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Just found out I'm having twins...feeling a bit overwhelmed!

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I just found out I am having twin girls which didn't surprise me because for weeks I ahve been saying I am feeling crazy mov't and feelinjg very "heavy" for being 18 weeks. I have 2 1/2 year old and this was a surprise baby so I was just starting to feel confindent in my ability to handle a NB and a three year old. I am very excited and happy about having twins but I kind of feel like I am pregnant for the first time again. I felt like I had it down...been there done that with NB care but I know nothing about bfing, co-sleeping, giving birth to...twins.

What is the minimum amount of "gear" that I need?
I was planning to cosleep but I don't think my husband and I will be able to comfotably do so with 2 babies in our queen bed for the first 4-6 months. We don't have a ton of money and still cosleep with our dd so we are planning on getting her a big girl bed and trying to transition her to sleeping on her own if we can but I am still unsure.
I keep feeling like I am going need all of this extra stuff but in reality I doubt I will try to take all three out too much anyway. I don't even think we can fit three car seats in our corolla. I have lots of slings and carriers so that is covered but I have no crib, no pack n play, no swing, no bouncer....I didn't really use that stuff this dd1 so I just wasn't going to get much. Maybe something to set the baby in when I was showering but now I feel like I will need two of everything.

Talk me down please!!!
post #2 of 13
Congratulations! Twins are "twice as nice" as the saying goes.

My twins came first, so my perspective is different than yours. For good background, I recommend the Dr. Luke book When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets,or Quads . It's got excellent information on eating well, resting well, and maintaining a healthy pregnancy for as long as possible. Most general "baby books" do not apply to twin pregnancies or the reality of twin infants. Be prepared for your pregnancy to be watched more closely than your first.

People will tell you stories you don't need to hear. Do your best to ignore or forget these. Not all twin pregnancies go early. Not all twin pregancies end with a c-section.

The best piece of gear I had was my twin (Ez2nurse) nursing pillow. Second was the breast pump. You will not need two of most things, although you will need safe places to have each baby when not in arms. I had one swing, one bouncy chair. We only had one crib at first, until they were moving around at night.

As for cosleeping, I had a modified system. I'd nurse both to sleep at the same time, and but them in their own beds. (This is a careful juggling act if you don't have somebody there to remove each baby from the nursing pillow. It can be done by mom, but it's not easy). For the first three months, if one baby woke up, we got both babies up to nurse. After awhile, I just nursed whoever woke up, side-lying, and when the next baby woke up I took first baby back to his bed, or onto husband's chest, and nursed the newly woken one. So each baby spent plenty of time in our bed, but they also had a safe place to be in their own bed.

Good luck, and congratulations again. Twins are a wild ride, but tons of fun.
post #3 of 13
First of all, CONGRATULATIONS! I know it's a lot to try to think about right now and undoubtly will be full of challenges, but I can tell you that I personally LOVE having twins - they are so much fun (though I am enjoying them more the older they get).

Stuff - you really don't need a lot. For carseats, check into the Radian's - you should be able to fit 3 across. Other mamas here know more about them I'm sure - I don't have Radians but hear them mentioned here a lot. You don't need stuff like pack n plays, bouncers, etc. but it might make life easier if you have at least one bouncer or swing - simply so you have a safe (and maybe soothing) spot to put one of the babies down while you're doing whatever it is you need to be doing with the other (diaper change, nursing, soothing, etc.). I'm sure you can find stuff like this cheap or free on Craigslist or Freecycle. Diapers - you'll need a lot of those. We started with 4 dozen cloth dipes and that worked well for us with laundering every day & a half.

My biggest "how-to" concerns when I was pg with my twins were how to breastfeed them and how to co-sleep with them. Breastfeeding for us had some challenges in the beginning - one twin was both sleepy and had a short frenulum - but honestly went really, really well and was a better experience getting going than it had been with either of my older dc (singeltons). Co-sleeping ended up working out just fine but we figured it out as we went along. I quickly discovered that swaddling blankets and sleep positioners were invaluable to my sleep system. I'd recommend getting good swaddling blankets! (we had Miracle Blankets).

