Surprise! You’re having twins. OMG Did you know Beyoncé and George Clooney's wife are also having twins, says every person to you from now on!
It’s one thing to read about celebrity twin parents-to-be like Beyoncé Knowles and Amal Clooney in tabloid magazines and think what are the odds? It is quite another thing entirely to personally experience being part of a small twin statistic that is actually happening to you. Likely you will move through a wide variety of emotions as you process this information and make preparations for your new life with two babies. Whatever way you are coping with the news of your twin pregnancy, keep the following in mind.
Whether you are elated or in the depths of despair, know that your reaction is normal. “Parents may be thrilled, shocked, anxious, totally overwhelmed — even unhappy. Their reactions depend on their lives and circumstances.” says Linda G. Leonard, associate professor emerita with the Multiple Births Support Program at the University of British Columbia School of Nursing in Vancouver. When expectations are not met, it can take some time to reset your modus operandi. Even if you are happy about your fortuitous state of affairs, anxiousness and fear can cloud the experience. Give yourself the time, space, and grace to adapt to your new situation. You will get a handle on things.
One of the biggest pros to becoming a parent of multiples is comradery with other multiples families. You, Beyoncé and Amal have more in common now than you ever could have imaged. From online support groups to multiples clubs, there are innumerable resources out there to help you survive and thrive no matter what your circumstances are. Today, nearly 4% of pregnancies are twins or higher order multiples. You are not alone. So many moms who have come before you are ready to pass on wisdom and truth to get you from pregnancy to preschool. Seek out these brave parents and soak up what they have to offer. It is a remarkable experience to raise two tiny humans together and the unique bond you can form with other twin parents makes it all the more delightful of a journey.
Do understand that it is okay to grieve for the experience you planned for with one baby (in twin jargon – a “singleton”). Sure, you may not get to enjoy the sweet quiet and focus of bringing one baby to the park to play. But, you do get to enjoy the incredible experience of observing two babies make each other belly laugh, of watching as they always grab that extra snack or toy for their twin sibling, and of feeling your lap happily overflowing with chubby little baby legs. It also helps that the world continues to become more twin family friendly. The TwinGo Carrier enables you to enjoy the pleasure and freedom of baby wearing for two tiny people, not just one. Many establishments even offer twin discounts on activities and classes. You will be able to leave the house and enjoy being out with your cuddly pair.
And if you simply cannot fathom starting your journey with twins, just take it one day at a time. A phrase from an Old Saxon poem that was written hundreds of years ago rings true even today. "Do the next thing." Don’t let all of the overwhelming logistics of a twin pregnancy get the best of you. There will of course be lots of planning, preparation, and logistics to deal with, but right now, you need only do the next thing. Stress management is key to a healthy and happy pregnancy. Instead of getting ten steps ahead, just do the next thing that needs to get done. That’s all! Rest. Eat well. Take deep breaths. One step at a time. Do the next thing. Your body is two babylicious not to survive and thrive!