Dear Me when I only had one baby,
This parenting thing is hard, isn’t it? You figure out one idiosyncrasy, establish one simple routine, and then that little lovebug of yours goes and flips the script. Now multiply that parenting improv show by three, and you know what life will look like in two years.
Don’t get me wrong: Your girl is a whirlwind of high-intensity wonder on her own. In fact, there will be many moments when you will find yourself shocked at how easy it is to take care of these two boy infants in comparison with her track record.
But being a mom of twins barely resembles the two popular notions you’ve heard: The romanticized version, and the chaos-at-every-turn version. Neither is true 100% of the time, and that is a comfort. For you it is a sweeping dance, like a ballet where the cast wave their arms a lot, speeding up and slowing down but never losing their balance because they know their foundation. You know your Foundation, too, and that is where your peace and confidence comes from in this unexpected adventure.
You will get less sleep, but that’s a given with any infant. Especially your girl, who somehow awakes at 4:30am many days and has consistently followed an inverse ratio of typical awake-versus-resting hours. What’s different this go-around is how overwhelmed you will feel by the just the idea of bedtime. So start early with feeding them at the same time. Every chance you get, keep those fellas together so they can at least attempt a similar rhythm. You won’t succeed at getting them on the same schedule – one is a great sleeper, the other is your girl Part Two – but you will succeed at feeling a semblance of control, which is gold in those early days.
Give yourself a warehouse full of grace. Your parenting skills will be maxed out, sleep deprivation will inspire some odd new meals, and your favorite heels won’t ever fit again. Just say “Yes” to each wrinkle – in plans and in face – that comes your way. Fighting it takes too much energy, and you won’t have excess to expend.
So let her watch a few hours of TV each day. Let the boys eat spilled Cheerios off the floor. Let yourself buy a cherry pie for yourself every week because, goshdarnit, you are breastfeeding it all away anyway.
Here’s the bottom line: This all is a massive blessing. You will go through a heart-shatteringly tough season in your marriage to get to this point. You will wonder if your girl will ever have a sibling, if you and your husband will be able to be the teammates you signed up to be as you exchanged rings in front of the pastor. But, as you emerge from that dark night of two souls, you will step into a partnership reinforced with steel, clad in iron, and wrapped in tungsten – which is exactly what you need to be pregnant with, give birth to, and parent twins. And their big sister, who seems to carry a punch card for trips to emergency medical facilities.
Let your husband be an amazing father and your partner in this endeavor. And when he can’t meet all the needs you have – because he is human, regardless of what you tell the kids about his superpowers – gather with your friends in honest, humble conversation and prayer. Godly community will help these kids to grow into the men and the woman your loving Daddy, their Creator, has designed them to be. It’s not you alone against the world. This is an important lesson for them to see in action – regularly.
Okay, now go snuggle that babydoll. She won’t be into your cuddles and kisses in a few years once she’s discovered how terrific Dada is, so gather as many as you can now. You are such a wonderful mom, and you’re about to become magnificent.
By His grace & in His time,