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Monday, July 28, 2014

seeing double - TWINS! - Laurie Harmon

Thank you so much to Laurie Harmon for sharing her awesome story of her twins - a boy and a girl, best of both worlds! They are now 12 years old, so she has survived those early baby, infant and toddler stages where you need more than two hands to help along active twins. She's lived to tell about it, and says her household is like an average home now with children. That's great news to those of you just starting out!

Thanks again, Laurie, these two are so adorable! 

All photos from Laurie Harmon

1. How did you find out you were having twins? 
I found out I was pregnant with a positive test on Thanksgiving morning 2001. In January of that year I had bleeding and went to the ER thinking I had a miscarriage, the ultrasound tech showed me the screen and said I was still pregnant with TWO babies with strong heart beats.

In our mid 30's Robert and I found out one thanksgiving morning we were going to have a child due on my birthday.. a few months later thinking we'd miscarried we found out we were having TWO later found out it was One boy One girl, The best of both worlds. Born early but healthy and knowing the struggles and health issues some of my moms of multiples friends went through with their babies I KNOW I am blessed.

2. What was your original reaction to finding out you're having twins? 
Excited. secretly hoping that there was one boy and one girl.

3. How old were your other children at the time you found out about twins coming?
The youngest child was 11, the oldest was 18 with a 14 and 16 year old in between.

4. What were you most nervous, scared, worried, etc. about with having twins? What thoughts ran through your mind initially? 
The health of the babies, I was over 35

5. What helped you to prepare for twins? How specifically did you prepare for twins? 
We made the mistake of thinking we needed two of EVERYthing. We over prepared with baby equipment. 

An important preparation is getting meals frozen ahead in the freezer, planning in any way to save time. 

6. Any good books, Web sites, etc. for those having twins? 
I read several books, I was on bedrest for awhile and all I did was read. There was also an online support program for moms who were on bedrest, I don't remember the name of it at the moment.

7. What were some lifesavers to you, things that helped you when the babies were born - baby must haves?  
Extra hands! Having other people around to tend to a baby if both babies were crying at the same time, so that one baby didn't have to go without while the other one was being tended.

8. How did feeding twins go for you, breastfeeding or bottle feeding, what worked, what was challenging?
Breastfeeding both was challenging, one baby continued to nurse longer than the other. I had to rent a hospital grade pump to help keep my supply up when nursing both and one of them never seemed satisfied after nursing and ended up being supplemented with formula and eventually switching over to fully bottle fed. Yes we cheated and propped a bottle if only one person was home but someone was sitting there with the baby, tending the other one so baby was not left alone with propped bottle.

9. What is the best part about having twins?
Two babies at the same time means they always have a playmate. 

10. What are some challenges overall with having twins?
When home alone with them and both babies cried at the same time. 

11. How do you manage two at the same age at the same time, meeting their needs, etc.? What helps you? 
It is very hard at the infant stage but is doable, it just takes time to find solutions to make things work smoother. 

When older and both want to talk to me at the same time, I feel like the one being told to wait always feels shorted or not as important as the other.

12. What is unique or special about having twins? 
One baby is special, two babies is a bonus blessing. 
13. What is your advice to a new mom with twins? 
Definitely search for some support groups/ social networks that you can connect with some multiples moms. I have a long term friendship with several moms online who I connected with on a parenting multiples website when the twins were toddlers. Some days those mothers' advice and tips or humorous moms of twins stories are what kept me sane. 

14. What do you wish someone had told you about having multiples? 
That we didn't need two of everything.

15. Can you share a typical day in the life with twins or a great story of the two of them? 
The twins are 12 now, A day in the life is very different from the days when they were little. A typical day now is like the life of any household with tweenagers. 

16. What are three things you know for sure about twins? 
They share a special bond with each other, they are more work but also even more joy.

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