Someone once told us that twins were “twice the work, half the sleep”. HA! It’s more like quadruple the work, a tenth the sleep. But despite the challenges, we’ve all survived mostly intact thus far (perhaps with the exception of my sanity, which sometimes feels like it’s hanging on by a hair’s breadth). So to commemorate the twins turning 3 months, here are 3 interesting insights I’ve discovered:
1. Twins are celebrities!
When we bring our twins out, we attract countless gawks and double takes. Not to mention countless comments of “twins!” or “双生!” or their dialect equivalents. At our neighborhood coffeeshop, they practically have a fan club that hovers over them whenever and wherever we park the stroller; we have been christened there as “the parents of THE TWINS”. There are also the paparazzi questions: “Twins?” (Yes) “Boys/girls”? (A boy and a girl, aka 龙鳳胎; which always makes all the aunties even more excited) “Identical?” (No. Maybe it’s the biologist in me, but it always amuses me when people ask this question after they have been told that they are a boy and a girl. Seriously, how is it possible that a boy and a girl be identical when they have different *ahem* ‘bits’??)
All the attention can be a bit overwhelming, especially when you are trying to wolf down your food in the 2 minutes of peace before either one or both of them start crying for attention, or when you’re trying to rush off to feed them before an inevitable meltdown ensues. But I’m guessing the interest will fade once they are older and it’s not so obvious they’re twins, or at least when we stop using the twin stroller. Which brings me to the next point.
2. Double strollers are a beast!
Seriously. The thing is a tank. I’ve lost count of the number of toes we’ve mowed over as we tried to maneuver through all-too-common narrow lanes. (Apologies if you have been one of the victims!) From pavements to supermarket aisles, Singapore is just not made for bigger strollers, even though ours is a tandem stroller (front and back, for the uninitiated) rather than a side-by-side.
But if driving a beast of a stroller with 2 babies in it was bad, driving it without any babies in it when said babies are screaming in refusal to stay in it is even worse. So hubby and I end up each carrying one baby and one of us tries to push the now-empty stroller in addition. We’ve gotten a little wiser and now bring along at least one baby carrier so that at least one of us has both our hands free. Still, it is an absurd scenario and we wonder why in the world we bought the darn stroller at all if all! I’m sure the hilarity of it will one day catch on. But probably not today.
3. The only thing worse than a baby screaming in the middle of the night are 2 babies screaming in the middle of night.
Having 2 babies simultaneously screaming is not much better on the home front, especially not in the middle of the night. So my strategy has been to try to settle one as soon as he/she wakes to prevent waking the other as well. But sometimes the inevitable happens and both are hollering at the top of their lungs. Add a soiled diaper or two into the mix, and absolute chaos reigns. Thank God for my rock star of a hubby, who usually tries to help. (Although I’m amazed how he can sometimes still snore through the commotion.) Still, I cannot wait for just one of them to sleep through the night!
Despite the madness, I know how blessed we are to have our twins (as so many of our gawker aunties remind us), and I also know that all these will one day pass, something I’m reminded when I see my eldest going off to primary school next year and wonder how all that time flew by. As it has been so aptly put, the days are long but the years are short. In the meantime, I’ll be looking forward (albeit maybe sometimes with trepidation) to the many more lessons I’ll learn on our ongoing twin adventure.