When it comes to raising twins, these moms know it’s twice the challenge but twice the fun and twice the love.
Raising one kid’s already a handful. But what happens when you have twins? That means you have to double everything from the crib to the number of diapers you have to buy! But, you’ll know they’ll have an instant best friend, and your house will be the noisiest but most fun place to be in.
But the journey to having and raising twins is stressful, especially during pregnancy. The risks are higher and sometimes, knowing that they are both healthy and alive is good enough, especially for these moms.
Pregnancy to Birth: A wish came true
We believe our kids are a gift and a wish come true. And we don’t even mind what sex they are as long as they’re healthy and well. But there are times we get more than we wished for, especially for Rocio Olbes when she found out that she was pregnant with twins. “We made a wish. And two came true. I am sure it’s different for everyone who has twins, but for us, it has been the happiest time of our lives,” beams Rocio.
But a twin pregnancy is no joke, especially if it was a mono-mono type like Katiana Iseppi’s. “It was a difficult and high-risk pregnancy. During the pregnancy, I even had Bell’s Palsy for a while which paralyzed my right side,” Katiana recalls. “I had an emergency C-section at 36 weeks and the recovery was hard. But thank God, they didn’t need to be kept in the NICU. They were born with a strong set of lungs.”
But once the twins are born, we’d forget about all the hardships of being pregnant especially when you take one good look at them. Kim King knew that when she gave birth to her twin girls — Artemis and Aurora (also known as Skye and Soul). “Although the pregnancy was difficult because it was heavier, I’d say living with twins is fun,” says Kim. “I’ve always envisioned having twins. I think a lot of moms envision having them too because it looks so cute.”
Different Twins, Different Stories
Although twins are cute to have, it still takes time getting used to especially trying to figure out which one is which! That was the challenge for Katiana Iseppi when she had her identical twin girls — Ava and Gia. “During the early days, it was hard to tell them apart because they both had that newborn baby look,” admitted Katiana. “And they were new to us so we [my husband and I] were learning how they looked like, learning things that could distinguish them because every time I check on them, they look different!”
But for fraternal twins, they can look so different that people don’t believe it at first sight. Rocio still has difficulty convincing people that Afonso and Federico are twin brothers because they don’t look like twins at all! “Afonso has blonde hair and Federico has caramel brown hair. No one can believe they’re twins because they look so different,” laughs Rocio.
Aside from looking different, fraternal twins can also like completely different things and act completely different from each other. One can prefer reading a book while the other one can grab a blanket, tie it around their neck and say they’re Superman, kind of like twins Daniel and Michael Aguilar are. “Michael loves running around wearing 3 different superhero costumes in a day while Daniel is happy with his books and flashcards,” says Jerika.
But just because they’re different doesn’t mean one’s better than the other. They just have unique talents! “Skye was the smaller baby, but I noticed she is more musically astute, and she’s very sharp like she could tell the correct shape by just pointing at it. Whereas, Soul is the one who likes to work out. She even plans it out!” giggles Kim. “Artemis also isn’t the picky eater. She eats things like malunggay and even the bitter food like oregano.”
But even if twins have their differences, they’ll always be there for one another. Rocio sees that, despite Afonso and Frederico being different, they’ll always have a unique relationship with one another. “No one will never have the same relationship that they have with each other. I love that it’s so unique. Even when they argue over a toy, they are very bonded,” says Rocio.
Their Unique Relationship
We’ve seen the movie Parent Trap where even though twin sisters Annie and Hallie grew up apart, they eventually found each other. Twins have a special bond that no matter what happens, they’ll always find a way, just like Jerika’s twin boys, Daniel and Michael. “But even with their contrasting choices, they’re affectionate towards each other. They protect each other. I would like to believe that their [Daniel’s and Michael’s] differences will be the major reason they will one day choose to be best friends,” confirms Jerika.
And that becomes especially true for both Ava and Gia. While it took them a while to learn how to share, they picked it up a lot earlier than most kids. With Katiana and her husband using the word “ours” instead of “mine”, the girls learned to do the same. Both Ava and Gia now refer to their toys as “theirs” and even correct one another if one twin gets it wrong. They share everything including stories about themselves.
“It’s like when I tell my girls a story. I usually would start a story like this: ‘Once upon a time, there was a mommy that had a beautiful daughter named Ava,” Katiana recalls her experience with Ava. “She would then tell me, ‘And Gia!’. Even though I would say, ‘No. Just Ava.’ She’ll always say, ‘And Gia!’. The same thing happened with Gia. She would say, ‘And Ava.’ whenever she hears her name but not her sister’s name.”
But just because they’re twins doesn’t mean they have to do everything together. They need to have their own thing so they can grow as individuals. Like Afonso and Federico, Rocio says that while they both have their own thing, they still touch bases with one another. “They also love to do things on their own, but it is not long until they look for each other because they want to share or show what they discovered,” says Rocio.
Although twins share things often with each other, that doesn’t mean they don’t sometimes get on each other’s nerves. They can still get into fights like how Soul can win over her sister because she’s the “more physically robust one”. “Like when Soul and Skye like the same toy or when Soul notices that Skye stopped eating because she eats slow, she sometimes gets her food because she thinks Skye’s done eating,” Kim laughs.
While twins can be the best of friends, we also know that they can also be each other’s worst nightmare especially when they bite each other over a toy.
What’s next for the mommies and their twins?
We often think that twins should always be together no matter what happens. It’s like how some of us would prefer if the siblings are in the same school. That way, there would be some healthy competition but they can look out for each other too. But we also know that they can’t always stick together. Some of us might prefer that they live their own lives away from one another. But for Kim, it might be a bit too early to tell.
“For me, it’s too early to tell. I want these decisions to be made with them, I want to figure things out with them. I am not one to impose. It really depends on what they feel comfortable with when that time comes,” says Jerika when asked about her plans for the twins.
While we want our kids to be more independent, for twins, it might be a little hard since they just like doing everything together anyway. “They are only one-year-old,” says Rocio about her twins. “And although we encourage independence, they truly prefer to do everything together. They are best friends & have their own world together. How can you blame them? They have been together since before they were born.”
Twins: Twice the Stress but Twice the Love
We know that living with twins is not the same as living with two kids. With the small gap in between, we have time to rest and learn from our mistakes from the previous one. But with twins, it’s double everything! There’s not much of a learning gap but sometimes, maybe God made it this way because He knows your kids will need one another. And we know that, despite the stress their twins cause, these moms would not exchange it for anything in the world.
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