Monday, August 17, 2009

A difference of weight

For the first time ever, Matthew's and Jonathan's weights are significantly different.
I first noticed it two weeks ago when they were recovering from colds. Both boys had preferred milk to solids while they were sick, but Matthew tended more toward the liquid diet than Jonathan.
So when they stepped on the scale after a bath, I attributed the difference to their illnesses.
Matthew weighed in at 33.5 pounds.
Jonathan was 35 pounds.
But two weeks later, the difference remains.
Part of me wondered whether I was feeding one twin too much or another too little, but then a babysitter put things into perspective: Matthew is much hyper than Jonathan, she noted as she watched them play.
And she was right.
Very right.
Matthew is spontaneous.
He moves without thinking and he moves constantly.
He rarely stops to eat, though he can't resist a sippy cup full of milk, especially when he is offered his yellow bear and a corner of the sofa with it.
Jonathan, on the other hand, contemplates things more often. He watches his twin brother and he learns from his mistakes. Then he decides whether to act. He does not waste energy; He lets his brother waste it for him.
And, boy, does he ever love peanut butter and jelly.
So, it is possible that this illness was just the beginning. That Matthew will never make up that caloric difference because he can't be bothered: he is too busy. And that future illnesses will create even greater differences until the two boys are double-digit pounds apart.
But then you never know.
Identical twins like to keep parents on their toes.
In utero, Matthew staked out his place as first-born from the beginning (or rather, from the 20-week ultrasound when we first learned two little guys were hiding out in there). He was head-down right near the cervix when we first saw him and there he stayed.
He never gave Jonathan a chance.
Jonathan was all over the place, kicking my ribs, my bladder, my pelvis.
Even after his brother was born, he wouldn't stop moving long enough to come out. He yanked his second foot away every time the doctor tried to breech extract him and took off swimming. When he finally decided to join the world 20 minutes later, he took a spontaneous pike dive, engaging fully head and foot first, and had to be removed via emergency c-section.
The boys were seven ounces apart and Jonathan was the lightweight.
I'm learning that just when I think I understand Matthew and Jonathan, that I know who they are and why they behave like they do, they pull a switch on me.
So I'm not going to worry.
Instead, I'm going to sit back and enjoy the ride.


jay_say said...

Wow... mine are the opposite in some ways... Matthew found his home on the bottom and stayed put. If he had his way, he wanted to be born butt first. Jonathon was on top and was constantly kicking and torturing Matt to try to move. When they were born via c-sec, Matt was 6lb 12 oz and Jon was 5lb 8oz. Till this day, Matt is always 1/2lb to a lb heavier than Jon and about 1/2 inch taller. By the time Jon "catches up", Matt has a growth spurt.

cat said...

Oh that is just so like twins - always keeping us on our toes. Mine are fraternal and even at age 2 they have a huge weight and height difference. My BFF's identical boys are now 8 years old and have a huge weight difference for exactly the same type of reasons you have mentioned.

ABIGAIL said...

My name is Abigail Pogrebin and I am the author of a new book, One and the Same: My Life as an Identical Twin and What I’ve Learned About Everyone’s Struggle to be Singular, which was published by Doubleday this week. (I’m a former 60 Minutes producer who worked for Mike Wallace and Ed Bradley, and this is my second book.) I’m writing to you in the hopes that you might consider mentioning my new book on your blog, which I know is read by many in the wide world of twins.
My book takes a deep look at twins from every angle – what it’s really like to be one, marry one, raise one, and lose one. I also explore the risks of multiples and the “twin shock” of raising two at a time. I interview many twins – including football stars Tiki and Ronde Barber and remarkable twin survivors of the chilling Mengele experiments – and I also talk to twins experts, but the spine of the book is my own story, which is not a simplistic portrait of twinship.
I’m attaching links to my interview in, NPR’s Talk of the Nation as well as my appearance on the Today Show (where I appeared with my identical twin, Robin Pogrebin, a New York Times reporter.) With your indulgence, I’ll also include my website which has an excerpt from the book:

Thank you so much for your consideration, Abigail Pogrebin