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Archive for the ‘parenting’ Category

Parenting Fail

Why is it that we don’t get “do overs” on at least one or two days in our lives?  Monday was a do-over day, for sure.  It’s not just that none of the plans I had came to fruition.  It was the complete and utter lack of control that I had over Monday’s happenings.

My darling husband had to work Monday, but my nanny was off work for MLK Jr. Day, as was I, so it was single-parenting day.  Normally, this isn’t such a big deal – but when you spend half your day throwing up, as I do, well, it becomes a more complex matter to handle.

We had originally had plans to visit another triplet mom out in VA, but those plans were canceled.  Instead, I made plans to visit a friend up near Baltimore in the afternoon.  Best laid plans, and all, I will give you the spoiler:  we did not make it to Baltimore.

J’s mother came to visit him for an hour or so in the morning, which would have been fine, but J wouldn’t take his medicine before she arrived.  I admit, I didn’t try as hard as I normally would have, but such is life.  They went to the park and he rode his scooter up and down the sidewalk in front of our house (something he doesn’t get a lot of time to do, since he’s got three toddler siblings).  He came back in the house mopey, weepy, and exhausted.  She headed out and I tried to get J to take his medicine after giving him something to eat – no dice.  Fine, I said, then please play in your room until you’re ready to take it.  He went to his room, but didn’t play – he slept for the next five hours.

That, alone, would have been reason to  cancel the trek to Baltimore, but (alas) that was *not* the full extent of it.

While I was making lunch for the triplets, I heard them playing in the sunroom, and could hear that they were probably into something they shouldn’t be, but I put their lunch on the table, called them to come eat, and promptly forgot about checking out the sun room.  I called my friend to let her know it wasn’t likely that we’d be making it to see her.  A mother of four herself, she completely understood, and we had a nice chat instead.  Unfortunately,  I had to cut the call short – sigh.

I looked over and saw that one of them had pulled some things off the mantle – how they did so is beyond me, but that’s another story.  I went to go clean up the mess, and noticed that my hand-painted, irreplaceable nesting dolls that were brought to me from Moscow  were on the floor.  And at least one of them was broken.  The smallest one, which is about a quarter of the size of my pinky nail (no joke!) is missing.  I know it’s just stuff, but…  gosh.  It had to be that stuff?  I cleaned up the mess and realized that Ellie needed a new diaper, so off we went to change her in the nursery (where the changing table is).

While changing a rather disgusting diaper, I heard a *CRASH*.  I dashed out to the living room and saw that Sam had pulled my Lenox Vase off the mantle and dropped it (I’m sure it was unintentional, but…).  I know it’s just stuff… but did it have to be that vase?  I love that vase.  I picked him and Abby up (did I mention I’m not supposed to be lifting more than 10 pounds at a time and each of my kids is 28-30 pounds?) and put them in their room.  They were both barefoot and I didn’t want them stepping in shards of anything.  When I brought them to their room, I realized Ellie was still patiently waiting on the changing table with her legs in the air and her pants half on/half off (I was putting her pants back ON when the crash happened – so at least she wasn’t still sitting in a poopy diaper).  I finished getting her dressed, and put them all in their beds (it was naptime anyway) and I went to go clean up the shards of vase on the living room floor.

When I was about halfway through cleaning the vase up, the giggles in the nursery had turned to cries, so I went in there to check on the trio of terror.  Much to my dismay, I saw immediately that the mistake had been mine – normally we take the changing table/diaper pail/laundry basket OUT of the room for naptime and bedtime.  I had forgotten to do so, so they’d opened the drawer and pulled out the Balmex.  Abby was covered, head-to-toe, in Balmex.  Sam’s hair was caked in it.  Abby’s pillowcase was totally white, and Piglet (her lovey) was another casualty.  I sent out an SOS message to a local group of triplet moms, because I had remembered that another mom in our group had a similar problem a few months ago.  Balmex isn’t the easiest thing to get out of hair.  Or clothes.  Nor, as it turns out, is it easy to get off of a hardwood floor, oddly enough.

