Our blog this month comes from the perspective of parenting twins.
One of my coaches shares her first hand experience of being a parent of twins, I'm sure you will enjoy her light hearted story and sharing of some of the comments and questions that she has received over the years............
Six years ago today, still slightly dazed from discovering I was pregnant again, mother nature or rather the ultrasound department at the hospital had another surprise for us ...It was twins!!
After the initial shock wore off it was actually all very exciting ....two babies at the same time ....Amazing!
After several months of sickness, fatigue, worry and the occasional false alarm, small girl and small boy arrived 8 weeks early. They were tiny but pretty robust. After three weeks in special care, growing and feeding they were ready to come home and join us and their brother and sister.
One of the most surprising parts of twin parenthood was the excitement and interest of other people on spotting this tiny pair of babies. It took absolutely hours to get anywhere!
Don’t get me wrong, the attention was very welcome most days but on tired busy days when I wasn’t sure I was cut out for this twin parenting lark it could be a bit difficult to deal with!
I was very proud of these two tiny miracles and to have them admired by complete strangers was a real compliment. People always had lots of questions to ask and normally I was happy to answer them, although the response they got depended on how much sleep I had got the night before!
I often got asked "Are they yours?" A valid question, I could have been looking after them for a friend or been a child minder, however I felt the eye bags, the unbrushed hair, the faint odour of baby sick and the giant maternity pants sticking out of my trousers in an attempt to hold in my affectionately named “Twin Skin” were quite a good indicator that these little creatures were indeed mine.
People were also very interested in how they were conceived and I got asked several times indirectly whether or not they were from IVF. One day I was actually asked how I had got twins? Maybe I should have drawn them a diagram!
Then they always wanted to know how I had given birth to them, a question often followed by ..How are you feeding them?
So............. my sex life, my fertility, my vagina and my boobs were often up for discussion with total strangers over the fruit and veg in the super
market. Easy tiger, we’ve only just met!
"Are they identical?" Another totally valid question, not everyone knows about twins and let’s face it, they are fascinating. On a good day I would patiently explain that it wasn’t possible to have identical boy /girl twins. On a bad one I do confess to saying “Yes, apart from the penis!!”
"You’re brave!" This statement used to amuse me no end. Brave for what? Having twins? I didn’t really have much choice in the matter, or maybe I could have shouted at the Obstetrician delivering them.. STOP! Leave one in there, I am not feeling brave enough today!
"How do you cope?" I was often asked this and still am sometimes. The truth is some days I do and some days I don’t, however as we all know as parents but no one else can or could do it for me.
Being a twin parent doesn’t make you some kind of superhero. We are just normal people who learn to operate two babies at once. My older children were 5 and 9 when the twins were born and able to do quite a lot for themselves which made life easier.
Six years on small boy and small girl still attract a lot of attention, although not always for the right reason these days! They are cute and happy and can melt the hardest of hearts when they hold hands walking down the street or slow dance to music together, They are also enough to drive you insane when they fight and argue!
So before I finish, I want to share a funny story from a veteran twin mum of 28 years. She said When her twins were tiny, a little boy came up to her and was asking her questions about why she had two babies in her pram. She bent down to his level and asked him “Do you know what two babies born at the same time are called?”
His reply? “ Yeah… GOBLINS!!!