Life With Twins: The First Two Weeks Part Two – Going Home

collage 8Read Part One Here: Life With Twins: The First Two Weeks – The Hospital Stay

After a five day hospital stay, once our precious girls Mia and Everly arrived via Cesarean section at 37 weeks 4 days, we had finally been given the green light to go home.  Mike proudly carried our two tiny 6lb bundles out into the hot summer air away from our safe haven of doctors and nurses, who for the past five days had been helping us non-stop.  We were on our own now… gulp!

We knew we had a bit of extra time before we were losing our babysitters who were looking after our two older kids, Holden and Beau, so Mike and I decided to drop into a baby boutique to pick up more swaddling blankets.  Venturing out of my hospital cocoon felt so absurd.  I felt hypersensitive to lights and the bustle of people around me.  After walking around the store a bit I started to weaken and parked myself on a chair near the door with our girls while Mike finished paying.  Reality was setting in that real life was about to begin and I was pretty nervous.  Not nervous about caring for two babies at once.  Nervous about creating a new family dynamic and making sure that I was giving everyone enough attention.

Once arriving home I was told that Beau was still napping, so after Holden quickly greeted his baby sisters I darted upstairs to the nursery with Mia and Everly to nurse them.  After a serene feeding session I started to hear muffled whispers and the sound of a vacuum outside the nursery door.  Once I ventured out of the room to see what was going on I knew immediately what happened by the overpowering stench.  Baby powder.  While we all thought Beau was napping, in reality she had been emptying an entire bottle of baby powder in her room.  I am still shocked to this day that Mike was so patient about it.

We spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying our newest members of the family while my mom, as well as Holden and Beau helped feed them.  I was trying to accommodate our kids as much as possible but my energy was quickly fading.

collage 2I put our girls down for their first nap in their cribs with huge success.  I realized then that sending our girls out to the nurses for help while in the hospital actually helped them get accustomed to sleeping independently which transferred over nicely when it was time to sleep in their nursery.

Side note: I had tried having Holden room share with us when he was born, which didn’t work out since I am such a light sleeper.  We had our girls sleep in separate cribs in their nursery so that we could use Angelcare monitors with the breathing pads for peace of mind.  If they shared a crib the monitors would not work.  (This post is not sponsored by Angelcare, I just LOVE their monitors).  See Nesting Story’s Twin Nursery Tour And Tandem Feeding Tutorial Video for more on our sleeping arrangements and how I would tandem feed them without help right from the start.


Once it was finally my turn to have a sleep I was so excited to pass out in my own bed without an enormous pregnant belly.  I had been sleeping in a slightly reclined hospital bed since my c-section up to this point.  I eased my bruised and battered body into my bed and was ready to go into a coma.  As soon as I laid down it felt as if someone place a 50 lb weight on my chest.  I couldn’t breathe.  I sat up in a panic and thought to myself, “what the hell was that?”  I tried repeatedly and every time I felt like I was suffocating.  I started sobbing as Mike entered the room.  I explained that I just wanted to sleep but couldn’t.  I eventually found a way to sleep somewhat comfortably by grabbing Beau’s decorative pillow’s from her bed and slept upright for the following few days.  This was something I had never experienced following my vaginal deliveries with my older two.  I think it had been a combination of healing from surgery as well as my organs being misplaced after carrying our twins for almost nine months.Collage 4

The next day I noticed my feet and ankles began to swell.  This happened after Holden’s delivery (which was also during the summer heat), so I wasn’t surprised.  But the amount of swelling was incredible, so much so that it was alarming my parents who kept taking my blood pressure, worrying that it might be the cause.  Nope, blood pressure was fine.  The uncomfortable ankle swelling went on for three weeks before it subsided.  I had kept saying to Mike that if my ankle swelling went down I would feel so much better.