Well, I got them cleaned up, pulled the changing table, diaper pail, and laundry basket out of the room and reminded them that it was nap time.  I resumed the great vase cleanup.  I got up as much as I could, but realized I was never going to get all those shards out of the carpet (it’s one of the LL Bean braided rugs).  The rug was on its last legs anyway – a bunch of stitching had come undone, and it was in terrible condition.  Had it been brand new, I would have tried harder to deal with it, but I’m petrified of my barefoot little children getting shards of a stupid shattered vase in their tiny little feet.  So I rolled up the carpet, planning to just get rid of it, but as I was doing so, I realized that there was far too much giggling going on in the triplets’ room.  I went in and found…

Three naked toddlers.

Awesome.  I was… not as amused as you might think I was.  I got everyone dressed, admonished them and reminded them that it was naptime, and left the room.  And I went to move the rolled up carpet to the sun room (too heavy for me to get any further than that), and discovered the disaster that the triplets had created while I was making their lunch. The piano bench was overturned, toys were strewn everywhere.  And worse – I have a bookshelf by the front door where I tend to put incoming mail.  They had gotten the whole pile down and had shredded it and spread it all over the floor.

So I cleaned that up, called Seth and said, “WHEN ARE YOU COMING HOME?” and then went to check on the triplets.  Ellie was trying to sleep, but Sam and Abby?  Not so much.  And guess who was naked?  Abby (and Sam was missing pants, but still had a diaper).  Abby got backwards footie pjs and they both got put into bed.  Another phone call to Seth, “NO REALLY!  WHEN IS YOUR SHIFT OVER AND CAN I EXPECT YOU HOME WITHIN 30 SECONDS OF THAT TIME?”

If I weren’t pregnant, this would have been a good time for me to take up recreational drinking.  But aside from being pregnant, I’m still hyperemetic, so it wouldn’t have been any fun anyway.  It’s no fun to throw up BEFORE you’ve gotten plastered.

Finally, Seth came home and I handed the reigns over.  And then I went and got some Phenergan (which I’d needed for hours, but couldn’t get downstairs to draw it up because of the turmoil of the day).  J woke up eventually and demanded dinner – and I left that to Seth as well.  I was done.

It was, unfortunately, one of the more memorable days of parenting.  I really can’t wait until I’ve forgotten all about it.

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Something I’m not very good at in my life is knowing when to say “No.”  It’s one of my greatest flaws, and, in some ways, one of my greatest strengths – depending on who you ask (and when you ask).   It means that I take a great deal on in my life – usually too much.  It’s a trait I hope not to pass on to my children.  Learning to judiciously use the word “No” is an important character trait, in my opinion, and one I wish I possessed.

At the same time, I work hard not to let “No” be a prevailing word in the world of my children.  I try to find other ways to let them know when something they’re doing isn’t acceptable.  “Zeh Lo Tov” (Hebrew for “That’s Not Good”) and “Not Okay” are two of my first two choices to let them know that what they’re doing isn’t appropriate.  “Stop” or “Freeze” also work.  “No” is my last resort.  Nevertheless, there’s no getting around the fact that “No” is a phrase they hear a lot, whether it’s from me or other people in their lives. 

A couple of weeks ago, Abigail started saying “No” very clearly.  It was not a surprise that Abby was the first to say no – she’s our most contrary child and she’s been saying no quite clearly since her early days in the NICU – she’s only just now found a way to articulate the word.  She’s very cute when she says it because she gets this “otherworldly” tone to her voice when she says it and she gets to be quite emphatic.  She says “no” when her siblings get near her, eye her toys, touch her things, or, you know, breathe the air near her.  She’s getting to be quite pushy and grabby, too.  If one of the others is holding a toy that she wants to play with, she’ll stomp over and swipe the toy out of their hands while declaring: “NO!”  It seems that “No” is a fine substitute for “Mine” (which she hasn’t learned yet). 

Speech delays or not, it was inevitable that they’d learn this word eventually, right?

