A few weeks ago, we spent a fabulous morning at Mayfield Lavender with the very lovely Rachel Thornhill. I’ve known Rachel for a few years as she used to teach the twiglets Gymboree before she embarked on her career as a photographer. Her work is amazing so when she offered to take some photos of them I almost bit her arm off 😂 We met at Mayfield Lavender Nursery, the ‘secret’ lavender field 🙊😊 It’s a bit more wild and natural than the main field further up the road but, unlike that one, is not open to the public. It is available for private hire though 😊
Back when the twiglets were babies, whenever I met a mum with older twins, one of the main questions I’d end up asking was ‘when will it get easier?’ Always spoken with a slight undertone of crazed desperation, meaning ‘please tell me it gets f**king easier, please, PLEASE!” 🤣 The other day, as I got the twiglets out of the car and they walked, both sensibly holding my hands, into their playgroup, it suddenly struck me that maybe we were actually there – has it finally got easier?!
I remember vividly the first time the twiglets came home from nursery and started singing a song that I didn’t know. They were about 19/20 months and hadn’t been going there long – their speech was nothing like it is now, but they were clearly attempting to sing a song and I had no idea what it was. It was such a weird feeling hearing words come from their mouths that I knew for a fact had not been learned from us. That was the moment I realised that it was no longer just me and twin.papa.po (and our close family) who were responsible for shaping their little minds. Up to then, pretty much everything they’d experienced in their lives had been with one or both of us. We were trying to teach them right from wrong, trying to explain things in a way they could make sense of, trying to encourage them to be kind and caring towards others, above all trying to ensure they were happy. All obviously guided by our own views, opinions and experiences and how we wanted to parent our children. So that singing moment felt significant to me because it was when I had the realisation that other people, with different views, opinions and experiences to ours, were now really starting to influence our twiglets.
Last week, we had a fab little break away at Drayton Manor Park. It was about a 2 ½ hour journey for us from Surrey so we stayed over for a night in the hotel – we definitely wouldn’t have attempted there and back in one day. Anyway the journey went surprisingly smoothly. We haven’t bought the twiglets i-pads or anything yet (basically trying to put that one off as long as possible 😂) but we managed to keep them entertained singing along to their favourite songs (pretty much the Trolls soundtrack on repeat with the odd Mr Tumble nursery rhyme thrown in 🔫🤣)
I could actually cry.
Yesterday we had a little breakthrough with Henry. To anyone else, this probably will not seem like a big deal in the slightest. But for us it was kinda huge. I managed to do a short walk (literally two minutes) from the car to a local softplay, and back again after, with no buggy AND NO REINS. And no twins – ha just kidding. To most other parents, even those with twins of a similar age, this is probably just normal. But for us, it definitely isn’t.
This is a question I’ve been asking myself basically since the day the twiglets were born. I felt utterly and completely overwhelmed in those first few weeks, even months, and constantly found myself wondering ‘is this normal?’ In the very early days, when we first brought our tiny bundles home, the midwives and health visitor were keeping a very close eye on me as they were concerned about my emotional state. I talked in previous blog posts about how I was pretty traumatised by their birth, and the problem with this is that you have no time whatsoever to make sense of it and come to terms with it – you’re immediately thrust into the toughest job of your life, with more responsibility than you’ve ever dealt with before. Not to mention the fact that my undercarriage was in tatters, I was desperately and futilely attempting to produce milk and get even one baby to stay on a tit for longer than five seconds, and I was a ball of raging hormones. When you put it like that, then maybe the fact that I could barely get a sentence out without bursting into tears was normal – I still don’t know and I don’t think I ever will…
I’m not too sure what the point of this post is going to be – in fact I’m pretty sure there isn’t one. Basically I just wanted to have a great big f**k-off rant about how utterly SHIT the twiglets are at going to bed at the moment.