This week's question of the week at the Multiples and More site is about advice.
What is the best and worst advice you have ever received on raising your multiples?
I have honestly gotten a lot of good advice from pregnancy and beyond. I am lucky to have a hugely active local multiples club. If I ever have any kind of question, I only need to ask those parents over there and I'm sure I'll get a few awesome answers. Between this club and my own mom, I think I get a lot of great advice.
The greatest advice I ever got with the twins was on the day that we found out we were having twins. The doctor supervising the ultrasound was one I knew really well. I knew he had twins of his own. He was explaining what we were looking at and measuring those 2 heartbeats. They were amazing to see on the screen. After he was done with the ultrasound, he looked at me and said, "You know I have twin sons who are 11, right? Those first weeks are really hard. Get help."
Juice was in the ultrasound with me and we spent the 45 minute drive home talking about what he said. It seemed like a good idea so we began to plan how we could have help. And who we could ask to help out.
My parents were planning on coming for the birth this time, and staying 2 weeks to help those first crazy days. Plus, we needed someone to stay with Butterfly. Sadly, they missed the boys birth by 1 day. But they were able to stay 2 whole weeks drinking in the brand new baby stuff.Then my in laws came to stay with us for one whole month. It was amazing to have another set of hands around. They bailed me out of a dead car, celebrated Butterfly's 3rd birthday with us, and had a fun time with the babies. They were a big help!My parents came back for the boys church blessing, and brought my niece Flower along with them. She was 14 at the time and had come to spend a month with us. We had SO much fun with her. We went all over and she was a gem. She changed diapers, cleaned up, took Butterfly to the park, watched movies over and over and over with her, and then watched movies at night with me holding babies.
Once she left, we had 3 weeks without any help. Holy cow. I thought I was going to die a few times. If it wasn't for my friends here, I don't think I would have kept my sanity.
After those 3 weeks, my cousin Bee came to stay with us for 3 weeks. She was a lot of fun too! She was 15 and had never really even held a baby before. But boy she did a great job. Butterfly especially loved her fun spirit and cool games she cooked up.
Bee's family came to pick her up and have a mini vacation with us for a week. Honestly, by this point the boys were 4 months old and had been hauled over the greater Washington DC area. They were great travelers and we had fun being tourists together. We also got photographed by Japanese tourists several times and I can just imagine what they tell their friends when they show them the pictures.
I flew to Utah with my kids and Bee's family. Juice had work to do so he couldn't come along. Then we spent almost 6 weeks at my mom's house. This was heaven. I loved having my parents around to help out and to see all of my friends in Utah.
Once I flew home (with Juice), the boys were almost 6 months old. They were a lot easier. They were over that scary newborn phase and were sleeping 16 + hours a day.
I think I took my doctor's advice seriously, and I really do believe that it was my key to having sanity while they were so tiny.
The worst piece of advice I think I've gotten from strangers. Mostly it's little stuff. But things they say in passing without even knowing who I am or what I do. If I dress them the same, they say "You should never dress twins alike!" Never mind that my boys are completely different physically. If I don't dress them the same, "You should always dress twins alike! How fun is that??" "You should have those kids in bed." "You shouldn't feed them that!" "You are shining the sun in their faces! Get a hat on those kids!" "You're making your kids too hot! Take those hats off!"
Seriously, strangers should keep their mouths shut. But there's something about twins that makes people just want to talk to you.
My best piece of advice for moms of any kind is to take things in stride. This is advice I try to give myself every day too! I see other moms with older kids and see how different their lives are than mine. Each stage has it's challenges and joys. And I intend to enjoy them all!