I have always known that Nick and Nora are the only children I will ever have. It’s never occurred to me to have the thoughts otherwise, let alone to let my neck tighten, the air to pass over my vocal cords, and the words “Honey, I really want to talk to you about having another baby” occur. There was a finality to their arrival, a line in the sand of years of tears. While I might have tried my hand at pushing for one more round of IVF had that last one not worked, ultimately isn’t that what we do? One more round? Just one more? Then we’ll stop?
Nick and Nora are it. The doors closed and although I look back on their baby years with a fierce joy tinged with regret (hindsight, and our knowledge that we would do things differently if we had another chance, will always be part of our hearts and minds) I am very aware that there will be no further wee people smelling of milk and sick and the future in this life.
And I think that’s why I struggle so much with moving forward. Or maybe it’s that I get stuck on some parts of moving forward. I am completely ok with their being potty trained, but I miss those days of bouncy chairs and frequent naps. I love that they have sparkly opinions that we get to debate but I miss them falling asleep on my chest.
In a little over a week, the twins have their last ever day of nursery.
They have been going to nursery since they were four months old, and they’ve been going to this nursery since they were eight months old. The twins have known and loved the same women in their lives for that whole time, as the nursery has very little turnover, and their names are part of our weekday lives.
These women love my children, and my children love them. That said, my children are very ready to move on to school.
It’s me that is incredibly tearful over it all.
Since I was pregnant I have been documenting everything. Every part of it. The pregnancy itself I wrote about in a blog, and I’m glad I did because I would have forgotten so much of it. I have created more momentos about their childhood than anyone has outside of the newly appointed Dalai Lama, all in hopes of giving the twins snapshots of their childhoods when they are older.
When the twins arrived I created a scrapbook of my pregnancy and their arrival. It includes all of my scans, the letters from the doctor, cards from well-wishers, and momentos from their birth. Of all the books I’ve created, that’s the one that I plan on keeping for myself.
In addition to a growth chart I mark up every six months for them and a special book for each of them to mark when they lose their teeth (including another entry tonight, as Nora lost another tooth) I did books for the twins’ first two years.
Then I did ones for their years 2-5.
And nursery kept books on the twins, too.
I’ve already got the album ready for their school years.
This mad need to document everything is in case it slips through my memory, my fingers. The time is passing and with it their years. I don’t know if my mad desire to write it all down is for them or me – this is when you learned to crawl, that is when you lost your first tooth. What if something happens to me and they don’t know that we were there, watching while they took their first step, laughing when they sang “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” or holding them through flu, chicken pox, and fevers?
A little part of me writes it all down so that years from now, we can look at the books together. They will sit on shelves in their homes (like my own childhood albums sit) and we can remember these things. I can be a part of their life and I can remember what it was like, way back when…
They start school in less than a month. Although Nick is rather worried about school (he does not handle change well), they are looking forward to it.
We are screaming into the future, headed down the flip side of the roller coaster now. One week until nursery concludes, then they are home with me for a few weeks. School is coming, and I am bracing for it.
The twins each have a copy of Dr. Seuss’ “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”, which their nursery carers have written in (and which I plan on all their teachers signing).
I’ve made the nursery teachers’ good-bye gifts (a jar of Skittles with a gift card inside. Original idea from here).
We’re getting ready. They’re getting ready. School is coming.
And the truth is, it’s me that is not handling the change well this time.
Controversial post going up here tomorrow. Hopefully sans death threats.