In some ways, it feels like only yesterday that we were sat on the sofa in our living room, having just returned from hospital, with two tiny, helpless babies in car seats, looking at each other like ‘so wtf do we do now?!’ Overwhelmed, emotional and bloody knackered…
Fast forward to now and we’re not *quite* so overwhelmed – still bloody knackered but nothing like in the early days! Those helpless babies are actual little people now, with personalities, independence and ideas of their own. I just don’t know how it’s happened. That saying you see being shared on social media: ‘The days are long but the years are short’ (which incidentally can be quite irritating when you’ve been at home all day not having spoken to another adult, trying to keep your head above water with two screaming babies, counting down the hours til your other half comes home… You certainly aren’t making the most of every moment in those circumstances 🙄) I’m realising now though that that saying is so true. Through all the long days of teething, illness, grumpiness, stress, mess etc – somehow we now have two almost-four-year-olds who will be starting school in just a few months! 😱
People have been asking me recently how I feel about the twiglets starting school. In all honesty, I am completely and utterly torn…
I am hugely nervous, as I’m sure all parents are, especially first time round. I know for a fact I am going to be absolutely heartbroken and bereft (dramatic much!) because as with any big milestone, it is the first and last time I will go through it (I talked about this in a previous blog post here). Also, the twiglets are summer-born children. I’ve always been defensive about that term, as my birthday is on August 24th so I’m about as summer-born as you can get and I’ve always maintained that it made no difference to me etc etc. However, now that I’m going through it with my own children, I realise that it must make some difference if a child is only just four when others will be practically five – kids change so much in a year! And now I think about it, I was massively shy at primary school and while I do think that’s just my personality, I wonder what difference it would have made if I had had an extra year at home…
Instinctively, I do feel that the twiglets will be fine. Without sounding braggy, I’m not worried academically speaking. The twigs can write their names, know the letters of the alphabet, have started trying to sound out some words, can count to at least 20, do some basic adding etc. They love reading and are so enthusiastic about learning new things. So in that respect, I think they’ll be ok.
And to be fair, I’m not worried about C in any way really. She’s pretty mature and I think she’ll take it all in her stride. But H still seems very young in a lot of ways. He really struggles to control his emotions sometimes and still has massive meltdowns when he gets really overwhelmed. He still refuses to wipe his own nose or bum, which we really need to rectify in the next couple of months! I could just imagine him forgetting where the toilet is for example, and falling to pieces because he needed a wee. I may be doing him a disservice there, because he’s always coped brilliantly at nursery and the meltdowns do tend to only happen at home or with me. So I’m sure he will be fine too, but you know when you just can’t help but worry a little bit.
It’s also that loss of another element of control. They’re not at home with me all the time, and obviously nursery has had a big influence on their lives, but even still, the thought of my little bubbas going off to school with so many other children, especially big 10/11-year olds, is a bit scary! What if other kids are mean to them? We’ve been lucky not to have had any issues at nursery but I know it’s only a matter of time before one of them comes home upset from school because someone said or did something mean to them. What if they don’t make friends? C can be really quite bossy sometimes – what if the other kids don’t like her? What if H is too busy in his own little world to make new friends? I’m sure these are the sorts of things that a few months in, I’ll wonder what I was even worried about, but right now it’s all unknown and it’s scary to think I won’t always be able to protect them.
The other thing is the twin dynamic. When you have twins, you realise that in the twin community, the issue of whether to separate them into different classes or to keep them together, is a huge and much-debated topic. Personally, I think it absolutely depends on the twins themselves. I can see that it would be more of an issue for identical twins, but even for fraternal twins, it’s still a big thing to think about. For a long time, my instinct has been to separate H and C. C is very dominant and bossy (although to be fair, H has been holding his own a lot more recently!) but she is also quite organised and has a tendency to mother him a bit, which is very sweet but I feel that as he is a bit ‘away with the fairies’ at times, he needs the space to learn to think for himself and not just rely on her to do things for him.
So we will separate them (some schools do anyway and parents have to fight to keep twins together, but ours leaves it completely up to the parents 👍🏻). But now that the time is getting nearer, the reality of it is hitting a bit. They’ve always been together since they were born. They’ve always had the other there by their side. When they walk into a party or a room of people, they’ll grab each other’s hands and walk in together. They’re not joined at the hip at nursery anymore, but they do look out for each other and know the other is never too far away. I know in reception it’s a lot of free-flow play etc so they will still see each other loads, but the thought of them not being together all the time is a bit sad. I know they’ll be fine and I strongly believe it’s absolutely the best thing for them, but it still makes my mummy heart hurt a little bit (actually getting emosh writing this! 😥)
Now that we have our school places (and we were so very lucky to get our first choice 😊) I am definitely feeling a lot more excitement about it all though. I’m SO excited to watch the twigs’ independence grow and hopefully their confidence flourish, to see all the things they’re going to learn and watch their personalities develop further. It’s such a privilege to be able to watch our little twiglets grow up and I know so many are denied that privilege with their own children. So I really want to make the most of it, despite the emotions and the need to cling on to my babies. We are so lucky And how fricking cute are they going to look in school uniform?! 😍
Wow, this ‘little’ ramble has ended up a lot longer than I expected! Thanks for reading if you’ve made it this far! And good luck if you also have little ones starting in September 😘
Til next time,
PS Writing this post during my time-of-the-month was not a good idea as I’m now bawling… 😭🤣