The fact is that the last several months have served to shatter, to a degree, some idealism regarding my kids. Girlie has been struggling--as, consequently have we--with some anxiety and something of an emotional hair-trigger. As I've mentioned ad nauseum in blogs previous, I have no real frame of reference when it comes to raising kids--only the other twin. So when such a huge divergence occurs, it's hard to ignore. Before I turn both of you off with a completely depressing blog, I'll ask you to stay; it gets a lot happier!
But not quite yet.
On Fathers' Day, eight months ago, our dog bit Girlie on the lip necessitating several stitches. Physically, she's fine and will have only a slight scar which may be all but invisible when she's grown. But this seemed to set off a chain of events, the result of which left her emotionally . . . different. She became somewhat withdrawn, wheras once she would hug and cuddle with people she'd only just met. She also loved to dance--just moving and swaying to the beat like someone who was, well, not a toddler! :) These things all but vanished, replaced by poor sleep & appetite, much more frequent tantrums, and chronic clinginess (but only to Mom and Pop.) We've sought help from several professional sources and have seen some improvement, but only what I might call slight. I had gotten into the habit of taking them both to the gym with me, dropping them off in child care while I worked out. I'd sweat it out, then take a leisurely, hot shower before retrieving them. It was majestic! And then one day, about two months ago, Girlie suddenly started melting down when I'd try to leave. And I mean core breach meltdown--no workout, no how. Subsequently, I've tried to slowly reintroduce her to the child care room--staying there to play, showing her pictures of the room before going in, etc. Suffice it to say, I have not since worked out there unless Wifey has been home with the kids.
Ok, I think now comes the happy part.
At the risk of counting my chickens and/or jinxing the situation . . . Girlie has had a breakthrough! For three nights in a row she has gone down at a reasonable time and for the past two nights (the current night is yet unfolding) she has slept through till morning. This is huge news in Casa TwinPop, amigos! (Incidentally, I haven't mentioned Boy much in this post. While I, of course, love them equally . . . Boy is a sleep rockstar. Girlie was too, but not since her shift.) Anyhow, in a matter of days, her appetite seems to be returning. So too seems to be her attitude, sleep, and confidence. But what may be the greatest joy is, well, her joy. And she's dancing again! I feel like we're getting our happy little girl back from a long, bittersweet hiatus. Again, and I guess this is mostly for me, I'm not trying to fool myself into believing that she'll never again shed a tear or soil a diaper. But no matter what this is, it's certainly not a step backward. And, frankly, I haven't been this happy in several months. Because we know, us parents, when something is different, don't we? How did I get this instinct/insight/perception? Maybe it's airborne, released from tears and diapers. I don't know.
I was on cloud nine today. The previous paragraph was actually a little hard to finish, as it started getting blurry for me. Serious emotion. I don't know what else to say about it.
I suppose I'll finish my longest blog to date by saying how much I love my family. All of them. Oh, and . . .
Happy Valentine's Day!
Love your loved ones . . . even more!