I'll warn that this is my second middle-of-the-night pump tonight so I'm definitely not rested...
I was telling Meg and Krista this, but I'm feeling really resentful of parents of singletons again. I have it relatively easy for twins -- I didn't deal with fertility issues, mine were never in the NICU, one of mine is a champion nurser and sleeper -- and I don't have other kids so I feel like I'm in no position to complain but "those people" are driving me nuts. I think what bugs the most is that they have the luxury of wistful thoughts of their baby's first days while I feel like this is still just survival. I guess it's hard to feed/diaper/change one baby ... but then they get to go out. Yup, I love the babies n' stuff, but why did they have to arrive together?
The problem is that we are the minority in the mommy world. Not many people can provide empathy to our situation and we are confronted with singleton moms all the time.
I still feel this way on occasion. It is so hard to go places with both of my girls, even if their overall care is less exhausting. There are times that I look at my friends who have singleton babies and I think to myself, "They have it so easy. Do they even realize how stinking easy their life is?" It is all perspective, but I just want to shout when someone with a singleton complains. It is like...Hello, I have two here, try it with both of them, then we can complain! I have learned to let myself feel those resentful thoughts for just a brief moment and then I make myself let them go.
The reality is that I have twins. I cannot change my reality (and I know you don't want to change yours either ). I can change my perspective when necessary (because those resentful thoughts creep in and they are poisonous to my mental health). My twins are awesome! Really, they are fantastic little beings who are getting more and more fun everyday. Just this morning, the girls were wearing hats, pretending to be cowboys, and saying, "Yee Haw!" How adorable. And...I get to experience that cuteness times two. How blessed am I?
I can promise you that it will get easier. You are deep in the trenches of infant clingy neediness and sleeplessness. As you get more sleep and the babies start to need a tad less from you, it will be amazing how refreshed you will feel. That doesn't mean that the challenges go away. They just become different, and if you can go at parenting with patience and perseverence, you will find that you will continue to survive and thrive with multiples. All I can say is that even with a singleton, parenting is never easy. My 8-year-old is actually harder than my twins at this point. He doesn't need me for the physical things anymore, but he needs me for his emotional needs even more now than he ever did as a baby. Okay...enough of my ramblings. I hope they helped some.
You know what I keep telling myself, and it seems to be the only thing that helps me get through the horrible nights. It could be a lot harder. Their are lots of women, some on this board, who have triplets and even quads and they are probably sick of hearing us twiners complaining!!!!
Seriously though, it doesnt matter anyones situation, twins are hard. And I am completely resentful of some women who complan about their one baby who STTN. But, in the end, I have two amazing babies that I wouldn't give up for the world (athought I could do w/o the sleepless nights). It is so much easier with one, but hold on because I've been told numerous times that they will eventually start to entertain eachother and with a singleton, you're their only friend! And, now that Kaylees reflux is all but gone, she has become more independent and less needing and I'm loving it. Say it with me "I love my children, I love my children..".
And like I said before, dont bother complaining to mothers of singletons, they will NEVER understand.
I second both Krista and Mel!
That first year was killer for me! Killer, so physically exhausting that it drained me mentally as well. But yes, it does get a bit easier as they get older. I panic less about taking both out with me than I used to, but I still try to avoid it when I can. But I sometimes have pangs of singleton jealousy as well, like when ppl are talking about signing their babies up for swim lessons, yeah, not at all possible unless I can round up another adult to do it with me. Or yeah, when they complain about tantrums, and I think, oh you have no idea until you have twin tantrums. lol.
But yes, the built in play mate is so nice. My weekly email from baby center this week talked about how at 2 most kids just do parallel play and do not interact with each other, mine are so socially advanced (ha ha! I hate when ppl say they kids are "so advanced!"), they are always bringing each other toys so they can play with each other, gesturing the other to come to where they are etc.
Rachel, momma to 4
dd 9, ds 7, twin boys Dec 09
I nursed my twins for 2years and 2 weeks! A little sad to be all done now.
Nah. That guy was remembering the absolute insanity of the infant stage and showing you some empathy. I have had many parents of twins seek me out to tell me the same thing. I think it is like a bonding experience. You see someone who is in the trenches with you and you just want to acknowledge them and tell them it gets better.
I have singleton jealously a lot. I only wanted maybe one more baby and I wasn't even 100% sure I wanted one more and I got two. It has completely turned my life inside out and it is very difficult for me to handle at times. It's really bad when I see my sister. She just had a baby and her daughter is 10. She can go and do whatever she wants. Relatives and other's don't mind watching her baby and daughter for her and helping her out. She has it so easy and I am so envious. When people see me coming with a toddler and twin baby's they run. My mom tells me - I just can't handle all three of them, i don't know how you do it - so I never get a break besides at work. However, my sister makes it a habit to drop off her baby at mom's and do whatever she wants. Hugh!
On top of it my sister and her husband wanted to have another baby but now my sister doesn't want to attempt it for fear she might have twins. She has seen what it has done to my life and doesn't even want to risk it. Of course her husband is not happy about it, he wants at least one more. So that will be an interesting battle.
I try to keep the jealousy down to a minimum. I can't imagine not having one of my babies. I love them both. I know if I didn't have twins I wouldn't have had all three of them so I know I was meant to have them but it is just hard right now. I so look forward to the point where Izzie is 5 and the boys are 3. Then life can slow down some but right now I am very ready to get to that point.
That's really rough, Jennie, about your sister getting more help when it isn't needed as much. I am amazed that you (and several of you in this group!) are going through all this WITH A TODDLER, TOO! Blows my mind. I have to say it's oddly comforting to hear you say you're also just trying to get through this part. Parents of two or more singletons love to comment on how I just don't realize it because these are my first but I need to savor every moment and drink in the infant stage. Bah. Let's just move on already!
Alrighty, I'm going to try to be more positive again once my daughter gets through this growth spurt.
Jennie - I am so sorry that your sister seems to be getting more help. We don't have much help at all. We have no family who live nearby and it seems like most of our friends kind of distanced themselves once the reality of twins invaded our lives. It really sucks. Like you, we only wanted one more. Our odds for twins, despite fertility treatment, were actually pretty low. We did an IUI and we only had one mature egg. So, we did not really anticipate twins and it is still tough for me. I love my girls and I work hard to appreciate how lucky I am. However, there are days when I do think about what life would have been like with a singleton, especially for my DS. He is struggling with them as much as we are. He loves them and likes to play with them, but his life is just chaotic. I don't really have a fix for it either. They are demanding and noisy. He struggles to concentrate on schoolwork because they interfere so much. It is very hard. We will all make it though. We will have fantastic kids and we will really appreciate age 5 and beyond. I truly believe that.
I think we can all empathize. I see moms at the grocery store with their child in a sling just pushing their cart and getting their stuff. It is a two man job for us to push the double stroller and the shopping cart (and get groceries while one cries).
But the way I see it is that we only have to go through this once. Singletons have to start over with each baby. We get two grown for the price of one. Wahoo!
And you can vent anytime you want to us. I do hope that Dara gets a little better very soon!!!