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what you wish someone had told you when you were expecting multiples - Page 2

post #21 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by kangamom View Post
Thanks Karen

I thought of another thing I wanted to say that I wish someone had told me. That is that when you walk out the door with your double stroller loaded with babies, you become an instant celebrity. It really freaked me out at first. I was used to people oohing and aahing over new babies, but with singletons they get over it pretty quickly. You might get a few strangers come up and ask questions but for the most part you're left to do your shopping or eating in peace. With the twins it went to another level. I can hear people whispering about us and pointing us out to their children. I see people staring at us out of the corner of my eye. I've learned to pretty much ignore it, because it falls into that same category of how people seem to turn their manner switch to "off" when they see twins. I also learned not to try not to leave the house with the babies without being totally confident of how I looked. There is nothing worse (to me anyway) than having a completely rotten day with baby/kid stress, being undershowered and underslept, having to sit in line for 20 minutes at WalMart listening to other people's screaming babies, and have every old lady in the store come up behind you and say, "ooh, are they twins?? I was supposed to have twins, I always wanted them my cousin's friend's sister had them and it was so hard for her blah blah blah...' Sometimes I just don't want people to talk to me. I decided if I had to go through that I'd better at least have my lipstick on. So, in a nutshell, be prepared for lots of attention.
So true! I've found that if I'm having a day where I need some attention, I use the double stroller. Otherwise, I try to go more incognito and put one in a sling/carrier and use a single stroller, or have my daughter sit on one side of the double.
post #22 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdahlgrd View Post
Ignore all the baby schedulers!! And boy are there hundreds of them!!

RELAX, it will be OK.
Just reading this thread, I'm expecting twin boys soon. I am SO glad to read this. I've had a lot of twin moms who told me that I HAVE to read Babywise :
post #23 of 67
One more thing I forgot to add be prepared you will get some great biceps from lifting holding your twins it's another great benifit.
You will get lots of advise only listen to people who have twins all the singlton moms who try to tell you things just smile nod then walk away.
post #24 of 67
Exactly what kangamom said (that celebrity thing is just bizarre - especially when you're the type that's not comfortable with all that attention). To add to that, be prepared to have people physically stop you. I had a man grab our stroller as we walked by so he could show his wife our 5 week old twins! It was crazy. I've had other people touch them - even when I was wearing them! One lady fixed one of my twins ears which was folded (he was in the Mei Tai on my chest) and several people have gone to put fallen out binkies back in their mouths! I would never think to touch someone else's baby like that! But people do it.

I wish I had been prepared for the ppd. For me, the thing that affects me the strongest is when my older kids aren't quiet enough when I'm trying to get the babies down for a nap or to bed. Might want to be prepared for just how on edge you might be when dealing with the challenge of soothing 2 babies while having an older child doing everything in their power to get your attention or simply just be loud b/c they're playing, etc. That's been hard.

Finally (about birth) - if you're planning a vaginal birth, be prepared for the fact that the contractions can pull the cord of baby A back into your body (at least somewhat) so make sure that it's NOT clamped with those metal things that look like scissors. A plastic clamp is okay but cord ties are even better. This was THE most painful part of my labor with them (when that stupid metal thing was being pulled up into me). Because it was being pulled into me, it was not easy for the midwife to get a clamp up above it so she could remove it. That was just awful. Might as well not use the metal clamps in the first place.

Oh, and that pph is more likely following a multiples birth so do what you can preventatively now and just be aware of its possiblity.

And read good twin birth stories (mine is linked in my sig)!!!

Good luck - it truly is a great thing! We're all very lucky!
post #25 of 67
I wish someone had told me to just expect not to sleep.

I also wish someone had told me that at near-40, with almost two decades of independent living under my belt, I was really really really going to need other people in my life on a daily basis, to help out. If you're closer to people in your life this may be easier on you but it came as quite a shock to me. Now I won't have it any other way, but I had to learn the hard way that reaching out for help ain't a crime.

I wish I'd looked more at my babies and less at what people told me about what gear I needed. I did use quite a bit of gear, and didn't feel one bit guilty about it (another tip - don't feel guilty about it. Use what works to keep the screaming down. Swings, exersaucers, jumperoos, double slings, sling plus backpack, huge double stroller in the house, whatever. If they're not screaming it's all good.). But I wish I'd absorbed a bit more of their personalities before spending so much money on a double stroller, which was not a good purchase for us. We ended up getting much more use (still to this day) out of an $11.00 single stroller plus a homemade gift sling. Anyway, long story short, don't shy away from gear if it helps, but genuinely look at what actually works for your actual babies rather than just accepting what manufacturers say about what it should do. If you're an experienced MDC mama you may have better success with that than I did.

