"How do you feel about crying?" Eva, our night nurse, asked when she came to meet us back in April. I was about 34 weeks pregnant at the time. I thought about it for a moment and then said that I know that there are times when it's ok to let a baby cry. Honestly though, I didn't really have a clue. When you have a baby, crying is inevitable.
This past weekend, I got a lesson in crying. My parents are not the pushy type. Friends will often tell me about their parents imposing their opinions and views on them. This is not at all my parents. They will happily offer up their opinion when asked. But, in those times when they do offer their views without being asked, it always seems to come at the perfect time. It seems as if they know that hearing whatever it was, was just what I needed.
We were getting ready to sit down to dinner on Saturday night and decided to put the girls down for a nap in their playpen. Sometimes we're lucky and they go down without a peep. More often than not, they keep us on our toes and one or both of them cry within minutes. On this Saturday night, it was the latter. Both girls started wailing. We tried to soothe them a few times but when it came time to eat dinner, the decision to eat outside on the deck or in the dining room came down to Jenn. The outdoor table isn't far from the girls' window so they could still be heard easily. We ate outside on the deck. I was reluctant but my Dad reminded me that they were fed, changed and in a safe spot so a little bit of crying wasn't going to kill them. He reassured me that they would be ok for the duration of our dinner. He also told me stories of my brothers and me as babies. He spoke from years of experience raising three kids. I decided to trust him. We sat outside and enjoyed our dinner while the Muskoka sun set. It was nice to have a few moments to ourselves to eat our dinner without rushing through it to get to a fussy baby. More than anything, I appreciated that dinner and my Dad telling me gently that they would be ok. And, of course, they were. They both had fallen asleep.
Crying is inevitable. Crying when you have twins is unavoidable, especially during the day when I'm outnumbered. On those days when the girls decide to be especially difficult, I find it much easier to let them cry :) For the most part though, it is tough to listen to them cry while looking at their adorable little faces. I will be the first to admit that being strict and sticking to a schedule has kept our sanity and allowed our girls to develop some good habits (including letting us get 7 hours of sleep per night!).