Thursday, May 22, 2014
Parenting Twins - The First Year (Month 2)
Two months old today! My babies are getting so big! They had a huge growth spurt this month, and they are developing pefectly. This month they’ve started to hold their heads up, reach out for things, smile more and focus more.
Birth – 5.7 (A) 6 (E)
Home from Hospital – 5 (A) 5.8 (E)
One Month – 6.14 (A) 6.12 (E)
Two Months – 9.4 (A&E)
Birth: 18 inches
One Month – 20 inches
Two Months – 22 inches
We increased their ounces per feed at six weeks when they were no longer satisfied with just two ounces of food. We noticed a huge growth spurt from 6-8 weeks. They went from taking one ounce of formula and one ounce of pumped breast milk every 3 hours, to taking two ounces of formula and being put on the breast every three hours during the day and every three to four hours at night. As convenient as pumping was for me, the babies can get more out of me than a pump can. From 2-6 weeks I was pumping during the day when I was home alone with them, and then at night I would breastfeed one baby while Matt gave a bottle to the other. As of six weeks, I breastfeed one baby while the other baby is in a boppy lounger feeding himself a bottle with a blanket propped underneath him.
The babies still sleep a lot. They eat every three hours, and it is common for them to sleep anywhere from to 1.5 hours in bewteen feeds. During the day, they tend to take naps together in my arms. If I’m lucky, I can put them down in bed without waking them up, but that’s only if I’m lucky. I will say I watch more TV than I ever have, just because I am often sitting in bed holding them to keep them quiet. They have a bed time routine and go down in their bassinets easily at night. When they wake up to feed it is harder to get them back in their bassinets without lots of crying. This is the time of night when we are more likely to cosleep just to stop the crying and give ourselves some sleep.
The boppy is still the most used piece of baby equipment that we have. They don’t like to be flat on their backs, so when we are not holding them they are being propped up in the boppy. I also use the boppy loungers every day. I especially use those when I am home alone doing feedings. I usually do feedings on my bed, and while I am breastfeeding one baby, the other baby is feeding himself a bottle right next to me in his lounger.
Car rides are still one of their favorite activities, although they do not instantly soothe them like they used to. I swear they can tell when we slow down and stop. This often results in crying. They are really only happy when we are going at a good solid speed.
The babies also like taking walks in the stroller. We have had very few days of good weather for me to take them walking. For the longest time it was too cold, and now we are quickly getting into the hot weather. But when the weather is nice, we do try to go on walks. I also try to time the walks just before dinner. If I’m lucky they will have fallen asleep in their car seats, and I can let them sleep in their car seats while I make dinner.
The babies love their baby gym mats. We use them in the evenings before bed. They are great to use at bath time. I can give one baby a bath and let the other play on the mat. They are also great for tummy time.
The babies still don’t like their swings. I continue to put them in the swings every few days and make them stay in it for at least 10-15 minutes in an effort to get them used to the swings.
I did this with their vibrating chairs too, and as of the past week they have finally started to like their chairs. I put the babies in the chairs after I feed them, and they are content for about thirty minutes before they cry and are ready to come out. I use those thirty minutes to shower, eat lunch, fold laundry etc.
At eight weeks, they finally fit into the baby bjorns. The babies were too small and didn’t have enough head support before then. They really enjoyed being carried around the house by Mommy and Daddy over the weekend, and we really enjoyed having two hands free to get our weekend chores done.
They still have text book colic. It started at two weeks and peaked between 5-7 weeks. For me, this is the hardest part of parenting newborn twins. There are some days when I just have to walk away as soon as Matt gets home. I either go sit in my car or I go out on the porch to get away for twenty minutes before I can walk back in. Raising multiples never scared me or intimidated me. I felt very prepared for it. My strengths are staying organized and scheduled, a must for raising twins. But nothing could have prepared me for colic in both babies. Colic fits go from afternoon until evening a few nights a week. We contribute this to tummy aches from gas. We’ve done all we can for colic. Colic bottles, new formula, my diet, gas drops and gripe water have all been tried, but there really is nothing more we can do for it. Holding them close to my chest soothes them the most when they are upset. The doctor just told us to wait it out, and it usually goes away around three months.
Mommy and Daddy:
How are Mommy and Daddy doing, you ask? We are still very tired. I feel like month two was harder than month one, but again that is probably because of colic. I parent my twins with a schedule and that works really well for us. I do not do on demand feeds or let them get on different schedules. I keep them to my schedule, while taking cues from them. Even at the doctor today, I purposefully scheduled their appointment with their feeds. Thinking ahead meant that I knew I could feed them half of the bottle after the doctor saw us and before they got their shots, and then finish off the other half of the bottle as soon as shots were done. Sticking a bottle in their mouth right after the shot instantly stopped their crying and allowed me to leave the office with two quiet soothed babies, even though I was only one Mama trying to keep every thing under control. Yes, staying organized and scheduled is a good piece of advice I could give someone with young twins, because it can get hectic fast.