The big thing I DID hear and still tell myself almost daily is that any change, no matter how slight, in a household with young twins is enormous and takes days, weeks, or months to adjust to. Minimize any outside commitments, don't be afraid to say "NO" when people ask you do to - well, anything. My doctor, also a mom of now-teen twins, says that by the time they're 5 years old you can do most things again. That's five YEARS, not weeks or months. Somehow I did not internalize that message until they were about 6 months old. You'll do better.
post #26 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by kalynnsmom View Post
Just reading this thread, I'm expecting twin boys soon. I am SO glad to read this. I've had a lot of twin moms who told me that I HAVE to read Babywise :
Um, no. Read Mothering Multiples, available for cheap from LLL. And though I'm not a huge Dr. Sears fan, Nighttime Parenting rocked. Both of these should be in your local LLL library (my local LLL library sits in two plastic boxes next to my computer - wanna come over and browse? ).
post #27 of 67
Mine pertains more to the actual pregnancy, but I really wish someone had told me to trust my body and that everything didn't have to be so medical. I hadn't found MDC yet, and my pregnancy was sooooo medicalized. I really believe that the way it was handled by the docs caused some of my problems and the premature delivery of my twins at 34 weeks. I also wish that SOMEONE had told me that I could carry my twins to term. There were so many people around me telling me that it probably wouldn't happen and that I should prepare myself for early delivery and a NICU stay that I eventually just accepted it as truth.
So many things I would've done differently with my pregnancy if only I would've known.
post #28 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by nora--not a llama View Post
Mine pertains more to the actual pregnancy, but I really wish someone had told me to trust my body and that everything didn't have to be so medical. I hadn't found MDC yet, and my pregnancy was sooooo medicalized. I really believe that the way it was handled by the docs caused some of my problems and the premature delivery of my twins at 34 weeks. I also wish that SOMEONE had told me that I could carry my twins to term. There were so many people around me telling me that it probably wouldn't happen and that I should prepare myself for early delivery and a NICU stay that I eventually just accepted it as truth.
So many things I would've done differently with my pregnancy if only I would've known.
yeah that me too...oh man, I went to L/D like dozens of times...I also wish someone would have told me about Nourishing Traditions and the WAP pregnancy/nursing diet...I probably wouldn't have put on sooo much weight on my butt and thighs and the babies would have gotten more.

Everyone was telling me I was "too small" to carry twins term even though I'm 5'6" and medium build. I wish I hadn't bought into all the negativity and fear mongering -- wish I had found MDC beforehand and read about the AWESOME mamas here who had wonderful homebirths with full term babies.

I wish fewer people had told me how terrible it would be etc etc....because it was and it has been very difficult for me, but I didn't need all the negativity beforehand, kwim? I totally believe pregnant moms need as much happiness and optimism as possible to grow big healthy babies and stay healthy as well.

I wish someone had prepared me for the NICU experience -- for staff who would discourage me from breastfeeding. I didn't know that I could say "no bottles"...I didn't know that I could demand to breastfeed my babies, I had never heard of an SNS or fingerfeeding. I DO know that not ALL women do well with a pump!! All those LLL and LC women did was tell me to pump etc etc -- well I was and I was barely getting jack! I *still* can't pump jack yet I can fully feed one of my 11 month old sons just fine with plenty of milk. If a pump doesn't work for you -- all the fenugreek and whatever is not going to help, because it isn't an issue of actual supply -- it is an issue of stimulation and body signals and letdown. Why is this information NOT common knowledge?? ALL the women I knew from my 7 weeks of NICU pumped at the most a couple of weeks! So I know this is NOT a rare thing.

whoa -- sorry this turned into a rant...but I am just kicking myself for how ignorant I was and just wishing I could rewind time and do things better. Another thing -- I am SICK to death of hearing, "the c-section probably saved your babies lives" or "I'm sure it was safer for the babies" MY @$$! I was duped, coerced, violated etc etc...and the end result was a wounded wreck of a new mom with two micro tiny babies struggling for their lives in the NICU. I will probably be scathed for the rest of my life.