I did get my shining moment shortly after Abby learned the word “no”, however, when her speech therapist was working with her and Abby was digging through the therapist’s bag of toys.  She pulled out a toy she wanted and she said, “Yes, yes, yes!”  It was the first, and only, time I’ve ever heard her say “yes” ever, but I’ll take it!

Even sweet, compliant Ellie has learned to embrace the word “No” in a way that her mama is nearly jealous of.  On Shabbos, she was playing with some mega blocks on the floor, and Abby and Sam had both given me some smooches, so I looked over at Ellie, who is always willing to give me smooches (!) andI said, “Ellie!  Will you give mommy kisses?”

Ellie didn’t even look at me as she continued to play with her blocks and she said, quite clearly, “Nooooooooooo!”

Wait, what!?  My compliant, angel of a daughter just refused me smooches!?  Really?  What?  I must have heard her incorrectly.  Right?  RIGHT?  Of course right.

“Ellie?  Can Mommy have kisses?”

“Noooooo!!” she responded immediately without looking up from the two blocks she was intently trying to stick together.

My heart broke.  I was simultaneously proud of my daughter for making this enormous leap in receptive and expressive language skill all at once, and yet… a little hurt (okay, a lot hurt!).  But really, hey!  My daughter heard a question, understood it, and responded with a brand new word and in context!  How cool is that?

Even Sam – sweet Sam – the most delayed of the three.  Sam has only 3 clear words, and one… maybe word.  But even Sam is starting to catch on to the “No” concept.  He shakes his head “no” if he doesn’t want something, and he’s started to make the “N” sound if he doesn’t want something.  “Na-na-na,” he’ll say, while shaking his head.  Clearly an attempt at saying “No” despite not quite having the word in his personal lexicon yet. 

My babies are… growing up.  They really are.  *sniff*  How did this happen so fast?

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Nineteen Months

I typed a beautiful and eloquent post about my kids at 18 months in Word… copied it to my clipboard and saved it… and *poof* it disappeared from everywhere.  No traces of it, not even on my clipboard.  No doubt, this post will be a sloppy attempt at recreating that post, and will not have nearly the finesse of the original.  I hope you'll forgive my clumsiness.

It's hard to believe that so much time has passed since our family expanded.  It was just over two years ago that I learned the news that there were three passengers on board.  It was nineteen months ago that those three passengers made their entrance into the world with their first tiny cries.  I thought the first year would be the hardest.  I had envisioned a life of absolute misery and beyond our ability to cope.  But, although our first year was full of challenges and a lot of hard work, it was nothing compared to the nightmare I had envisioned.  Why, it was downright easy compared to the nightmare I had envisioned!    We not only survived our first year, our family thrived. 

I look at our family today and I am astounded at how far we have come.  From three tiny babies to three toddlers on the go.  From one big brother timidly approaching his little brother in an incubator, to a vroombunctious five year old fearlessly tumbling with his toddler siblings, and complaining when they touch his toys.  I am thrilled with the way our family dynamic has evolved and in awe that it has stayed together through all of the challenges that we face each day.

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The most common question I get these days is, "Well, is it a lot easier now that they're older?"  Wait, what?  In whose world could this possibly be easier?  A year ago these babies weren't even crawling!  They weren't eating real food.  They slept much of the time.  They had simple demands on the world still – eat, sleep, poop, eat, sleep poop… with a little time on the playmat thrown in for good measure.  Now?  They are into everything (especially Ellie).  Now they are running in three different directions at all times.  They have wants and needs and they make sure we know it!  They eat real food, which means preparing three home-cooked meals for them each and every day (something I don't even do for myself!).  They want to be engaged at all times.  They are transitioning from two naps per day to one nap per day, which means their sleeping schedule is erratic. 

Really.  In whose world is this easier?  But it is also incredibly rewarding.

