The moment when you find out you are going to become a parent for the first time is magical and a bit overwhelming. One of the best parts of pregnancy is that first ultrasound to see the development of your little bub. Only a select few get to experience a second “oh wow” moment when the ultrasound tech announces there are two babies in there!
The journey of parenting twins begins in pregnancy and lasts a lifetime.
If you are preparing to welcome twins into your life, or have two little ones in your life already, then this article is for you. Below are some tips I have collected from parents of twins on how to minimise the stress of parenting two tots.
1. Get Good Gear
Gear for twins is a whole new world from the mums of a single baby.
Finding gear that is practical with enough storage, but still isn’t too bulky, is a mission for sure. Luckily, the baby industry is constantly innovating ways to streamline gear with the aim to not only ease stress for parents, but ease the stress in style.
For your two little ones, a twin pram will be one of the first pieces of gear you purchase. Being able to strap those babies in and take a walk to the nearest coffee shop or park will be a sanity saver.
2. Don’t Be Afraid…
….To ask for help. If your husband has to go back to work and you are home with two babies, find ways to get help. If a friend offers to drop dinner by, say yes! If an auntie offers to spend a couple hours cleaning your house, say yes! If your mum offers to visit for a month to help with it all, say yes!
One of the biggest mistakes of new mums is thinking they can do it alone. The phrase “it takes a village” exists for a reason. During pregnancy start building your village so when your twins are born there are numerous extra hands to help ease the stress.
3. Nourish Your Body
Eating healthy is one of the first things to fall off the priority list when babies take over. I know from personal experience, it can feel impossible to stay well fed and hydrated when you are juggling feeding times, nappy changes, and crying babies.
My biggest tip for this is to have a weekly food delivery box, or weekly meal delivery. Every Wednesday morning, a box of local, organic produce and dairy is dropped at my doorstep and I swear it is the only reason my family eats well! It is a great way to eliminate the grocery store task which, with twins, can be quite the challenge!
4. Take Time
It may seem impossible to carve out a bit of personal time whilst in the midst of raising twins. However, it is a goal that should move up your priority list. Taking even 30 minutes for a stroll around the neighbourhood alone, or a ten minute meditation, will refresh and replenish your dwindling energy reserves.
Mums often think that taking time for themselves is selfish, but it is the opposite. Running yourself ragged and being unable to care for yourself and your children is the true selfish thing. No excuses, take care of yourself.
5. Drop the Mop
If you were used to a sparkling clean house pre-baby, then either your expectations need to dramatically change or you need to hire a house cleaner. After a few months of me nearly dying of guilt that I couldn’t keep the house clean and take care of the baby, we opted to hire a house cleaner.
The glorious feeling of having my house cleaned top to bottom once a week has released me from the mom-guilt of not being able to mop the floors or scour the toilets. We worked it into our budget, and gave up a couple of other extras to make it work.
Parenting is full of ups and downs and lefts and rights. Parenting twins is, well, double all of the challenge and the joy! A positive mindset, planning and preparation can go a long way in decreasing the stress of parenting twins. Really being able to ask for help, and delegate the things you cannot keep up with will make life a lot more enjoyable. I hope these tips build a foundation for decreased stress in your wild ride of a life with twins!