An update, finally

Today, my daughters turned 7 months old, and last night, I got eight hours of sleep, so I think it’s time for an update.

The girls are now doing quite well, as far as I can tell and as far as the pediatrician has said. They’re 7 months old today, but, having been born 2 months early, they’re sort of 5 months old. This is their “adjusted age.” A nurse might say “They’re 7 months old, or 5 months old adjusted.”

The past 7 months have gone by so quickly. It seems like every day, we’re putting more clothes in the do-not-fit pile – clothes that I swear were too big yesterday! Both girls are rolling over and A has learned that she can travel by rolling. They’re making sounds that are so close to words. Eye contact. Reaching for things. Smiling. Laughing. When did this all happen?

The girls have now been in the world for as long as they were in Christine. It’s bizarre to think about how quickly the past 7 months have gone by because the previous 7 months – the 7 months they were in utero – were some of the longest, scariest, most difficult months of my life. Most of the updates we got during the pregnancy were that not much had changed and that everything was maybe okay but we couldn’t be sure and that we need to keep the girls in for longer but not too much longer.

In roughly 7 more months, it will be Christine and my birthday (we, like the twins, share a birthday), and the girls will be over a year old. What will they be like then?

DadGear review: Merkur Heavy Duty Double Edge Razor

I recently acquired a Merkur Heavy Duty Double Edge Razor. Made in Germany, it was a gift I got for myself via Amazon ($38.41). In the same order, I also got some blades (10 of them for $7.38 – take that, Mach 3, with your 8 blades for $24.99) and some fancy shaving soap from Taylor of Old Bond Street ($14.98). Total cost: $60.77

I’ve always wanted to try a safety razor for three main reasons. (1) I dislike the amount of waste that comes with disposable razors. (2) I tend to get skin irritation on my neck from disposables and have heard that using a safety razor can help alleviate that. (3) Fezzes Safety razors are cool.

I’ve now been using the razor for over a month, and I’m loving it. The skin irritation I got when I used disposable razors is totally gone. I’ve used more blades than I thought I would – I think I’ve used 6 – but I’m still creating less trash than I did with disposable blades/razors. With the new soap and the brush and the heavy blade, shaving is now a very soothing experience. Seriously, add some music and some candles, and it would be really luxurious.

I had thought that it would be difficult to find shaving supplies once I started using a safety razor, but this doesn’t appear to be the case. I’ve seen double-edged blades at CVS and at Walmart, and discovered that there is a shaving supply shop in a nearby mall. Also, the internet. Probably just going to stick to the internet.

One thing I didn’t anticipate was the number of blades I’ve used up. In the past month, I think I’ve used 6 blades. I had hoped to use 1 per week. I don’t have the thickest face fuzz, so I tend to shave only a few times per week, letting my stubble get fairly noticeable between shaves. In order to preserve my blades, I think I need to shave more regularly. Now that my skin is happy and my shaving supplies are so fancy, I might be willing to do that.

Snow Day

I haven’t updated in a while, but it’s all good news. The babies are still in the Special Care Nursery, but are in normal cribs now – no more “incubators”. They still have their feeding tubes in, but are now getting bottles and are learning to breast-feed as well.

Rae is home now. I’m sure she misses Grammy and Grampy and the dog paradise that is my childhood home, but I think she’s happy to be back.

Oh… and Christine is home now too. I don’t think I explicitly mentioned that before. She came home 4 days after the C-Section. But actually, Christine is spending today and the next few days in the hospital, taking care of the twins. We’re getting a major snow storm here and, when faced with the choice of staying home and not seeing the girls for potentially three days or spending three days in the hospital, Christine chose the hospital, like the Super Mom she is.

So Rae and I are home alone for the next few days, hunkering down through #snowmageddon2015, or “Snow Paw-Calypse” as Rae likes to think of it.  I’m happy to stay home and take care of Rae and the house (and to go to work…), but I miss Christine and the twins. Today is the first day since the girls were born that I won’t see them.

But Rae and I are having fun:

2015-01-26 18.36.13

A week old!

The girls are a week old today, and what a week it’s been! They’ve graduated from NICU 3 and are now in the special care nursery, which is amazing progress. Christine and I are thrilled!

Christine has been recovering faster than expected and is back home. She’s also pumping like a champ – our girls are already getting to have breast milk. Breast feeding is difficult, but it’s so good for babies, especially preemies like ours. I’m grateful that Christine is such a trooper and so willing to take on so much to provide for the girls. I’m doing what I can to be as helpful as possible (I’m currently winning the diaper-changing competition), but, just as it was during the pregnancy, Christine is stuck with the hard stuff.

:D

After months of worry, the girls are now over two days old and doing very well. For the past few months, my default state has been one of anxiety, and now it is one of joy and gratitude. What a way to start 2015!

We announced our daughters’ arrival via Facebook a little after midnight on New Year’s Eve. Not a lot of people knew and it has been lovely to let go of the “secret” and to receive so many happy messages.

I used Facebook in college to communicate with friends and classmates. It’s so much more satisfying to use it to stay connected with family and friends all over the world. I’m so grateful that I can easily share our joyful news with our friends.

Being a librarian – or maybe it’s because I’m a new parent and thus a little protective – I’m trying to limit the images and information we put out to the world. I’m sure we’ll post more photos in the not too distant future, but they’ll be limited and tasteful.

This hesitancy to post information and photos feels important to me – my girls will lead lives online probably to a greater extent than I have/will. I want to give them as much control over and guidance about what information they put out there as possible.

This hesitancy also feels a bit naive to me. Information has a way of getting out there.

And I don’t know what my girls’ digital lives will be like. I’m writing this post on my first ever smart phone. I wonder what gadgets my daughters will have when they’re overjoyed at the births of their own children, should they choose to have any.

Early arrivals

After an ultrasound with babies that were doing well, but seemed a little sluggish, the mfm decided that we should do the c section today. The girls arrived at quarter of four and all are doing well.

Totally exhausted. More information later.

today, tomorrow, and the next day

squashAs of today, Christine has been in the hospital for six weeks. Tomorrow is the 32nd week of the pregnancy. The day after tomorrow is New Year’s Eve – and the twins’ birthday.

We’re scheduled for a Caesarian section at 8am. C-sections tend to be pretty quick procedures. By 9, the girls will be born and I’ll be a dad twice over – a daddad.

The girls likely won’t be home until mid to late February (around the 40-week mark), so we have a while to go. But I’m still marveling at the passage of time. When we found out in September that we were having a monoamniotic pregnancy, it felt like the next months would be interminable. And it was long and tough and I do have a few new gray hairs.

But the pregnancy has also been quick. We didn’t know that Christine was pregnant for the first several weeks. That cut down on the first trimester. And, because the C-section is happening at 32 weeks, the third trimester is shorter as well. The second trimester was the only one we experienced fully.

And we rushed the pregnancy along, praying to make it to 20 weeks, to 26 weeks, to December and 28 weeks, to 30 weeks, and finally to 32 weeks. When Christine entered the hospital at 26 weeks, we started crossing each day off on the calendar. Soon we’ll be praying that the twins make it through their time in the NICU without any lasting issues and crossing off the days on a new calendar.

One of my hopes for 2015 is for the luxury of being able to be in the moment instead of straining for the next goal.