Monday, March 16, 2020


Oh, it's been a while.

But for good reason: our darling identical boys were born on December 30th, and arrived home at a quarter to midnight on December 31st to a spectacular display of fireworks.

We've taken our sweet time getting to know them but even so, in the blink of an eye, the so-called "fourth trimester" has flown by and I've found myself putting away size 0-3 month sleepsuits and vest tops - forever.

The bony toes and ankles you see above have filled out into deliciously plump feet that I kiss every time I change their diapers; their saggy knees no longer the sharp obtrusions that jutted out below my ribcage but now round little mounds that dig into my postpartum belly when I lift them up to burp.

Although our house has remained inexplicably calm since their arrival (quiet, except for the indignant screams of hunger when I'm a second too slow in providing breast or bottle), for weeks I operated in a robotic survival mode: methodically changing diapers, feeding, and burping before gently laying them back down in their cot to sleep without so much as a cuddle.

"Don't!" I shouted at my parents who held them for a minute too long after burping. "They'll get too used to falling asleep on you!"

My mother obeyed me but looked forlorn putting Twin 1 into the cot; my dad almost always succeeded in making them fall asleep on him with his gentle, rhythmic pats.

I had trouble accepting them into our family life at first - it was an adjustment for us all. Their arrival was almost disruptive - a breaking of the bond between me and our eldest. At least, it felt like that to me. I wept as I watched my son play contentedly with his new fire engine, a "gift" from the twins, which felt deceptive and merely a tool to distract him from the fact that I was hobbling around the house, trying to stay on top of painkillers and night feeds.

And I worried. Oh, how I worried: that our eldest was having too much screen time; that we still hadn't been referred to the tongue-tie clinic and it had been nearly two weeks since we were discharged from the hospital (both boys were found to have severe ties, as was the case with my first); that my husband was fatigued and wrought with worry over work; that my c-section scar hadn't healed properly; that I wasn't bonding properly with the twins.

Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

And then, one day, I opened my eyes, and they opened their eyes and looked back at me, and in that moment, I knew, I knew. Suddenly, it clicked into place and they fit into me in this outside world just as they did inside. Our bond was complete.

They were born with heads full of jet black hair: a pair of little ravens, with cries that filled the operating room like squawks and sharp, pointed little fingernails that bewildered and freaked me out.

Our eldest took an immediate interest in them, gently stroking their hair and kissing their knees. That's changed a little now: the hair-stroking is interspersed with violent rocking of the bouncers when he thinks we aren't watching, and blankets snatched from their laps, followed by a cackle of laughter, especially after seeing our stern expressions and hearing our exclamations of, "No, gentle!"

But, here we are: a family of five.

And we just fit. Like so.

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