Thursday, September 22, 2011

"It Doesn't Get Easier - It Just Gets Different"

You may have heard that saying, "It doesn't get easier, it just gets different."

Totally, completely untrue!

Having 2 walking babies has really made me reflect on the past 13 months. Yes, there are new challenges that come with the territory. 2 walking babies are more work than two crawling babies around the house. But, whenever I think of the new challenges, NOTHING compares to having two newborns. That was the hardest thing I have ever done, and I'm not sure any of the "different" challenges that happen along our twin journey will compare to the challenges of twinfants.

Why?

Because we are getting sleep!

And the kiddos are more independent. In my opinion every month until 12 months gets easier. But we will see what happens now :)

Some things are harder with walking kids than newborns... such as trying to get them to stay still for a picture. We had a photo shoot with a very talented photographer (hewfly.com) this past Sunday. At one point our photographer asked if we could make them interact. I wish! The boys did NOT do exactly what we wanted (especially not simultaneously), but we managed to get some great shots anyway.

I have so few photos of just me and the two boys it is sad. But following is some of my favorites with them, and the easy/hard aspects of that age range.

Newborn (minutes old)
Easy: You are running on adrenaline. Just looking at your babies' faces makes you so happy.
Hard: You hurt, everything is new, and you don't know what you're doing.Newborn (12 days old)
Easy: They stay where you put them.
Hard: Still getting to know each other. Babies require constant attention and/or movement. Breastfeeding every 2 hours or less for 12 straight days. With twins, you have to plan your movement from one room to another; if you leave one alone, he will cry. (I hadn't mastered holding two at once yet).

1 month:
Easy: They stay where you put them.
Hard: Breastfeeding every 2 hours or less for 1 straight month. Starting to really feel the exhaustion. Learned how to hold both at once, but they are heavy! Still a struggle to move the babies around the house on my own. Babies like to be cuddled one on one better than both at once. Not taking all naps together.

4 months:
Easy: Starting to space out nursing to 2-2.5 hours. Longer stretches at night. Definitely starting to feel more human. Taking almost all naps together.
Hard: Still not sleeping through the night. Getting heavier, but still like to be held a lot. (Really started using the Moby Wrap to hold one baby). Short naps (about 45 minutes).



6 Months:
Easy: Starting to sit up and reach for things, which means they can play by themselves for a few minutes! Yeah! This is when I started making real dinners again. Waking up just once a night around 5am, then going back to sleep. (6 months was a huge turning point for us).
Hard: Like I said, getting easier every month. Babies love their new independence, but you can tell they want to move on their own.

10 Months:
Easy: Started crawling at 7.5 months, which was beautiful! Crawling brought much more ability for them to entertain themselves, so more freedom for mommy! Also the struggle to move them around the house instantly got easier; they loved to follow Mommy! Started sleeping through the night at 9 months. Longer naps. Easier bed times.
Hard: Movement means training/discipline. Can't let them crawl just anywhere (in public) due to dirty/uncomfortable floors.

13 Months: (Picture from our photo shoot)
Easy: Walking means they can walk more places, so they can get some energy out in public if needed. More outing possibilities. Sleeping through the night almost all the time, except when they get scared/sick. (Mommy can handle that)
Hard: Walking means quicker boys, and there are 2, so have to plan how to keep them safe/contained when I take them on the new outings.

This is what has been on my mind. Especially as my husband and I discuss if we want another baby or not. I think a lot of the challenges of the first 6 moths were so hard because we had twins. Nursing at night, cuddling, and holding/moving the baby around the house would be way easier with one, right?? I would just keep that baby strapped to me in a Moby the whole time ;) I keep trying to tell hubby that, but he is not buying.

Oh well. I am blessed with the two beautiful sons I do have. Love my 13 month olds :)

4 comments:

uneggsplained said...

Love your post.... i am so encouraged, it will get easier :) one of my boys thinks he is an only child and wants to be held all the time! I would gladly hold him if i could but its not always possible. I dream about sleeping for two straight hours. Did you have to supplement at all? Your boys are really cute...... i love all the pictures!

Lesley K said...

I just came across your blog and I am in shock because I am a mom of identical twins (girls), and also work PRN in a NICU. Do you have any contact info. ? It would be neat to keep in touch with you. I will have fun reading through your blog :)

Krystal said...

Uneggsplained: I am so glad you were encouraged; it definitely gets easier. It just isn't possible to hold both all the time, I think both of mine thought they were only children too :) It gets easier to play with them at the same time as they get older too. To answer your question, I only supplemented a few days before my milk came in because they were losing a lot of weight. They were always good latchers though, so my situation is different than yours. You are doing great Momma! I always told myself what is a few months of sacrifice for a lifetime worth of breastfeeding benefits. After that first few months it is a breeze though ;)

Lesley -- thanks for reading :) That is pretty neat. How old are your twin girls? You can email me at krys15@hotmail.com if you want to keep in touch.

McKims said...

I stumbled across your blog... my twin boys are 1 month old... and though I have a 4yr old and 3yr old... this twin stuff has been an adventure! So, YES, I think ONE baby would be a breeze for you after having twins first! It was so great to read how things get easier!!! Thanks for posting this!!!