Guest Author - Julixa Newman
After speaking with so many twin moms on a regular basis, my knowledge of twin behavior has grown exponentially. One thing that stands out in my mind is that almost all of my conversations regarding the twins, the same funny anecdotes keep popping up. I'm not saying that they all attack a bag of delicious candies when they have the opportunity to do so (when their older sister climbs up to get one and leaves them within reach), but the same themes re-appear over and over. So look out, pregnant twin moms, because it's funny to me now, and you may think it's funny too, but these are some of the twin behaviors worth mentioning because they'll keep you laughing, your heart racing, and your eye circles darkening!†
1. One plate will probably serve two.
Luckily, twin toddlers don't NEED to eat a whole plate of food. My pediatrician assures me that a meal that looks the size of half a deck of cards will actually suffice for a toddler, but I try harder because I remember the days when they said if she didn't gain a pound, they would be taking her back in the hospital. Now, eating is more of a ceremony, with them dancing around the rest of the people at the table, stopping to pick at either their own or their twin's plate as they see something that interests them. Most days, one will like the meat and the other will be in the mood for the corn or the rice, etc. One thing you can be sure of though, is that they will finish the equivalent of one plate. That is, of course, if one doesnít sneak away and start a nap while you're setting the dinner table.
2. The concept of cooperation comes to twins earlier than everyone.
I wish I could say that I remember the day I first saw my twins work together to achieve a goal, but to be honest, it happens so often that I forget which time came first. Whether it's giving the other a lift to reach something in the cabinet they want to eat, or pushing a heavy box to the stairway (and eventually down the stairs), they are a part comedy act and part demolition crew. It all gets your blood boiling from laughter or frustration, but every time it happens, you have to step back with pride and love that they are bonding, learning, and making you laugh all the way. Also, all their cooperative acts aren't for demolition or sweets; I can remember many times where it was simply one feeding the other their dinner as a singleton would feed their doll, reading a book together, or offering something of their own when they could see that their sister was in need...I love especially when they know it's nap time, and one brings the other their favorite blanket :)†
3. A family with twins is a traveling circus.
My twins attract attention to us EVERYWHERE we go-the mall, a restaurant, the White House lawn (some tourists begged us to take a picture of our twins), superstores, and anywhere else I frequent. Whether they are pulling each otherís shopping cart closer, dancing around our table at a restaurant, or just rousing up some people who have never seen twins before, I get stopped for smiles, pictures, and questions-a LOT of questions.
4. Twins will always compete when they arenít cooperating.
The last rule: when one has it, the other wants it. Whether itís a book, a snack, a ball, or a parent holding them, one wants what the other has. Introverted, extroverted, shy, quiet, demanding or otherwise, twins spur competition in each other-that is a fact. When my husband has only one in his arms, a dirty look from around the corner is not far behind. That is why twin parents are much stronger and more durable-weíre always making room for two!