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March 24, 2010

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Brave or Crazy?

Chicken and I are a bit fearless at making sure we get the twins out and about.

Neither one of us can stand being cooped up inside for too many days, so when the weather is nice–out we go.
Usually these outings have to be quite close to home, at least within a mile, because we only have a limited amount of time in between feedings until we have to race home again. No one wants a public meltdown!
City living doesn’t get you any car escape when the baby cries, it’s all out there for everyone to hear–and make judgement against. You have no idea how many people give you dirty looks when your baby is in the stroller crying. It’s only happened once, but that was enough for us to make sure we watched the clock like hawks. We often joke as we’re speed walking back home that we feel like vampires racing against the sun.

Since the boys are still eating anywhere between every 2.5 hours and 3 hours, we have to be ready at the 2.5. If you consider it takes about an hour to feed, burp, and get ready to go, that doesn’t leave us much time ‘out’.
Today, after being inside for a few rainy, cool days, we woke to find the sun shining and a lovely 60 degrees.
An executive decision was made that we would do our afternoon outing of wearing the babies, but pack a bottle of breast milk for Grunter and I would breast feed Whoop Whoop since we’re still not doing bottles with him after the nursing strike. Yes, it’s now been almost 2 weeks of around the clock breast feeding. We are exhausted, but if we don’t go outside, we’ll be exhausted and crazy.

We decided to get a latte to split at our favorite coffee place, pick up sandwiches from theCambodian sandwich shop, and head for the Highline on the west side.
Our plan was to breast feed W2 in the park and give Grunter the bottle. Then we’d walk along the Highline and eat our sandwiches. If it was too chilly, we’d head around the corner to our friend’s art gallery, visit with him and feed the boys there before heading back home.

This gave us a HUGE block of time. We leisurely strolled over and by the time we got there admitted we were both exhausted and we’d have to take the subway home. Seems we’re both a little out of shape these days as this was a walk to and fro we’d have no problem with before.
But, in all fairness, we previously weren’t carrying 8 lbs of baby and a diaper backpack either.
Plus, it is over a mile and 3/4 just one way….so I think we did quite well!
(Yes, this activity level is probably why I’m still bleeding…but Doc says it’s all perfectly OK).

The wind was blowing off the Hudson and it was a lot windier and cooler than we’d anticipated. There was no way we could take them out of their carriers and feed them up there, so we headed to our friend’s gallery….only to find a note on the door saying he’d be back in an hour.
SHIT. By now, the natives are getting restless and we don’t have a plan C.
This is about the time we start wondering if we are crazy, horrible mommies.

This neighborhood, the Meatpacking District, is home to high end shops and restaurants, not exactly the kinds of places you pop into for a discreet nursing session while ordering a drink just so you can sit down. Shit again.
I remembered a trendy-ish diner a few blocks away so we headed there, got a booth in the back and had our first ever session of both public bottle feeding (easy) and breast feeding (not so easy!).
It was a brave undertaking since we’ve had so many problems with getting Whoop Whoop to latch on, BUT he loves the one-on-one side cradle hold, so I was just praying it would go well. I took one arm out of the Moby, draped a pashmina over my shoulder and his face and tried to position him.
Oops. Just flashed my nipple. Clearly I need some practice at this. Thankfully no one saw!
We finally got it and he nursed for a good 25 minutes. Getting him back in the Moby without re-wrapping the entire thing wasn’t easy, but we did it!

Whoop Whoop under wraps

Now that Grunter has eaten, it’s one handed eating for Chicken

After that we braved the subway for the first time and got a LOT of looks. I don’t think many people see babies in a hands-free Moby wrap out and about and since he’s almost completely covered, I’m sure they are more than a little curious. I want to wear a little button that says, “yes, it’s a baby and yes, he can breathe”.
Plus Chicken had a light scarf over the ergo, so you coudn’t really see Grunter either. We are just two ladies with strange bumps on us!

It didn’t go quite as planned, we never even made it up to the Highline, we never got to eat our sandwiches (now dinner!) because we ordered at the diner and we hadn’t counted on not being able to walk back home, but overall, it went well.
It was an exhausting afternoon, but I’m glad we did it. We just have to keep pushing ourselves to go outside our comfort zone and I think the sooner we do it, the better. No doubt about it, twins are hard work!

I have no idea what my life would be like not only without these boys, but also without Chicken and I as a team with these boys. We are so lucky she has this much time off to bond with her boys. I don’t know of many twin parents who both get to spend this much time with their babies. There’s not a day that goes by when we don’t say grace for how lucky our lives have turned out to be. It was a hard road to get here, but my god it was all worth it.