Friday, July 30, 2010

Seriously, though. Teen bachhon ki ma??

Seriously? Me?

The thing about having blogged for a few years now is that the blog serves as a reminder of what kind of a person you were and have now become. The time I started writing this, I was the kind of person who couldn't understand why anyone would ever have kids. Now, while I'm not exactly the opposite in terms of saying I can't understand why anyone would choose not to have kids, I certainly do understand it. And how.

Anyway, Peanut turned 3 years old a couple of days back and we had a little party for her. She cut a Noddy cake and was generally quite happy even though it wasn't a kiddy party - her two cousins being around is a party for her anyway.

She's at an age where she's a complete mixture of angelic and sweet behavior and complete and utter defiance. Too late one is realizing that the last few months of pregnancy and the last month of being away from her have resulted in lack of enough routine and attention in terms of instilling some sort of discipline. Well, she's hardly devoid of all form of discipline but it's not been enough. Her eating and sleeping and playing routines are completely awry resulting in really late bedtimes, crankiness, too much TV (and Vijay's iPhone - man, can that kid operate it or what!) and will take some time to correct . But I'm at a stage where I know I need to pick my battles, so will have to take it slow.

But she is incredibly sweet in many ways and very sharp about observing and picking up things, and sometimes exhibits such great understanding and maturity that I'm only left marveling at her and hope that somehow these qualities don't get inhibited by anything that we do. Overall, I think she's going to be okay.

It's clear she's going to be a great big sister - she's already very fond of her brothers and kisses them often, giggling at their funny faces and noises and looking quite stricken when one of them starts to cry.

The next few months are going to be very, very interesting to say the least. And did I mention that the concerns now about getting proper help to take care of the kids are now striking me hard? I have a really good part timer who is currently staying till about 7 p.m. to help and she's actually brilliant - she's been my cook for the last two years so there is also that basic level of trust with her. Unfortunately, like so many in her situation, she is saddled with a husband (with the usual drinking problem) who is shouting at her about being away from home and is 'forbidding' her to work here for too long, so she may not be able to keep it up beyond a couple of weeks. So what is someone to do?

Some practical advice here would be much appreciated. Please do share your experiences with help through agencies - would really help me. I've been lucky enough to have the K to help with Peanut but now she is barely able to manage her and the twins are going to be far more work. I need to fix this in the next few months before going back to work - so yeah, the word would be 'help!?' right about now.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Suddenly Mother of Three

We finally returned home with Pickle and Papad, a couple of days ago.

I was in the hospital with the two of them and the ever-loyal Vijay for quite a few days. I started to feel distinctly better and was subsequently discharged.

The second day after being home, it turned out I had developed another infection, and it is still ongoing. However, I'm hoping that this is the last leg of this whole illness affair.

In the meantime, it feels good to be home. The first couple of days weren't great because I was unwell and because Peanut was behaving like...well, a 3 year old who is suddenly saddled with the reality of little twin brothers, just like I was behaving like a (half-crazed, post-double-surgery) 30 year old who is suddenly saddled with the reality of little twin sons. Basically, I ended up smacking her bottom and still come dangerously close to doing it whenever she has a meltdown. I know she doesn't know any better and needs time to adjust and am trying my best to control it and am digging into the deepest untapped layers of my being, where I'm hoping lie hitherto untapped reserves of patience and tolerance. Somewhere deep, deep within.

It's obviously a round the clock job - well, a single baby is a round the clock job. Two babies are ...what, round two clocks? One wakes up hungry, the other wakes up hungry a few minutes later while I'm feeding the first one; they do synchronized potties; they cry in unison. Even when they don't cry/poop/feed in unison, one still doesn't get much rest because you've finished with one when the other starts up! Surprisingly though, I think we're doing pretty well now - it doesn't seem new, for one - having Peanut 3 years ago was quite an eye-opener. Secondly, it's miles better than being apart from them, as we were for the first ten days when they were under observation in the nursery; and it's better than the last ten days when we were all admitted in the hospital together, and the four of us were away from Peanut. The very fact that I've found a few minutes to blog says something, doesn't it?

So let me tell you about my new sons.

First of all, they are identical twin boys, a fairly rare variety as far as statistics go apparently. They don't look quite identical though - Pickle is darker - he was at birth and this was compounded by extensive phototherapy for his jaundice - and his nose is more like Vijay's - while Papad looks more like me, and in fact, more like a miniature version of Peanut - we often joke that he is her twin, 3 years later! I don't quite know how it works in terms of their starting to grow more alike as the months pass, but time will tell. I did double check with the doctors to confirm they were actually identical, though - it's actually a blessing to be able to tell them apart easily at the moment. There are still times when I have asked, when being handed one to breastfeed him 'Who is he?' in a zapped manner. Vijay also has been known to observe them closely and them remark with a beaming proud smile 'Bilkul twins jaise lagte hai' ( roll of eyes).
Pickle is the older one, and he's also the one who is growing bigger faster - he's already almost 2.5 kilos while Papad is about 2.2 kilos. They were both born a minute apart, and were 2.1 kilos at 35 weeks, 3 days.

