Just to start with, I know this is going to sound really negative and like I’m complaining. I’m really not. These are parenting challenges that caught me off guard, or that I wasn’t prepared for as a new dad. I still have the most amazing babies and they impress me and thrill me every single day. Also, aside from the work, these challenges all seemed to come in stages. So, I never had to deal with two at the same time.
I knew it would be hard work, but the work I wasn’t prepared for was so much bottle cleaning. It lessens over time, but I still have to do it a lot. Part of it is because it’s twins, which I wan’t prepared for. We went to a twins class before the babies were born and the instructor basically laughed and told us we were screwed. None of the information was helpful.
So double bottles, plus all the pumping bottles and the fact that we started out with 8 feedings per day and pumping at every feeding, Even with two sanitizers, it was a lot. More work came as they grew, but in the beginning, this took most of my time.
The sleep deprivation
This is the one thing I had heard of. I was aware that it would be difficult, but I was not prepared for how little sleep I actually would get. This was when I still had my day job as an insurance sales rep and I was a zombie at work. I kept falling asleep in front of my computer screen and I remember using my lunch break to sleep in my cWhat I guess Ididn’t realize how long feedings would take. I new I would be getting up in the night, but I didn’t realize I would be stying up. Another thing I didn’t realize was how difficult it could be to put them down to sleep. I think we were lucky though with how quickly they both started to sleep through the night.
The witching hour
This one blindsided me. Who has ever heard of the witching hour. Apparently it is this real thing where your baby loses it and all hell breaks loose in your house. Every night like clockwork from 6:00 to 8:00 these babies would scream relentlessly and incessantly. They could not be calmed down. it was just two hours of craziness every night.
At first the only thing that would help was if I carried them both and walked around, but they were so heavy. If I ever tried to put them down though, they would scream again.
I eventually was able to work with them and the witching hour became a thing of the past, but putting them down when I had been carrying them would still be a problem. For what seems like a long time I could not get any work done because any time I tried to put Gwendolyn and Lawson in a play yard so I could clean up or do dishes, or write they would start screaming for me.
Gwendolyn especially was needy. She would hate to be set down and for a long time always wanted me to carry her. I never new it would be like that.
Now, there is a lot less of crying when I set them down or leave them alone for a little while. They play with each other now and they communicate. This is dangerous because they can plan attack patterns.
I can’t believe how much I have to watch them all the time, because of the things they are constantly getting themselves into and the amount of destruction they are capable of. They will pick up anything and either rip it, throw it, or put it in their mouths. Lawson especially likes pulling things apart and emptying the contents of drawers and boxes all over the room.