A letter to harry and Zach: 12 months.

Dear Harry and Zach,

12 months.

A year.

A whole year you’ve been here. It feels like it’s passed in a blink of any eye, yet I feel as if I’ve lived a lifetime in the past twelve months. I knew from having Dylan, that when you have a child, your heart grows immeasurably. I knew from having Mahalia that when you have another child, your heart grows again. I was not prepared for how much my heart would grow, the depth of my love that came with your arrival.

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I was terrified while I was pregnant with the two of you. Caring for one baby is hard, how the hell was I going to manage two? But here we are, we’ve survived our first year together, with more laughs than with tears. The past year has not only been about discovering you, watching you learn and grow, but I’ve discovered myself too, I’ve never felt so comfortable in my own skin.

Who you are and what you do:

Favourite food: For both of you, it’s weetbix, spaghetti bolognaise and yoghurt (but not together).
Least favourite food: Harry – porridge, Zach – I don’t think I’ve seen you turn your nose up at anything yet.
Song: ‘Three little fishies’.
Doing: Waving, clapping, crawling and pulling up on furniture. You’re both so close to cruising.
Saying: Mama, Dada and buba.
Sleeping: Sometimes.
Teeth: Harry – two all the way through, and cutting another two, Zach – one all the way through, two have just come through your gums, and one more cutting.
Favourite toys: Zach – blocks and musical instruments, Harry – anything Zach has in his hands.
Favourite activity: bath time.
Who makes you laugh: each other.
Favourite person: each other.

We’ve had so much fun this past year. You bring joy to so many lives, and all who meet you adore you . It’s amazing see ing the bond between the two of you. You have such different personalities, Harry you are still so relaxed about everything, whereas Zach you are constantly on the go and trying new things, yet there seems to be an invisible thread that always draws you back together. You crawl around the house together, you crawl over each other in the bath, explore each other’s faces, try and cheer each other up, and make the other one laugh. You are so incredibly lucky to have each other, and we are so incredibly lucky to have you in our lives.

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Happy birthday my babies, and thank you for picking me to be your mama. xx

A Letter to Harry and Zach: Nine Months

My boys, you have now been outside my belly longer than you were in it. Yesterday you were nine months old; you were inside me for 38 weeks and one day, and a week ago, you ad been out for just as long. My pregnancy with you seemed so long, yet your time earth side seems like it’s been much shorter. It is bittersweet, the thought that I will never feel babies growing inside me again, flipping and kicking (I am so done by the way, this baby-making shop is definitely closed for business). But I love having you on the outside, seeing your personalities grow and develop, watching you taking in the world around you.

The move into separate cots has been a success, and we’ve been able to gently teach you to self-settle. Most of the time you now pop off to sleep without any help from me. You really seem to have got the hang of sleeping in the last few weeks, and I’m now having to wake you in the afternoon to pick Dylan and Mahalia up from school. As tiring as it is, I don’t mind the times I do have to help you to sleep because I know it won’t be long until it’s the last time I rock one of my babies to sleep, and I won’t know when it is the last time.

This past month has brought some big changes in your development. Zach, you still seem to be doing everything first, and Harry, you seem more than happy to sit back while Zach masters a new skill, and shows you how. You are both now saying mum and bub, with he occasional dad thrown in. You talk to each other, you make each other laugh, and you try make the rest of us laugh too. The way you interact with each other is so beautiful to see, it’s like there is an invisible thread tying you together. You are definitely individuals, but the bond you share is impossible to miss.

After weeks of unsettled nights, Zach,your first tooth seems to finally have cut through the gum. I think your first is still a few weeks away yet Harry, although your gum does seem to be swelling a bit. Crawling is still a way off, but we have backwards shuffling going on. I’m in no hurry for you to grow up and be properly on the move. This weekend will see you Papa and I lowering your cot bases. Zach, you are trying so hard to pull up to standing, and I know it won’t be long until you have it mastered. Harry, you still seem so chilled, but there a few things that get you so excited – the bath, other people’s ears, and socks. I have never seen any other baby get so much joy out of sticking fingers in ears, or waving socks way above their heads. You make me laugh every day.

This first year of your lives seems to be passing so quickly. Next week you start day care so I can go back to uni. I’m torn. I can’t wait to go back to studying, but I don’t feel ready to leave you yet. If only we could pause these moments in time, suspend them, spend as long as we want in them, before moving on. I know you’ll will do fine at day care, you’ll always have a buddy with you, but I will miss you so much. I will miss you, and our days together, learning about each other, teaching each other. I will miss you.

