I'm starting to think I'm a bad father. It's pretty obvious. Right now I'm staring at a computer screen and listening to the boys scream on the baby monitor. What did people do before baby monitors? Did they just put their babies in bed, close the door, and hope for the best? Maybe, back in the day, closing the door was how people coped with the insanity. In these modern times, we pipe their cries to wherever we happen to be. Baby monitors broadcast your babies cries all night long. All the yelling. All the time. Our particular baby monitor has a volume control that runs from one to five. I usually keep it on five. Okay, maybe four. Fine, it's on three most of the time during my shift. If I turn it below three, I believe child protective services will kick down my front door and take them away. I have turned it completely off. I admit it. However, our monitor has five lights on the top of it. I refer to it as the "Scream-O-Meter". When it's completely off, you can still watch the lights for activity. I know this is bad and I'm a horrible father, but I do it anyway. When they are just fussing a bit, only one light lights up. When they really get rowdy and join in a hallelujah chorus of screams then the meter ramps up to five. They can peg the thing on five and leave it there for quite a while. At this moment, they are barely lighting up the first light, and it happens to be Cash. They take turns being the problem child. Tonight just happens to be Cash's night. They rarely all go off at once. In fact, they are very good babies in general. We got really lucky.
Here is reason number two why I'm a bad father. Right before I change a diaper, I secretly wish upon a star, that it's not a dirty diaper. You know, unzip or unsnap the little onesie. Remove one piece of tape. Remove the second piece of tape. Slowly pull the diaper back. Find out what you've won. I secretly hope that I don't get the bad diapers. I don't wish them on anyone else, and I really don't mind that much, but I would just rather they used the toilet.
I also must admit that when one baby won' t finish his bottle, and another is still hungry, I just stick the leftover bottle in the hungry baby's mouth. That has to be bad on some level.
I let them scream. If I know they are fed and clean, I let them scream themselves to sleep. I am trying to get used to the screaming. My first instinct is to knock down the door, pick them up, and make it all better. The fact is, a lot of times, I'm too tired for this. They calm down after a while anyway. Besides, I'm their father so they need to get used to disappointment.
We have settled into a really good routine here at the house. Here is our latest feeding schedule and who actually takes care of these feeds.
7:30 AM - I start this one and then Carrie's Mother Ethel takes over.
10:30 AM - Carrie and Ethel
1:30 PM - Carrie and Ethel
4:30 PM - Carrie and Ethel and I come in at the tail end.
7:30 PM - Carrie and I
10:30 PM - Usually just me, but apparently Carrie is helping tonight.
3:00 AM - Carrie
Looking at the schedule, it's obvious that I'm really not hitting the mark and there is no real chance of me wining "Father of the Year". I must say that this schedule is during the week. This past weekend I was pretty heavily involved. I try really hard, but bottle feedings are rough. You have to make sure the baby is awake, breathing, and actually getting formula in its mouth rather than just all over the bib or burp rag. Then after that, you have to burp them or they will just spit up all over the crib or one of their brothers. The other day I was watching the Red Sox, surfing the internet, and trying to burp a baby all at once. The baby's mother was not impressed with my multitasking. I had to give her a serious listening to.
I couldn't drink formula. You shouldn't give your children anything you wouldn't eat or drink, and formula smells bad and tastes worse. I tried it, and it just sucks. This also makes me a bad Dad. I mean formula is just nasty. I tried breast milk too, and that wasn't bad. No, I didn't get it directly from the source, but I tried.
Okay, the final reason that I am a bad father is because I can't tell my boys apart. Cash and Zane look exactly alike to me and I don't know who is who. The only reason that I know it's Cade is because he still has the small spot where the IV infiltrated and left a tiny scar. Other than that I'm lost. If you can't tell your kids apart, you are a bad parent.
So, there you go. I have a long way to go before I even get a passing grade on this whole father thing.
Now for some frequently asked questions:
Q: Are you getting enough rest?
A: That's funny. No.
Q: Do the boys sleep through the night?
A: Yes, they sleep very well through the night. We feel guilty when we have to get them up to feed them at 3:00 am. Doctor's orders. Hopefully we can move to every four hours in a month.
Q: How's Carrie?
A: Tired, but completely in her element. She handles it extremely well. I'm the one that is falling apart and can't tell them apart or remember who is who.
This is my friend Monty Black with the boys and I. Monty and I have been friends for over twenty years. He showed up at the house Sunday morning and was wearing the exact same shirt I had on. I think it's because we share a brain.
This is Cade hanging out with his cool new shirt.
This is Cash. He is with the band apparently.
Here is another one with Cade wearing his Back Porch Mary gear, cause that's how he rolls.
Zane is wearing a cool skull and crossbones shirt. Skulls are a common theme amongst the trips this summer.
Apparently Cade is the STAR of this blog. Here he is smiling a bit. I would like to know why he spent Sunday afternoon screaming while Mom and Dad were trying to take a nap.
I'm pretty sure this is Cash. His mother is currently sleeping and I'm not waking her up to find out. I'm going to have to make them wear name tags. This is just embarrassing.
Finally, this is Tess. I don't have any trouble telling Tess apart from the boys. Tess is the Official Dog of Rolling For Trips and the Krug Family. She is swimming in a pond at the farm, retrieving a stick. She is extremely protective of her brothers. She likes to walk up to each bouncy seat and lick each boys head. Our friend Haley offered to wash her hands the other day before she held the boys and I was like, "You might want to wash the dog slobber off his head before you pick him up too." Dog Slobber. That's just how we roll around here.
I tried to get some video up, but YOU TUBE won't let me upload anything at the moment for some reason. I'll try later.
Carrie and I have the best life.
If we could just get a bit more sleep.
Soon, I'm going to ask her out on a date.
Wish me luck.