Thursday, January 30, 2014

but i don't have three arms

The course we went to last night was very similar to one we've been to before, but there were a few things we took away that we hadn't considered as almost-parents-to-be to twins.

We didn't leave with a sense of dread or overwhelming thoughts - I think most of the reality has sunk in and we are as mentally prepared as we possibly can be I suppose.

But there are some things I actually hadn't thought about. Take this enlightening bit of news:

Lady: "Welcome everyone! I have twins and I wrote a book about it. 
Now, one thing you might not have considered is the fact that you cannot carry two babies outside."


(At this moment, I am thinking, "Of course I can go outside carrying two babies. One in each arm, obviously. Where's the problem?")

Lady: "What singleton parents take for granted is the fact that they can leave the house without a buggy/pram."


Lady: ..."You cannot close a door when you're holding two babies, people."

(Oh fuck. This is true.)

Lady..." You can't pick them both up, open the front door and put them in the car, because you can't open the car door when you're holding two babies either."

(She's right, I definitely did not think about this.)

Lady: "So. When I say you're going to be using your pram or baby seats for even the shortest of distances - from your front door to your parked car, I really mean it. It's because you don't have three arms."

It is because I don't have three arms.

Lady:...."So get a pram that fits through the front door. Even if it's side-by-side, make sure if it does anything, it fits through your door."

Tick. After days, weeks, months of research, The Brit and I found a side-by-side buggy that fits through our door. That was our number one priority. It's a bulky, heavy old thing, but at least I can get it in and out of the house without having to dismantle it each time. Thank fuck for that.

Other things that we learnt were:
1) One twin dad said he prefers to come home to play with and see his twins than go out on the lash with his mates. He said that was the most surprising aspect of parenthood for him. That he didn't miss his old life at all.

We really needed to hear that.

2) Bathing twins is going to be one tricky situational exercise.

3) There's a good chance that one of my twins will spend time in neonatal ICU or special care after birth. I always thought it would naturally be both of them, mucking about in there together, and they'd at least be side by side in the scary bleeping incubator machine.

But apparently not. It's likely that one comes home with us and the other stays in the hospital. If this happens, it's going to be extremely hard. One there and one with me? One doing OK and bonding with me, while the other is in special care at the hospital?
Just something I may need to prepare for.

4) That said, one thing I've learnt thus far is that every single twin experience is different. And there is no single way to go about this. If I find a routine that works for me, great, if I don't have the right equipment or stuff I can make a plan, if one baby likes sleep and the other doesn't, well, I'll figure it out.

Let's do this thing.

PS: I still well up sometimes when I think about the adventure ahead, out of excitement and out of being terrified of the unknown, but I am more ready than I have been for a while.

PPS: Mum has booked her ticket over. One thing that I am so thankful for - I could  platz -  is that my mum is coming to stay with us for two months. She arrives end of March, and with any luck the babies will stay in utero until then.

Having her here, even as moral support or helping with small thing like making us a meal or taking the babies for a walk or even just helping me figure out why they are crying - will be an absolute godsend.


MeeA said...

Aww, Peas - It's going to be awesome, you'll see! And you'll figure it all out as you go along - just like everyone else does (including moms of multiples!).
It's great that you'll have your mom around for support. Mine came to stay with us after each of our babies was born and made sure that I ate. And ate. And then, just for good measure, ate some more (especially when breastfeeding). Moms rock like that.
Also - although having your mom around is going to be, like, the biggest gratitude experience of your life, don't be so sure that she'll always know better than you do. Sometimes, moms are just more in tune to their babies than anyone else is. And often, even though they're fed, clean and loved to bits, babies just cry. Make use of your mom's help as much as you can, while you can. And sleep whenever you get the chance! Also, enjoy the whole experience and don't be too hard on yourself!

Kookalooks said...

What pram did you get?
You might think this is an insane idea, but I've heard of people flying out a night nurse for a month or so from SA just to help out when the sleep deprivation really hits. Use it, don't use it, but at the current exchange rate it would be as cheap as anything.

Peas on Toast said...

MeeA - Indeed, I can't wait! It helps just to know she will be around xx

Kooks - I LOVE the sounds of this, are people really doing it? How though? They need visas, flights and need to stay with you though, so how does this cut the costs? Am very interested to know!

Kookalooks said...

Heard about it from a saffa girl who had twins and a toddler in London and has since moved back. If you've got a family helper who you've known for ages and can be an extra pair of hands, the flight and visa aren't a huge cost. And the current rate for a night nurse in Jhb is R300, or £16 a night roughly. And a spare room (or friend with one) is all you need. Might sound mad, but do try think about getting help once your mom has left, even from somebody once a week so you can get an hour to get out year house for the sake of sanity.