Down The Rabbit Hole

Well. Where has time gone?

Here’s ten minutes to post, so forgive the brevity:

We made it safely to Texas, with very few problems on the flight (surprisingly!). We’re basically settled here, with what I might assume are typical issues one has when one travels with two infants. They’ve done really well all things considered. There’ve been lots of new faces to see in the last couple of days, and there’ll be a lot more still to come before we make it back home.

Lots of those new faces have had lots of opinions about the way I choose to parent, largely because I have overheard my mother telling pretty much every single person who has come to meet the boys that we co-sleep, which is then followed up by a comment from said person encouraging me to place them in a crib. I’m quite proud of the fact that I haven’t blown my emtherefking lid and told them all off. Because not only is it NO ONE’S BUSINESS BUT MY OWN, but it’s also quite rich coming from a crowd of people who treat their dogs like family and would balk at the suggestion to kennel their pets at night. Um, so I should put my babies in cages overnight, but it’s expected and normal for your dog to sleep in your bed? Yeah. Right.

Additionally, I’ve been getting a lot of comments about the fact that I respond to my babies when they cry. I’ve tried gently explaining that my babies are humans, and just like a normal human, if I heard any one of my friends or family crying in the next room, I’d probably go in to offer comfort. But, you know, they’re babies, so we should just ignore them. Oh, and I’m also supposed to watch while they cry in other people’s arms, and reach for me while getting louder and louder and louder. Because, you know, they have to learn that while we’re away from home, they cannot trust that their parents will respond to them, whilke grandma tells them to “just stop it!”. Totally comforting, right?

Ugh. Tra-fucking-la-la.

In other news, the boys are six months old! Their monthly letter is in the works, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it didn’t appear for another week or two. I’m blaming the holidays.

And more news, we have a tooth! Henry cut a tooth on the 9th, and just yesterday, a second began to break through as well. Jack is still gmawing on everything in sight, and both boys have been incredibly fussy lately, so I’m sure there’s more to come.

And that marks the end of my free time. SO much more to say, but it’ll have to wait.

Any tips for surviving teething and holidays and travel and well-meant-but-completely-rude advice?

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16 Responses to Down The Rabbit Hole

  1. melissa says:

    Glad to hear the traveling was relatively uneventful.

    omg, I’d want to stab so many people! Thank god no one gave me shit for co-sleeping or I would’ve had some words…

    And yeah, my IL’s have tried to do the “i’ll hold your baby while she cries because I haven’t seen her in so long….” while the crying gets louder and the baby turns red. I just got bitchy and grabbed her back. I know what’s best for my child. thankyouverymuch.

    Wine? can you have a sip or two?

    Plus the holidays are really almost over… 🙂 ((HUGS))

    Can’t wait to see pictures!!!

  2. Brandy says:

    I don’t get why people are so invested in other’s parenting choices! It’s not their business. I don’t have any advice, since we don’t have kids. I know it has to be frustrating. I can see my mom doing that to me, and the response I have for her, should we ever have children, is, “you had your kids, now I have mine and I need to parent them my own way”.

  3. Rachel says:

    Isn’t visiting family fun? At this point we just fully deny co-sleeping. Sure, the baby maybe “occasionally” fall asleep in our bed and it was rather suspicious that we did not have the crib set up when she was born and have currently registered for 2 new queen-sized waterproof pads and no second crib, but what of it?

    As for comment #1, at 6 months you can certainly have a glass of wine. That would be my strong holiday recommendation.

  4. Tara (TIMO) says:

    Glad to hear you made it safely!

    My two favorite responses: “Oh, I didn’t realize you also had twins.” said with a huge smile even though I know they don’t and/or “would you like to take them for the night?” asked in your most hopeful yet quizzical way. So far they’ve gotten me through a few holiday party know-it-all encounters.

    As for the crying, my preferred method was to take back the offendee saying “oh, A/B really likes to be held/patted/sung to/etc this way.” You get the baby back and perhaps they’ve learned what works with your child for the next time.

    Congrats on the tooth! Hooray for six months old! Snuck a peak at the pics..they sure are cuties!

  5. Ellen K. says:

    Glad things are going comparatively well! My gosh, a tooth already. Tara’s suggestions have worked for me, too. Also I ask pointedly how they handled such-and-such with their secondborn or thirdborn. Very often the person becomes instantly sympathetic and remembers how trying it is to care for several children. You have the twin trump card, good until you meet a triplet mom. Use it freely. : )

  6. strongblonde says:

    i totally agree with tara and ellen. i hate people trying to parent or judge my parenting skills. it makes me not want to be around them. most of the time i just try to smile. then i avoid. 🙂 i like to remind everyone that two is totally different than one. and most people that you are in contact with only had one child at a time and have no idea.

    i can’t wait to hear how things turn out. 🙂 good luck!! xx

  7. Samantha says:

    My MIL told me last Christmas she thought maybe I was being too over protective of my son because I took him back when he started crying. She said I need to make sure he spent time with others so he could learned to be soothed by others (mind you, he was going to daycare full time). I determined that it had less to do with anything about ME and more about HER. She was upset that she couldn’t soothe her grandkid, and that he preferred me to her when upset, but there wasn’t really much I could do about it (I am his mom, so it wasn’t really surprising), and I wasn’t going to try to make her feel better by just letting him cry in his arms. So I tried to keep this mind. Similarly, if people talk negatively about cosleeping, they are probably just imagining how they don’t think they would like to be in bed with two babies. Good news for them is that they don’t have to.