I wasn’t allowed to drive for two weeks after my c-section and thankfully Mike was home during that time.  We ventured out all as one big family and enjoyed the long summer day.  Holden was adjusting beautifully to his new sisters and after a few giggles when I would nurse Mia and Everly uncovered in front of him, he got over it pretty quickly.  Beau was a mix between clinging to me and being very defiant.  She had her moments of being an extremely helpful little mommy, but then she would start taking advantage of my guilt.  I was trying to be so accommodating, worrying that she might feel completely shafted.  After my mom witnessed what was going on, she gave me fantastic advice.  “Joanna, she is a big girl.  What this family needs right now is a mom that is taking care of herself and healing properly from a very major surgery.  Your number one priority are those two tiny babies.”  It was exactly what I needed to hear.  From that point forward I put my foot down and Beau quickly realized the jig was up.  To this day it is still a balance between extra love, attention and one on one time vs structure and discipline with Beau.

The first couple days at home came with it’s share of visitors.  I was careful to schedule the visits for when it suited us and not over do it.

collage 3We had scheduled a newborn photography shoot for day three at home.  This was a turning point for us.  We had a babysitter for Holden and Beau while Mike and I hid out, lounging on couches while the photographers gingerly photographed our little dolls for four hours straight only stopping here and there so I could feed them.  This gave Mike and I some time to get away from visitors and the activity of our home.  We put our feet up, relaxed and regrouped.
collage 5In the days that followed we all found our groove.  I actually enjoyed getting up with Mia and Everly to feed them during the night.  When one would wake, I would also wake the sleeping baby and do one big feeding.  I was actually getting a pretty decent amount of sleep and would soak in those intimate quiet moments when it was just the three of us.  We mastered bathing two babies (think assembly line), and a routine was starting to take shape.collage 9

Holden and Beau were and still are fascinated and completely in love with “their” babies.  They both started finding ways they could help safely.  Beau would even mimic me breastfeeding with her dolls.  There were days that I would get teary and think I wasn’t spending enough time with one child or another and always feeling spread so thin.  But as time has passed I have learned that even a quick hug and kiss in passing when you don’t have time for more can make all the difference.  I also try to be constantly in tune with who may be having a rough time and give them extra attention.  It is a constant balancing act.

After the first two weeks I was feeling much better, but taking my wise nurse’s advice, I didn’t over do it at that point, including going on long walks.  It took a couple months to really start feeling like myself again.  Although I was relieved that I was on the other side and had completed my “marathon” of a pregnancy, there was a lot of healing that needed to happen.
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By the end of the first two weeks, Mia and Everly were still those easy to please, happy babies that I had experienced in the hospital.  But little did I know that something was brewing and our lives would soon be turned upside down.

Read Postpartum Depression, Fructose Intolerence And Why I Stopped Breastfeeding Our Twins to see what was waiting for us at the three week point.SMP005

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Life With Twins: The First Two Weeks Part 1 – The Hospital Stay

collage 2Day 1. C-Section Day.

My girls had finally arrived safely after 37 weeks and 4 days and I had just finished the most blissful two hours of skin to skin with them to regulate their temperature.  Coincidentally a family member had delivered her baby earlier that morning in the same hospital just a couple rooms down.  This meant that there was a parade of family hanging out in my extra large deluxe room cooing over our new twin girls.  I was okay with this chaos because of my incredibly protective nurse that kept the girls on my chest and was very clear that no one holds them.  My girls just melted into my body and my post c-section shivers finally subsided as the epidural wore off and the pile of warm blankets took affect.  This will go down as one of my favourite memories of all time.collage 2After a couple of hours I was getting pretty tired, (and a little sweaty).  My nurse finally allowed Mike and the eagerly waiting family members to take our girls into the hallway while she instructed me to have a nap… greatest post c-section gift (second to my little bundles).