Personality wise, and yes, it's never too early to start labelling them, is it - Pickle appears to be slightly crankier, and has already started exhibiting a strong preference for the phenomenon known as 'Godi', refusing to just lie still. Papad is more peaceful and lies back and looks around interestedly at things around him, although he can probably see just about the end of his nose.
They are both terribly cute and ugly little creatures and so, so very small - Peanut was 3.5 kilos at birth and so having such tiny ones around is a bit new - but we've already adjusted to it and handle them fairly well. I still bristle inwardly when someone remarks 'Abhi to bahut kamzor hai' ( who likes hearing that?) but have surprisingly not reacted to it much, and even the inward bristling passes after a moment.

Vijay's brother has been a key support during this time. He had flown in from the U.S a few weeks back and the timing couldn't have been more perfect -for us, that is. He has been helping babysit almost continuously and changing diapers, making up formula bottles and the works like a seasoned pro - which he is, considering his younger son just turned two this month. He's been amazing, as has been Vijay, and of course, the rest of the family. What do people do without family!? It's great to have them around.

Back to the twins. Papad, while being the more peaceful one, sleeps way too much and has to be coaxed into waking up to feed often enough. He is also the guy with the biggest range of dirty expressions, although both of them are pretty good at conveying the emotion 'What the hell are you guys doing with me? Are you seriously my parents? Is this seriously my life?' when troubled enough.

I am still marvelling at the fact that I have 3 children. I had never thought it would ever happen.
Twins, especially. Who knew? Who thought? Not even my dumbass ultrasonologist who informed me of the single fetus at 12 weeks, who was doing well.

Either ways, twins are a curiosity for most people and bring out really offensive behavior. There was this 'mother's room' at the first hospital where I would go to breastfeed the kids every few hours, while they were in the nursery. One day there were these Punjabi aunties who were so tickled by the fact of the twins, and so fascinated watching me feed them simultaneously and expertly that they forgot their own daughter who was struggling to breastfeed her baby - and had the nerve to call out to their waiting son-in-law/son outside 'Amit, Camera lao, inki photo kheechte hai! Dekho, do-do ko kaise pila rahi hai'. I was seriously shocked by this - no matter how cute and endearing my own husband had found the sight of my feeding the two of them, he didn't really seriously contemplate recording the moment for posterity on film, and here were these shameless strangers wanting to do the same, without the thought of even asking - although, even asking would have been bad enough!

Basically, lots has happened in the last month, but clearly I'm not going to be able to write one coherent post about it, so look forward to more instalments over the coming few days whenever I'm able to snatch the time.

See ya!

Edited to add: No, they didn't end up taking the picture. Because thankfully 'Amit' had left his camera behind in the hospital room. Even if he had sent it in, the fat Punjabi cows would have not got a picture, but a couple of black eyes courtesy Y. I didn't put on 24 kilos during this pregnancy without gaining a bit of strength too.
( 14 kilos are already gone of the same though - Yay! Irrelevant side note, but it makes me feel good)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


So it turns out C-secs aren't supposed to be so difficult, normally.
I was really wondering what people had been talking about 'I was up on my feet within a week/3 days/24 hours' - I was thinking, what's wrong with me? Why is the pain not going away? Why is this fever persisting? What's going on? Is it my threshold level for pain that is just lower than others.
Turns out not. Turns out clot. Hey, that rhymes.
A big clot developed and was surgically removed a few days back. I had been home for just about two days when I had to be readmitted to the hospital.
For someone who has never had a surgery ever in 30 years of life, and has otherwise been in pretty good health throughout, the last 3 weeks have been quite a learning experience. 2 surgeries. About a 100 needles. And lots of other things.
But I'm on the recovery path now, and hope to be home again in a couple of days.
As before, the kids are doing fine, and that's the most important thing. I just want to get back home and be with Peanut so that our family of five can start life together.
Yeah. Quite a ride.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Quick One

Just to thank everyone for the comments on the previous post welcoming Pickle and Papad to the world.

The good news is that they are doing okay as per their first post-hospital doctor visit. Will repeat after a week.

The not-so-good news is that my infection is not so hot and am being readmitted to the hospital tomorrow.

However, here's hoping for the best and that I'll be back soon and that I will not be away from my many babies for too long now.

Ciao for now. And Thanks again.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Hello to Pickle and Papad!

It's been quite a couple of weeks.

An emergency C-section at 35 weeks 3 days.
Two beautiful little baby boys.
An infection after my surgery.
Waiting for release from the hospital.

But yes...two beautiful little baby boys. Beautiful to me and Vijay, that is. All four of us have been in the hospital for over ten days now. Little Peanut has been at home for a week with Vijay's parents and brother. We've never been away from her that long.

And today we're ready to go home. So yayy!

Their jaundice will need to be monitored carefully but the doctors say it should be all fine now. So ... as before. Give us the good vibes, people!

And thanks for all the good wishes in advance, just in case I can't log on again for a while.