    Good luck, relax, and enjoy the holidays!

  8. lz says:

    As I am about to face the first Christmas with the sort-of-in-laws… no baby yet, but still scared of the amount of advice. The bf’s mom was a nurse and the bf is her only son… so you can imagine. I think I’ll simply respond I trust my ob/gyn and go with that.

    Besides, had my end of first trimester screening today and everything looks wonderful! Bf couldn’t make it but a special guest from back home was able to accompany me, so that was pretty awesome.

    Just say nicely to anyone that most of the world other than here co-sleeps, and the babies not only don’t suffocate, but turn out just fine. Give them the url to your flickr account and point out that your boys are obviously happy and healthy and doing just fine, thank you very much.

    Eat some bbq and enjoy the warm weather! My love and best to all back home!

  9. jenn says:

    Ugh- assvice… I actually got into quite a heated response once to a ‘friend’ who couldn’t understand why I was wearing my baby in a sling rather then let her hold her- despite the fact that I could smell her noon-time Hennessey a mile away! Oh- and she told me that she let her babies cry & they were just fine. (um yeah- I heard some stories & she was also a grandma before 40… just sayin) After giving it to her with both hormonal barrels I stormed away- but did hear a little ‘good for you’ behind me. Which felt awesome. And we stopped talking to the couple. But family is a little different- you are kind of stuck!
    I think each situation is a bit different, but while extremely nosy & annoying, most family really is just trying to be helpful- or is literally ignorant of any way different than how ~they~ did it. If all else fails than I love playing the twin card! Tara’s responses are great!
    Good luck! Teething can be brutal. We used Hyland’s teething tablets which I swear are magic, but then were recalled. If they have them out again (recall seemed more for pr than any real manufacturing defect or danger) than I would recommend them! Frozen washcloths (which doesn’t help while traveling!) and a baby toothbrush worked for us too. Or maybe the mesh baby feeders with some frozen fruit chunks? That seemed to keep her very happy in a pinch.

  10. Ellen K. says:

    Oh, yes, the Hyland’s tablets are awesome. I say “are” instead of “were” because I’m hanging on to my remaining bottle. SIL #2 freaked out when she saw it. Harris makes dissolving teething strips that are pretty good. Also, ibuprofen works better than acetaminophen.

  11. loribeth says:

    I have to admit, when we were still ttc, I did not consider co-sleeping myself. But I loved your analogy to putting a dog in a kennel at night!! Touche!! ; )

  12. Star says:

    I think I must be intimidating-looking or something, because I never get this kind of assvice. So I say that if you did not blow your top, you are damn well near sainthood in my book. Well, maybe I do get assvice, but in a more passive-aggressive way: My mother actually has never gotten over the fact that Reed still sleeps with us (still! at 18 months old! she says) and talks about how “that boy needs to learn to sleep in his crib” but in this little sing-song baby voice. And I just say, Reed will never sleep in a crib, Mom. When he transitions out of our bed, it will probably be to sleep in the bottom bunk in his brother’s room. I have nothing against cribs as a general matter, Casey slept in one just fine from 6 months to 2.5 years old, but Reed hates the crib and is scared of it and I’m not going to make him cry and be terrified at night just to satisfy people’s insane need to put babies and toddlers “in their place.”

    The whole not wanting you to comfort your babies when they cry thing is a whole different order of magnitude more insane. I mean, that idea comes from a philosophy of child-rearing that was popular in the early 20th century until it was UTTERLY DISCREDITED. But the fact that the general attitude still persists in 2010 America goes to show how long it takes to get a pernicious idea to die out. Good lord. Well, I guess the good news is that the holidays come but once a year. By the bye, what did you ever say to your mom about the shopping trip?

  13. Serah says:

    We got A LOT of this from my hubby’s mom our first few Christmases when my daughter L. was a baby. Now, however, I have to stifle “I told you so” when MIL compliments us on how well my daughter is turning out, and how L. seems to be more grateful, attentive and compassionate than her cousin. So there. As a result, with my son, no more assvice. Cause clearly we’re doing it right. I vote you ignore now and gloat later.

  14. PJ says:

    I’m sorry I’ve been a sucky blogger lately. You really are one of my favorites and sometimes I read and don’t comment because, well you know, life is busy.

    The girls are teething too. Sassy makes this passie looking thing that has a mesh net that you can put fruit in. Babies R Us has them. I’ve been putting frozen (ok half thawed) cut up bananas in it, which she LOVES. Although I’m going to try strawberries next because bananas are a PIA to clean.

    We drove to Cleveland. See the blog. I think just to be totally prepared and to expect things to be off kilter.

    My thing was the GERMS. SO much touching from people. I hated having various people holding and touching my girls. Gah!

    Hope your return is calm and that your mom lays off your cosleeping, which is definitely your business. Enjoy snuggly time with your babies and husband. Happy New Year Kate. 🙂

  15. shinejil says:

    Ugh, the assvice just gets worse, right?

    Heaven forfend! Parents, parenting?! People sharing beds?

    Haven’t we realized it’s the space age?! Babies should be traveling independently in their brainwave-powered pods, self-soothing immediately post partum, and ordering their own hyperengineered formula via the internet. We stone age mamas are ruining them!

    Hope the trip had plenty of fun stuff to balance out the grrrs.

  16. Amy says:

    Hi Kate! Thinking of you and hoping you’re well!

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