After my two hour nap I was ready to jump back into things.  I nursed Mia and Everly and then relaxed and enjoyed a popsicle while Mike and the nurse gave our girls their first baths.  Because I already knew how to bath a newborn, I knew I better use that time to enjoy watching from my bed while resting as much as possible.  collage 1It was very soon after this that my IV was taken out and my catheter removed.  This process wasn’t painful, just uncomfortable and gave me instant relief.  The rest of day 1 (and the following week) I felt a lot of pain in my ribs stretching across my back.  It was a combination of my body recovering from carrying twins as well as residual gas pains from surgery.  In fact, the sharp rib pain was almost the only pain I felt for the first day.  Sure, my body felt heavy and exhausted but there really wasn’t much, if any pain, from my c-section incision.  It was more of a numb feeling.

Mike and I spent the rest of the afternoon cuddling and getting to know the two newest members of our family.  They were so peaceful, predictable and easy to please.  Every nurse that entered our room mentioned how happy our girls were and credited it to me being so relaxed.  Sure, I think that contributed, but these being my third and fourth babies, I can honestly say these girls have very easy going personalities.

We ended day one with a walk around labour and delivery proudly showing off our girls.  Yes, I forced myself to walk which has been proven to help with recovery… and it did.  I enjoyed a proper meal, and introduced Mia and Everly to a few more visitors.  By 9PM I sent Mike home to get a good sleep and with the help of the nurses I had a pretty successful first night sending my girls out to the nurses station and having them brought back to me to nurse so I could grab little bits of sleep.

Side note: when I had my first, Holden, I had Mike sleep in a pull out chair next to me in the hospital while I lay awake the entire first night just staring at him in awe.  I think this is pretty typical when you have your first.  But the next day Mike and I were zombies.  When I had our daughter Beau I sent Mike home to sleep and I slept with Beau on my chest, which was one of the most incredible experiences.  With our twins I had always planned on doing what I could to utilize my longer hospital stay and ensure a speedy recovery.  This meant using the nurses as much as possible.  Let’s face it, I had two more kids at home to parent as well.  I needed to be as rested and healed as possible.

Day 2.  The BAD Day.

I found that I could start moving around a little better after my c-section on day 2 and I was able to enjoy a hot shower that morning (and every day after). But the after birth contractions set in and my nipples started to blister from all of the tandem nursing.  The pain of both of these was much worse than any incision pain and after asking for more medication I got some relief.

This was the day our girl’s doctors let us know that Everly’s weight loss was hitting the 10% point and Mia’s jaundice was still apparent so they recommended that I supplement with formula after each time I nursed Mia and Everly.  We were okay with this and just wanted what was best for our girls.

This was also the day our two older children were to visit and meet their long awaited baby sisters.  Each met the babies accompanied by their grandparents, with whom they were staying with with.  When our five year old son, Holden, first visited with my parents he was excited and confident while holding them, insisting he didn’t need help.  The visit ended with tears and Mike helped redirect his excitement as he left.  Next was Beau, our energetic three year old.  She held the babies like a little mommy and couldn’t get enough of them.  Her exit was a bit more dramatic.  Tears and a full blown meltdown is an understatement.  I had to get her to the hospital doors and ask Mike’s parents to grab her from me and carry her away wailing.  I knew I had to be strong and not let these emotional good-byes get to me.  My mother-in-law is still scarred from this and Beau gets nervous every time I wear those same pj pants with the elephants on them.  Mike and I made the decision together to not let them visit again for the rest of my hospital stay.  It was too hard on everyone and that ended up being the right decision.collage 1

Weeping is very common for the first week after having a baby but unlike after having my older kids I had been tear free.  Suddenly the biggest bully I have encountered in my adult life entered my hospital room.  A blonde thirty-something hospital lactation consultant (LC) with a monotone voice, dead eyes and who was incapable of smiling, started ripping my parenting choices and I to shreds.  From my breast-pump, to me supplementing, to listening to the doctors and nurses that Everly was underweight and needed a little help.  I sat there wide-eyed, while my sweet nurse sat quietly behind her helping me bottle feed Everly and watching me with a knowing merciful look.  Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against lactation consultants, in-fact my mother used to be an LC.  But this woman was soul-crushing.  While I thought if I just keep my mouth shut she will finish and go away, but Mike the chatty cathy that he is, began engaging her in conversation.

