I have to admit that I am pretty emotional just thinking about the twins 1st birthday coming up next month. I can't believe that this year has already passed us by and I wonder where the time went. Of course I know that most of the time I have been in a constant state of "zombie" with all the sleep deprivation, effort to make sure I am not screwing up my kids' development, and worry over the normal first time mom things. But when I look back over the past year, I see many blessings.
We went from spitting up to growing up in the blink of an eye. Just when I was getting the hang of double feedings in the middle of the night and juggling two helpless infants, they started sleeping through the night. Just when I began to enjoy laying them on their backs on the play mat and making silly faces in an effort to evoke those precious giggles, they learned to roll over and away from me. Just when I was so happy that they could now sit on their own and I could place a few toys in front of them and they would be content for an hour, they learned to crawl away and get into everything else. Just when they started eating my homemade baby food (which I was so proud of), they demanded food that was easy to pick up with their hands (showing me just how independent they were becoming). And just when I thought I had mastered the art of containing mobile twins in the "baby corral," they learned how to climb out and escape. Yes this past year has blown by and has been marked by great milestones that seem to only have lasted but a moment in time.
I am constantly humbled by the amount of love that I have for these precious beings and it makes me understand just how much our Maker and Creator loves me and my children. I love the fact that each of my children is completely unique. And I love watching them develop into their own person. When I take them on an outing with me (which let's admit it, is rare because of the enormous amount of energy it takes to haul two infants around), I almost always have one or two people come up and ask me the general twin questions: "Are they twins?" "Are they identical?" "Is it a boy and a girl?" And while my answer is "yes they are boy/girl twins," they are definitely not identical.
I love the calm nature and contentment that Knox demonstrates. He has always been the "easy" one from birth. He continues to amaze me at his gentleness. My favorite thing to do with him is sit him on my lap and sing to him, while he plays with me hair. He doesn't pull it or play rough with it, but rather, he runs his fingers through it. He lets his sister sit on him, take things away from him, and bang toys on his head without even a cry (which is something that we are in the process of disciplining for). While he is calm and sweet, he is total boy, full of grunts, growls, and curiosity for adventure. This past year watching him develop has been so amazing to me. When he was born, he weighed all of 4lbs 14 oz. He was the smaller of the two and, well...he gave Kris and I quite a scare. He was born nearly lifeless. Yes, he was breathing and his heart was beating, but he wouldn't move or cry. When lifting his arm of leg, it would fall back down completely lifeless. I never heard my son cry until the next day when he was ready to eat. We were told that this was normal of B/G twins and not to worry, but as a parent, you can't help but think that there is something wrong. With much prayer, Knox was absolutely healthy. He came around and showed me that while he may have been passive at birth, he is a fighter and a lover. Which I am sure will make for good husband material one day in the far FAR future!
Kaitlyn has been developing into a very strong willed little girl who definitely knows what she wants. I like that about her. She is full of life and energy and can never sit still. From the moment that she learned to move, she hasn't stopped moving. She explores everything and isn't really afraid of anything. I began singing a song to her when she was still an immobile infant that goes "Katie Bear, Katie Bear, I love you. Katie Bear, Katie Bear, I love you. I love you in the morning and in the afternoon. I love you in the evening and underneath the moon." Sung to the skidamirinkidinkidkink song. She absolutely loves it. She revels in the fact that I am singing especially to HER. She lights up and it is one of my most favorite things to do with her. She is so much like me that it is scary. She is a total girl who loves to see herself in the mirror and be adorned with love and affection. She loves to be doted on and loved on. Her favorite thing is when daddy strokes her face lightly. And I have to admit that it is one of my favorite things that Kris does to me! She is the more assertive of the two and is always in Knox's space and business. When she was born, she was 5 lbs 9 oz and was the bigger twin. She came out of the womb screaming and hasn't really stopped using her vocal chords since. We secretly think that she likes to hear herself. She is a joy and a handful all at the same time and I think we will never have dull moments around here because of her.
Watching them grow individually is great, but watching them grow together is something that not many moms get to experience and I am so blessed and grateful that I was given the opportunity. They truly have a bond between them that I am in awe of. They are not calm and content unless the other is somewhere nearby and they are most comfortable holding hands or touching each other in some way. I love watching their love for each other as friends and siblings emerges. And I am proud to be able to say that I am a super TWIN MOM!
While this past year has blown my mind, I am sure that this next year will be so much fun filled with first words and first steps. I am so happy that I trusted the Lord to direct my decision to stay home with them because the time goes by so fast and I haven't had to miss one milestone or special moment that I can't ever get back. While I may complain from time to time that it is very overwhelming (which trust me...IT IS), it is so very much worth every exhausting day, sleep deprived night, and tearful moments. I can't wait for the next exhausting year!!!
Happy 1st Birthday (in less than a month) to my wonderful, beautiful, amazing gifts from God...Knox Dereck and Kaitlyn Donna.