Each of their personalities is truly beginning to shine and they are healthy, thriving toddlers now.  Abby was our last holdout, but she, too, is toddling away along with the others.  At 17 months, she finally gave up on crawling and starting walking.  Six weeks later, she's still so proud of her accomplishment.  The most amazing thing about her walking is that once she started walking there was a drastic reduction in the number of temper tantrums that she was throwing each day.  She used to throw several per hour, but now she's a much happier baby.  She giggles all the time, lifts her shirt to have her belly tickled, flashes her great big grin and brings you toys to play with her.  She works through things that used to frustrate her into a huge temper tantrum and is so much more pleasant to be around.  Walking was her key to happiness!  Obviously she still has temper tantrums, but not with nearly the frequency she used to.  It's awesome.

All three babies were declared healthy at their eighteen month check up.  The pediatrician told me that we can start to shift our frame of thought from thinking of the triplets in terms of their adjusted age as we've been doing up until this point to now thinking of them as mostly typical eighteen month olds with only a few remaining developmental delays.  But they have caught up on the growth charts.  They have caught up with gross motor skills to their actual age milestones for the most part. They are almost to actual age milestones for fine motor skills.  

The only area in which there remain significant delays are expressive and receptive language skills – all three of them are behind even their adjusted age, which the pediatrician noted at their fifteen month appointment and recommended that we have them evaluated by early intervention from the county for speech therapy services, which we did, and they have been receiving speech therapy once a week ever since and they have made such great improvement, especially the girls!  Sam still doesn't say a word, but he's at least starting to respond to his name – which is a great relief.  He had actually been the greatest concern because he responded to his name when he was about a year old – he would look back and make a cute little grunty noise every time he heard his name, but then he abruptly regressed for months.  Last month he started to turn his head consistently to his name again, which makes us all very happy. 

They all have such distinct little personalities and they are really starting to learn how to interact with each other.  Abby, in particular, seems quite in tune with the others' emotional states, even though for the most part she wants nothing to do with them.  If Ellie or Sam is crying, she will go find their loveys (Ellie's are a green bear and a fuzzy blanket and Sam's are the elephant blankets and lately also a lovely knit blanket from a friend of ours) and she will bring the lovey(s) to whomever is crying.  Sometimes Ellie will do the same.  But as in tune as she is to that – she's the one who most consistently steals Sam's pacifier, thus guaranteeing to devastate poor Sammy and leave him screaming in shock and despair!  She is also the most likely to pick a fight with Sam.   But, then, Sam is the most likely to pick a fight with her, too.  They are always fighting.  They are always in each other's space and Abby can't stand when other babies are in her space.   She's going to have a really tough time in life.

Ellie is still, by and large, very laid back, but she's starting to assert herself more, and she does NOT like it when another child takes a toy of hers, or if she always has to wait to be the last for something.  She is also starting to become my pickiest eater.  Until recently, all of the kiddeos would eat absolutely anything, but they are beginning to be more discriminating than that, particularly Ellie.  She is the least likely to try new foods and the most likely to reject foods, even if she's eaten them in the past.  Still, she does love her food, and when she wants food, she makes it known.  Her first word was "cracker" and she makes it very clear when she wants her beloved crackers!  Also she asks for cups (either water or milk cups) when she's thirsty.  She is quite clear about her desires and gets upset if you're eating something that she wants and you're not sharing.  It's nice to see her asserting herself more; I would have hated to see her getting walked all over forever.  Still, she is still her loving, giving self.  She loves to share – she will bring you her toys and share them, or even her crackers and cups.  She expects you to share right back, of course, but she's all about the sharing.

Sam is still a bit of a brute – but it's not malicious, he's just completely unaware of physical space and the fact that there are other babies in that physical space.  He is, by far, the cuddliest of the three babies, though, so I know he's got a loving soul.  Though Abby is the one that likes to be held the most, I'm certain this is largely because she's trying to get away from having other little people in her space.  With Sam, he likes to snuggle right into your space and be held.   But he's also very busy, so after he gets his snuggles, he wriggles right back out and goes back to the business of playing.  It's serious business, you know. 

