Today is my daughters’ birthday. It’s been three years already since those tiny humans crashed into our life, time flies! (In case you wonder why I’m saying ‘crashed’: they only needed 4 hours but that’s another story )
I’m sitting here while the birthday girls are tucked up in their beds, with their new stuffies in their arms and lots of cake and fries in their bellies. And as every mom, I’m getting a little lost in the memories of their birth, the first tough weeks at the NICU (I’m sure a lot of twin moms can relate to this), and how my life changed since those cuties joined our family.
A twins birthday is something very special but also a challenge. I’d like to encourage my girls to let their own personality shine, to bloom in their own pace and place. This started very early with not trying to force them to a shared schedule. They had different needs at night, different time intervals with their bottles. So why should I wake one up just because her sister was awake? This didn’t make any sense to me. Yes, many people recommended it to do it for my own sanity and I totally get this, I don’t judge any mom who is doing it. But for me, it didn’t feel like the right way. My oldest daughter was a high-need baby so this probably “trained” me to be used to interrupted nights and be happy with little sleep.
I also try to not dress them the same, except they like the same clothes when we go shopping. (Winter gear producers – can you please make your clothes in more than one color for the same size? Thanks!) This caused some lack of understanding with my mom because “they are twins and it looks so cute if they are dressed the same!”. Yes, mom, I totally get it and I love how much you care for them and how proud you are. But they are also individuals with different personalities. They have to share so much already. They share a room because we planned only for a second child when we bought our house and we still need to get creative to divide the available space into three children’s rooms. So far, they’re happy with this solution. But they’re not happy when they have to share mom or dad, like any other sibling. So, we’re trying our best that each of our kids gets some special time with us where we do something together without their siblings. A walk in the woods, sometimes a stop at the ice cream shop, splashing in puddles, pushing the swing as long as they want …I hope this time together will create some fond memories for them.
Of course, my girls had different wishes for their birthday. One loves sweets, unicorns, and pink dresses, the other fruits, mermaids, and shirts. (No dresses for her, please!) And so, they wished for a unicorn birthday with chocolate cake and a mermaid birthday with strawberry cake. The result? Mom was baking two different cakes and decorating the house in a wild mermaid-unicorn mix.
Am I spoiling them with fulfilling their different wishes? No, I don’t think so. I’m embracing their differences every single minute in our life, so why should I ignore it on this special day? Birthdays are special in our house. It’s THE day of the birthday girl or boy (yes, my husband gets a special day once a year as well ) My girls have to share this special date for the rest of their lives and I’d like to give each of them unique memories on their childhood birthdays.
And if this means unicorn cakes AND mermaids with strawberries, so be it.
I’d love to hear from you how you’re celebrating your kid’s birthdays? Leave me a comment!