Sunday, January 10, 2010

A needed reminder...

Last night Brent and I had a nice little date night complete with take out Chinese and a movie. The babies cooperated reasonably well - only fussing every now and then when the mood hit them.

Today started out ok - we were both exhausted as, in our zeal to spend a little time together we'd put the babies to bed a tad earlier than usual - consequently they woke up - a little earlier than usual. We of course had gone to bed a little later than usual after the movie ended so were none too pleased with the early wake up call by our little ones. But we finally conceded to have playtime - and watch the sun come up together.

We haven't been able to do our regular walks in a bit due to the cold weather but today I was hopeful that we'd get out for a little while as it was dry and the sun was bright in a clear sky. I was in such a frumpy mood (always one to need my dose of sunlight)...Brent and I were talking about the week with the little ones, I was saying how the physical therapy appointment went - then just burst into tears. I sort of puked out how upset I'd be if I somehow missed some exercise or task thereby stunting our babies even further - as if they need any more delays from an inept mother. I felt like they were maybe supposed to be a little further than they are developmentally and that they always seem to be teetering on the edge of being officially developmentally delayed- even for their adjusted age.

Brent smiled, looked at Mary Louise and David and said patiently, "I think it's time for a bubble bath." Ha - I don't know why I'm still surprised when he knows just what I really need. He continued on, "Heather, I don't know why you worry about things like that - they're beautiful, and perfect just the way they are - remember how far they've come and how they've grown under our care. Why does it matter if someone comes in here - or evaluates them at some appointment for a whopping hour and says otherwise? You know what they can do - and that's more than enough. I don't care if they are labeled "delayed" and you usually don't either. Besides, you know they do things in their own time anyhow."

I took the bath advice and he plopped Mary Louise in my lap - then a while later, switched her out for David. I sat in the tub for over an hour with them - just playing. They picked up their toys, kicked their little legs, grinned, giggled. They (and Brent) reminded me that although this prematurity beast is far from gone (and will probably always be around to some degree) that they are quite simply, babies and will be kids and even adults one day -they don't care about all of the therapists and medicines and insurance mess - they just want to play with toys and squish around in their cereal and snuggle with Mom and Dad. The simplicity of their wants and needs is so refreshing to me.

It's sometimes so difficult not to get wrapped up in over analyzing their every sound and move. I have so many people checking on me and asking about "what the babies are doing NOW" that I find myself constantly assessing them - are they ok - is that ok - was that movement right - am I doing everything I can to help them and facilitate learning.

I know we were finally able to bring our babies home after such a long struggle, but I was ill-prepared for just how connected we would remain to so many medical personnel. Our homecoming was by no means free and clear. Our revolving door of therapists and social workers and phone calls from doctors' offices has slowed significantly in recent weeks. However, the constant evaluations is enough to (in my opinion) drive the most seasoned of mothers mad... I must remind myself that we are all here for the same reason - to give these little ones the best chance to fulfill their enormous potential. Phew - I feel better now...

We did end up going for a long walk this afternoon. We went to the state park and walked the sunny roads rather than the shaded trails. 4 miles down and back home for a little more play time before night night feeding and bed. After my angst this morning over getting the babies to somehow "perform" to some make believe standard that I seemed to inadvertently impose upon us all, I had to giggle when David did this...

a "tripod" sit

and this...playing while sitting...

and Mary Louise did this...a tripod sit...

and this...just flat sitting...

Ok guys, I get it, in your own time. But does YOUR time always have to be 5 minutes AFTER I freak out about everything thereby consistently making me look like a big boob?! pft.

Sorry babies for being so anxiety ridden and impatient...I'm so so proud of you!



  1. The babies are doing fantastic! Actually they know what to do innately to advance. Huge love and play with parents and family encourages their growth. The more giggles, the better. You two are certainly supplying more than the recommended doses of love and play. The vocabulary and science behind all this is quite interesting and certainly has come a long way since you all grew up. But human development follows the same process. So add huge laughs, relaxation, silliness, and fun to all activities. Simply love the snuggles and bubbles like wise Brent said. Mary Louise and David give you silly laughter for home work. Dosage: 10 minutes at least 4 times per 24 hours. (The pictures show that they are very good teachers of the snuggle bubble, silly laugh method of human development.)xxxooo

  2. SOOOO CUTE!! Sitting up!! You are doing a great job as their mommy.
    Trudy 2+TWINS

  3. your babies are simply adorable. :) and a random aside - i was looking at my husband's alumni magazine for high school a few months back and noticed your husband graduated from the same school. a few years after my elderly husband. :P

  4. Heather,

    You and Brent are doing an outstanding job with your little ones. They have come so far, from the edge of viability to smiling, crawling, spoon feedoing themselves and all the things that babies do. Never doubt yourself as you are one Mommy that really does know what is best for her children.

    Keep up the good work

    Lia From Australia

  5. Ha! Your children will always 1) know when Mama and/or Daddy have had some fun on their "own" time and make you pay for it by either waking up in the middle of the night or early in the morning (as in your case) and 2) do whatever is expected AFTER the evaluation.
    I remember when Charlotte had her first speech evaluation. She was behind in a few areas and no more than a week later she was preforming half, if not all, of those said tasks.
    They just like to torture us. It is payback for what we did to our parents!
    Your babies are beautiful. Great job Mama!