Sam just started liking cars and trucks and the girls just started noticing baby dolls and purses.  It's really cute that they're starting to notice that there's a difference between boys and girls, but it does make things more complicated for mommy!

The J-man is still an exceptionally good big brother, and about as patient as you can expect a 5 1/2 year old to be with three intrustive toddlers.  But the strain of being a big brother to three 19 month olds is definitely starting to get to him.  He's starting to notice that they like to get into his stuff and they like touching his things.  Which, you know, is kind of his fault.  I mean, they can't get into his room (there's a baby gate blocking their entrance into his room), so if he'd stop leaving his toys all over the living room, they'd stop touching his toys.  But I know it seems unfair to him that they touch his things.  So we try to find ways to let him keep things private.  He also seems to think that the babies have a lot more stuff than him.  Which, um, I have to say, isn't quite true.  First of all, a lot of the stuff they have is hand me downs from him.  And second of all, um, hello?  Have you SEEN how much stuff he has?  Plus, there's three of them and one of him.  But if he gets 10 toys for, oh, say, Passover, and they each get one, he thinks they get one, he thinks they got more than he did.  It's a hard life.  Poor kid.

I'm sure this isn't the end of them annoying him, but I'm also sure there will be more stages of happiness and joy.  I can't wait to see how their personalities emerge.  Seth said he hopes that Sam's and Ellie's personalities stay much the same and that Abby learns to chill out a bit.  Just as he said that, she started to shriek because one of the others looked at her funny.  Or something.  I wouldn't count on her chilling out anytime soon.

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 Ellie and me at Jessica's house.

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Abby

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Sammy

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Cry it Out?

I totally don’t get the “Cry it Out” method. I don’t get how people do it. How does it work? How do people stomach it? How long does it take for a kid to cry it out? I’m telling you, there is no chance in hell that “crying it out” would work with my kids. No. Chance. In. Hell. I can tell you this with near certainty because I spent today single-parenting under the worst possible circumstances. Let me back up…

Over the first days of Passover, I developed the most evil, insidious intestinal flu/bug/virus/horribleness known to humankind and most of it is a blur in my mind. I’m still recovering from it. Monday, my nanny told me that her brother-in-law finally awoke from his coma from the car accident that killed her sister. Consequently, she needed to go to Toronto immediately. Of course, no problem, no argument from me. Two hours later, she left to catch a plane. Thank heavens for those two hours, though. Then this morning (Tuesday) Seth left for Florida at, like, 5am. Honestly, I don’t know whether to threaten divorce or not. What do you think, is that a threat, or an offer he can’t refuse?

So here I am, four kids, no nanny, no husband, intestinal flu, and my golly it feels like all I do is feed babies all. day. long. Is this what my nanny does all day? Does it take less time to feed a baby a bottle? Actually, it turns out, it takes CONSIDERABLY less time to feed a baby a bottle than to nurse a baby. No WONDER M seems to have more time with the babies than me. How exactly is this fair? It’s getting harder and harder to nurse two at a time, because they push and shove each other, so it seems that by the time I’m finished feeding all three babies, it’s time to start over again.

Which leads me to my original point.

This evening I had fed all the babies and had about an hour’s reprieve when no one needed to be fed. I got J fed, threw some laundry in the washer, played with the babies, etc. Then Ellie started to cry. Since she’d been first in the previous round of feedings and since she nearly never cries, I figured she must be hungry. I picked her up and I said, “Ellie-Belly are you hungry, sweetpea?” And she looked at me, opened up her little mouth, leaned forward… and latched onto my nose and started sucking. I took this as a yes.

So there I was laying down in bed with her nursing her, and J was watching “Walking with Dinosaurs” next to me. When, unsurprisingly, Sam started crying. Because really, if one baby is being fed, and it’s not him, a great injustice is clearly being done in the world. And as his cries grew more desperate, Abby joined in the chorus. The wails grew so desperate that I began to wonder if they would simply “cry it out.” I couldn’t leave poor, desperate Ellie. She was so hungry and, after all, she had asked so nicely if she could please have dinner. She deserved to have a meal uninterrupted. And really, how long could Sam and Abby wail, right?

