what I wish I knew before having twins
When i found out we were going to be having twins, i was over the moon. If you know me, you know i have always wanted twins since forever. I always knew it will be a lot of work having twins, but boy i still underestimated the amount of work lol. I read so many books and twin forums, but nothing really prepared me for the reality of having two babies at once. Nothing prepared me for how crazy our lives will turn around after their birth, both for good and crazy lol. Even the twin pregnancy was a lot harder than my singleton pregnancy. I decided to make a list of a few things i wish i knew when we found out we were having twins. Again, no matter how you prepare you can never truly be ready for multiples.
Get as much help as you can
In the first few weeks you will barely be able to even do anything for yourself. Line up some people to help out especially with bringing food or cleaning. I am so grateful for friends and family, the house was usually full of food and people to help out. I already knew I was not going to be a great hostess to anyone that visited and was thankful that no one actually expected me to have food for them or cater to them.
You have to multitask
With all the things you need to do to take care of your babies, you need to find time to do some things for yourself to keep your sanity. For instance taking showers and eating. In order to feed your babies you need to be well nourished and eat enough calories daily. I usually try to have my shower around 4am when hubby is still at home so its one less thing to deal with when alone.
Your house will look like a daycare
With all the swings, rockers, changing table etc your house will look like a daycare center. Especially if you already have a toddler with their own play area lol.
Your stroller is your best friend
We keep our Joovy Twin Roo+ Car Seat Stroller in the trunk at all times. Unlike one baby, if you go out alone it can get hard carrying two babies or two car seats so to be safe, always have your stroller. Check out my blog post on essentials items for the first year of your twins, my stroller is like my main item lol.
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Baby wearing is gold
Yes, wearing your babies will be so helpful. If you escaped it with one baby in the past, i doubt you can escape it with twins. Especially if they are both crying at the same time.
Find other twin moms
Twin moms are so beneficial and the twin mom forums as well. I have joined so many and hit up most people i know that have twins. Many days you will need the encouragement to know that this too will pass. It is so helpful to talk to other parents who have been there, done that and survived it all. Plus they can give you advice on things like feeding two babies at the same time, advice that singleton parents may not have to deal with.
Let things go
Don’t get too hung up on how clean your house should look or how anyone should behave or certain things you usually get stressed about. You have a lot on your plate so take a chill pill mama.
You will constantly remember how easy it was with one baby
If you had a singleton before you will always remember how easy it was with just one baby and yet you felt overwhelmed lol. With twins you and your partner do not really get to take turns unlike when it’s one baby. Plus asking one person to watch both babies while you go to do something can be hard due to how much work is involved watching both babies unless they are sleeping. So you tend to rethink leaving both with one person unless it is really important.
Triple the work
Gosh I know it’s two babies so it seems like double the work, but honestly it’s more like triple the work. The amount of work that comes with having twins is crazy. People see the cute pictures online and think it’s easy or that you are surviving but honestly most times I don’t even know how we made it to the next day.
I remember when we had them, people kept praying for us and praying specifically for patience. Now I know why, you need a ton of patience with twins. There will be a lot of challenges along the way especially when it comes to your regular schedule. For instance it’s a lot harder to leave the house now, it takes more planning and logistics and most times we end up not going lol. Just remember your babies aren’t trying to frustrate you, they are only longing for your attention. Also, breastfeeding both babies at the same time requires a lot of patience. Hubby and i also have learned a lot on patience with each other to avoid unnecessary arguments.
You get cut some slack in so many areas
People that care about you also understand when you take hours or even days to call them back or respond to their texts because half the time you can’t even get a break. I have a long list of phone calls and texts to return and going out to events nearly does not happen. Heck i hardly get invited to events these days which low key annoys me lol. Like sometimes i want to have the choice on whether or not i want to go out, even if i end up saying i can’t.
Online grocery shopping is your friend
I can’t remember when last I went for a full grocery shopping. Now I schedule pickups and drive by to pick my grocery up. Basically since you obviously have more than a lot on your plate, you have to cut corners where you can. There is hardly time to hang out at the grocery store shopping like before. Plus you cant really push a stroller and a shopping cart at the same time. Although i have heard some people do it, but definitely not me lol.
Fear of being alone with them
At the beginning I was quite scared to stay alone with them especially when they start to cry at the same time. But overtime I have learned to just let them cry if they have to because you only have two hands. Sometimes i might wear both of them on me, other times I wear one and rock the other in their swing.
Leaving the house takes forever
Try leaving the house with two babies. I usually start prepping days in advance and have a checklist of what to do to leave the house. During winter, the process of getting them into their winter coats, then car seats and into the car takes about 15 minutes. Hence, unless we really have to leave the house, most times we just avoid it. Plus you tend to need double the supplies for their diaper bag before heading out.
You hardly get personal space
With one baby, when they are done breastfeeding they are done. But with twins, when one is done the other may still be feeding and then before that one is done, the previous one may decide to feed again lol. Some days, it feels like i have at least one attached to my boobs. Add in a toddler girl that wants to play pretend or paint when she gets back from school. Trying to steal a few solo minutes can be like searching for a needle in a haystack.
Most times you don’t know what you are doing
Yep many times you just wing it with twins, even if you already have children. Most of your parenting styles and techniques go right out the window.
Just ask people to get you diapers instead of random things. You will be amazed how many diapers you go through daily. We use at least 20 diapers a day and a ton of wipes. Thankfully we have not had to buy diapers yet besides the ones given to us by people.
The exhaustion is real with newborn twins. There seems to always be something to do or a baby that needs your attention. Plus waking up at night every 2-3 hours to feed two babies, and change their diapers is a lot.
Working out takes extra commitment
Before the twins or when my first child was born, i was back to working out in no time. However, this time it takes extra commitment to workout and most times the only workout i get is when we go on walks and i take time to do stroller exercises or when i am carrying them and workout with them. Between carrying both of them, going up and down with them and other things around the house, my body is aching by the end of the day. I have decided to give myself some grace and try to stay as active as i can throughout the day. Working out does not have to be complicated.
It takes a village
Yep it definitely takes a village to raise twins. Since having the twins, we have had to ask everyone for help lol, from our parents, siblings, friends, family etc. Everyone understands the amount of work it involves especially with a four year old daughter. Most are usually willing to help even if its just for a few hours or just to bring food, run errands or grocery shop etc. I and hubby have both also had to work harder at our team work skills because sometimes the cries and stress can wear on us and lead to arguments or one person getting frustrated.
It is easy to just get comfortable staying indoors especially during winter, but get outside when you can. Dress everyone up warmly and take a walk. It is amazing the impact taking walks can have. Plus often times the babies sleep through it all. So if they are screaming their heads out and you are at your wits end, take a walk.
Trust me, even Beyonce has nothing on you with the attention you will get. When I leave the house with both of them, we get so much attention. People stop by to look at them and talk with you, some stare from afar, others point at you or smile. You get so many questions lol. I wrote a blog post on some crazy questions i have gotten asked as a twin mom.
Its super amazing
All this being said, i have to say being a twin mom is so amazing, you get twice the smiles, love and everything. I know this is just a phase and by a couple months i will miss it all, so enjoy it while it lasts.