If you consult any guidebook on raising children or especially twins, you’ll find one topic included in each one of them: keeping a rhythm is essential. Looking at my life, I must say, that is by far the thing we’re struggling with the most. (The fact that I’ve been writing this blog post for a week now should give you an inkling of how much.) The boys are far from having a rhythm, at least as far as I can tell. The only thing that is starting to become a constant is waking up at 7:30 am – or something around that time. But throughout the day and the evening they’re all over the place with hunger, tiredness and naps. In the evening they’re getting tired and to sleep anything between 6 and 11 pm which makes it really hard to plan anything. Being twins, one would think they’d be tired or hungry at roughly the same times, but no. More often than not they’re take turns in being hungry, waking up when the other just fell asleep and so on.
Last Tuesday for example, Cub slept two solid hours while Birch was wide awake and demanding attention. Cub woke up to drink and basically continued napping while being nursed just when Birch got hungry. When Cub had enough he slowly woke up and Birch fell asleep after I nursed him. Both house work and “us-time” for Leander and I are really not getting the attention they require.
So these days I’m experimenting with trying to establish more of a rhythm. Getting up with them still costs me quite an effort with having to nurse every two hours in the night but I’m making it nonetheless. Another thing I’m trying to actively plan into my daily routine is outdoor time at around 1pm. I’m no big fan of waking a baby up, especially when there’s no “real” need (i.e. appointment), so I’m hesitant to take up a sleeping baby for a walk, but luckily the last week it worked pretty well. They nearly always fall asleep in the baby buggy, at least for a while so this might become a constant and synchronized nap time for the two of them. In the afternoon, sometime between 4 and 5pm, we’re making “naked time”. You should see the difference in their movements when being naked! It’s amazing. Babies at their age are moving all the time anyway, trying their limbs, getting a feeling for their fine motor skills, getting ready to crawl etc., but it gets even more intense whithout the restriction of clothes and diaper. They’re rolling around, babbling, telling stories, grabbing everything and laughing, it’s pure joy to watch.
At the moment the boys seem to be getting their first teeth, so there’s a lot of crying and drooling which is pretty exhausting, I must confess. But then there are these moments of peace, when they’re napping on the couch while I’m writing or playing on the ground and looking up at me. Amidst all the chaos, a smile is all that it takes to make it wonderful again.