Little did I know. I had forgotten that the only one of my babies that has any patience whatsoever is Ellie. And that the only one of my babies who has ever stopped crying and fallen right to sleep is Ellie. And that the only baby who isn’t persistent is… you guessed it, Ellie. Not only that, but the few times that Ellie has cried and fallen asleep before I can get to her, I’ve felt unbelievably guilty for not getting to her in time. I can’t handle that kind of guilt. Crying it out is not for the faint of heart. Poor Ellie didn’t like all the screaming either, apparently, because the screaming kept distracting her. So eventually, I put her down in her crib and picked up Sam and Abby. And because I knew they were terribly desperate and wouldn’t possibly wait another single, solitary second, I gave them both bottles. And they calmed down. And then I picked up my poor, sleeping Ellie, and let her finish eating and then put her back to sleep too.

And everyone was in bed, asleep, by 6:30, just like normal. The only abnormal part about it is that normally I have an extra pair of hands at bedtime so no one has to cry while waiting for attention or food. So normally no one has to cry even for a little while, but tonight, Sam and Abby discovered how wonderful it is that they normally don’t have to “cry it out.” I honestly don’t know how other parents do it, becuase I’m fairly certain that Sam could cry for hours without crying it out.

Maybe other babies aren’t built like Sam? Maybe most babies are more like Ellie, who doesn’t cry much, and will generally quiet right down unless something really IS wrong? In any event, I’m not opposed to letting the babies cry sometimes. Heaven knows, I can’t answer their every whimper at the first sound of distress… I’ve got three babies to attend to and I can’t be everywhere at once. But I definitely can’t understand how I could possibly let them “cry it out” on purpose. Maybe I’m just misunderstanding the method. Because I’m telling you, if I hadn’t eventually picked him up and fed him, Sam would STILL be crying right now, four hours later. No joke!

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Cry it Out?

I totally don't get the "Cry it Out" method. I don't get how people do it. How does it work? How do people stomach it? How long does it take for a kid to cry it out? I'm telling you, there is no chance in hell that "crying it out" would work with my kids. No. Chance. In. Hell. I can tell you this with near certainty because I spent today single-parenting under the worst possible circumstances. Let me back up…

Over the first days of Passover, I developed the most evil, insidious intestinal flu/bug/virus/horribleness known to humankind and most of it is a blur in my mind. I'm still recovering from it. Monday, my nanny told me that her brother-in-law finally awoke from his coma from the car accident that killed her sister. Consequently, she needed to go to Toronto immediately. Of course, no problem, no argument from me. Two hours later, she left to catch a plane. Thank heavens for those two hours, though. Then this morning (Tuesday) Seth left for Florida at, like, 5am. Honestly, I don't know whether to threaten divorce or not. What do you think, is that a threat, or an offer he can't refuse?

So here I am, four kids, no nanny, no husband, intestinal flu, and my golly it feels like all I do is feed babies all. day. long. Is this what my nanny does all day? Does it take less time to feed a baby a bottle? Actually, it turns out, it takes CONSIDERABLY less time to feed a baby a bottle than to nurse a baby. No WONDER M seems to have more time with the babies than me. How exactly is this fair? It's getting harder and harder to nurse two at a time, because they push and shove each other, so it seems that by the time I'm finished feeding all three babies, it's time to start over again.

Which leads me to my original point.

This evening I had fed all the babies and had about an hour's reprieve when no one needed to be fed. I got J fed, threw some laundry in the washer, played with the babies, etc. Then Ellie started to cry. Since she'd been first in the previous round of feedings and since she nearly never cries, I figured she must be hungry. I picked her up and I said, "Ellie-Belly are you hungry, sweetpea?" And she looked at me, opened up her little mouth, leaned forward… and latched onto my nose and started sucking. I took this as a yes.