I'm sorry again for the rant...just listen to your body and don't let those docs force you into anything you'll regret. You can do it -- you were made to carry full term healthy babies!
post #29 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by twins10705 View Post
Another thing -- I am SICK to death of hearing, "the c-section probably saved your babies lives" or "I'm sure it was safer for the babies" MY @$$! I was duped, coerced, violated etc etc...and the end result was a wounded wreck of a new mom with two micro tiny babies struggling for their lives in the NICU. I will probably be scathed for the rest of my life.
Me too, Momma. I so, so feel ya.
post #30 of 67
Thread Starter 
Don't worry about posting your negative experieneces as well. We want to hear those things that other wouldn't tell us and the hard stuff is part of that!
Thank you mamas of multiples!
post #31 of 67
i wish someone would have told me....all the joy of hearing my 3 babies cry... the joy of seeing them smile... the work involved and the coordination of DH...

i love my kids and i would do it all again in a heartbeat...
post #32 of 67
1. Breastfeeding is easy....I got so much breastfeeding advice from moms of singletons that I was unsure of my ability to breastfeed both of them.

2. Thats its much easier than most people make it out to be. Heck having two babies doing the same things at the same time is as easy as it gets...lol

3. Be prepared to constantly have them in your arms......everyone said how easy it was to put them down and do stuff....lol...yeah right.
post #33 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by nora--not a llama View Post
Me too, Momma. I so, so feel ya.
Quote:
Originally Posted by twins10705 View Post
whoa -- sorry this turned into a rant...but I am just kicking myself for how ignorant I was and just wishing I could rewind time and do things better. Another thing -- I am SICK to death of hearing, "the c-section probably saved your babies lives" or "I'm sure it was safer for the babies" MY @$$! I was duped, coerced, violated etc etc...and the end result was a wounded wreck of a new mom with two micro tiny babies struggling for their lives in the NICU. I will probably be scathed for the rest of my life.
A bit OT here - but reading the book "Silent Knife" really helped me come to terms with and heal emotionally from my C-section, which happened along the same lines - not tiny preemies, but a NICU stay nonetheless, and lots more I could write about. The chapter on emotional healing was invaluable and broke loose a flood of emotions I didn't know I had. to you both.
post #34 of 67
1. I wish I'd asked for more help. It turned out that I really, really, really needed it. My babies' newborn to toddler perios was awful in terms of sleep deprivation, PPD, and food issues.

2. I wish I'd known that no matter how much I tried to AP them, no matter how much I loved them, that there would be times that they'd cry inconsolably. That was so incredibly hard for me

3. I wish I'd known that despite giving 1000%, despite seeing all kinds of LC, LLL, and trying supplements and pumps, etc., that NOT being able to BF would be OK. I mean - it wasn't OK, believe me, and it's probably one reason my kids have so many food issues, but the incredible frustration and sadness of not being able to BF drove me into PPD (with the help of the sleep deprivation).

4. Take lots of pictures - leave the camera/video camera out where you'll be reminded because it's easy to get caught up in day-to-day stuff. And make sure you take pics of you WITH the babies, and DH too.

5. Toddler twins are hard, too LOL - going in different directions, etc. Going out, even to afriend's house, is WORK if you don't have enough capable hands to help. and by help I mean change a diaper and get me a sandwich LOL.
post #35 of 67
i wish i knew more about not having a csection. : I would be pregnant all over again with twins just to do it over. you can have a homebirth, dont let doctors bully you or be so negative. Be informed!!! and Breastfeeding was easy. It would have saved me alittle sleep in the beginning had i learned how to breastfeed them together. but i was pretty much a rested nursing mommy. so go with your instincts, trust yourself and do whats best for you and those precious babies.
mama to ds1 (7), ds2 (5.5) and dd1&2 (3)
post #36 of 67
I did get great advice when I was pregnant and in the early months, so I'll pass it on.

RE: Pregnancy and birthing, I'm glad someone told me I did not HAVE TO have a c-s. Seriously, the thought of having a vaginal birth never occurred to me til a friend gave me "The Thinking Woman's Guide," and suddenly I was empowered. I really pushed having a vag birth with my Ob; I absolutely insisted on it. I literally mentioned it at every appt, lest he confuse me with the rest of the mults moms who begged for a c-s at 38w. I had Baby A vertex and Baby B breech, and I still had them both vaginally. My proudest achievement.

RE: The first year, I'm glad someone said that no matter what I did, there would be moment when both kids would be crying and I couldn't do anything about it. I did learn who could deal with crying for a few minutes without going hysterical and who needed nearly immediate attention. And also someone told me just to think outside the box. Twins are DIFFERENT than having a singleton. The things that might work for singleton moms don't necessarily work for us. Also, I didn't push a schedule, but after a few months I observed their natural rhythms and basically found they were in a groove, which became a "schedule" at around 6mos. Before that, anything goes.

