While most of our family and friends – including our daughter Madison – were spending the moments leading up to the New Year with food, drink, merriment, and a couple metric tons of illegal fireworks, Lynnette and I were in bed.
I snapped this picture just as 2015 gave way to 2016 and all the non-law abiding citizens living in Mililani Mauka decided to light their Christmas money on fire.
Cole and Avery were asleep in their bedroom and in what is a miracle and an extremely early entry to the “Biggest Upset of 2016” category, they didn’t wake up. From 11:20 PM through 12:15 AM the sounds of fireworks constantly bounced of the walls and windows of our home. Each time a particularly large one went off, I thought to myself That’s the one that does it. But none of them did. Of course since the universe knows I love irony, both twins woke up at 12:20, after most of the noise died down.
So it happened – to the surprise of absolutely no one – that the first things we did in 2016 were change and feed the twins. Both of them took a small bit or formula before falling asleep again. They had a long New Year’s Eve. The feeding was uneventful until Lynnette and I swapped kids. I was trying to feed Avery the rest of her bottle, but she tonged it out, gagged, sat bolt-upright, then projectile vomited all over herself and me. I had her resting at a 45-degree angle. She sat up to 90 by herself, extended both arms out from her body, opened her mouth, and unleashed a torrent of whiteness. it got everywhere. It was the most I could do to catch the last half of it with the bib and burp cloth. As I sat there, I turned to Lynnette. She laughed. “Hooray, 2016!” I shouted. Lynnette and I laughed quietly in the near-darkness. I looked down at Avery. Her eyes were wide open. She looked pleased with her handy work.
The second thing we did in 2016 was try to put the twins back in their cribs without them waking up. This is the most challenging and dangerous game I play now days. It’s dramatic like Jenga, but the consequences are much, much more serious. If either of them wake while we’re trying to place them into the crib then we’ve just assured ourselves another 10-15 minutes of carrying them in our arms while walking around the kitchen and living room, possibly singing such hits as “I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues”, “For the Longest Time”, “Time After Time”, and “Rock With You”.
This is our first family picture of 2016. Madison slept at Lynnette’s parents’ house last night so this was the first chance we had to take a picture together in our home. The Christmas tree might stay up until Valentine’s Day. Both Lynnette and I are just waiting until Abby flips out completely and dive bombs one or both of the twins from the top of the couch. I am shirtless because Cole decided to make it 2-for-2. I burped him over my shoulder. All of a sudden, he pulled his head and shoulders back, away from my body. Then he jerked his head to the left – as if possessed by a demon – and hosed me down with that pungent familiar whiteness.
The last eight weeks or so have been the most challenging of my life. The twins’ arrival has affected every aspect of my personal life and consequently my professional life. They’re aren’t enough hours in the day to get things done, and honestly even if there were, I’d be too tired to get around to those things. I am grateful for Lynnette who routinely displays the kind of patience and will power I could never summon readily enough for it to matter. I am heartened by Madison who has graciously put her brother and sister before herself in a way I didn’t think possible for a 7-year old. I am thankful for Cole and Avery, two healthy babies who have exponentially raised the degree of difficulty in my life.
2016 is going to be full of new adventures. My wishlist is brief: a little less crying, a little more sleep, and can I please make love to my wife again some time soon. Thank you for following along with our family’s haps and mishaps. Best of health and luck in the new year.