“OMG are they twins?!”, “I always wanted to have twins.”, “Do twins run in your family?”
Twins are hard. Twins are like life consuming hard. Unless you have lived it then there is no way to truly understand how much twins change everything. Its more than double the pleasure…it’s a lot of work!
We already had three children when we found out that I was pregnant for the fourth time. Our youngest was only 1 year old so the pregnancy was a already a big deal then…. SURPRISE….TWINS! Carrying a twin pregnancy to term was the most uncomfortable feeling I have ever physically felt in my life but it was totally worth it to have our fraternal boy/girl twins come home three days after being born with no time in the NICU. Life with twins certainly hasn’t been easy. I’ve learned a lot in the last seven years and if I can help someone newly entering the world of twins or someone who is already buried in the chaos then my blood shot eyes will have served a purpose.
1.) “Be there in 20 minutes”, you will never utter these words again unless you are already loaded up in the car and heading towards your destination that is less than 20 minutes away.
2.) Someone is going to have to cry and there is nothing you can do to stop it. When you have a single baby, even with older children, it can be easier to appease one while you tend to the other. Twins don’t have the “it’s your turn to cry” thing figured out. Maybe they get on the same feeding schedule (actually this is ideal) or someone is hungry at the same time the other fills their diaper. It’s ok, you are a great mom. Twins are hard.
3.) Talk to other twin moms! Sometimes they have information about some sanity saving service that you haven’t heard of. I learned about an online delivery service for formula and diapers that eliminated my weekly runs to the local bulk food store and in turn saved my sanity because with three kids under 2 years old I was going through copious amounts of both!
Side note: I exclusively breastfed our twins for three weeks until my husband was diagnosed with testicular cancer and I had to help him recover too. I only say this because I was a “breast is best” mom and felt very guilty for giving up breastfeeding so early. Formula or breastmilk doesn’t determine whether or not you are a good mother, love does, period.
4.) Laundry is your new BFF. You won’t be done doing laundry for approximately 20 years. Embrace it and accept it.
5.) Getting groceries is your new quiet time. Enjoy it. Do not take the kids, let your partner hold down the fort while you slowly peruse the aisles imagining all the amazing healthy dinners that you are going to make for your family. Then grab the chicken strips and the frozen veggies taking your time to complete your more realistic shopping list.
6.) What you just bought at the grocery store will last for 12 seconds. Head back to #5.
7.) Sometimes popsicles are dinner. It is ok. Of course you want to eat a healthy dinner but one has to get to swim lessons and the other has art class, but we have to finish everyone’s homework before we go…..so go ahead, have a popsicle, just eat something. Twins are hard.
8.) Embrace the chaos. One day your house will be so quiet, it will feel eerie (So I’m told. We aren’t there yet). I see it with our two oldest who have already started their adult lives. Every day your little ones grow older and yes your house is a mess, and the laundry pile is frigging huge, and you need a shower BUT one day sooner than you think they will get their own breakfast, then it’s don’t kiss me in front of my friends, and before you know it they won’t need you as much. As much as the chaos drives me crazy, I’m not looking forward to that day. The day you realize that they are all grown up. I already cried the day I realized that we no longer could shop in the baby stores, so when my hubby and I are staring at each other over coffee trying to figure out what to do with ourselves, it will probably hit me hard.
9.) Remember that the twins entered your life. Maintaining your relationship with your partner is extremely important because not only are they your support system (and the only other adult you have backing you up) but they are also why you started growing this little family in the first place. Seeing your healthy relationship is vital to your children’s view of what they should expect from a partner in the future and the only way to teach them is to show them. One date night a month is like the old adage for good health, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, well “A date night a month keeps the other “D” away.”.
10.) Take care of yourself. It is so true that you cannot pour from an empty cup and if you are not going to the gym, getting a mani/pedi, or hitting the yoga mat like you always did before then you are doing your whole family a disservice. The dishes, laundry, and household tasks will always need to be done but you will feel a lot better doing it if you had your time to yourself. Your mental health is vital to a healthy family, take care of yourself. Twins are hard.
Want to meet more fun twin moms? http://www.lularoejenniferwilliams.com