Love always, Mama.


A Letter to Harry and Zach: Eight months

Dear Harry and Zach,

I know I say it every month, but I can’t believe that another one has passed already. I really wish tie would slow down just for a bit. With you being my last babies, I am really trying to take the time to enjoy and appreciate your babyhood before its gone. I try to drink in your smells, try to commit them to memory, but already they are changing, and more often than not you smell of weetbix these days. Your baby days are passing in a flurry of school runs, laundry and grocery shopping, things that can’t be put off in a family of six, the way they could be when your older siblings we young.

You’ve really got the hang of this eating thing in the past month. The needs of the family mean that we are combining baby led weaning with spoon feeding. We’d never get to school on time if I let you feed yourselves in the morning. There doesn’t seem to be anything you don’t like so far, at you steadily chunking up without the need to top you up with expressed milk anymore.

This past weekend we finally bit the bullet and moved you into separate cots. I think you’ve been ready for it for a while, but I wasn’t quite there yet. You’d always slept so well together, but you’d started to wake each other up due to the lack of room and rolling into each other. You are still in the same room, but I miss seeing you sleeping next to each other, usually touching some part of your body to the other’s. Separate cots also means gently teaching you to self settle rather than patting you to sleep. We are seeing improvements already, with you needing me less and less to calm you to sleep, and you falling asleep with needing my help faster each day. Your day sleeps seem to be stretching out too.

We’re entering into our last month at home together. June brings your transition into day care in preparation for my return to studying in July. I feel so conflicted about it. I am ready to go back, I love studying, and I am passionate about my chosen field, but I don’t feel ready to leave you yet. I don’t know if I’ll ever feel ready. I’m sure you’ll be fine, you adapt to new situations, and new people so easily. We can navigate our new pathway together, just don’t stop needing me just yet.

I love you more than you could ever know, my smiling, laughing, funny boys.
Always.
Mama xx

 

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A letter to Harry and Zach: Seven Months

My two little men,

I can’t believe you’ve been earth side for seven months, you’ll be walking and talking before I know it. I’m not ready for my last babies to grow up. I am very much enjoying the age you are now, I wish we could pause here for a few months before getting on with the growing and developing. Your personalities are really starting to show through, and you are interacting with your people and your world with joy and wonder.

We had a visit from your Granddad from Sydney a few weeks ago. I was worried that you may be wary of him, having not seen him since you were a week old. But you took to him straight away, enjoying hanging out with him during his brief visit. We are often stopped when out in public (I can’t believe how often we are stopped!) as twins are like magnets to people who would otherwise walk straight by you. They all comment on how happy you are, how blue your eyes are, and how lucky I am. And I am.

Your eyes are still blue, and I think it’s a safe bet to say that they will stay blue. When Dylan was a baby, I desperately wanted a blue eyed boy, but Dylan’s started changing from blue to brown at six months, and were completely brown by the time he was one. I was pretty happy when Mahalia’s eyes stayed blue and there is no hint of yours changing colour. Brown eyes are meant to be the dominant gene, but it seems that my recessive blue eye gene – which could only have come from my Dad’s side of the family, but none of his living relatives have blue eyes – coupled with your Papa’s blue eye gene, has won out over my brown eye gene. My wish for a blue-eyed boy came true. Four kids, and only one has the same colour eyes as me.

You’ve been eating food other than milk for a month now. I had grand plans of Baby Led Weaning being the way you were introduced food. We had great success with BLW with your sister, but you two have had other ideas. While you’ll happy eat food out of my hands, you have no interest in picking food up yourselves. So we’re pureeing and you hoover mush off a spoon, bouncing in anticipation as you wait for the next spoonful. We still offer you finger foods, and I hope that it won’t be long until you’re picking food up and feeding yourselves.

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Zach, you are by far, the messier of the two eaters. Bouncing up and down, and turning your head as the spoon nears your mouth, and then you start chewing just before you take the spoon in your mouth. Even Harry blowing raspberries with a mouthful of food can’t compete with your mess making abilities.