Check out this page too. There are some great articles from btdt moms as well as several photo galleries - from belly pics to breastfeeding multiples to co-sleeping and babywearing. You can do this!!!
post #4 of 13
Oh, and I saw the cloth diaper in your siggy-- I don't know if you're planning to cloth diaper your twins, too, but we did, and wow. Talk about money-saving.
post #5 of 13
Hi there and Congratulations!!!!!:::
I am having twin bliss right now, and there are moments with twins that are so tenderly sweet, you won't believe it. And don't worry, I think most everyone here FREAKED OUT when they learned they were having twins.
For our family, it meant a huge change in income, and I worried a bit about the sleeping thing, and the car thing, and the attention to DD1 thing. But I'm here to tell you that it all worked out. I think the secret is to accept all the help you can get, and all the gear that anyone will pass to you. But in the end, my girls used the swings maybe 10 times, and almost never went in a bouncy chair, and we put 2 infant seats and one toddler seat in the backseat of our Toyota Camry. Just a month ago we got a minivan only b/c the Camry had transmission problems. Eventually we had to get the minivan to accomodate 3 toddler seats, but, we could have done it for at least one year.
Cosleeping: we did it and still do it. At first, (during pregnancy), I got DD1 to sleep in her room w/me. After the twins were born, she spent a few nites in our bed and decided it was not a good night's sleep.
She then came back to our bed, which was good, as I was tired of running room to room for the wakeups that ensued. We put a twin mattress next to our Queen, and though it is always changing and never perfect, it's fine, and sometimes even perfect. As far as the pack and play goes, we just use the mat from it on our hardwood floors as a soft place to put the babies. We cloth diaper them (even cloth wipes), and I've never pumped. There are benefits to pumping, and you may need to, depending on your situation, but I HATE pumping and can't bring myself to wake up to do it.
Just wait until your twins hold hands when they nurse, or when they see eachother and just giggle like old friends. It is sweet, it is beautiful, it is so freakin' hard at times, but also so great. Twins are also the perfect excuse for not getting anything done and needing a lot of help.
One of my dearest friends did buy us a freezer to put in our attached garage, and that has been a godsend! It allows us to store lots of food. (great for the ever hungry mama!)
As far as birth and breastfeeding go, as with all birth, you never know what you will get, and what life lessons are to be learned from your experience, but if it cheers you any, I had my twins at home and breastfeed them with ease right away. DD1's birth and breastfeeding did NOT go like that, and so I felt delighted that with twins, it all went easily.
Good luck, and hope to see you on this board again, as there are a lot of fabulous mamas on here just waiting to root you and your family on.
post #6 of 13
congratulations

best thing i did my whole pregnancy was check in here every day
the accumulation of hints and tips really got me prepared for what it would actually be like having a dynamic duo around!!

eat well, drink well, listen to your babies and your body.

i don't have two of everything. that would be a disaster if neither baby took to a swing or seat but i do have way more 'maybe this will help' stuff than i used with my singletons. in the early days i loved the second hand amby hammock most. i didn't buy much in advance btw - just as i felt we needed to try it out. i had a single pram and carseats to start off. with young siblings i'd make sure i'd got a pack and play to have a safe space to put babies a little out of toddler's reach.

i co sleep with mine in a king. first 6 months they slept on top of me and nursed through the night. last few weeks they've started sleeping either side of me and i turn to feed whoever asks for it. i also got a reduced arms reach co sleeper after a couple of months to give the feeling of more bed space and use it for naps in the day mostly. our room is packed out, but it's worth it.

i think you're right to assume early days will be slow and mostly at home. unless that drives you crazy!! but i felt mellow just nursing and resting and enjoying the yumminess of it all.

the secret to everything is acceptance. i think
post #7 of 13
Congratulations!! I felt like you just over a year ago when I found out. They are 10 months now and so much fun to be around. Things are busy but it's just what it is and we do the best we can.

With regards to the "gear" we didn't use a whole lot. We did have lots of friends give us gear that they no longer needed so we had more than I would have bought. We had two bouncy chairs which was nice because we have two levels to our house so we could keep one on each level rather than taking one up and down the stairs. We had one swing which was fine because only baby ds liked the swing. We have a pack n' play but I haven't really found a use for it yet. We may get it out again to have a safe spot for two crawling babes while I go to the bathroom . The biggest purchase we made was a double stroller. I used my wrap, mei tie and now Ergo a lot. We also have two strap on booster seats for meals.

We have a Radian carseat and it is narrow but very heavy as well. We have 4 dc's so had to "upgrade" to a minivan. Post in the Health and Safety forum for carseat ideas - I've seen lots of posts about what carseat combo's fit in different cars.

With regards to cosleeping - we've done it from the start in our king size bed. But it was only myself and the two babies. Our older dc's would wake at night so dh would sleep with them in ds1's room. I rarely needed his help at night as I would just nurse the babes lying down and we would all go back to sleep. Then dh started sleeping with dd2 as she would sleep through the night in a seperate room. Now he is back in our bed because the older two sleep through. We've been all over the place (musical beds) but maybe your dh could sleep with your dd.

