Tuesday, September 13, 2011

"I'm Blue": a major mishap of raising identical triplets

There are a few phrases I never expected to hear in this lifetime, among them "You're having triplets" and "They're identical."  Given that I had two toddlers at home when I received this news, it was especially unsettling... and all the more so when the disturbing facts and frightening statistics about birth defects and premature labor finally settled in.

The pregnancy was a long haul -- 36 weeks of ups and downs, worrying and fretting, and sleepless nights with an alarmingly large belly, as noted for posterity here:

Freakishly large belly with 17+ lbs. of bouncing baby boys inside
When the little fellas finally arrived, we had a plan for telling them apart.  While my husband Des wanted to tattoo them, I decided that just a bit of nail polish on the big toe would be a better way to go -- red for Kevin, blue for Declan and green for Cormac.  For the better part of their first two years, these little guys had a better pedicure than I ever did... typically with a coordinating outfit to eliminate any possibility of a mix-up.

Onesies with their names helped in the beginning... could you tell these guys apart?!

As time passed, we all comfortably relied on the color coding system.  It has helped me and Des, Liam and Ciara, my parents, neighbors and friends and extended family to know who's who here in the Lyons Den.

Color-coded kids from the very beginning -- circa May 2009

That said, I'm not so sure it has helped the very fellas it was intended to benefit: Kevin, Declan and Cormac.  Since the day they were born, these poor guys have had their toe nails painted and their hand-me-downs organized by color.  When we don't have red, Kevin may get orange or yellow.  When we don't have green, Cormac may get gray or white.  But we never seem to run out of blue... which I suppose is why when strangers ask Declan what his name is, he responds with great sincerity "I'm blue."  

Yikes, now is that a motherhood mishap, or what?  The poor kid thinks his name is Blue!  Not to worry, this is an issue we're actively working to address, first and foremost by letting them each choose their own clothes.  The problem?  Now they all want blue.  To make matters even more challenging, on many days they all want "Yankee uniforms" and Declan (a.k.a. "Blue") now mutters to himself as he stumbles down the hall "Derek Jeter!  Derek Jeter!"  I suppose in terms of aspirations, it's better to be Jeter than be Blue but, my hope is that one day, he'll be happy just being Declan... and until then, I hope that we -- and everyone else -- will find a way to tell who's who!

Cranky Yankees circa June 2010 in color coded crocs & clearly not too happy about it!

1 comment:

pyjammy pam said...

Mine can't tell each other apart sometimes. Yeesh!

Right now, they wear uniforms to school (the horror!) and I have them in different colored shoes. Yesterday, their teacher said I was NEVER allowed to switch up the shoe colors. :)