Last year on New Year's Eve I posted a selfie on Instagram with the following caption.
Me. Last day of 2012. Mama of our two gorgeous girls. Wife of the most dear husband. Owned by two furry friends. Happiest at our home, the hut. Bring on 2013, one day at a time. Happy New Year friends.
2012 was a tough year for me. Ending of course with the girls' birth. Only 19 days into their hospital stay I can look back now and see I was scared, but trying to count my blessings at that moment. I knew 2013 would be hard, but I can also see the determination in my eyes and words.
2013 was hard. We spent the first three months commuting to hospital to see our girls, and then at the end of the day we had to walk out the door and leave them there. The rest of our life was put on hold, our focus entirely on those two tiny girls and their daily improvement and growth.
I took my own advice and got through each day rather than trying to look forward to their homecoming day. I knew there was no point in setting a date, I could end up disappointed. So on that final day when the nurses (who had become our friends) told us we were free to go home, Rob and I were overcome with a range of different emotions. Joy, relief, sadness, fear, disbelief, excitement. You could feel all the tension and worry that had been bottled up for 112 days be released as we said tearful goodbyes to the nurses. I could not have gotten through those long days at hospital without Rob.
As we walked out the hospital via the air walk, I quickly asked Rob to stop. I snapped a photo that I used to announce our homecoming on Instagram, Facebook and here. It is my favourite photo of 2013. We were overwhelmed by the comments and support as our online friends expressed their joy as they shared the feeling of relief. They had followed our hospital journey since Maggie and Elisabeth's birth day, and knew, perhaps even better than some of our real life friends, what we'd been through to get to that day. Most people we had not met (and may never meet), but we could tell how heartfelt their comments were.
The rest of the year has been spent at home. The hut is a beautiful home, and I have now spent each season there with our daughters. Tending to those needy days of newborns in autumn. Frequent feeding and nappy changing. Two tiny babies sleeping at the same time!
Watching them start to become aware of their surroundings during winter. Those first smiles and the triumph of those early milestones of grabbing toys and rolling over. My days getting busier as they slept less and rarely at the same time.
Come spring, and the lengthening daylight hours saw me chasing two increasingly mobile babies around the living room. A play pen became a necessity. But despite the busyness, we watched in delight as they prepared to crawl and finally did, pulled themselves up on furniture and sat up on their own. Elisabeth led the way, but Maggie was not far behind.
Come summer, eating solids three times a day takes up a lot of a normal day. Providing a few options and helping a little (increasingly less) then cleaning the girls, their high chairs and the surrounding area is quite time consuming. But we are pleased to see them enjoy food. Favourites include meat, buttered sourdough crusts, sugar snap peas, cheese (preferably French chèvre) and peaches. They love a bath now, we usually do it after breakfast as they tend to be in a good mood and enjoy it. Lots of splashing, excited squealing and wriggling.
Of course December was a time of celebration, their first birthday, and first Christmas at home (see my recent posts to read a recap of those days). With Rob on holiday we have been going out a little more. To the dog beach, the Taste of Tasmania, shopping. The girls keenly take in new surroundings, although they weren't impressed with the noise at the taste!
We had a very quiet New Years Eve, a dinner of BBQ'd lamb and a bottle of Jansz Rosé.