Toddler twins

This weeks twin mama highlight is a special one for me! This beautiful lady has been my biggest twin support from the night I found out I was having two babies.

My message went something like ‘hey, it’s been ages, hope you’re well, I just found out I’m having twins so I would love to catch up x’ her response, ‘how does Sunday sound?’

Without her support and knowledge, I wouldn’t have been as confident throughout my pregnancy and as a new mum to two so sharing her knowledge as a mum of almost 4-year-old twins is truly an honour!

So let’s get started! When did you find out you were pregnant with multiples? Did you have any idea before your scan?

We found out we were having twins at our first scan at 9 weeks. I remember my husband and I looking at each other as we realised there were two little blobs on the screen and not one.
We had an inkling that it could be twins as I had a bump quite early and because twins run on both sides of my family, was still a bit of a shock to have it confirmed though.

How old are your children now?

3.5 – We are in the midst of the “threenager” stage.

Do multiples run in your family?

Yes on both my sides of the family and on my husband’s side too

What is the best thing about having more than 1 baby at a time?

I think I really like the fact that they will always have a friend or a playmate and never be lonely. Someone to grow up and experience life with.
Double twin cuddles are the best type of cuddles, one on each arm snuggled up to you! Sure gets the ovaries exploding.
Only having one pregnancy and birth is an added bonus, about the only time where its two for the price of one.

What sort of pram do you have? Why did you choose the one you have?

We have the Mountain Buggy Duet, I really wanted a pram where I could have my babies side by side with capsules and then convert into the stroller.
It still gets used now even if it’s a workout in itself to push with 2 big lumps that are almost to old to be sitting in it haha

How do you manage with more than one baby?

It’s amazing how often I get asked this question, and I always answer as honestly as I can. Some days I don’t manage. Somedays are just that hard. My husband has come home from work with me in tears, although they are few and far between as the girls have gotten older.
In the first years I’ve called him home from work early because I couldn’t manage.

I think sometimes you just have to trust yourself, trust that you are making the right calls the right decisions and not second guess yourself. To know their cues and stick to a routine.
Certainly ask for help if it’s available to you, family, friends, multiple birth groups, forums etc.
Some days are easier than others. You just take one day, one hour at a time, sometimes breaking the day down makes it easier to manage instead of looking at the day as a whole as that can get overwhelming. Don’t stress if the regular housework doesn’t get done, it is not a deal-breaker if that load of washing doesn’t get hung or the vacuuming didn’t get done, or that the bathroom went another day without being cleaned. Every day is a new day.

Are your babies identical or fraternal?

Identical, but they have their slight differences to tell them apart.

Were your babies naturally conceived?

Ah this question… always makes me internally cringe.
Twins are a blessing regardless of how they are conceived.
But yes they are natural (Nikayla was the first person to let me know people actually ask this question, even when they don’t know you, I’m glad she prepared me 😂)

What are some of your top purchases for multiples?

Double pram
Tandem feeding pillow
Bath sling

How do you decide which baby to settle/feed/change if you’re alone?

Which ever is the most unsettled or crying/screaming the loudest.
I always did tandem feedings so I didnt have to worry which one to feed first, just swapped which side baby drank from on the next feed.
Changing I would do them both at the same time, one first then the other depending on who was the wettest or smelliest. Sometimes you would have to try settle both at once and would have a bub in each arm sitting on the couch trying to sooth them.

How do you tell your babies apart?

Riley has always been just that littlest bit smaller than her twin sister Myla. She also has prominent cowlicks. As they have got older they both have their own personalities and traits, the way they talk, laugh and act.

Have you labeled your babies in any way to make sure you don’t get them mixed up?

After the first week at the hospital, we pretty much knew who was who, of course, we have mixed them up numerous times thinking one is the other and vice versa. Now that they are older we can tell who is who from a different room without even seeing them as they have different voices and cries.

Do you have a set routine and if so are the babies all on the same routine?

When they were younger I was super strict with their routine, always woke one when the other woke from sleep, fed them both at the same time, changed bums the same time, naps they went down the at the same time.
Eventually I had a set routine that I worked my day around.

I’m not ashamed to admit that if I was out and around a particular feed or nap time that I had to be back home at a certain time to tandem feed and put to bed because 15mins or a half-hour after that effect and change the whole routine.
Even now at 3.5 where they are in the process of dropping the day naps I know that if they do need to have a nap that they have to have had lunch and asleep by 12-12.30 otherwise the night goes to crap.

Thank you so much beautiful Nikayla for sharing your experience and tips with us!!

I have a limited number of spots for some more families to share their unique stories of multiples, if this sounds like you please get in touch!

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