Once the warlock finally left, I started bawling.  You know that guttural cry that escapes your mouth without your permission, it was like that.  I was fuming!  My nurse began to comfort and agree with me, telling me to ignore her.  Mike quickly caught on and realized what had just happened… Oops!  Just while I was taking a breath between my shocked, ranting and whaling cries, my O.B., the most calming presence on earth entered the room for my post op check up.  The sweet, loveable, highly respected doctor who often uses the phases “snug as a bug” and “happy as a clam” while describing how well your fetus is growing, looked shocked and beyond embarrassed with this LC as I described in sobbing detail what I had just experienced.  She apparently “dealt” with that LC and banned her from my room.

After sending Mike home to rest in the evening, my girlfriends visited me.  We all sat in a circle passing the babies along every few minutes.  It was a wonderful break from the traumatic day I had experienced and it was exciting watching them cuddle and bond with Mia and Everly.

Day 3.  The Bonding Day.

This day was much quieter as far a visitors go.  Mike and I spent the day cuddling and really getting to know Mia and Everly.  We enjoyed some outside food Mike brought, (a nice break from the hospital food) and many walks around the maternity ward.  It was so nice to be able to move again without the weight of my pregnant belly sending my heart into overdrive.  By this point we knew all of the wonderful nurses so well and my confrontation with the evil lactation consultant had become an urban legend.

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This was also the day that we started to really get to know Mia and Everly’s personalities.  Mia was and still is such a cuddle bug and Everly is so smiley and such a ham.  Mike got such a kick out of watching her sleep because she would make such a variety of hilarious facial expressions.

Day 4.  The Extra Hospital Day.

We were all packed and ready to head home on day four when the paediatrician and nurse came in with a concerned look on their faces.  They weren’t yet satisfied enough with Everly’s weight gain and wanted to keep us there one day longer.  This was a hard pill to swallow.  My nurse still went ahead and removed my staples from my incision and applied the steri-strips (little vertically applied bandages applied to my c-section scar).  Although I had been dreading the removal of my staples it wasn’t bad at all.  I was instructed to let the steri-strips fall off naturally but by day seven remove the rest that haven’t come off yet.  At this point a fair bit of bruising had settled in around my incision making it look worse than it felt.  As long as I had baggy string drawn pants I could pull up over my incision, I was fine.

This was the day we were supposed to reunite with Holden and Beau and give them the gifts we had put away from their baby sisters.  We made the decision for Mike to head home and give them their gifts while I facetimed them.  In the end it worked out well and our kids were happy to be home with Daddy.  I made the best of having an extra day in the hospital by having one of my dearest friends hang out with us.  We actually had a really fun time and she stayed way past visiting hours just laughing and cuddling babies.

Day 5.  Going Home.

This day couldn’t come fast enough.  Although I was still moving slowly and exhausting quickly, I was eager to get home and create my own routine with our family of six.  We placed our teeny tiny girls in their carseats, said goodbye to all of the wonderful nurses and ventured outside.

collage car seat

We made the decision to stop at a baby supply store on the way home to buy more swaddling blankets which we realized we didn’t have enough of.  It was kind of nice to delay our entry into real world with our older kids but I quickly became tired and was ready to get home.  Although I thought I was prepared for real life outside of the hospital… living it was a whole different story. To be continued…

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Postpartum Depression, Fructose Intolerance And Why I Stopped Breastfeeding Our Twins

Stop BFI have had a bit of a mental block these last few weeks. I have enjoyed writing about my twin pregnancy and then their birth but to honestly write about life with our girls was going to require a very honest raw post first. So before you think that our lives with twins have been all rainbows and sunshine I will tell you about a major bump in the road that has since put each day in perspective. I was able to bring these two beautiful, happy and easy-going girls into the world as a very experienced mama. I already knew how to bath, nurse, soothe and care for a newborn and I just had to double up. But three weeks into my girl’s lives I entered into three weeks of my own personal hell. I didn’t just experience a few hectic weeks, I experienced three straight weeks of stress so extreme that it can break a person. So here it is, our story of what caused me to experience postpartum depression and make the very satisfying decision to stop breast-feeding our girls when they were eight weeks old.

