Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Ripping off the Band-Aid

I wish I could tell you how many times we’ve said to each other, “we really need to update the blog.” 10? 100? 1000? Where to start? What to write? Do I have time to upload that many pictures? So much has happened, yet so much is the same. But like all things big and daunting you just have to do it. So, with that I’m ripping off the proverbial band-aid and diving right in. Hold on tight…

The triplets are now 4 months old!!! We had their 4 month appointment on Tuesday, September 29 and all were pronounced strong and healthy, well, with the exception of William’s double ear infections. Our first round of antibiotics! Here are the stats:

24 ½ inches (50th percentile)
14 lbs. 6 oz (50th percentile)

25 ¼ inches (75th – 90th percentile)
14 lbs. 11 ½ oz (75th percentile)

24 ¾ inches (50th percentile)
16 lbs. 1 ½ oz (75th percentile)

And remember, those percentiles are on the REGULAR growth chart!!! No more preemie chart needed and such a long way from where we started!

They clearly all have their own personalities and likes/dislikes. It is a wild ride trying to figure out the cues of 3 babies. Luckily, we have the highly conversant Joshua to help “interpret” for us. He pretty much assumes that when a baby cries, Mom & Dad need to change a diaper.

Matthew is our mover! Mr. M (as he is called around here) is the wiggler and has mastered rolling over. This is pretty astounding for a 4 month old preemie. Joshua didn’t roll over until he was nearly 6 months old. In fact, Joshua could sit-up unassisted before he could roll with any proficiency. But Matthew just doesn’t like to be still. He is the most generous with the smiles and will gladly “tell” you about his entire day as long as you will listen. He is grasping rattles and toys when you hold them out for him and is very adept at taking his pacifier out of his mouth. Putting it back in is a bit challenging but he’s working on it.

Paige is our Zen baby. When she was tiny she could truly sleep around the clock waking up only for feedings. She has more awake time now but is still so calm and relaxed it is scary. I’m not sure what she thinks of her Type A parents running around trying to schedule anything and everything. If left to her own devices I think everything around her would flow with the ease of a lazy river. She’s still known as “the peanut” given her tiny stature when she first came home but looking at her now you would never know that she was under 5 pounds when they discharged her and entrusted us with her care. Paige is also very generous with her smiles and loves to coo at you. She is still working on her core strength but her neck is getting stronger every day & I’m sure she’ll be rolling around with Matthew very soon.

William, ahh William. We’re still trying to figure him out. He can smile at you…when he wants to. He can lay contentedly…when he wants to. He can grab a scarf or toy and play with it…when he wants to. But truth be told, the “Big Man” simply likes to be close to you. He loves to be held and cuddled and is usually most-displeased when you have to put him down. He loves looking at his mobile (Herbie Husker!) and his neck and core strength are good. But of all the triplets he is the most preemie acting, meaning that we can truly see that cognitively and physically he is closer to his adjusted age than he is his chronological age.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with adjusted age vs. chronological age, it is something that doctors and parents pay close attention to with preemies. Chronological age is the age of the baby from the day of birth, i.e. the number of days, weeks or years old the baby is. So for the triplets, their chronological age is just over 4 months (or if looking at in weeks, 18 weeks on October 1). Adjusted age is the age of the baby based on due date. So, for the triplets, their adjusted age is not quite 3 months (or if looking at in weeks, 13 weeks on October 1 since their due date was July 1). For some preemies adjusted age never comes in to play and they hit all their milestones within the normal ranges for a full-term baby. For other preemies adjusted age is a huge factor and most be considered almost daily. I think our babies will probably fall somewhere in the middle.

For those of you who know us well it will come as no surprise that it is hard for us not to freak out when we compare William to Matthew. There is a stark contrast. But having triplets is nothing if not a lesson in patience and “letting go.” So we try very hard to look at all the babies as individuals and remember that if we didn’t have them to compare to each other we wouldn’t know any different! Besides, the doctor told us that Matthew is jumping so far ahead he is just making Paige & William look like they are lagging behind when, really, they are hitting all normal 4 month old milestones. Matthew is just hitting 6 to 7 month milestones a little early.

Joshua has adjusted amazingly well to all of this. For a long time he basically ignored the babies. Sure, he liked to get diapers but after that he was pretty much done with all things baby. Now that Paige and Matthew are starting to smile and interact he loves to show the babies how big boys get dressed, eat real food, play with action figures, do art projects and, most importantly, go to Jr. Bankers at school. As he is fond of telling you he is WAY too big for the baby room. We can’t say enough about Joshua’s day care (now known as pre-school!) and how happy he is there. We are confident that the consistent high quality care and attention he received and continues to receive from all of his teachers has grounded him and helped him adjust well to these monumental changes. Sure, he has his moments, but never once has he said he wants us to take them back and *knock on wood* we’ve only seen gentle touches and kisses. Let’s hope that continues…at least until they start getting into his stuff!

As for Mom & Dad we are surviving. Mom went back to work on August 31 and it was as difficult as you would imagine it to be. Having been immersed in the baby world (x3!) for such a long period of time getting back into the groove has been hard…harder this time than it was with Joshua. But, as we tell people when they ask us “how do you do it?” the answer is, you just do. Dad continues to be the champion multi-tasker. But he has recently admitted that from this point forward all weekends must have planned activities and errands. Otherwise, 48+ hours with 4 kids to 2 parents can be, well, downright dreadful. Sorry Paige, we’re going to have to be regimented for a while to come.

So, we hope you’ve enjoyed this peak into our crazy life. I could go on and on about schedules and feedings, day care drop-offs and pick-ups, the amazingly brazen comments we get from people when we take everybody out, the literal lack of time, the kindness and generosity of our friends and family through all of this…but then what would I have to blog about next week. That’s right, my hope is for one blog post a week. Will we be able to make it happen??? As we said way back on the first post when we started this adventure…stay tuned! More details and pictures to come!


The Carney's said...

I was just thinking about you all and am so happy you finally decided to post something on your blog again! I am so happy that everyone is doing fine; they certainly look like healthy happy babies :-)

Marcy said...

Oooooo, i want to hear about the amazingly brazen comments strangers make. People never cease to amaze me...

Glad to see they are all doing well and look and sound happy and healthy. that is all you can ask for. keep the updates coming!