Sunday, February 21, 2010

Almost four months

The girls are doing beautifully. The joy and rewards have increased a million fold these past few weeks. They are now interacting with us on a consistent basis. They recognize us. I don't know why this surprises me so much, but they KNOW me.

I know they know me, and have known they would know me from the moment I fell pregnant, but it is different to see the recognition in their facial expressions. I never knew I had the power to make another human being light up the way they do when I walk in the room. It is humbling and joyful. It makes me feel like a mom, complete with that overwhelming sense of responsibility. Their vulnerability, and the expectation in their expressions, are simultaneously wonderful and terrifying.

These first few months with preemie triplets, who are all refluxing and colicky, have been much harder than I anticipated. The hardest part is not having the quality time with each of my children that I had dreamed about. Every snuggle with one means two others are missing out. I take turns to chat with each, to play with each, to feed and cuddle each of my babies, but it is always interrupted by another baby who is crying louder or needs me more. I relish the "stolen" moments when two are asleep and I can cuddle just one at a time. Of course, these moments also come at a cost, because we're trying to keep them on a schedule to save our sanity.

Much of our time is spent trying to feed them. They're growing nicely - to the tune of 12, 10 and 9 pounds each. Despite being in the midst of reflux hell, sleep deprivation, and the continuous "feed-cry-burp-cry-diaper-cry-sleep-cry" repeat cycle, the monotony is suddenly interspersed with these goofy, nose-creasing, gummy smiles that make my heart bounce. Their smiles are like booster shots of joy and energy for my depleted shell of a body. I continue to express more than 2 liters of milk a day (~66 oz) and although it's been exhausting to keep up the pumping schedule, I know this is what's best for them.

I laugh out loud with them dozens of times a day because they're so precious and they know it. They coo and make gargly baby noises, kick excitedly and slap at their dangling toys. We've even heard an audible giggle from Ada (Baby A). Our "firstborn" is the most high maintenance and demanding. Everything is high intensity with her. Her cries are blood curdling - like a smoke alarm you simply can't ignore - and her smiles are disarmingly sweet. She's my little firecracker, blazing through the night until 2 am when she finally collapses and then sleeps so soundly that I keep wanting to ask her, "Now was that really so hard, munchkin?" A few nights now, she has slept five hours straight. She's on the cusp of actually sleeping through the night, which fills me with tremendous hope.

Julia (Baby B) is the strongest physically. Although they are all holding their heads up, pushing up and turning their heads from side to side during tummy time, she is able to push herself up further and hold the position much longer than her sisters. She pushes herself up and then looks from side to side to see what's happening in the world. She is the most inquisitive baby and loves to spin the globe on her swing and play with the toys dangling from her bouncy seat. She often looks at me with this quizzical expression, as if she's asking me about what she's seeing. When I tell her about the world around her, she beams and coos. If my kids' personalities could be pinpointed on a pendulum, I'd say Ada is the one extreme, Emma the other, and Julia is somewhere in the middle.

Emma (Baby C) is such a relaxed, contented, quiet baby even though she struggles the most with reflux. She flashes her smile at me more frequently than her sisters and is always watching what we're up to. She is very observant. The smart money says she will check out how her sisters attempt new things and stumble their way through it and then she'll jump in and get it "right" the first time. She's my little pixie, but she amazes me with her strength.

They are all scooting around their cribs these days like little inchworms. Gone are the days that we could put them down in one crib for their short naps. It's hard to believe they're four months old this week.


BB said...

So nice to hear about their progress! Looks you guys are cherishing this time! I am so happy for you! :)

Carrie said...

You are an amazing, wonderful mother! Way to provide your sweeties with your awesome milk too! Love hearing about their personalities- it's all so familiar. :)

Kate said...

Glad to hear all your girls are thriving!

jenicini said...

It's lovely to hear about them! :)

R.J. said...

Happy 1/3 birthday to the girls. Your post is a heart-warming peek into a day in the life of a triplet parent. So happy to hear they are doing so well.

The One and Only Chelle said...

It sounds like they are doing so good! I hear you with the colic and reflux... You are doing a great job, I know how hard it is with two, let alone three! And I admire you for pumping. I wish I was able..

Congratulations on doing so well these first months. They were certainly tougher than I imagined as well.

My Endo Journey said...

I love your posts. :) So amazing!!!