When Mia and Everly were born, other than Everly’s quick thirty-minute stay in the NICU for in-drawing, everything was going as smooth as a scheduled C-section can be. They each nursed right off the bat and to the amazement of my team of nurses I had them tandem nursing on the first try.  I had gone into my twin journey determined to breastfeed but okay with supplementing a little with formula if needed.

When we had our first child, Holden, I exclusively breastfed him until he was ten weeks old and suddenly no amount of nursing was satisfying him.  He was a very moody baby and like all four of our kids he had a huge appetite.  No matter what I tried to increase my supply I was never one of those blessed woman who could feed a village with her milk.  Maybe it was my lack of thyroid (I had a complete thyroidectomy when I was 19 due to severe hyperthyroidism and a hyper plastic nodule), but by the time I had exhausted every trick to increase my supply, postpartum depression had start lurking over my shoulder.  So when Holden was 10 weeks old I started giving him one or two bottles of formula a day and still nursed about the same amount as my friends were with their little ones.  I was able to breastfeed both of my older kids with a little formula supplementing each day for six months, which was when I was very ready to finish.

On day three in the hospital with our twins the nurses and pediatricians began to become alarmed with Everly’s weight loss.  There was a bit of confusion as to if her starting weight of 6lbs 3oz (Mia was 6lbs) was correct because of the commotion going on about her breathing issues.  But the scales weren’t lying.  Weigh after weigh Everly, although nursing like a champ, was losing weight until the point that she had lost over 10% of her starting body weight.  In the hospital you quickly learn that 10% is the magic number for alarm bells to go off as this weight loss was a dangerously high.  I was very relaxed about it and quickly agreed with the nurses to start both girls on some formula topping them up after each feed.

We headed home on day four when Everly started to gain a little weight and the following three weeks went by surprisingly well.  Although it was tricky at times to find the quiet and keep the older kids at bay to nurse, I really enjoyed tandem nursing and had a great routine of topping them up with a bottle.  I loved that I could nurse a twin and then pass them off to a family member to be topped off with a bottle.  The girls were sleeping well and I was getting up with them a couple times a night to feed.

Then the diarrhea hit.  What I initially dismissed as frequent breastfed newborn bowel movements turned into over forty frothy acidic bowel movements a day from each twin.  This caused a diaper rash so severe that it covered most of their bottoms right down to the dermis, bleeding at each diaper change.  No matter what diaper cream we tried or amount of air exposed to it, the rash would not improve.  We knew that until the diarrhea stopped the rash wouldn’t go away.  We switched a couple of formulas, which didn’t make a difference either.  They were crying constantly, no really, I mean constantly!

A Video of Mia and Everly Crying That I Sent To Mike At Work So He Could Experience It

During this time we had a temporary nanny to help with our older kids during the summer months and my husband Mike was wrapping up the biggest project of his career.  This kept him away from home and he was arriving home late everyday for weeks, which was rare for his job.  I was averaging 30 minutes of sleep a night.  Although I was getting a lot of help from family members, I could barely string together a sentence.  I remember lying on the couch for two minutes while my sister-in -law was over helping me.  I was babbling like a delirious sleep deprived lunatic and she was looking at me with very concerned eyes.  I eventually stopped the bedtime help because only I could put the babies to bed and the older kids just wanted mom after the day with the nanny and would start acting up if another outside person was there trying to help.  If I hadn’t been as prepared and organized as I was for twins I would have completely sunk.  It was the perfect storm for postpartum depression.  Although I knew a dark cloud had settled over my head I couldn’t stop for a minute, or else my house of cards would come crashing down.