Congratulations again!!
post #8 of 13
Congratulations on your twin pregnancy.

We did have two of most things. We obviously had two car seats, we had two bouncy seats as I was alone in the house most of the time and I needed a place to put little ones while I went to the bathroom, made food, etc. For a long time we actually put them both in one and have some great pictures of them cuddling up together. Now we have two boosters.

We did not co-sleep. We had one crib and they slept together until they were about 6 months old when the one that moved kept squishing the one that didn't. At almost two they now sleep side by side and there are times when I go in there to check on them and they are sleeping holding hands.

We started off with one pack and play it worked great especially when they started waking each other up and I had to seperate them for naps. We now have two, one upstairs and one downstairs and that works great, especially in the middle of the night when we need to take one out so he doesn't wake up his brother.

We borrowed a swing and that was great, we definately didn't need two of those. The best was our snap and go double graco duo glider stroller. I didn't go out very often, but it was a life saver when I did. They loved the car seats and fell asleep and I didn't have to wake them up to take them inside.

I did pump, but that was so that I would have milk in the freezer for when people came over so that I could leave the babes and take a shower/nap, do laundry etc. It was a life saver and I stopped pumping when they were about 8 months old 'cause they didn't feed so frequently.

We had two slings and that was fabulous. A lot of the time when DH and I went out together and could walk we just put them in the slings and off we went. I wore them a lot and when they were very small I even managed to put them both in the same wrap, which was nice for all of us.

You would be suprised how little you actually need and what you can borrow. Our second crib is borrowed and we put out an e-mail on the neighborhood list requesting old toys and we got quite a few, and between gifts and certificates I actually haven't had to buy much. I found that if I waited I either just picked something up as I need it (still do) or were given it as a gift. Have a list ready of things you want (receiving blankets, clothes certain toys etc) so when people ask you what they can get you there is a well-thought out plan and then you get what you want instead of having to return gifts.

Good luck, and keep asking questions. If it weren't for this board, I would have lost my sanity a long time ago.



Good luck!!
post #9 of 13
Yay! Congrats!

As a pp said, twins are twice as nice and double the joy.

At times they can also be a pain in the neck! But so can singletons, right?

I second the EZ 2 Nurse pillow as a must have, although I have heard that if you have small breasts it doesn't work as well. Mine has been worth its weight in gold and I am still using it at almost 16 mos.

I cloth diaper my twinkies and I have never had to buy disposables. It saves so much money and is so much nicer on their bums.

And you don't need 2 of everything. Obv. car seats, but other things not so much. We had a swing and that was very helpful in the earlier months.

We have co slept since the beginning with a sidecarred crib on a queen bed. We use their second crib as a junk drawer it seems.

I highly recommend the book Having Twins and More by Elizabeth Noble. It is such a great book.

I did give birth prematurely after following all of the rules.... I do think I was dehydrated when I went into preterm labor (traveled for xmas) so that was ):


good luck and keep wr+iting to +u+-s wi+th +concwerns a


ok the above is an example of toddler twins


gotta run!




















*-
post #10 of 13
Congrats, and welcome to the multiple mommas adventure! Twin shock! Oh, how I remember. We found out mid-pregnancy too. What a surprise!

You've gotten some good advice already. Just a couple things to add:

You don't need two of everything, and you can do things cheaply. I'm a big fan of my local twin mom club - not crunchy or AP necessarily, but you might find a kindred MOM here and there. There's a national organization and lots of local clubs, so there's probably one in your area. It's great for support - mine has a listserv for questions and monthly meetings of new and expectant MOMs. Plus, they have all sorts of resources. Mine lends the huge EZ2Nurse pillows to new moms planning to breastfeed. And twice a year there's huge, wonderful consignment sales. Buy everything you can there - clothes, gear, they sell everything except car seats and breast pumps.

Save gifts for luxuries, or ask friends to get together to give you the bigger, hard to come by items. I love my jogging stroller, a Mountain Buggy Urban Double, but it took months of searching Craigslist for it. None at the twin sale, those go too fast. Also fantastic at first was the Double Snap n Go, and now I also use a lighter, umbrella stroller for car trips when I'm on my own. For when you're onto feeding, I also really like my twin feeding table. A easy to clean alternative to having 2 high chairs.

I'd also like to pass along my best wishes for going to 40 weeks. It may sound like an impossible goal, or even a curse later in the pregnancy, but if it's what you have in your mind, those last weeks might be more bearable. I went straight from worrying about the twins coming too early, to worrying about them coming too late. Every day you carry them is good for all of you.

