From the moment the ultrasound showed two heartbeats my life changed. While parenting twins had crossed my mind (there is family history) I had not entertained the thought. So, on that day staring at the screen I found out I was going to be a twin mom and a first time mom parenting twins.
If you know any twin moms they are the ones that cringe every time someone says “double trouble” and are usually seen carrying large cups of caffeinated beverages. They don’t just have two of everything they have multiples of two because like your singletons their kids lose things. They stock up in the Fall on hats and gloves like they are outfitting an army and celebrate every clothing sale for kids available because there are no hand-me downs. Getting out in the door and to the bus stop in the morning is pretty much a military manoeuvre and no one invites you for playdates because their one child doesn’t want two kids coming over. It’s throwing all the sleep training out the window and just letting them sleep in your bed. It’s feeling like you’ve run a marathon by the time you drop them at the bus stop. And even though potty training twins went better than I thought it would it is still potty training two kids at once!
I describe parenting twins as herding cats. They are cute, cuddly, loveable and sweet but they are never going in the direction you need them to go. Getting my boys into their pyjamas is somewhere between a wrestling match and a game of tag. As a single mom of twins I definitely have times when I’m tired, overwhelmed, outnumbered and frustrated. Then, one of them throws their little arm around my neck and tells me he loves me and all is right in the world.
Parenting twins is the single greatest adventure I’ve ever had. Every day something new exciting and potentially challenging happens. You struggle to ensure they each have their own identify while also hoping they will always want to do the same activities so you don’t have to drive them to different things. It’s never reading a book with one child on your lap and always calling them by the wrong name. It’s appreciating when they play together and praying no one gets hurt during a wrestling match. Parenting twins is about celebrating the special bond they share together and also fostering their own identifies separate from their brother. It’s messy, hard, funny and filled with as much laughter as tears.
While the truth about parenting twins is that the chaos is sometimes controlled it is also the overwhelming joy that you get to witness two siblings share the ultimate bond and you hopefully don’t pull your hair out in the process. On those tough days, the ones where you cry, yell or want to run away know that you aren’t alone. Look past those you feel are passing judgement and look for the eyes that meet yours and know exactly what you are going through. When you look through your social media feed and see only pictures of perfectly dressed smiling families know that is not real life. Cherish the messy, tough and challenging parts and celebrate the small victories.