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5 Ways to Stay Sane When You’re Alone with Twins

5 Ways to Stay Sane When You’re Alone with Twins

breastfeeding twins class

Last updated on May 14th, 2024 at 09:13 pm

While pregnant with twins, I read every book and article that I could get my hands on. The number one piece of advice I would see again and again was to get your family and friends to help. This is GREAT advice, in the beginning, but eventually the MealTrain comes to a halt, friends have to go to work, and you realize your closest relative is five hours away. Eventually, many moms have to figure how to stay sane, when alone with twins.

1. Eat Breakfast

The days of grabbing a granola bar and a cup of coffee to last me through teaching four middle school classes were over. For almost nine months, I provided breast milk for my twins by exclusively pumping. This activity is a caloric-burning-equivalent to running fifty miles per day. What worked for me? Smoothies. There are nutrient-dense smoothie mixes that help lactation. Throw in a frozen banana and some coconut milk, and you will have a great breakfast to sustain you…until second breakfast….one hour later.

2. Be Practical, Not Perfect

In the newborn days, I came to realize that I was meeting the recommended 10,000 steps per day, without ever leaving my 1400 sq ft. house. The perfectly cute nursery we had envisioned needed to change to the absolutely most practical set-up possible. I moved the babies’ dresser (with a changing station and all of their clothes) into the living room, where we spent most of our awake time. Also, my husband set up remote switches so that when I turned on the light in the nursery, two white noise machines, one salt-lamp with a perfect warm glow, a nursery fan, and a humidifier all turned on simultaneously.

elyse Habenicht outside with twins

3. Get out of the House

My first outing with the babies, by myself, was to the grocery store. I parked at the very end of the parking lot, with no cars around, because I knew I would need space for my giant double-wide twin stroller. My heart raced in anticipation. Would the babies cry? Or poop? Would I be able to put the stroller together? Would my favorite cereal be on sale? I only had to call my husband for encouragement (and stroller help) twice before the babies and I made our way into the store. And guess what? I don’t remember if anyone cried or pooped. I do remember leaving the store feeling like Superwoman.

4. Do Something for Yourself

When I reached my second trimester, the nausea finally went away, and I started feeling more like my normal self (plus 20 pounds of baby). It was around this time that I registered for a half-marathon. I told my family and friends that if I didn’t feel like it when the time came, I wouldn’t race. I knew in my heart that I needed to meet this goal for myself. Fast forward to when my babies were 8 months old. Not only did I finish the race, but my time was a personal best. Sure, it took a lot of training, and I had to sacrifice some sleep to train. But running gave me a place of solitude, during which I could reflect or zone out. It refreshed me in a way that sleep couldn’t.

alone with twins
Photo Credit: Jane Goodrich Photography

5. Give Yourself Grace

There is no way to explain the physical and emotional demands of taking care of two tiny humans at the same time. There is also no way to explain the joy these two tiny humans will give back. Do the best you can and take an occasional bubble bath. Sure, it may be interrupted by crying babies, but it may not. It will get easier. When? Every. Single. Month.

Staying sane means that you find the bright spots of every single stage. I find myself missing the cuddles of my newborns, but loving when my babies run into my arms for a hug. Even though you are “alone” with twins, you are not actually alone at all.

Elyse Habenicht

Elyse Habenicht is a former science teacher, turned stay-at-home-mom of 1-year-old boy/girl twins. Her pre-children hobbies of cooking and running, are now prepping healthy baby food and logging miles with her kids in the jogging stroller.

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