My reaction to having twins was pretty much like all other mother’s or soon to be mothers who found they were having twins.
Seriously. I did not sign up for this. I was crazy enough to sign up for ONE. Let alone TWO!
The journey of life begins. Every mother/soon to be mother’s fear is the loss of the pregnancy until about week 12 or so. The fear subsides. Sometimes the morning sickness. Heartburn is a daily visitor. Urinating is like breathing….you don’t realize you went so much until you see your water bill the next month from what seems like continuous flushing. And finally the time comes when the two little faces you have come to know as Baby A and Baby B, blurry, splotchy, and skeletal, greet you with white filmy, pink flesh, cries, crying, tears, joy, sorrow, shakes, unknowing, fear, terror, pain, defense, a rainbow gamut of emotions.
I wanted to make sure my kids were alright. I was put at ease to know they were. They still are. Bounding, giggling, sqwealing, wailing, whining, crying, and carrying on, they are more than alright. But before we got to the alright, I really was not sure if I would be alright.
I was not sure if I could go the distance. I saw my skin stretch to the point of being a cast member on a Sci Fi world premiere television event. My back, hips, and knees were in so much pain, I was thankful for the winter season in AZ so I could sport compression stockings 24-7. I quite literally thought I would die. Twin pregnancy sucked. Pregnancy with a singleton sucked, but nothing compared to my two for one deal.
So when I met them and I was ponder how the hell I would manage. By Myself. All Alone. I thought I was going to break. Yes I have DH. Yes he is a great help with changings and baths and the like. But the rest was all me. You see I was the one with the lactating breasts. I was the one who had two. Lactating. Breasts. And so I did it. I breast fed both my twins. At the same time, one on each breast. For each feeding. Never missing a beat. Never, if hardly ever giving a bottle. With the exception to boost caloric intake for Sara who was a lot smaller and needed more, even though she was six pounds at birth as a twin. But I did it. Until I thought I was going to die. Until I thought I was going to lose my mind. I was losing every inkling of who I was as a person. As a woman. A wife. A caregiver. I need to break what I was doing for my own metal condition. To prevent a complete breakdown.
I had many. Breakdowns. I would put the kids down for their nap time which was every 2 hours give or take. And then I would find a nice spot in the house to retreat and ball my eyes out. I didn’t ask for twins. I didn’t have fertility issues. I was and am a good mother…why was I cursed? Why was I given this ultimate challenge, the job to top all jobs, an early death sentence, why me? I asked this for six months after the birth of my Thing One and Two. What was I to learn? Had I not suffered and struggled enough in my young life that NOW. NOW when I can enjoy being a mother I am tossed this curving knuckle ball to beat out into center field.
So I suffered through the pointless comments, stops, gawks, and gasps about having twins. The daft and the bold of fertility issues which most assumed was my issue. NO ONE has twins that are boy girl. (Um…okay….did you miss sex ed.) I dealt with it all. The nasty, the insane, the unbelievable, even the codependents who clearly thought I was unable to care for two children at the same time. As if I was the Octo-Mom Nadya Suleman or something.
At about 10 months I knew I was going to make it. Life got easier as I weaned (Sara…not so much the Seth-En-Stein) off the boob and into a hand held baby bottle to go! Bottle feeding was easy as they were able to hold things on their own at that time. Then when the sitting up really was in full force the high chairs were rotated into the house. Meals got easier. Naps were still consistent. I was a free woman again. I could leave the house and not worry if I was going to have saucer size messes all over my shirts if I didn’t move fast enough through a store to get home for a feeding.
Things got easier because I kept them on a schedule. From the day they were born they were on a schedule with me. I knew if they deviated life would be hell. I wouldn’t sleep, I would suffer, they would suffer, DH and Big G would suffer with me.
The one year mark passed and I wondered where the time went. I still wonder. I thought life would get easier with them. Which life did, get easier, for a short moment. And then they both started walking. Climbing. Almost running now. My house is on a constant Def Con 1 status.
But being a mom of twins gets easier. I am able to enjoy these moments as they entertain themselves. I am not always the playmate, which sucks, but is a life saver all in one. I watch them now “twin talk” to each other. I watch them watch us and learn. I watch them turn into loving people before my eyes and I wonder where the time has gone.
Big G told me the other day how much he loved me and that I was a great mom. I didn’t know what to say. I welled up and felt the burn in my cheeks, my nostrils flared, and I wondered where the time went. He tells me how much he appreciates the organic juice and milk boxes for lunch, that I cut his sandwiches into triangles, that I picked him up from school with his brother and sister. And I wonder where the time has gone. That my boy no longer gazes at me like I am the most beautiful woman on Earth, but that I am the woman who knows him best. Moreso than his father. He looks at me and smiles and tells me how much he loves me. The twins fight for a seat in my Indian Style lap, each wanting a prized thigh to hold them. And I wonder where the time has gone that they used to feed until they couldn’t eat anymore, gaze up at me and pass out.
I really thought I was going to die with twins. But if dying means that you get to enjoy all that life gives you, with twice as many hugs, twice as many smiles, and yes…twice as many diapers. I wouldn’t change my death wish. Life with multiples isn’t easy, but what is easy is the love you feel for these people who came into your life when you thought you truly were damned.
I am proud to have enjoyed Grant as my oldest, he was my teacher on being a mom. The twins are only helping me perfect the fine art of evolving motherhood.