The babies are here!
The nursery is beautifully decorated. The home is organized. Extra hands are at the ready and meals are frozen just waiting to be devoured.
As you depart the hospital with your beautiful babies the panic sets in.
Well, after speaking to over 80 moms, I’ve compiled a list of the most common survival tips.
- BREATHE! Don’t forget to breathe – you are a mom now and they adore you already!
- SLEEP when they sleep. I hated when people gave me that advice, but the second time around (yes, my 2nd pair of twins) I am definitely doing that! I realize the importance; even if I just lay down. If you are not rested then the stress builds and you can’t enjoy your precious new babies.
- KNOW that it will get easier. It will!
- SCHEDULE: this is more long term. In those first few days you are just trying to get through the day but keep in mind that a working schedule is key to surviving multiples.
- LISTEN to the baby. If she is crying she needs you; feed her, change her or help her get to sleep.
- ORGANIZE: whether you have a list printed out or keep everything in a basket; keep together all the items you NEED – burp cloths, nose spray, nose sucker, diapers, wipes etc. Don’t set yourself up to fail because you can’t find your essentials.
- ACCEPT help from whomever, whenever they offer but don’t entertain – be strong enough to ask them to leave.
- ASK for help. Whether you need help watching the babies, or because you need someone to talk to because you just don’t feel attached or you are sad. Being a first time mother can be very overwhelming and these are very normal feelings so reach out.
- CHART each baby’s feeding and urine/bowel movements so you know if each baby is eating enough, going enough, and is well hydrated. This will also help find a pattern for when you are ready to start a schedule.
- FOCUS on you and the babies. Get to know them!
As difficult as it is to hear, these are the moments to bond with your babies – not clean the house, write thank yous, and host dinner parties. When you feel overwhelmed it is OK to let them cry until you can regroup. If you need a moment, put them in their cribs and take a break so you can come back in a few minutes with a clear head.
Part of the challenge (and fun) is getting acquainted with your new loves and life. In a few months you will be the master, giving out wonderful advice to new mothers of multiples! Enjoy!
Kerry Bergeman is a full-time stay at home mother of 5-year-old twin girls and newborn identical twin girls. She teaches part-time at the local community college and blogs at New2Two about life with twins, dealing with infertility and a daughter with a severe intolerance to dairy.
Top photo courtesy of Kristin Staples Photography in Salisbury, MD
Last photo courtesy of Twinzzshop.
* * *
Are you a new twin parent? Check out Natalie Diaz’s new book “What To Do When You’re Having Two: The Twin Survival Guide From Pregnancy Through the First Year”, available in stores now!
The rate of twin births has risen 79 percent over the last three decades, and continues to increase. A mom of fraternal twins and a national guru on having two, Natalie Diaz launched Twiniversity, a supportive website with advice from the twin-trenches.
What to Do When You’re Having Two is the definitive how-to guide to parenting twins, covering how to make a Birth Plan checklist, sticking to one sleep schedule, managing double-duty breastfeeding, stocking up on all the necessary gear, building one-on-one relationships with each child, and more.
Accessible and informative, What to Do When You’re Having Two is the must-have manual for all parents of twins.
* * *
Join our FREE forums and connect with parents of multiples all over the WORLD! Visit http://www.twiniversity.com/join-