Becoming a parent of twins is a wonderful, incredible, life-changing experience. There is nothing like the love you feel for the new lives you have created. Once they are born, you cannot imagine life without them. You vow to do everything you can for them, hope they never have to feel pain, sadness or sorrow, and set all kinds of (probably impossible) goals for yourself as a parent.
Caring for your infants may also be the most difficult challenge you will ever face as a parent of twins. You may be so physically and emotionally drained that you may not appreciate the joys of the experience. I was so overwhelmed with the responsibility of mothering young twins that I spent much of my daughters’ infancy secretly pining for the days when they could walk, talk, and feed themselves.
As I struggled to get through that first year as a full-time working, breastfeeding mother, I would ask parents with older twins when things would get easier. Their answers would vary. Some parents say it never gets easier because every age presents a new challenge. Others find twin toddlers more challenging than twin infants and wish they could turn back time. There is another group of parents who highlight the difficulties associated with having school-age children, and I am somewhat terrified of my future with teenage daughters.
With a few years of parenting now behind me, when I am asked this same question, my answer is that life gets easier after the twins turn a year old. After that, they’re usually easier to feed, easier to put to sleep, easier to entertain (think built-in playmate), and easier to tote around by yourself. Even though I have cried from frustration with my toddlers a few times, I feel the parenting challenges are no different than having a singleton of the same age. Everything is just multiplied. And as a parent of twins, you will have to accept that inevitability for every stage of childhood.
After the first year, I felt more like an equal to other parents who were juggling just one. Their gripes mirrored my own. I no longer felt isolated or misunderstood. I felt more comfortable leaving the house with them alone. (I actually think having a toddler and an infant at the same time is more difficult than caring for twin toddlers, so I am even more grateful for the unique parenting experience life has given me.) I have a few regrets from their first year, but I do not wish to do it all over again.
Now that my daughters are almost four years old, I have many stories to share and some tips for parents who are still deep in the trenches with their young twins. I hope you will stay tuned for my twinning posts where I intend to offer tips on breastfeeding, bottle feeding, sleep training, potty training, traveling, moving, and much more.
Thanks for visiting my website. I hope you will return again soon. In the meantime, happy, healthy twinning!