I started to take action carting my girls into the emergency room with the help of my mom.  The situation was baffling and taken very seriously.  The nurses and doctors couldn’t believe how healthy and hydrated they were despite their chronic diarrhea and contributed that to my sleepless nights of feeding.  Blood and stool samples were taken and our girls were misdiagnosed with a dairy intolerance.  I was falling apart; I could barely hold it together.  I had been through so many stressful experiences in my life but this was the only time that I felt like I was in a pressure cooker and that I might shatter into a million pieces.  Mike and I decided that because he was only a week away from his deadline that he had worked so hard for, we wouldn’t pull the plug.  I was starting to lose hope and began panicking that no one would be able to figure out what was wrong with our poor babies.

Then a nervous doctor called us back into the emergency room and put us in touch with another pediatrician.  This pediatrician dug deeper and asked lots of questions about our older kids including their own diarrhea triggers.  I pointed out that they cannot have apple juice without having diarrhea after.  He explained that he thought our girls could have a Dietary Fructose Intolerance…..  A WHAT?

A dietary fructose intolerance: (not to be confused with a life threatening hereditary fructose intolerance).  Fructose is naturally present in fruits, some vegetables and honey. It is also used as a sweetener in some soft drinks and fruit drinks. When the body doesn’t absorb fructose properly, it is called fructose malabsorption or fructose intolerance.  Fructose malabsorption occurs when the body is not able to break down fructose during the digestive process. When undigested fructose reaches the intestines, it reacts with naturally occurring bacteria and generates carbon dioxide and hydrogen gases, which can cause bloating, abdominal pain, heartburn, diarrhea and gas.  –

It’s bizarre and very rare for an infant to have a fructose intolerance, but twins?  It was worth a shot.  The pediatrician raced around researching and making calls to find out what if any baby formula did’t contain fructose.  Most of them do, even many that don’t list it right on the label. Finally, after speaking to a gastro pediatric specialist, he found Earth’s Best organic baby formula.

I left the hospital exhausted and still in disbelief that this could be the answer.  After having our girls on the new formula for a few days we saw an improvement.  I was still nursing but I found myself feeling like a shell of a person.  Between giving so much of my body during my twin pregnancy, my C-section and then the colossal three weeks of stress and sleep deprivation I had endured, I didn’t feel like myself.  While nursing our then six week old girls in the middle of the night I suddenly knew that I had to stop breastfeeding.  Only trace amounts of fructose if any are in breast milk, but it was acting as a natural laxative for our girls.  Between that, me being completely spent and still fighting postpartum depression I made the decision right then and there to stop breast-feeding.  I was certain.  Not a bone in my body had any doubt.  It took two weeks to wean our girls off of nursing.  The diarrhea completely cleared up.  Our girls were happy, satisfied, content and SLEEPING.IMG_1546

The clouds started to part as my hormones leveled out and I began to feel joy again.  The girls were thriving and rarely even fussed.  You bet I enjoyed the perks of bottle-feeding.  Propping them up for feeds (which they prefer) and watching others feed them including our older kids.  I have an incredible bond with our twin girls.  Of course it’s different from the bond I have from our older kids, just like my bond is different between my two oldest.  Occasionally I’ll feel a pang of guilt as I watch them gobbling down a bottle propped up while I am trying to get dinner on the table for six people.  But then I think about how incredibly happy and social they are and frankly much more content than my older two ever were and I know that the choice I made was the right one.