So there I was laying down in bed with her nursing her, and J was watching "Walking with Dinosaurs" next to me. When, unsurprisingly, Sam started crying. Because really, if one baby is being fed, and it's not him, a great injustice is clearly being done in the world. And as his cries grew more desperate, Abby joined in the chorus. The wails grew so desperate that I began to wonder if they would simply "cry it out." I couldn't leave poor, desperate Ellie. She was so hungry and, after all, she had asked so nicely if she could please have dinner. She deserved to have a meal uninterrupted. And really, how long could Sam and Abby wail, right?

Little did I know. I had forgotten that the only one of my babies that has any patience whatsoever is Ellie. And that the only one of my babies who has ever stopped crying and fallen right to sleep is Ellie. And that the only baby who isn't persistent is… you guessed it, Ellie. Not only that, but the few times that Ellie has cried and fallen asleep before I can get to her, I've felt unbelievably guilty for not getting to her in time. I can't handle that kind of guilt. Crying it out is not for the faint of heart. Poor Ellie didn't like all the screaming either, apparently, because the screaming kept distracting her. So eventually, I put her down in her crib and picked up Sam and Abby. And because I knew they were terribly desperate and wouldn't possibly wait another single, solitary second, I gave them both bottles. And they calmed down. And then I picked up my poor, sleeping Ellie, and let her finish eating and then put her back to sleep too.

And everyone was in bed, asleep, by 6:30, just like normal. The only abnormal part about it is that normally I have an extra pair of hands at bedtime so no one has to cry while waiting for attention or food. So normally no one has to cry even for a little while, but tonight, Sam and Abby discovered how wonderful it is that they normally don't have to "cry it out." I honestly don't know how other parents do it, becuase I'm fairly certain that Sam could cry for hours without crying it out.

Maybe other babies aren't built like Sam? Maybe most babies are more like Ellie, who doesn't cry much, and will generally quiet right down unless something really IS wrong? In any event, I'm not opposed to letting the babies cry sometimes. Heaven knows, I can't answer their every whimper at the first sound of distress… I've got three babies to attend to and I can't be everywhere at once. But I definitely can't understand how I could possibly let them "cry it out" on purpose. Maybe I'm just misunderstanding the method. Because I'm telling you, if I hadn't eventually picked him up and fed him, Sam would STILL be crying right now, four hours later. No joke!

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I’ve been taking Ellie to the doctor every single week because she’s been pretty stubborn about the growth thing… after that first week when she grew 18 ounces in 10 days, she stalled completely and stopped growing for a couple weeks. Sigh. BUT! Today, finally, my little Ellie bellie seems to be back on an upturn. She is over 9 pounds now, which still puts her way behind her siblings, but she’s finally making some progress. She’s the only baby that hasn’t tripled her birth weight yet, but at least she’s doubled it. The good news is that I don’t have to go back until March 11th, which seems like an eternity. Dr. B. said I can come back sooner if I get a sense that she’s slowing down again or she starts striking again, but if I have the sense that she’s continuing to grow and she’s continuing to improve, we can hold off for another 2+ weeks. Unbelievable.

Meanwhile, Abby and Sam continue to grow, but that’s no shocker. Abby’s got a new nighttime pattern for eating. She used to go to sleep after her 6 or 7pm feedig and sleep until about 2am and then eat and go back to sleep until about 6am. Lately, though, she’s been waking up at 11pm starving (which is ridiculous, because we’ve actually started feeding her more than we had been). So we feed her at 11pm and then she either sleeps through the night or wakes up around 4, which isn’t that far off of when we have to wake up anyway. But it’s weird, and I’m not sure why she’s changed her pattern. It’s not that big a deal, but it’s new.

