All the Twins Questions. Answered.

Ever since we found out we’re having twins, I am asked the same series of questions by multiple people I’m not bothered – after all, people are curious and caring. And, as my grandma told me, people LOVE twins. When I first told her I was expecting twins she burst out laughing! She gave birth to her own twin daughters more than 40 years ago, so while she knew how freaked out I was, she also ┬áhas the wisdom of hindsight to know that twins are great and that people love watching a twin relationship develop.

Because I know my memory will fade, I thought I’d post all these questions – and my answers – here. It will no doubt give me a laugh 40 years from now!

Q: Are they identical?

A: Yes! The initial ultrasound suggested fraternal, but it turns out that there is only one placenta which means the babies are identical.

Q: Do twins run in your family?

A: Yes, twins skip a generation on my dad’s side: my great-great uncles, my dad’s sisters, my dad’s cousins, and now my two! However, the doctors tell me that identical twins are not genetically based – but rather a fluke of nature. And, if twins do come “from the family” it is from the mother’s side. But, I just think it is too coincidental to rule out any sort of familial relevance, so I often joke that I was doomed to have twins!

Q: Whoa, six kids. Are you like Mormon or Catholic or something?

A: This question doesn’t necessarily irk me, but it does strike me as inappropriate. Perhaps if we were super religious I might take offense to it, but I get that people are just genuinely curious about how we ended up with six kids. For the record, we are Catholic, but that has very little to do with our family size. Also for the record, I just don’t think it is ever anyone’s business to ask why so many kids…if we are done having kids…the answer to those questions lies with me and my husband.

Q: How are you feeling?

A: The short answer: I’m hanging in there. The brutally honest answer: I’m basically miserable. Everything hurts. My legs and ankles and feet are grossly swollen. I have horrible round ligament pain almost all the time. Raging heartburn like 23 hours a day. My belly skin feels like it is going to tear apart. I am exhausted by 1:00 and basically done for the day by 4:00. I am naturally a very active person who HATES sitting still, but these babies demand that I lay down. Often. THANK GOD I have Chris and my mom and our regular sitter Khrystyna to help with the kids.

Aside from this quip here, I try to keep the complaints to a minimum. The twins are exactly where they need to be at 33 weeks, and I am so grateful for their (and my) continued health. Life is precious and special, and it is my honor to carry them.

Q: When is your due date?

A: This is a somewhat tricky question. My due date is technically September 8, but because they are identical and there were some initial concerns about twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS), I will be induced around 36 weeks. TTTS is a very scary and very real concern, especially for identical twins. It is when one twin starts taking all the nutrients from the other twin, leaving one much too big and one much too small. It can be swiftly fatal for both babies, and we have been very nervous about this syndrome since we found out we were having twins. We keep families who suffered with and struggled through TTTS in our thoughts all the time.

Q: So, you’re having a c-section, right?

A: I hope not.

Q: Are you going to breastfeed/cloth diaper/make homemade baby food/etc?

A: I hope so. Not because I am trying to be some psycho super mama, but because these things are comfortable and normal for me as a mother. I literally do not know how to use formula. I don’t know how to soothe a frantic baby without a my boob. I don’t like buying disposable diapers. Twins are scary enough – and thinking that I need to completely change how I handle a newborn makes me even more nervous. So, if you know me, please encourage me.

Q: Are you going to get extra help?

A: I assume we will need it, but I really treasure my independence and the natural rhythm of my family. I am an advocate of taking things one day at a time right now. When I recognize that we need more adult hands, I will reach out and ask for it.

Q: Are you going to dress them the same?

A: I’m too practical to buy the same outfit twice, so I don’t generally plan on dressing them the same on a day-to-day basis. But, if they are gifted matching outfits I think they’ll look adorable! As long as my kids are comfortable, I don’t care what they are wearing. And, anyway, once all my kids reach the age of 2 I pretty much give them the freedom to pick out their own outfits.

Q: Do you need to get a bigger car?

A: Unfortunately, yes. We didn’t need a “bigger” car, just a car with one more seat. So, we traded in our older model with seven seats for the 2016 version that has a total of eight seats. I often joke that we were thisclose to buying a mini school bus…

Q: Are you moving to a bigger house?

A: Eventually. While the city townhouse we currently call home is perfectly snug for a family of six, it will be too small for a family of eight once the twins are a little older. Our lives are lived one day at a time right now, and we are very content to make do with the space we have.

I wonder how the questions will evolve once the girls are here and we’re out and about with our brood of six kids…

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2 Comments for this entry

  1. Sheila says:

    Thanks for the update! God bless!

  2. Jessie Jay says:

    Another few questions: I’m not sure if you work right now or not (and I know that being a mom is a full time job!), but if you are working, does your employer give you (paid) maternity leave, or just the federally mandated 12 weeks? Any extra time for twins?

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