This past month has seen the two of you become my first toe chewers and thumb suckers. You are fast moving towards being able to sit unaided, and you are starting to practice crawling positions during awake times, not just in your cot. You love having stories read to you, and listening to stories being read to Dylan and Mahalia. Playing aeroplanes and horsey rides have you grinning and laughing. You are such happy babies.

I’ve mentioned before that Harry, you are my chilled little dude, while Zachy G Bear is quicker to become upset. These parts of your personalities have developed even more. Zach, while you may be quicker to cry, you are also quicker to laugh, and vocalise non stop during play time. Harry, you struggle to get a word in edgewise. Zach, you are also the first to try out and practice new milestones, while Harry, your happy to do something new once or twice, then go back to chewing on your Sophie, smiling at me whenever I look your way. You are starting to interact with each other more and more, chatting to each other in your cot when you wake at the same time, reaching out and touching each other, and stealing the other’s toy whenever you get the chance. even at such a young age, the bond you two share is so obvious to see, and I hope the bond stays just as strong your whole lives.

The people that stop us on the street and in the shops are right. I am so lucky to be blessed with you. So lucky.

Love Mama

 

 

A letter to Harry and Zach: Six Months

A letter to Harry and Zach: six monthsMy two precious boys, I can’t believe another month has passed us by already. You don’t get to turn six months, being born on 29th August. Yesterday you were five months and thirty one days, today you are six months and one day.

Everyday you make me smile, everyday you make me laugh. You are experimenting with your voices more and more, Zachy, you especially love the sound of your own voice. You often have me giggling with the noises you make. Harry, your conversations aren’t as animated as your little brother’s, they’re much more laid back and relaxed, just like the rest of your personality.

The end of last month saw the introduction of supplementing your feeds with formula. The beginning of this month, we saw a lactation consultant worth her weight in gold. She managed to pick up what so many before had missed: tongue-tie, upper lip-tie, and high palates, all which result in poor attachment and milk transferral. Had these issues been picked up before you turned 3 months, you could have had the ties layered, and prevented feeding issues. Unfortunately, after 3 months, there’s no guarantees that the treatment would make any difference. We have managed to get rid of the formula though, topping you up with expressed milk, and on the lovely lactation consultant’s advice we’ve stopped weighing you. Instead of reading a book, we’re reading you. And you two are happy.

Your current favourite person is your Papa. As soon as I put you on my shoulders for burping after a feed, you immediately look around for your Daddy, your faces breaking out in huge smile when you see him, bouncing up and down on my lap until he comes and picks you up. You love having stories read to you, peek-a-boo makes you laugh, and you somehow don’t seem to mind my singing. You have your older brother and sister wrapped around your fingers; Mahalia is always asking to hold one of you, and Dylan has become your chief entertainer, playing ’round and round the garden’ on your little hands while you chuckle away.

Crawling practice is still a regular occurrence at bed time, bouncing around the cot like bunny rabbits up on arms and knees. How you don’t disturb each other, I don’t know. We’ve decided to leave you together in your cot for the time being. You sleep so well together, and I don’t want to risk ruining your sleeping patterns by separating you.

Today brings your first taste of solids, a day I’ve been in denial about for a long time. My babies are growing up. While I’m loving seeing your grow and develop, seeing your personalities emerge a little more each day, I want to savour each moment, I want your babyhood to last for longer. I can’t believe you’ve been in my arms for six months, half a year; soon you will have been in my arms longer than you were in my belly. Could you just slow down a little bit?

Happy six months my baby bears. As always,
Mama loves you. xx

A letter to Harry and Zach: 5 months

Dear Harry and Zach,

I can’t believe another month has past already. We’re staring down the barrel of 6 months, half a year, and I’m not sure I’m ready. Six months brings high chairs and solids and I’m sticking my head in the sand.

This past month has seen you change and develop so much. Having been through this twice before, you would think I’d be used, be ready and waiting for each new milestone. But I’m finding that with each new skill, it’s like I am seeing these changes happen for the first time.

You turned four months old, and with that, the four month sleep regression hit with a bang. After getting used to only one feed overnight, coffee became my best friend as we went back to four night time wakings. Thankfully, we seem to be heading back to better sleeping.

You are both rolling all over the place. As soon as you are put down in your cot on your back, you both roll straight onto your tummies. This has meant a fast transition from arms swaddled, to arms out for sleeping. Even though you are put down at opposite ends of the cot to give you room to roll, you still always manage to end up touching. Papa and I probably need to start thinking about buying a second cot so you both have plenty of room to move, but I can’t bare the thought of separating you.