When you have some time for fun reading, Looky Daddy is a favorite blog of mine. Written by a stay at home dad of an older daughter followed by twins. The best post is written by his wife, about going full term with her twins:

http://www.lookydaddy.com/weblog/200..._that_mos.html

Her post and all the letters that follow are heartening reading when you hear about all the difficulties some women have with their twin pregnancies.

PS - Stick with the CD'ing. It can be done with twins!
post #11 of 13
Deep breath mama, you are in for the ride of your life!

My girls are 4 months old so that shock of finding out there are 2 instead of one is still pretty fresh with me (though, to be honest, I'm sure all of us have that moment pretty ingrained in our memory ) So, here's my 2 cents!

Stroller - Love my double snap n go (though I know there are lots of people that don't like them too)...It's great for quick trips out, totally light and pretty darn easy to manouevre even in tight spaces. I've purchased a Baby Jogger City Series Mini Double for when they get a little older (they hate it right now).

Swings/bouncy chairs - we have one swing which I do use during the day to put one in to sleep while I nurse her sister to sleep. We also have a couple of rocker/bouncy chairs that I use for when I am preparing meals, nursing one while the other is awake, etc. Love my EZ2 Nurse pillow...I'd take that over any piece of equipment!

Co-Sleeping - It took us a month or so to figure this out, but we found swaddling with the Miracle Blankets really helps. I sleep in a Queen bed with one baby on each side and just roll back and forth to feed them during the night...dh sleeps in the guest room and is joined most nights by dd2. I get a very reasonable night's sleep this way.

Babywearing - I think someone already posted a link to the photo gallery on the Naturally Parenting Twins site...this was really helpful for me to see all the different ways that people sleep and wear 2 babies.

If you can, plan on having lots of support EVERY day...I started off with my mother coming over every day for 8 hours (about 2 weeks), then 5 hours for another 2 months and now she comes for about 3 hours most days. It keeps me sane even if it just means someone else to chat with.

Last, but not least, if no one has pointed this out yet, watch this video. I watched this every day for weeks after I found out we were expecting 2 bundles of joy...it made me cry, it inspired me, it made me SMILE .

Oh, and come back here lots as there are many AWESOME mamas here to support you
post #12 of 13
We coslept with our twin babies (and one of our twins still sleeps with us every night, the other does so less often), and found that what worked best was to put our king-sized futon right on the floor. If you have a limited amount of $$ to spend on baby stuff, you should make a list of things that you KNOW you'll need (like car seats), and another list of things that you MIGHT need. For me the list of KNOWN NEEDS would be:

1. as big of a bed (mattress or mattresses) as will fit in your room, wall-to-wall
2. baby carriers; I would recommend two mei tais since you can wear two at once from birth.
3. car seats

Beyond that (and diapers and clothes, obviously), I would wait until after the babies are born before acquiring any baby stuff. That way you'll know if you have the kind of babies who would do well in a swing or a bouncer or a crib or a stroller or what.

I sent my dw to the store for a wind-up baby swing and pacifiers (two things I NEVER intended to use) when my twins were 3 weeks old. My twins never took to the pacifiers, but LOVED the swing. We ended up getting two of them because that was the only way I could ever have any time at all without a baby in my arms (which turned out to be rather important!). They'd take their morning naps in the swings while I ate breakfast. We eventually gave the swings away, and when we had ds3 (a singleton), I never once felt the need for a single swing. But with my twins I really did enjoy having two of them.

But, as for what to get while you're still pregnant, I think the list of needs is very small. A bed is key. I cannot imagine having to get out of bed to nurse two babies in the night. It would have done me in. As it was, I didn't feel sleep deprived at all until my twins were over a year old (at which point they became such active nursers that I was no longer able to sleep through their feedings).

HTH!

Lex
post #13 of 13
Congrats! The overwhelmed feeling is completely normal. I had it too - even though i was excited. I also second the Dr. Luke book. Its great.

You don't need 2 of everything. We had one swing, one jumper, one bouncer, one papasan baby chair, one boppy lounger, 2 boppies were nice also, 2 space saver highchairs, 2 carseats, and 2 cribs - BUT our twins didn't utilize 2 cribs until they were at least 6 months old. They slept in our room in a co-sleeper and I would cuddle them with me in the mornings. It saved us a lot of sleep having them next to me.

A double electric breast pump is also wonderful. nursing didnt' work for my two so I pumped for almost a full year - but you CAN get them to nurse. I know many twin moms who nursed their twins.

Twins are so wonderful. Yes, busy and crazy, but I wouldn't change it for the world. Its great that you have the singleton experience to go on - it will help. You'll do fine!
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