Written by: Joanne Lowe
Congratulations, you’re having twins. Those words must been some of the most exciting and terrifying at the same time. Having twins is a special thing, but how, just how do you feed, change, and look after two tiny people at exactly the same time? Having seen a few friends recently blessed with two bundles of joy it’s something I’ve wondered about. If you are entering that reality what can you do to make life run smoother?
Knowledge Is Power
Getting as many tips and as much information as possible before your arrival will help to prepare for your special task. There may be a multiples specific antenatal class near you, and there’s no better way to get advice than to speak to someone who’s already done it. If you can’t find a multiples class, then don’t be afraid to ask your midwife or consultant for help as there are big differences in bringing two people into the world than with a single birth. Parents need to be aware of the potential complications and birth options open to them. There is also a group called ‘Tamba’, Twins and Multiple Births Association which can which can give support on how to manage both practically and financially.
With any baby there is a lot to get ready. Clothes, a place for baby to sleep, prams, bottles, nappies, the list is endless. With twins there is even more to sort out and consider. Getting organised will help to reduce the stress when you come home. When it comes to clothes consider what size you’ll need. It will probably be premature baby clothes as twins are smaller, and these sizes can be harder to come by. A pram may also be hard to find. I struggled to find a double pram that suited my needs for a newborn and 19 month old, so know it can be a chore. There are many on the market now, but do your research and take your time to find the right one for you.
Babies do respond to routine and with twins it’s important to get this going straight away to make life easier. Some multiples spend a considerable time in hospital before being allowed home which can be a plus. It means they establish a routine before you bring them home and can give you a good start. Some parents also keep charts to mark when one baby has been fed, has slept or been given medication. This can really help to keep on top of the daily routine, especially in that tired new parent state.
Try to get your finances in order before your babies arrive. Obviously having two babies at once costs more, and although you’ll get two lots of child benefit, there is no extra help from the Government. Try to put some money aside for their arrival, or ask if family and friends have any unwanted baby items to use the pressure.
Hold On To Your Sanity
Having twins is a major challenge. Feeding times two, sleeplessness times two, everything times two! Prioritise what is really important to keep yourself sane. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from friends and family, even if it’s a quick hour of babysitting help so you can creep away for a nap.Don’t try to do all the housework, bake cakes and be there for your little people all at once it will probably be impossible unless you have super powers.