Harry, you are giggly boy. You loved to be tickled and love flying through the air like an aeroplane. You are still my chilled out little dude, but you love to have a chat, and sometimes Zach can’t get a word in edgewise. You took longer to get used to sleeping with your arms out, and sleeping on your tummy, but now it’s like you’ve always slept this way.

This month Zach, you became the first of our four children to have a bath code brown. You laughed at the hilarity, me, not so much. You love to cross your ankles, whether you’re sleeping, lying on the mat, or sitting on someone’s lap. You still need extra cuddles, but you’re becoming a bit more relaxed the older you get.

Both of you are chewing on your hands, your fingers, and you are both starting to grasp toys and bring them to your mouths for gumming. No feet in mouths though, but toe chewing isn’t something your older brother and sister did either.

In the last week, we’ve had to start supplementing your feeds as hard as I’ve tried (and I’ve tried everything), Mama just isn’t producing enough milk for both of you anymore. I’m a little sad that we’ve had to introduce formula, but making sure you’re getting everything you need to grow and develop is what’s most important to your Papa and I.

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Happy 5 months in the world my baby boys. I can’t wait to see what the next month brings.

Love Mama xx

A Letter To Harry and Zach: 4 Months Old

Dear Harry and Zach,

I can’t believe you are four months old already. I remember reading while you were still nestled in my womb, that the first three to six months with twins is a blur. They were right, those other twin parents. I feel like the veil of constant tiredness is starting to lift. I am seeing the world clearly again, I am making plans for the future. All I can really remember of your first three months is your Papa coming down with gastro two days after we came home from hospital, and spending a great deal of time sitting on the lounge. Your first two months, I pretty much slept upright on the lounge. I was lucky if I spent more than an hour in bed each night. I thought my derrière would be permanently without feeling due to all the couch time spent feeding you. I wish I had taken more photos of the two of you in those early months, but I struggled to form a coherent sentence, I couldn’t even think about anything other than tending your needs. Also, I thought I’d have more time to take photos to remember the early days by. Funny that.

But now you are four months old, and my, how you have grown and changed in such a short time. Your feeds are down to as little as 10 minutes, and you sleep 7pm until 1.30am most nights, and then until between 4.30 and 6am when we are up with the birds. No more lounge sleeping for me (and I have feeling back in my butt).

It’s remarkable how close together you achieve your milestones. Zach, you smiled first, but Harry was only a few hours behind. You both giggled for the first time on the same day. Harry, you rolled tummy to back, followed 30 seconds later by Zachy. You can both roll back to tummy too.

While you both bounced around inside my belly, I honestly thought that I was having both a boy and a girl. The sonographers and obstitricians kept insisting you were both boys. I had a feeling that if you were in fact both boys, that you were identical. I got that bit right at least. Your personalities are so different already, and I think that’s what I was picking up when I was still growing you on the inside.

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Zachy, you are my sensitive little soul. You need more snuggles than your older brother, but when you feel safe, you give us the most beautiful smiles. You babble away gooing, giggling and chatting to anyone who will listen. You find going to sleep and waking up hard, but you are comforted by arms, by soft words and kisses. You may have been born second, but you certainly aren’t falling behind in your development (in fact, you may just have overtaken Harry). We put you on the floor, and you roll over and over and over again. I’m not sure I’m ready for all the movement.

Harry, you are my chilled out little dude. You are usually happy to wait while your little brother is given some extra attention. You already look out for him, trying to comfort him by moving closer to him in your cot when he’s struggling in the arms of sleep. I think that’s the way it’s going to be, you taking care of your little brother, protecting him from the world, while he showers you with love. You’re happy just relaxing on your blanket on the floor, feet dancing in the air. You’ve rolled once each way, and have decided that’s enough for you.

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We’ve just celebrated your first Christmas. You didn’t get much in the way of presents, but you got showered with love. You spent the day being cuddled and held by family, all enjoying the magic of your existence, and hinting to others that more babies are wanted.

Harry and Zach, your first few months may have passed in a blink of an eye, but at the same time, I feel a bond with you that feels like its been there forever. I feel I’ve waited my whole life to meet you, that there is a special purpose for you being given into my care.

I can’t wait to see what the next month brings.

Love Mama xx