Friday, January 11, 2013

My Child, The Thief

It has been 33 days since my child has broken a law and so far we think that we've been able to stop his slow and steady descent into a world of crime. 

"What???" you're thinking.  "How could sweet, little, smiley Aaron do anything to deserve this libel?"

Let me explain...

In the fall we started taking our children to music class.  They were, in my opinion, a little young to do much participation.  At about five or six months old they couldn't play the instruments, sing the songs, or even clap along.  That's not to say that I don't believe in music classes for children.  I do strongly believe that giving children exposure to music including rhythm, pitch, meter, musical styles, and more does a lot to help develop their brains.  So off we went to music class every week.

Over the weeks the boys went from laying on their backs during most of class to rocking on their hands and knees to crawling.  They started smiling at the other children, clapping their hands and playing* with the instruments.  Class got more and more interesting for them, and me, every week.

The third to the last week of class our beloved Miss Caroline took out her saxophone to start playing our welcome song.  Jeff, who had recently discovered crawling, took off from position in the circle and started crawling across the carpet.  I wondered where he was going.  He just plopped himself down a foot in front of Miss Caroline to watch her play.  He was like the most well behaved child at circle time.  So cute and so well behaved and he was now starting to participate in class.  I couldn't have been more proud.

The next week we went to class again and enjoyed ourselves.  On our way home we stopped at Walgreen's to buy some stuff for the house.  As we started to leave the store the crime began...

Security Guard: Uh...sir...did you buy a candy bar?
Me: No.  Why?
Security Guard: Well...look.  (pointing to Aaron)
Me: I'll just go pay for that.

While at the register paying for our stuff Aaron had reached out of his stroller and a peanut butter Snickers.  By the time the security guard caught him he had been gumming it for a minute or two.  It was now covered in slobber.  Don't think Jeff was innocent either.  With all of his crying he usually does during the day we know that he could have let out a wail to get our attention.  Jeff is guilty of aiding and abetting.

Thank goodness Aaron had stolen something that was only about a dollar and delicious too (not something like cinnamon gum or sour patch kids).  At least the kid has good enough sense to steal something daddy likes.

Nevertheless, I believe this is how a life of crime starts.  Kids think it's cool to do petty crimes like shop lifting and before I know it Aaron will be doing 5-10 in Sing Sing for stealing cars and Jeff will be in some white collar prison for a Ponzi scheme.  Hopefully these mug shots and prisoner jump suits they wore will make them scared straight.

* playing means trying to eat it and slobbering all over it

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Sleep Part Eleven: More Steps Backwards

Ugh...another posting about them not sleeping, Michael???

Yes.  It's true.  I swear I have several blog posts in my head that have nothing to do with sleeping and they will be coming soon, but sleep is a big issue these days and I want to remember to write about what is happening while it's still in my head.  Since I'm not sleeping much I have to write about it quickly before it disappears from my swiss cheese brain.

A while ago I wrote about how just when I thought the babies' sleep was getting better we took two steps backwards.  I think this time we just took three steps backwards.

Just about three weeks after we had our first sleeping through the night we had a night in which Derek and I woke up six times between the two of us.  SIX!!!  I have no idea what is going on at this point.  I take solace in the fact that some of my friends have told me that it took their kids about a year before they started sleeping through the night.  Some people have said twins tend to have worse sleeping habits and they disrupt each other more during the night. 

Whatever the reason for not sleeping, it's hard after having a couple nights of five, six or even eight hours of sleep.  On the plus side, I think being a twin is helping them with some development.  When one learns how to do something the other picks it up quickly and often does it a little better.  The new skill is standing.  Both boys are testing how to stand on their own for a few seconds.  They're still a few weeks away from mastering it (I'm guessing) but it's fun to watch them alternate who stands longer.  They also play with each other.  Just yesterday I watched them crawl around the floor and constantly look for each other, smile, and then continue crawling.  It's exciting to watch them play together and learn socialization skills.

I'm waiting for language to come too.  As a sign language interpreter who keeps thinking about getting his masters in linguistics (specifically first and second language acquisition) I can't wait for them to start signing and speaking.  I want to know what's going on in those little brains.  I'm wondering if they will develop twin sign language in a manner similar to idioglossia.  I thought it was funny (and validating!) one reason twins have language delays is the exhaustion and stress of the parents!

Besides the sleep issue they are happy, healthy babies and I am thankful for that.  

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Sleep Part Ten: Newton's Third Law

Newton's third law states: For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Did you know that this law applies not only to objects but babies as well?

So apparently Aaron sleeping through the night means that he wants to sleep less during the day.  As his nighttime sleeping has increased, the ease in which we can get him to nap and sleep for the night has decreased.  We can see the eye rubbing and the hair twirling.  We sometimes see yawns.  We see his gaze becoming glassy from time to time.  We know he's tired.  We know he wants to sleep.  And yet, when we go into his room to put him to bed it's like WWIII.  Somehow a 9 month old baby often wins the battle against a pair of grown men.

My guess is that he doesn't like waking up alone and in a dark room.  But that theory doesn't always hold true because sometimes he can wake up happy.  Here's what we know...

- He's happy being held in most rooms but when we walk into his bedroom to put him down he squirms (and screams)
- He's happy being in his bedroom to play so it's not an issue with the bedroom
- He's can be content playing in his crib so I don't think the crib is the issue
- He's unhappy going to bed during the day and the night so I don't think it's an issue of him not liking the light or the dark
- Baths, feedings, pacifiers, soothing music, shushing, rocking, singing, playing until he wears himself out, a new diaper, and everything else we use to get him to sleep are all hit or miss; we have to just keep trying things because we don't know what will work
- We go see the pediatrician tomorrow (hooray!  I don't actually think I'll get a good solution because "babies are babies and do what they want" but at least I'll get to know their current weight and height)

This started out like a physics problem but I think I'm going to have to be Sherlock Holmes to solve this riddle.  I was never good at science but luckily I often figured out who the thief was in Scooby-Doo cartoons so I think I have a chance at solving this.