Thursday, August 16, 2007

Life With Twins, Part 2

The Benefits Of Twins

Twins tend to be so fascinating for so many people, so when I started blogging I thought I'd write more about them. However, it is so normal for us that I rarely think to write about it. (You can read Part 1 here.)

Having two babies the same age was challenging in many ways. Many Ways. But I think that having twins is sometimes easier than having 2 siblings really close together. At least with twins they are- usually- on the same eat/nap/play/bedtime schedule. Also, they are developmentally doing (about) the same things, so their needs are more similar than, say, a newborn and a 15 month old (Hi Erin!).

Other advantages of having twins became apparent as the girls grew. Since they've always had each other to play with, I've spent very little time entertaining them. I read to them often, and we snuggle, and play games. But then they disappear into their own world, sometimes for hours at a time. (As I write this, they are playing on the floor next to me. They have squabbled a few times, but mostly have spent the last hour entertaining themselves.) I feel the same way as Me
Today does about playing make believe games for kids. My mind gets all restless and wander-y after just a few minutes. There's always so much more I could be doing. Having twins has left me with much more time for things like reading (my OWN books)- I can do this while "hanging out" near the kids while they play.

Enter Marin. Her sleep issues are complex and exhausting and I've already blogged about it a few times, so I'll leave it at that. (David wants to nickname her "Marin *UP* all night"- cue perky Rhonda Shear voice). Swistle described our issues perfectly in her post yesterday, just add in "talking to each other harshly and inappropriately in the middle of the night", and that pretty much sums it up.

Anyway, in addition to not letting me sleep, Marin has been rising for the day around 6am. I could get used to this if I were more rested, but on my current "25 seconds of sleep at a time" plan it is very difficult to be awake at this hour. Painful even. So David and I have been taking turns getting up with her and heading straight to the family room couch, plopping Marin next to her toys on the way.

With Kate and Joan, this would have worked fine. In a similar situation, they would have played happily while we caught a few more winks. Not so with Marin. This morning, she stood next to the couch where I was desperately trying to sleep and crowed at me. "Mom! Mommy! I'm bored! Play with me! Look at my paci! I'm going to bang you with my paci! I'm going to bang you with my head!" And on and on. Since Joan and Kate were up late last night (fishing, with Daddy, Grandpa George, and cousin Allen), they were still sleeping. I was half awake and trying to interest her in the toys, but it would only last a few seconds and then she was back. "Mommy! I'm bored! I'm going to bang, bang, bang you with this plastic carrot! And with my head!"

So David? This is another reason that Marin needs a little sister or brother. Because I'm a crappy playmate, even when I'm more rested. OK?


Feener said...

my bro in law has twins and i have always wondered, maybe it is easier in some ways to have twins then my 26 month apart children. this was some helpful insight. also my 10 month old, is not a great sleeper...or napper and wakes bright and early as well. and yes she expects to be HIGHLY entertained most of the time. sometimes i think something has to be wrong, you can't really just want me to be playing with you ???

Swistle said...

I'd thought I would blog more often about twins, too. And yet I hardly do at all.

My first two singleton babies Would! Not! Tolerate! a playpen, but the twins do. I think the singletons didn't like being in there alone.

David said...

Or maybe that's the reason we don't want another one, because "Oh boy, I don't think I could survive this sleep thing again!" :)

Black Sheeped said...

I keep almost writing you a stupidly long comment in response to your last comment, then searching for an email address on your blog, then thinking maybe I should just make a long comment anyway, then feeling like a huge dork and COME ON KARA GET IT TOGETHER.

I'm so awesome and not at all awkward.

In short, I think I'm going to do before and after pics of all our rooms, and yes, the kitties are in heaven and the dog is sort of sulky. The cats have been ecstatic about a) boxes b) stacks of boxes and c) climbing on stacks of boxes since we got here. Sometimes they fall. I love it.

Also, hey! I'm a twin.

Erin said...

Hey, thanks for the linkie!

It's funny you would post this because just yesterday, I was thinking about you & Swistle. Because my sister-in-law (who also has a newborn) and I were talking about how we could never handle twins. It baffles me how people juggle more than one little baby, especially when it comes to sleep. But I guess so much of it depends on the individual kids.

Sounds like Marin is really giving you a run for your money with the sleep issues. I hope it improves soon. I know how desperate that can make you feel.

Penny said...

I've always wanted twins, even though I usually only hear about it being very difficult (not to mention risky in pregnancy).

I imagine it is difficult to blog about something so common to your life, even if it is so rare to others'.

Mommy Brain said...

It was a full year before I stopped wanting to hit people who told me "I always wanted twins". (This always happened in a crowded store while one baby screamed her head off.) Now, I can honestly say that I love having twins. (Remind me of this tomorrow when I'm complaining about my twins...)

Katie said...

I think I would have a hard time during the first few months with newborn twins, but the entertaining themselves thing? Sounds AWWWWWWESOME. Mine can't entertain herself for more than about 2.5 seconds.