Sticker Charts and Schmidtlets

I’ve always been a rules girl. Sticker charts were made for people like me. If I set the table I got a sticker. If I made my bed I got a sticker. If I went a whole day without a time out in the Naughty Chair, that was worth at least three stickers. 

I’m not going to say I never tried to manipulate this system (comforter pulled up over a tangle of sheets never works, does it?) but this method of rule à reward had always worked well for me.

Um, it still works well: Revise one page, get one Revision Skittle…

Which is why bed rest baffles me.

I’ve followed the rules. I spend all of my time confined between the headboard and footboard of my sleigh bed or down on the couch in a flurry of pillows. Bathroom visits are a field trip – but only require a couple dozen steps. Food is the same: St. Matt emptied and carried our wine fridge up to the bedroom and stocks it daily with a large enough food and liquid selections for a woman who’s carrying at least quintuplets.

All that’s required of me is that I stay put – and the payoff is healthy babies who also stay put.

Which is why bed rest baffles me.

I’ve done my part…

… the Schmidtlets don’t seem to want to do theirs.

I may gripe a bit and I may complain of BedRestlessness, but, in truth, my role is easy.  I’ve got an engrossing WIP to play with, shelves of books we’ve stockpiled (I read seven last week alone), TV’s with DVR, friends a few keystrokes or phone digits away, and a saintly, saintly, truly saintly husband who has gone out of his way to envision things I might want, before I’ve even dreamed them up.

What’s not easy:  knowing I’ve followed the directions with NASA precision, and the results aren’t in my control.

We’ve started steroid shots to advance the Schmidtlets’ lung development. We’ve started packing our hospital bag. We’ve started prioritizing the to-do list for the what-if?

Preparation is great, of course, but it doesn’t change anything. It doesn’t grant me a second more of pregnancy if the twins decide that NOW is when they want to arrive.

But they haven’t picked Now, or Now, or even Now and every second they continue to grow is a blessing.

So, stay put little ones. The world is waiting to love and cherish you, but it will still be waiting in a few weeks. And your momma will put extra stickers on your sticker charts if you make it a month or more. Stay.

10 comments


  • Isn’t there a song about co-op-er-at-ion from nursery school? Maybe it’s time to start singing to those boys!

    But perhaps they’ve inherited their Momma’s patience, in which case…

    Ready, Set–

    October 26, 2010
  • I know it’s hard, but you’re doing great. I’m still sending you tons of Schmidtlet Stay Put Sparkles. 🙂

    October 26, 2010
  • Emily – Who are you calling impatient? Me? Okay… well, yeah.

    Linda – These babies! Not only are they impatient, but they’re willful! There’s too much of ME in them. Maybe they’re saving all their Saintly traits for after they’re born? *crosses fingers*

    October 26, 2010
  • It’s funny how far we’ve come, but we still don’t have that much control over when babies decide to come. Babies rule over everything else.

    Stay put, boys! Auntie Suze loves you, but doesn’t want to SEE you just quite yet. 🙂

    October 26, 2010
  • Suze – that’s just what the doctors were saying yesterday — they have come so far with interventions for preemies, but they have very little control when it comes to delaying labor. Craziness!

    October 26, 2010
  • Aw, bb! I like what Emily has said… those bbs are just impatient to meet their Momma! And also, seriously. This is fabulous fodder for when they hit those grumpy sullen teenage stages. You can be like, “See what I had to endure? See!” It is all stuff you can use later on down the line. 🙂 But it is hard to recognize that some things are just out of our hands. But there is also a freedom in that too. You’ve done exactly all that you can. You have certainly done your part, T, and that will always make a difference. Many sparkles that they stay put for as long as possible. Stickers are worth waiting for, babies! And so are the fabulous new parents who are going to be there to meet you when you make your entrance.

    October 26, 2010
  • Hugs, Courtney, BIG hugs. You’re right, at this point it IS out of my hands, and like so many other things these boys have taught me already, this is a valuable lesson too. It’s great to have plans and expectations, but flexibility when things change on the fly is key, too.

    October 26, 2010
  • Sarah Mitrovich

    You so creative- I love hearing your ‘thoughts’ from bed rest. I’m so impressed by how gracefully your handling this situation. Stay strong for your babies and keep up the positive thinking- all of your vibes of ‘awesomeness’ will trickle into your womb. I’m so excited for you and are thinking of you all the time 🙂

    October 30, 2010
  • You my dear are doing awesome & my thoughts and prayers are with the twins willing them to stay put a wee while longer. Just have to keep reassuring them that patience is a virtue and the world will be all the better for waiting another month or two before they see it.

    Hope that the words in your WIP continue to flow and your book pile is never ending. We need restless Tiffany to not think about being restless.

    October 31, 2010
  • Hey Sarah! I’m itchy to see that baby of yours — but soon enough/not-TOO-soon he and the Schmidtlets will be tearing up the town 🙂

    Irish – See, I have this AMAZING Book Fairy who intelligently loaded me up with great books. I think about her with gratitude ALL THE TIME b/c she’s made of awesome & keeping me sane. *hugs*

    October 31, 2010

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