3 months with 3 children under 2 1/2. What.The.What. It’s crazy town up in here.
Yes. It is impressive. Yes. It is note worthy. But. I am not unique in this accomplishment.
Every other mother in the world fights the same draining, demanding, and daunting battles to take part in this world with tiny children in tow. Our job is hard, ladies. Carting kids around is hard. You deserve a medal every time you show up to bible study or brave the grocery store.
Pat yourself on the back, first. Then I will allow you to congratulate me.
And we can celebrate our accomplishment together.
Cheers to us, mamas. Cheers to all of us.
Could you use some HELP?
I’m not blind to the fact that this life of mine is a bit of a curiosity to those around me, whether friend, family, or stranger. I would have to be completely oblivious not to notice the stares and comments as the Great Osborne Caravan makes its way past gaping faces anytime we go anywhere.
We are a spectacle. Oh yes. A spectacle.
So I’ll attempt to wrap up the past three months with a toddler and twins for all of you, my lovely, dearly missed readers friends, and answer the questions I would ask me if I were you.
The first three months with a toddler and twins
Yes. It’s a freaky deaky nature thing that God created in my mama brain. And, yes. I’ve always been able to. It’s super weird, and probably one of those things I’ll ask my Jesus about at the end of days.
But then again, I guess any mama would be able pick her own baby out of a crowd of babies, so maybe it’s not so weird after all?
First, I have help. I’m not ashamed. Actually, I’m super proud. I brag about my helpers and my unabashed acceptance of their help. The more help the merrier!
Everyone should have help. All the time. With everything.
I’ll probably write at some point about the beauty of this amazing exchange, the music and rhythm of giving and receiving help, and how its a symphony conceived by our Lord. How we see it in the Creation Story, that Adam wasn’t alone for long, that God made him a suitable helper, and then forever after God has spoken of how His creations have helped and supported one another. How giving and receiving help binds us together like nothing else in life, and when we deny others the opportunity to help us, we are selfishly, pridefully destroying the chances for a great transformative, unifying work to be done in our souls and theirs. Turning our backs on the union God had meant not just for husband and wife as helpers to one another, but for all mankind, as helpers and receivers of help, each and every one.
But that’s a story for another time.
In many forms.
Husband. Nanny. Church. Friends. Family. Fellow Warrior Mamas/Sisters.
Meals. Laundry. Errands. Prayer.
Baby holding. Toddler watching. Starbucks delivering.
That’s how I do “it”.
Every mom, everywhere, of one child or many, needs and deserves this kind of love and support. She should ask for it and accept it, humbly and gracefully. I think it is a tragedy that so many of us enter motherhood as if hurled into the deep end, forced to swim for our lives, and somehow, we feel guilty and ashamed if anyone reaches out a hand to keep us from drowning.
It’s utterly ridiculous.
You won’t get extra points in the end for nearly drowning in the beginning.
Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest…
Let me describe what I actually do.
Because 1) I have help and 2) I give myself a giant, freakin’ break and expect almost nothing out of me.
I think people see me at church or bible study with cute(ish) clothes and make up and 3 children in tow and assume some sort of magic is happening in my life. There is no magic, I assure you. I have a ton of help to get me out the door on the very, very rare occasions that I actually leave the house. Most days, I don’t. Let me explain.
(If we are all going to bible study or church, I throw some clothes on while Hubby throws the kids in the car.)
11 am – Hurry to get a snack because by now, I’m starving. Again.
The rest of the day is a blur of nursing and snacking and nursing and snacking. Occasionally, I go to the bathroom. I might be able to do one major thing, like give my Toddler some undivided attention, or take a nap, or a shower, or do my hair, or bathe the twins, but definitely not all in one day.
Around 5 pm everyone everywhere gets fussy and the nursing and snacking turns into nursing and nursing and nursing. And holding and rocking and cuddling, in the dark, for the next several hours.
Of course, it never runs that smoothly. Never ever ever. But that’s to be expected.
Once in a very great while.
Only if the girls are fed, and sleeping, and the Toddler is sleeping, and another adult is home, and I have more than 30 minutes before the next feeding is expected. In 3 whole months, this has happened maybe 7 or 8 times total, allowing me to run to get Starbucks or frozen yogurt or something for 20 minutes or so of alone time. Half of those times, the twins started crying almost immediately upon my departure. -sigh-
But that’s just this very short season of life.
Do I get sick of it? Yes. But I’m so thankful I’ve been through it once before with my first born. It helps me to remember how painfully slow this season felt, but how quickly it went by. I know I’ll be able to go out on my own soon enough, even meet a girlfriend for coffee! Just not today.
Nursing while I’m out = Nursing one twin for about 30 minutes and then the next twin for about 30 minutes.
So if I’m at the park or library or something, I have to prepare myself to sit there for about an hour while Hubby or other adult helper plays with my Toddler.
The nursing thing really dominates our lives right now and places a lot of limitations on my availability and activities.
Which brings me to…
Basically, it’s the same as nursing one baby. But different.
That’s pretty much it.
And it’s pretty much all I do.
Of course, there is more to it than that, but not everyone wants to read about all that bid-ness.
For the rest of you, let me just say this. Nursing takes about 30-60 minutes, every 2 hours or so (from beginning to beginning), usually requiring a giant nursing pillow and a very specific seating arrangement, so for the most part, all I do is “feed da gur-als” (as Big Brother puts it).
I know all of this will change dramatically in the next three months.
I don’t know what our life will look like, but I do know is this, I’ll probably still employ the same tools I’ve used to get through the first 3 months:
1) Accepting lots and lots of help
2) Giving myself a giant, freakin’ break
3) Laughing as often as possible at myself and this ridiculous (wonderful) life I’m living.
Other interesting and random facts
We do our best to keep them on the same schedule by feeding them at the same time.
For the first 3 months, they have slept in the same bassinet right next to each other. Yes. It is adorable.
Two babies crying is exactly how you would imagine it. It can drive you insane. But it is also so ridiculous that it’s just plain funny. (At least to us.)
No. Our son can’t tell them apart yet. Poor kid.
Yes. Twins run in our family. The girls have a great-grandpa and a great-great-grandpa who were both twins. (So you can wipe the sweat off your brow and sigh in relief. I could tell you were worried.)
Any questions about life with twins?
Please feel free to ask anything in the comments below
or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org