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Let’s celebrate the twin and multiples moms out there who are kicking ass every single day despite personal struggles, life obstacles, and feelings of doubt. Let’s learn from each other and celebrate the Badass in all of us.
Twice a month I will feature one Badass mom of multiples. Last week, Kellie from New Mexico shared her incredible story, read it here.
Be part of our growing Badass Twinmoms group: join here. Want to share your Badass parenting moments? Please sign up below.
Meet Trista from Canada
I virtually met Trista through one of the online groups I volunteer as an admin My Journey with Twins. We have a few things in common: our infertility struggles and having twins after 3 years of fertility treatments. We also feel a deep gratitude for motherhood and having our twins. This is her story, and what makes her one Badass Twinmom.
1. Introduce yourself:
My name is Trista, I’m from Ontario Canada. I’m a volunteer fire fighter and work as an activity aid. My husband and I were high school sweethearts and have been together for 11 years. My fraternal boy girl twins are our first children, they are currently 5 months old. I’m still on maternity leave and enjoying my time with my little miracle babies.
2. Can you share some of your Badass parenting moments?
It took us three years to have our beautiful blessings, and I’m starting to figure out why. The first year we did Chlomid treatments but they failed. The second year into our fertility treatments, we lost 5 family members, one was my stepdad (I had lost my biological father at a young age, my stepdad was basically all I knew). Doing fertility treatments while grieving was probably not the best thing but I needed something to keep me busy. I really just couldn’t deal with the loss of so many important people in my life. I needed some good to come out of this, whatever it was going to be. We couldn’t just give up, we pushed even harder for our babies. I needed a reason to live again.
It finally happened, we were pregnant! I wanted to tell the world but instead we kept it a secret and just told close family. When we finally announced it to the world, some complications emerged. Everything turned out okay, we had done an ultrasound to confirm. Still, I wasn’t convinced that everything was going to be fine. It all just seemed too good to be true, it all still felt like a dream. How could I finally be pregnant?
I remember impatiently waiting for the next ultrasound or doctor’s visit just to make sure that our babies were okay. One ultrasound report came back showing one baby was measuring a lot smaller than the other, and we were told we needed to see a specialist who happened to be located 8 hours away. Here we were worried and scared that something was wrong with our baby. As it turns out, the ultrasound tech had just measured wrong. Our twins were half a day behind one another and exactly where they needed to be.
We made it through to 7 months, then I developed more complications and was on bed rest. Again, I was worried that things were not okay. I made it to 36.5 weeks and went into labor crying as I was getting prepped for my c section because this all just felt too good to be true. I was still feeling paranoia that not everything was okay. Once I heard my babies’ cries, i felt relief. They had finally made it here safe and sound. The paranoia could stop now right? Wrong!
I was paranoid about going out in public and people touching them. So apprehensive about it and still the words wouldn’t come out even when I wanted to forbid people to touch my kids. The first time my babies caught a cold, I couldn’t sleep, I was so worried. When I introduced solids, I was so afraid that they were going to have an allergic reaction that I actually called 911 once because I thought my daughter was having one. Turns out she sounded a bit wheezy because she had developed a cold overnight. After their cold, my twins developed an odd rash. I went on to find out they had impetigo. How the heck did my kids get this? I’m a Germaphobe for this very reason, paranoid my twins are going to get stuff like this.
One day we were out at the store doing our weekly shopping, my husband had dropped us off at the doors. I was waiting for him to come in and I spotted an elderly lady who seemed curious about my babies, after all they are beautiful. She kept getting closer and I was trying to avoid eye contact and kept walking while waiting for my husband.
I look back at my babies and I see her hands touching my boy! “No touching!” The words finally belted out of my mouth. I did it, I said it, and it felt so good! I understand kids are cute, they are adorable, but they are very very fragile and they can catch pretty much anything. There’s not one, but two to care for, and this mamma is alone with them because daddy needs to work to pay the bills. I’ve had enough of my babies always being sick and worrying myself sick, and that is only the beginning of finding my voice.
3. Can you share what your typical day is like?
A typical day: my husband gets up around 4-5am and one twin normally wakes up too so he makes them a bottle and puts them in bed with me. I feed and change diapers. Normally the other baby has woken up so that one gets fed, changed and put back to sleep. My son likes to snuggle in bed with me until 7-8am then we get up, prep another set of bottles, mom makes coffee( this is a must) and dress the kids for the day. Kids usually play in their Jumparoos while I get ready for the day. Then it’s nap time. During this time I do chores: clean bottles, sweep, mop and prepare supper in the crock pot. Twins wake up and they get bottles, play on their playmats and basically we repeat this all day (eating every three hours and naps every one and a half to two hours between feedings) until 6pm when daddy is normally home. My husband spends time with the kids while I get the bath stuff ready, and clean supper dishes. Around 7ish babies have bottles then rice cereal, followed by bath time and then they’re off to bed. On nice days, we go for walks or go for drives around town or go out visiting and bring daddy some coffee at work.
4. What’s some advice you would share with new twinmoms to survive the newborn stage?
My advice for twin moms: do whatever works for you and your babies!
I wanted to so badly breastfeed my twins. I really wanted to and I did but it didn’t last long. I made it to two and a half weeks. I felt pressure from a lot of people to keep going and I really tried but I wasn’t producing enough milk and I was sleeping maybe if lucky an hour between feedings and I never had time to eat or anything. It was horrible, I felt like I couldn’t enjoy my babies I was so run down. But I loved the bond with my twins.
I brought them to their appointment and the doctor said “fed is best, that’s all that matters” and I realized she was right. What good was feeling rundown, crying over burnt pizza? It wasn’t healthy for me being that tired and exhausted and not good for my kids to have a tired and exhausted mom. So formula it was.
My daughter was also colicky and we tried everything to help her, the doctor said it was probably because I was supplementing and then we switched to just formula. I waited it out for a month, nope, my daughter still screamed her head off for hours on end. We tried gripe water, nothing. Swaddling sometimes worked, or putting her on the swing sometimes but only for a little bit. Finally, I had enough and switched formula. It seemed to help a bit but still cried at the same time every day. This time my grandma happened to talk to someone who suggested Ovol. Yep, it worked! What a life saver.
Moms you know your babies best.
I knew something wasn’t right and letting my daughter cry for hours on end was not okay. However in order to get her to sleep during these episodes, I would put her in her crib and let her cry it out (it never went past 15min) and she would be out like a light. There are two babies who need mom and holding a baby who is screaming bloody murder, swinging her arms, and kicking her legs is frustrating; so this is what worked for us. A bit of Ovol helped calm her down, and we let her cry if she didn’t calm at all. I would pick her back up, try calming her and start all over again. We got through it.
5. At what age did your twins start sleeping through the night? How did you sleep train them? What worked for you?
My twins just recently started sleeping through the night (my son has been doing it longer). Honestly I don’t know what I have done to make them sleep through the night. I honestly think when they are ready they will sleep, and if they are hungry, they probably won’t.
6. How do you deal with temper tantrums?
My twins are too young for temper tantrums right now, but there’s been a few days when I was ready to have a few!
7. What have you started teaching your twins, when did you start, how did you do it and how long did it take?
Well they are only five months old but I’ve taught them everything they know so far! Joking. My son for a while was really pulling on my face and grabbing really hard and he would laugh about it. So when he did this i would say “ouch” in a stern voice and say “you’re hurting mommy! That’s not nice, be gentle” and now he grabs mom’s face nicely and I’ll smile at him so he knows the difference between grabbing too hard and being nice.
Thank you again Trista for sharing your story!
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning about Badass Twinmom Trista. This mom is getting it done!