Dear Girls –
November has been rough, my little angels - and I'm not talking about politics (though that has been rough on a different scale). I mean, physically rough. For example, I was buckling you into your carseats in grandma’s cars while we were on Nantucket, and the wind caught the door and slammed shut on the back of my knees. I crumpled to the ground and lay there helpless for a few minutes before mustering the strength to stand back up. The next day, I had a softball sized bruise on the back of my knee.
On the Friday after Thanksgiving, we were facetiming Auntie Joy, and Hayden, you were sitting on my lap. When we were done, Mason wanted to show me something so I moved to lean over, right as you decided to literally jump off my lap. Your concrete noggin’ smashed my face and I immediately started bawling. This outburst of emotion scared the bejeezus out of you because, despite the many bruises that proceeded this one, you’ve never actually seen me cry. And I *SOBBED*. The gasping-for-air-checking-to-see-if-you-knocked-a-tooth-out sobbed. The three of you were so scared. Mason ran to get me a blanket and tuck me in. Quinnie, you just petted my head and assured me “it’s ok mommy.” Hayden, you mostly just stood frozen, scared out of your mind that you broke mommy. I tried my best to stop crying so that you would know I was OK, but the tears just wouldn’t stop. For days, my face throbbed though the only physical evidence was a giant bruise on the inside of my lip that nobody could see, and a little bit of a bruise on the outside of my lip that kind of just made it look like I had half of a mustache. So yeah, that look was hot.
Meanwhile, I haven’t been the only one having a rough go. Hayden, after three straight nights of crying, multiple potty accidents even though you haven’t had any in months, and being off your game, I finally took you to the doctor to see if you had a UTI. When you were little you had one that we didn’t catch right away, so since then, Mama and I have been extremely gun-shy. The doctor we saw was pretty dismissive and kind of annoying, treating me like I was one of those moms that rushes to the doctor with every little ailment. I hate to admit it, but at that point, I was hoping you did in fact have a UTI just to shove it in her smug face, but alas, your tests came back clear and you have been basically fine since then.
The night after that doctor’s appointment, I was sound asleep when I hear you, Quinn, yelling from the bathroom “Mommy, come wiiiiiiiiiipe my butttttttt.” It’s a little odd that you would get up in the middle of the night to poop, but I got right up and took care of business. Ten minutes later you were back in the bathroom screaming bloody murder saying it hurt, and that started the next FOUR HOURS, from midnight til 4 am, when you got up every 15-20 minutes screaming like you were being tortured. The next day, Sunday, you were mostly fine but you kept running to the bathroom and then not going and screaming that it hurt. I bought you laxatives and stool softener. We then got into the car to go visit Auntie Trish and Auntie Caryn. Both of you fell asleep in the car and about 15 minutes from their house, Quinn, you shot awake anxiously saying that you had to go to the bathroom. Since I had pumped you full of laxatives, water, and stool softener, I wasn’t going to gamble on making it another 15 minutes. I stopped at a slightly upscale Mexican restaurant that hadn’t even opened for business. Hayden, you were still asleep, so I woke you up only to discover that you had peed while sleeping. No time to worry about that though… I just grabbed you, hoisted you on my hip, and pretended like I couldn’t feel the urine soaking through my coat, sweatshirt and shirt onto my skin. So, with one of you on each hip, I burst into the Mexican restaurant and asked if I could use the bathroom. The hostess somewhat reluctantly agreed (seriously?!?! Who would really have the gall to say no or make me feel bad about bringing you guys in to use the bathroom when the restaurant wasn’t even open… it wasn’t like I was dragging one pee soaked kid and another shit-filled kid through the middle of someone’s dinner?!?!). Anyway, we got to the bathroom, and Quinn, you once again refused to go, just screaming that it hurt. We left defeated, and on the way out the door, I ignored the dirty looks from the hostess who must have assumed based on the volume of your screams that I was prodding you with a red hot branding iron in the bathroom. We got to the car, and I dug out the pair of pajamas I had packed since we were going to be at Auntie Trish’s for the Patriots game, which wouldn’t end until around bedtime and I wanted you all suited up for the hour drive home. Hayden, I stripped your pee soaked clothes off of you while you were standing on the running board of the Suburban (It’s not like I was going to go back in and ask to use the bathroom again). Right then, a family walked by and looked at me like I should be locked up for stripping a kid down naked in 40-degree weather. So yeah, it was a good drive. We got to Auntie Trish’s and had a great time, complete with plenty of bathroom runs and screaming (and a bath). Finally, right as the Patriots were about to score their game winning drive, Quinnie, you pooped. I was so relieved; it was worth missing the touchdown. Except…. You still kept complaining it hurt.
The next morning, you told me “mommy, I have to go to the bathroom, but it’s OK, it’s won’t hurt because I have to poop, not pee.” I was confused by this… the whole time I thought you were in pain because you had an adult-sized poop stuck in your toddler-sized butt. But nope. Ultimately, Mama ended up taking you to the doctor (our regular doctor, not the condescending lady who saw Hayden a few days prior), and it turns out that you have a UTI. WTF? Maybe you psychosomatically induced a UTI because you were jealous Hayden got to pee in a cup a few days earlier? I’m totally chalking it up to some weird twin voodoo thing. Oh, and sorry for jacking you full of laxatives when really you didn’t need to go poop. Oops.
Anyway, bathroom woes and bruises aside, we’re having a pretty good run. You continue to get a little bit more independent (Hayden, for you this is a relative term, since your baseline starting point includes being suction cupped to me at all times). At Auntie Nic’s for Thanksgiving you played with the other kids and let me and Mama have a good ole time playing ridiculous games and drinking wine with the grown-ups.
You continue to develop your own style. For Thanksgiving, Quinn, you insisted on wearing your superman t-shirt for the second day in a row and a pair of jeans. To dress is up, we picked the jeans with flowers on them – which really made the blue in your dirty, hand-me-down batman light up sneakers pop. Hayden, you wore leopard print pants that were both inside out and backwards because you refused to let me help you put them on. We showed up looking like the hot mess family we are. The day after Thanksgiving, since superman was in the wash, Quinn, you had a terrible meltdown. Thankfully, Auntie Nic had given us a bag of Jackson’s old hand-me-downs at dinner, and we found a kick-ass Star Wars shirt (I thought it was Darth Vader, but our friends on social media corrected me. I forget the guy’s real name, so in our house, it will always be “Darf Vader”). You wore that for two days in a row and then switched back to Spider Man. Getting you dressed for school in something other than these two shirts this week has been a Herculean task.
For the record, I don’t care what you guys want to wear. I do prefer that your clothes are semi-clean, but Quinn, if you want to rock super heroes and star wars, and Hayden, you want to flash pink glitter and animal prints, I’m on board. No guilt or gender-typing boy clothes and girl clothes in our house. You’re both your own people and I love it.
We love you to pieces.