It seems like only yesterday I arrived home from the hospital with my twin daughters in tow. But alas, two years have passed since those amazing little girls entered and essentially took over my world, and while raising them along with my son is a perpetual learning process, here are a few tidbits I’ve picked up along the way.
1. People will never cease to be fascinated with twins.
When my daughters were infants and I’d cart them around the supermarket or back and forth to the doctor’s office (we didn’t really venture out much during those first six months since I spent the majority of my waking hours nursing and changing diapers), not a day would go by without a well-meaning stranger coming over to marvel at the fact that there were, indeed, two babies in my double stroller. I figured things would calm down a bit as the girls got older, but that didn’t happen. To this day, I pretty much can’t go anywhere without someone approaching me with questions about my twins, the most common of which being, “Are they twins?” And yes, I’ve thought about taping an oversized FAQ sheet to the back of their stroller, but somehow that just seems rude.
2. People will always think my girls are identical, even if they look nothing alike.
My daughters are pretty much the same height, and I suppose you could say there’s enough of a resemblance that they look like sisters, but in reality, they have many opposite features. My daughter A has light, straight hair with sparkling blue eyes. K has curly, dark brown hair and deep brown eyes. Their facial structures are different. Their features are different. Yet people insist that they’re identical, even when I swear up and down that they aren’t. Repeatedly.
3. Mealtime will basically be hell for a long time
Feeding one infant can be stressful enough to drive an otherwise well-adjusted person to the brink of insanity. Feeding two infants at once can be pure and utter hell, and it doesn’t get better for a long time. I know this because I was convinced that once my girls were old enough to feed themselves, I’d get a reprieve from the simultaneous spoon-thrusting and unavoidable screams that ensue when you have no choice but to give one child the first bite and make the other wait 3/10 of a second to get hers. But now I have the opposite scenario—my daughters are so independent they refuse to let me help them eat, which means I spend most evenings scraping noodle particles out of their hair and mopping spilled soup off the floor. Of course, one might easily experience the same antics with a singleton, but twins tend to produce double the mess.
4. Everyone at the pediatrician’s office will always know me by name— but they still won’t be able to tell my twins apart
My doctor’s office is one of those really busy ones, and the revolving receptionists typically have to ask incoming parents who they’ve brought in and are there to see. When I walk in the door, I’m greeted by name even if the receptionist is one I don’t recall ever meeting. In spite of that, no one in the office can tell my twins apart. Not even our new doctor. While she’s mid-exam. Go figure.
5. Fighting is inevitable, but the love makes up for it
Earlier this year, I asked (OK, practically begged) my family members not to buy two of each gift for birthday and holiday purposes. “They can share,” I insisted. Oh, how wrong I was. Not only do my girls tend to fight over the same toys (even if there are two identical versions), but they constantly battle for my attention. Case in point: Often, I’ll walk into their room in the morning and they’ll each insist they want to be dressed first. (And trust me, it’s no fun encountering a classic rock and hard place situation before you’ve had a sip of your morning coffee.) But despite all the fighting—and there’s more of it these days—there’s nothing like watching my daughters hug each other randomly or run over to each other for the sole purpose of showering one another with kisses.
Raising twins is no easy feat, and there are times when the fighting really gets to me. But seeing the love my girls have for each other is enough to make all the difficult times more than worth it.