The First Month

More babies in our friend circle! Our girl Penny gave birth to her twin boys, Jack and Liam, on December 12, 2015. Her boys were born just under 33 weeks and so the first three weeks for this little family were spent in the NICU. She shares her answers to our The First Month series. They are heartwarming and funny and tender and genuine and refreshing. Thank you P.

The First Month

Can you write five to 10 words that describe the first month of being a new mom?

  • Terrified
  • Helpless
  • Overwhelmed
  • Brave
  • Protective
  • Delusional
  • Crazy
  • Inquisitive
  • Loved
  • Needed
  • Amazing
  • Happy

I think that list could go on and on. The first month you feel so much more than I ever thought possible.

What is one thing that you can tell us that you weren’t sure you would tell anybody about what you are feeling or have felt this past month?

I really never thought that I would be as crazy protective over these boys and yet open and honest about it. Being with and watching them in their way-too-early days of life has made me a crazy person. In my mind a good kind of crazy person. It’s a preemie thing but others who have never been there don’t understand.

What is the one thing that took you off guard, that surprised you the most?

Our whole first month took me off guard. It wasn’t supposed to be our first month. So, from my water breaking at 31 weeks and 5 days to delivering at 32 weeks and 6 days, to 22 days in the NICU – and then home where my guard is up and the imaginary bubble that I have to put them in is still there.

What are the moments and experiences that you have enjoyed the most this past month?

I have enjoyed every moment! From the first time we finally got to feed them with a tiny syringe through their gavage tubes, to getting to bring them to breast and feeling that connection that no one else gets with my boys. Every feed, every poop and every gram gained was a celebration, tiny little milestones to bring them home, where they belong.

What do you wish was different?

Lol, I’m not sure I can answer that … I would like to say everything and nothing at the same time. But, then we wouldn’t have witnessed all of those tiny celebrations and milestones that usually happen in the womb and Brian and I wouldn’t have grown so much stronger together and individually.

But if I changed it all, my boys wouldn’t have had to be under someone else’s care, in tiny little isolettes, with IVs, with gavage tubes, with antibiotics, with photo therapy. They would have continued to grow inside of me, under my protection and care.

Someone is about to give birth – she asks you for one piece of advice, and you say:

Breathe, take it one day, one hour, or one minute at a time … Take it all in, at your own pace.

What is a question that you have for other moms?

Ha, ha! Is it too early for a drink??

How has this changed you?

It has changed everything – my sleep habits, my drinking habits, my Saturday nights, my Sunday mornings, my patience and my sanity, and it’s changed my title … I’m a mom and I’m okay with all of it!

What do you look forward to?

I look forward to cold and flu season being over! Lol! Really hoping I will be able to pop the boys’ little bubbles they live in after that’s over! One day at a time, no guarantees.

When you are gazing at your babies snoozing, what are you thinking about?

What do I think about?? Well, I’m not sure you have the time to hear what runs through my head when I stare at them. I’m sure most of us think the same things …

  • I love you so much!
  • What would I do without you?
  • How long are you going to sleep for?
  • Was that just a fart or did you just poop again?
  • I love you so much!
  • Did your eyelashes get longer?
  • What colour will your eyes be?
  • You smell so good!
  • I want to hold you forever.
  • I love you so much!
  • Can I pick that booger without waking you?
  • Are you really comfortable in this position?
  • Are you warm enough?
  • Was that sneeze from a little tickle or a cold?
  • Can I keep you forever?
  • I love you so much!

Anything else to share that I haven’t asked?

Motherhood is the most amazing thing I have ever experienced. From the things that scare the shit out of me to the nice calm and quiet moments, I wouldn’t change it for the world.

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