Here’s the kicker: although I am so certain with my decision, I find myself picking and choosing which photos I post, avoiding photos of my girls having bottles in fear of breast feeding bullies coming after me with torches and pitch forks.  I have made the decision to post those photos.  As many of you know I am very active on social media, especially Instagram.  I will be posting the beautiful photos of my girls enjoying their bottles that don’t hurt their tummies and bring them so much joy under the hashtag #thebottleisbeautiful.  I Invite you to follow me on Instagram and if you have bottle fed your baby/babies add your beautiful bottle feeding photos with #thebottleisbeautiful.  Let’s stop bottle shaming now.


Someone Switched My Baby – Extreme Separation Anxiety


My little guy arrived into the world in a pretty textbook way; my water broke like a water balloon 3 days before my due date and after six hours of labor and twenty minutes of pushing he was in my arms.  He was perfect!  He came out completely pink and ready for kisses.  We were now a proud family of three.

In the weeks that followed my son’s birth we had a parade of family and friends come through our house cuddling and passing around my little man.  My mother would come over often to babysit or just spend time with her first grandchild.  My husband and I were bursting at the seams with our cute and cuddly baby boy.

Then one morning when he was ten weeks old I went into the nursery to go get who I thought was my son.  No, no one actually switched my baby, but they might as well have.  He was miserable and on edge.  After giving him a thorough look over and consulting my mental “is he sick” checklist I came to the conclusion that he was his normal robust self but with an attitude. I decided to get on with my day as usual.  When my mother arrived later that day I was relieved to pass off my little gremlin and get some much needed housework finished.

That was when all hell broke loose!  He howled and howled and did not want anything to do with my mom.  Determined not to give up, my mom told me she was fine, besides, she had survived four babies herself (one who of which was nicknamed Oscar the Grouch for a reason).  I raced out of the house and opted to buy a baby swing which my husband and I up until this point had thought was a load of crap!  After arriving home an hour later and seeing my son was still hysterical, and my mom, the veteran nurse, lactation consultant and mother was exhausted and felt helpless, I couldn’t get the swing put together fast enough.  It helped a bit but until my mom left and closed the door behind her he didn’t quite settle.

That’s when the realization that my baby boy may have a bad case of separation anxiety set in.  Okay, I thought, I could handle this.  Besides, I don’t want to share my little bundle of joy with anyone anyways.  This will pass soon… HA!  I was delusional!

As time passed my son systematically cut person after person out of his life including my husband, which broke his heart.  We were at the point that we couldn’t attend any family functions without feeling like we had been through a war and I had to tell people in the grocery store not to make eye contact with my baby let alone talk to him.  I remember multiple attempts at hosting play dates with my friends and their babies and having to spend 99% of the time hiding upstairs.  My husband and I came up with odd little tricks to keeping him happy while we had visitors like putting him in his high chair with the TV on and a tablespoon of peanut butter… this was not how I pictured motherhood!  I was so isolated and alone.

The breaking point was when my son was 18 months and I was expecting our daughter (a surprise!!!) in a month and I couldn’t conceive how I was going to handle a newborn and a son who couldn’t peel himself off of me.  I started sobbing and panicking to my husband and instructed him to drive me to labour and delivery because I thought I was going to have a nervous breakdown.  Once inside, two angelic nurses sat with me and let me sob and told me their horror stories of their own experiences as mothers.  In conclusion they said, you have to get help, you can’t do this alone.

After heading home feeling like a ton of weight had been lifted off my shoulders, I called around and found a fantastic babysitter who we hired to come a couple times a week.  We started slow with me leaving the room for short periods of time.  After a few months of having our babysitter and my determined mother taking turns babysitting we put our son into a home daycare a few days a week.  I was able to stay home and enjoy some quiet time with my little girl.

After time my son realized that there was a whole world out there and he had been missing out on so much.  Now he is mister social.  He still suffers from some anxiety but the best thing for him is getting out of the house in a school type setting.  If I could go back a couple of years and tell myself a piece of advice it would be, don’t try to be a hero, get help, even if he cries the whole time and this won’t last forever!!!