Sunday, January 15, 2012

How do you tell them apart?

So probably 20 times a week I am asked the same questions. Strangers in the grocery store, cousins, friends, ward members... everyone asks, "Are they identical? Can you tell them apart? How?"

So here we go!

Caitlin has a small red dot on her forehead. It is along her hairline, just to the right of center, and very faint. When we were in the hospital she had a lot of trouble keeping her blood sugar levels up. She was always right on the line of where they are required to send babies to the NICU. She had to have an IV inserted into her forehead so they could give her a rush of sugar solution. This got her blood sugar to spike so that she would have the strength and energy to nurse. She looked like a Snork. It left a somewhat permanent mark on her head. But it was effective and kept her out of the NICU and made it so that we could take her home with us.

Abigail has more hair than Caitlin. Ironically, she also has the most pronounced widow's peak that I have ever seen on a baby. Her little curl on top is so cute, but the bald sides of her head make me say that she looks like a little old man.

Their heads are shaped differently. Abigail has boxy, almost a triangular shaped head. I think it makes her head look much bigger than her sister. But so many people we talk to think that Caitlin's very rounded shape looks larger.

The shape of their eyes is also incredibly different. Caitlin has had a "goopy eye" since we brought her home from the hospital. She has a clogged tear duct on her right eye (left side if you are looking at her). It gets crusted shut and looks like something right out of a horror film. That eye has been the quickest and easiest way to tell the girls apart. It is actually clearing up now that she is 4 months old which has caused identification issues for the whole family! I think though that her goopy eye has caused her eyes to always be very narrow. It is hard to describe, but to me it almost looks like her top eyelid is a straight line and her bottom eyelid curves down from there. Abigail is the opposite. I would describe her eyes as humongous and very alert. Her bottom eyelid seems to be the straight line when I look at her and her top eyelid just curves up into this huge arc. But inside those eyelids on both girls are the sweetest, most earnest dark blue irises I have ever seen.

This is not a physical description, but Brandon and I agree that Caitlin seems to talk a lot more. Abi is still very interactive. But she communicates through those huge eyes more and when she makes sound it is typically coos. Caitlin seems to always be babbling and gurgling. These personality differences ring true to their personalities in the womb. Abigail was the mellow baby. I would go for days without feeling her move. And Caitlin was the acrobat who always seemed to have the hiccups or doing forward rolls or kicking my ribs right out of my chest.

I hope you pardon my ramblings. I just realized over the past few weeks that these are things that won't last forever. And things I don't ever want to forget!

1 comment:

  1. I think it's great that you wrote this down. My mom knows that she was able to tell us apart when we were babies, but she can't remember the specific little details like this now, which kind of makes me sad. She had painted my toenails red for the first few months of life as a back-up plan in case she got confused, but she never had to check my toes to make sure it was me. ;-)

    Your girls are precious, and I can definitely see the differences in them while at the same time the similarities. Enjoy them while you can!