old, times goes fast but every day is a battle. Often time, one of them gets off the routine, and that’s still good news because one crying baby is so much better than two crying babies. Michael went for a meeting last night, we fed the babies at 4:30pm, from 6pm he leaves the house, till he gets back at 9pm, both babies were crying, I held one for 5 minutes then switched to the other, the second they got dropped in the bed, they started screaming, and the second they got picked up, they were quiet. They usually get really fussy when they are either hungry or get sleepy, so even though I knew they just need only maybe 15 minutes in my arm to fall asleep, I couldn’t soothe both of them in the same time. Now they are a little older, one’s crying makes it very difficult for the other to sleep. By the way, now they sleep in separate bedroom during the day, and the family bed at night, the co-sleeping is still working out great and they don’t need someone to be there to fall asleep. At 4~5 months, they need their 14 1/2 hours of sleep, and once the clock hits 2~2.5 hours since the beginning of the feeding, you can pretty much drop them in bed and expect them to sleep. I really think babies need us to know what they expect and to follow their routine.
Michael and I did everything we could to eat properly, exercise properly and went under a lot of pressure to wait till the time the boys decided to be born, the only thing we would want to change was the delivery, which was sabotaged by the doctor, however, the boys still had least amount of impact from it, even though they got jabs with anti-biotics for no reason. We credit their health and competency to following the course of nature, and take pride in being able to breastfeed them even though I had no milk for 10 days, when our lactation consultant Cindy told us when the boys turned one month, that they have advanced skills of nursing, and I had more than enough milk for them, it was one of the happiest moments in my life, especially because we went through so much struggle to get to where we were. I will never forget what Dr. Gil said, “follow your heart instead of pressure”.
Michael and I now really believe in investing our own time in the first three years of Lin and Li’s life is the best gift we can give them. After all, 90% of their brain development is completed by the age of 3, even though they don’t retain that memory, the close contact and human interaction is critical to improve their intelligence (we believe anyway). So we try to entertain them every waking moment, as a result, they are so used to being accompanied and it’s hard to leave them alone! I guess it will be a delicate dance between spoiling them and helping them. Michael said in the 80s, a scientist claimed that if a baby is left alone will die if it doesn’t get human interaction even it is well fed and changed. I wonder lack of attention may have contributed to autism since it’s a communication problem.
Lin rolled over yesterday morning as well, and today he reached out to the little cow on the music box and sticked it right in his mouth. The boys are discovering what they can do with their hands!!! (Fun and scary…) We also noticed that they recognize us – me, Michael and my aunt. My cousins and friends came over the other day and Lin and Li right away started crying when they saw strangers!
Well so glad my aunt is coming over tonight, even though this is the hardest job ever, we are thrilled to see them grow everyday and surprise us with their amazing abilities 🙂