Sam never stops eating. Dr. B. says that he’s big enough that he should be able to sleep through the night now (calorically speaking), but every night at 2am, 4am, 5am, and 6am I have the same conversation with Sam:

Me: Dr. B. SAID you’re big enough to sleep through the night!
Sam: Mommy! Please don’t make me! I’m so hungreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! I’m wasting away! I’ll be so saaaaaad if you make me wait!
Me: But Dr. B. PROMISED ME that you’re big enough to sleep through the night!
Sam (with the saddest look possible on his face, while screaming BLOODY MURDER): MOMMY! PLEASE! You wouldn’t actually make me wait would you? I’m so hungry! Please don’t make me! Please don’t! I’m starving! Please!
Me: Well, I’m sure as heck not going to listen to screaming all night, of COURSE I’m not going to let you starve, no matter WHAT Dr. B. says.

Then after Sam’s had his fill, Ellie and I go and have the opposite conversation:

Me: Ellie, Dr. B. SAID you’re not big enough to sleep through the night!
Ellie: Mommy! Please don’t make me! I’m so sleepeeeeeeeee! I need my beauty sleep! I’ll be so saaaaaaaad if you make me wake up!
Me: But Dr. B. SAID that you need to eat more often!
Ellie (completely sleepy): *yawn* Please mommy, don’t make me…*snore*
Me: huh? wha? What time is it? Can I go back to sleep now?

And then, it’s usually time to have another conversation with Sam… But Dr. B. SAID you’re big enough to sleep through the night!

Thank heavens J sleeps through the night!

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I've been taking Ellie to the doctor every single week because she's been pretty stubborn about the growth thing… after that first week when she grew 18 ounces in 10 days, she stalled completely and stopped growing for a couple weeks. Sigh. BUT! Today, finally, my little Ellie bellie seems to be back on an upturn. She is over 9 pounds now, which still puts her way behind her siblings, but she's finally making some progress. She's the only baby that hasn't tripled her birth weight yet, but at least she's doubled it. The good news is that I don't have to go back until March 11th, which seems like an eternity. Dr. B. said I can come back sooner if I get a sense that she's slowing down again or she starts striking again, but if I have the sense that she's continuing to grow and she's continuing to improve, we can hold off for another 2+ weeks. Unbelievable.

Meanwhile, Abby and Sam continue to grow, but that's no shocker. Abby's got a new nighttime pattern for eating. She used to go to sleep after her 6 or 7pm feedig and sleep until about 2am and then eat and go back to sleep until about 6am. Lately, though, she's been waking up at 11pm starving (which is ridiculous, because we've actually started feeding her more than we had been). So we feed her at 11pm and then she either sleeps through the night or wakes up around 4, which isn't that far off of when we have to wake up anyway. But it's weird, and I'm not sure why she's changed her pattern. It's not that big a deal, but it's new.

Sam never stops eating. Dr. B. says that he's big enough that he should be able to sleep through the night now (calorically speaking), but every night at 2am, 4am, 5am, and 6am I have the same conversation with Sam:

Me: Dr. B. SAID you're big enough to sleep through the night!
Sam: Mommy! Please don't make me! I'm so hungreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! I'm wasting away! I'll be so saaaaaad if you make me wait!
Me: But Dr. B. PROMISED ME that you're big enough to sleep through the night!
Sam (with the saddest look possible on his face, while screaming BLOODY MURDER): MOMMY! PLEASE! You wouldn't actually make me wait would you? I'm so hungry! Please don't make me! Please don't! I'm starving! Please!
Me: Well, I'm sure as heck not going to listen to screaming all night, of COURSE I'm not going to let you starve, no matter WHAT Dr. B. says.

Then after Sam's had his fill, Ellie and I go and have the opposite conversation:

Me: Ellie, Dr. B. SAID you're not big enough to sleep through the night!
Ellie: Mommy! Please don't make me! I'm so sleepeeeeeeeee! I need my beauty sleep! I'll be so saaaaaaaad if you make me wake up!
Me: But Dr. B. SAID that you need to eat more often!
Ellie (completely sleepy): *yawn* Please mommy, don't make me…*snore*
Me: huh? wha? What time is it? Can I go back to sleep now?

And then, it's usually time to have another conversation with Sam… But Dr. B. SAID you're big enough to sleep through the night!

Thank heavens J sleeps through the night!

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