Having twins can be the most amazing experience of your life. It can also cause you to wake up in the morning wishing you were someone else. Twinning offers an honest depiction of life with twins from a mom who tries to keep things somewhere in the middle.
I could have read all the parenting books in the world when I was pregnant with twins, and still wouldn’t have expected half of the hassles life with twinfants presented. After a long pregnancy that included a two-month bed rest, I was definitely excited to be on my feet again. But even minor travel with twins — getting out of the house with them — was such a hassle. I soon felt like I was under house arrest. My motto when it came to going anywhere with my twins was, “You’ve gotta really want this” because it just would not be worth it otherwise.
In Sippy Cups Are Not for Chardonnay, Stefanie Wilder-Taylor describes infants as “luggage” and she really hit the nail on that one.
Imagine carting around two adorable pieces of luggage that can scream, eat and shit: it’s not so much fun. Just the preparation for going anywhere was exhausting. If you’re one of those care-free “let’s just wing it” types of parents who turn up without bottles or spare clothes for your babies, then lucky you. You’ll get out more, and I’m sure your baby will survive. Unfortunately I’m the type of self-conscious mom who felt that it was my responsibility to have everything the babies needed at all times. I’m the one who supplied the care-free moms with whatever it was they forgot.
Getting ready to drive anywhere with the twins took about a half hour of prep work. I’d fill up bottles, pack them in the diaper bag, making sure I had pacifiers, pacifier clips, diapers, changing pads and wipes. Then I’d put the double stroller in the trunk of the car if it wasn’t already there. I’d change both babies’ diapers and strap them into their infant car seats. Then I’d race out to the car, dump the diaper bag and race back in for the babies. I’d put them down on the porch, lock the door, then carry the babies out to the car, and snap their seats in one at a time. Having babies facing backwards was a pain because it’s impossible to see them to make sure everything was okay. They usually cried for a few minutes until the driving lulled them to sleep and that would stress me out. Then once they were quiet, I’d worry that they couldn’t breathe because they couldn’t hold up their heads.
Once we arrived at our destination, I’d get the stroller out of the trunk, unfold it, lock the wheels, and get the diaper bag and both babies. I remember one time, as I was getting my twins out of the car and into the stroller, I saw another mom get out of her car with just a purse, unbuckle her baby and stride off with the kid on her hip. I gave her such a stink eye, I’m surprised she didn’t feel it.
I couldn’t stride anywhere with both of my babies, ever. Not even if I was a care-free parent.
The most care-free I could be when taking my twins out was by walking with them in the stroller, because we could lose the car seats, I could check on them whenever I wanted to, and no time was spent buckling them in and out of the car. I was also always so much closer to home when out with the stroller, so forgetting the odd thing or two wasn’t a big deal.
Luckily I live in a town where I can walk to clothing stores, baby classes, restaurants and parks, because driving infant twins around was absolutely my least favorite thing to do during the infancy stage.
So if you happen to see a new mother out and about with two tiny babies in her huge stroller, please hold the door for her or just give her a smile—because she’s done a shitload of work to get there.