Thursday, January 29, 2015

One Half of a Year Later

I've escaped the house for a few hours cause we found a little nanny help a couple days a week! I'm sitting at the bar in Starbucks,  Macbook and something called a flat white latte on the table in front of me, writing this post like some kind of pseudo-normal non-mommy person. It feels so strange to be away from the girls... leaving the house without them has happened very few times these past six months and I revel in my "personal" time whatever and wherever it may occur. I don't love it cause I'm away from them (okay maybe sometimes that too), but because it gives me time to reflect about all their peculiarities and a chance to take a breath and think about all that has happened in the last six months.

This month, unlike the ones before it, I have been completely and totally alone with the girls all day long. Four years ago Jonathan started working from his home office and I was working from home too. We spent an exceptional amount of time together during these past years, and it was amazing. When I would tell people that Jon and I both worked from home, many of them would look at me and remark about how incredible that was, like, "Wow, I'd kill my spouse if we spent that much time together" Ha! I know it's crazy, but it just wasn't that way for us. I have loved the days we've shared over the past four years. It's been magical, and I'm sad to lose the days with my best friend, but all good things must change with time to yield way to new exciting things.

This month Jon started a new job which will move us from our current home in the Pacific NW back to the Valley of the Sun in early summer. As part of his new role, he needed to spend a week meeting his new team in the Arizona: a week I spent alone, day and night, with the girls. I wish I could say the week was a Hallmark movie montage of beauty and motherly strength but it wasn't... it was (to put it in blunt terms) a shit show. I don't know if I've ever been so close to the edge of my sanity as I was this first week of January... the girls experienced some sort of sleep regression, refused to nap, and cried, and cried, and cried (and so did I).  With my ambitious pumping schedule it was just an all out act of personal strength and utter survival mode for the week. I am happy to say we all made it through, and we were all thrilled about Jon's return late Friday night.. I greeted him at midnight with a swift passing of the baby monitor and a kiss on the cheek as I b-lined it for the bedroom for my first stretch of sleep in seven days. Maybe that wasn't the kindest thing, however, no guilt.... no guilt.

Given the start of the month, the rest of it has seemed like a freaking walk in the park on a sunny afternoon where we all laugh, play and frolic among flowering pastures... Ha! No, but seriously, as hard as the week felt, it's been so much easier to have survived a week like that. The girls have become progressively more talkative, they sit unassisted for long stretches, they are desperate to crawl, they have gut wrenching laughter sometimes at the strangest things, they talk to each other, they've eaten bananas, avocados, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, carrots, peaches, pears, apples, oatmeal, mangoes, and peas! They are starting to fight over toys, and generally amaze me every single day. To quote something Jon said last night, "they are legitimate little humans now" and it's so true.

People ask me all the time if they are different. Obviously yes, they are different.. they are two different people! As they grow their differences are becoming so pronounced and we constantly wonder how their budding traits will manifest into their adult selves. Will Summer grow to have more persistence and patience with herself and others when things don't go her way the first time? Will she always be so easy to make laugh from the core of her belly? Will her love for being surprised mean she'll like scary movies? Will Samantha always be such a chatterbox? Will she always stop smiling the second you have the camera in her face? Will she always look at the world so seriously and with such a critical eye for detail?

I've learned so much about these two in the past six months. They say it takes six months to learn a new job, to be an effective member of the team.  I guess this is even true about motherhood. This month started with my lifeboat gone, thrown in the deep water in the ocean of parenting. It was hard, it continues to be a challenge, but what I feared before this month: I wasn't any good at this, the girls didn't like me, maybe everyone else was better at this than me... I realize now these things just aren't true. I am a good mom, wait, no, I am a great mom and not a single person on this earth is better at being their mom than me.

Just like Summer and Samantha, I'm growing everyday, and we're figuring this out a day at a time, or sometimes when it's really hard.... five minutes at a time.

So as I take my final sip of the latte and see my free time is almost up, I want to say: girls I love you, and thanks for sticking with me, we're in this together, forever.

Baby first first birthday party! 

Samantha actually smiled for the camera.

We love Dahlia <3

the girls in my mother's baby dresses

My mother in her dress
And me in them ;)
It's 5am, we've been up for, like, ever.

I often say mothering twins isn't pretty..

Celebrating surviving the week alone! Also my sucky good friend, Pumpy. 

Avocados, yum.

Mommy and mini's selfie!

Love you baby girls, happy six months <3 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year and Happy Five Months

The years have seemed short, but days go slowly by - Shins

The girls are five months on New Years Day and the year has been so full of amazement and change I'm having a hard time putting it into words. A little over a year ago Jonathan and I sat in a restaurant downtown celebrating our anniversary, two glasses of champagne sat in front of us, only one drunk and we toasted to the best news of our lives.  

Every year we have moments that stick out to us, some years more than others, have so many memories we can't believe they all happened over the course of twelve months. This year has been one of the years for me. So filled with memories I can't even begin to wrap my head around all that has changed in my life. But more than thinking about how my life has changed, what I reflect on the most about this year is how the year has changed me. I'm not the same person I was last year, of course we never are, but I mean it in a life altering way...I am fundamentally different now. I feel differently about things, the things that used to matter to me don't matter as much, and things that didn't matter at all before, are ridiculously important to me now. I started this year not knowing anything about motherhood, and now I'm a mother... to twins. 

This year has been the most fantastically challenging year of my life, and I am grateful for every character building moment it has given me.  This year has taught me a lot about myself, writing this blog has helped me reflect on the things I want for my children and the things I want for myself in the coming year. So as I say goodbye to this blessed year and welcome the changes that are to come.. I begin 2015 with a few intentions: 

I will be more present and intentional with my time, whatever it is I'm doing, there is beauty even in the mundane and monotonous tasks and I have spent far too much time with my head in my phone and not enough with heart in the task. 

Take time to validate the people that I love by saying thank you, telling them how grateful I am for all they have done for me now, and in the past, telling people they are doing good work, even for the small stuff. We all need a cheerleader, and being a good one is a daily practice. 

and at my husbands request.. and because we're moving this year, taking a stab at being more neighborly. We've been blessed with amazing neighbors since moving to Portland, some have developed into friendships I am positive will stand the test of time. I hope in the coming year, we make connections and develop a since of community and belonging like we've found here. 

Finally, Summer & Samantha.. Happy 1st New Year!! I am afraid you cannot stay awake till midnight and watch the ball drop! But I hope you are sleeping soundly and dreaming about sweet puppies frolicking, mommy cuddles and kisses, waltzing on daddy's shoulder, and all the people who love you dearly. You, my sweet little girls, are the best gift I have ever received. I cannot wait to begin our 2015 adventure together, may we find the extraordinary in every ordinary day. Love, your ridiculously proud mom

Bring it 2015.