The hardest time was when they were both 2yo and would literally run in separate directions (and I was pregnant with a singleton). Now they're 3.5yo and energetic awesome little boys, and I have a 1.5yo girl who does exactly the same stuff they did, but I'm glad there's only one of her!
post #37 of 67
My boys just hit three weeks. My only advice so far is get someone to come help if you can (I have my mom for another week!), co-sleep with them (we haven't felt sleep deprived yet) and I'm just learning how to wear them both in a sling and it is great! They held hands while they were in the sling together
post #38 of 67
This really isn't advice, but just something light to share -it may be a little corny....however, when my dd's were born 12 yrs ago, my friend gave me a framed saying that not only have I come to love and appreciate, but my girls have had me read to them numerous times over the past 12 years:

There are 2 to wash and 2 to dry,
And 2 who argue and 2 who cry!
One's in a mudpuddle - having a ball,
One holds a crayon off marking a wall.
Some days seem endless. My patience is thin.

Why was I blessed as the Mother of Twins? :

The answer comes clear at the end of the day,
As I tuck them in bed and I hear myself say:
"there are 2 to kiss and 2 to hug.....
and best of all....
There are 2 to LOVE!"

As silly as it may be, it still literally brings tears to my eyes!

-even now that they are in that wonderfully interesting preteen year.:
post #39 of 67
Sometimes having twins is THREE times as hard as having one baby, but--especially as they get older--sometimes it's HALF as hard as having one baby! My three-year-olds are best, best friends. They get to go through their lives with their best friend by their side. They say the sweetest things to each other, and it really does make it all feel so worth it.

I think you should go into the early twin days planning only to breastfeed, eat, and sleep. Many moms of twins are amazed by how much time they spend breastfeeding. IME, most moms give up because they just can't handle nursing that much (and then they start supplementing, and they lose their supply, etc.). I honestly don't remember doing much else during the first three months, but after that the babies were much more efficient, and while they still nursed very frequently well into toddlerhood, the nursing sessions got much, much shorter. Also, I know a few moms who say they started supplementing their babies in the hospital because their milk hadn't come in yet. This is just ludicrous, since most moms will leave the hospital before their milk comes in (especially if they've had a c-section). So, being educated about that and insisting on NO supplementation can really help. Also, if you've had an induction and are on IV fluid for a while before the babies are born, they're likely to have inflated birth weights, and it would be totally normal for them to lose 10% of their bodyweight fairly quickly. I personally feel like nursing twins is one of the hardest things I've ever done, especially once they became toddlers. It can be hard to feel so very needed in such a physical way. Of course, I also think it's one of the best things I've ever done!

Make sure you get out of the house everyday. People were always amazed to see me grocery shopping with my newborn twins (in slings), but I just couldn't imagine staying home with them all day. On the days when I didn't manage to get out the door, dw could always tell within 30 seconds of getting home, just from the way I'd be acting. It made me feel crazy to be stuck in the house with two babies. So, definitely go to LLL meetings and join whatever baby groups you can find. I admit that sometimes I would feel really jealous of the moms of singletons, but for the most part it was nice to have all the other moms treat me like some sort of super human, and to realize that I was really doing okay with two babies, even while some moms struggled with one.

I think you need to be more relaxed with twins than you would be with one baby. If I'd only had one baby, I probably would have been much more paranoid about germs, and letting my babies crawl around on public floors when we were out, etc. But there were just much bigger things to think about with twins. I've seen some moms of twins really go crazy with being very protective of their babies. One mom of 18-month-old twins asked me how I gave my boys a bath by myself. I couldn't really understand the question, since I'd been bathing the boys by myself since they were born. It turned out that this mom never had and didn't feel she ever could, and would never put both twins in the bath at the same time because then she couldn't keep her hands on both of them at the same time! I think it helps to have more of the attitude of "sometimes one of the babies might slip under the water, but if that happens, I'll just scoop him right up."

HTH!

Lex
post #40 of 67
My girls will be 5 in a mere 10 days (where oh where does the time go??). I will echo the sentiments of some of the PPs.

1) Ask for help! Someone wants to do the dishes or laundry? YES PLEASE! Watch the babies while you nap? YES PLEASE! Cut up your food into tiny pieces so you can eat while you tandem nurse? YES PLEASE!!

2) Sleep when you can. Really!

3) Don't beat yourself up when things don't go the way you envisioned them. I put so much pressure on myself to do everything exactly like all the "expert" books said to do that one day I was curled up in a ball crying on the living room floor! I shouldn't have done that to myself. (On a related note, just trust your instincts!)

4) You'll never be prepared for the amount of love and joy and wonder and awe that comes from carrying, birthing, and raising two beautiful babies. : :

Best of luck!
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