Being a twin mum is harder than I imagined, and there are different challenges at every turn. The lack of sleep hits me in the face every time I look in the mirror, as our quest for some decent blocks of sleep of a night continues. Whilst trying to tell my husband what I’d read about the effects of chronic sleep deprivation, it took me a long, blank-staring, eyebrow-furrowing 10 whole seconds to think of the word ‘function’. Oh the irony.
As parents we all have our own little must-have items that make our lives that little bit easier each day. A favourite toy or activity guaranteed to cheer even the grumpiest baby. (Jumperoo, anyone?) Stacks of clean vests/bibs in every room. Packs of baby wipes everywhere.
But the one thing I’d be lost without can’t be bought.
As a twin mum, what you really need in life is… other twin mums.
Find your local twins club, join Facebook multiples groups, follow some twin mums on Twitter or Instagram and get chatting, or maybe contact your local Children’s Centre to see if they run any twins groups. Just find them!
Singleton mum friends are great too, of course, but it’s amazing what being with a group of twin parents can do for your soul.
If you’re lucky enough to meet as lovely a group of twin mums as I have been, here’s what you can hope to gain…
Forget ‘What to Expect in the First Year’ and its ilk, (like we have time to read anyway)… meeting lots of twin mums with children of different ages means you’re likely to find out what you might be able to expect in the next month or two.
Need the loo? Something from your bag? 2 minutes to take a breather outside and remember what it’s all about? There will be a pair of arms to hold your grizzliest child while you get yourself together.
You’re all up against it in some way. But sometimes seeing how others cope in different circumstances gives you a little hope.
Babies are tiny but expensive little things, so anywhere you can save money can come in really handy! Twin clubs can be a great place to find nearly new clothes, buggies, toys etc.
The opportunity to just blend in.
Twins, especially babies, attract a lot of attention in the outside world. It’s nice to feel special but sometimes you’d rather not stick out like a sore thumb.
The ability to vent your frustrations at people who completely get it.
And if you need to have a little cry, go ahead. Other twin mamas understand that having a cry once in a while is not a weakness or a sign that you are not coping – they just acknowledge that it is relentless, hard work.
So you might not get much sleep for while. Your vocabulary may decrease exponentially. The laundry mountain will probably never be conquered.
But we’re pretty darn lucky.
And when mums become mum friends who become simply friends, you’ll have someone there on the end of the phone, or to text, keeping you sane when it all gets too much.