Do words even exist that can express the total cacophony of feelings that overwhelm me when I think about our little Sausage and Pudding. What an incredible journey parenting is, what an adventure, what a challenge, what a joy. Every day they do or say something new which amazes me. Every day they push me to my limits and challenge me and my beliefs and what I thought mattered. Every day they make me smile (at some point). Every day their very individual personalities emerge a little more.
One thing I have come to realise so deeply in the last year is how you simply cannot put a child into a box at this age. I think with twins there is a strong urge to do that and I’ve read how important it is not to do it, but the comparison angle is so strong with twins that it’s hard not to. For example, for a long time Pudding spoke much better than Sausage. That’s not to say that Sausage wasn’t speaking extremely well too, but she always just seemed a couple of steps ahead, had a bigger vocabulary and strung more words together in her sentences. I thought of her as my more vocal child, with him being the more physical child. Then a couple of months ago we went to see a new paediatrician and he was asking developmental questions “Do they use sentences of at least 2 words?” I laughed because my kids are both extremely verbal and speak way ahead of the typical child their age. I said yup around 7-8 word sentences, he gave me that look that said “Yes, you are one of THOSE mothers” and wrote down 2 plus word sentences. It really irritated me so I started paying attention and counting the number of words in their sentences and suddenly I realised that no longer was Sausage lagging a step behind Pudding on his speech. He had not only caught up, but at the moment he is more of a mimic and seems to pick up new words a little quicker (AT THE MOMENT). And that is the thing. At this age every child is different and developing so quickly and developing at a different pace and changing so much that to pigeon hole them is such an injustice. I am now working even harder to avoid doing that as much as possible.
On their speech, it really is phenomenal, I have totally given up trying to keep track of the number of words in their vocabulary as it is just HUGE. We regularly have 8-10 word sentences now with pretty good grammar and Pudding has totally mastered the pronouns “him, his, hers, ours” although she does seem to need to concentrate on it, she pauses before she uses a pronoun as though she is figuring it out. And speech development has given us the single biggest positive impact. It is so much easier parenting a toddler who can tell you what they want, even if you don’t always give it to them. It is so much easier parenting a toddler who can tell you they “want somesing eat” (something to eat) so we can manage their hunger or that they “want go bed now” so we can manage their sleep.
Of course physical development helps to make things easier too, but has also added a level of challenge in monitoring them. The other day I walked into the kitchen and Sausage had pushed a chair up to the counter and climbed on top of the counter. He had managed to open the cupboard above the counter and get out a mug and when I caught him he had the glass kettle (thank heavens it hadn’t been boiled in hours) in his hands. After I yelled, I asked him what he was doing and he said “I make coffee for Daddy”, melt my heart! They climb everything and have figured out that their little stool is perfect to give them the reach to get things they can’t otherwise get at. Sausage is obsessed with Duplo and Puzzles. He can happily sit for hours building things or putting together puzzles. A couple of weeks back he brought the duplo into the lounge and proceeded to build a tower as tall as him. It required an unbelievable amount of patience and rebuilding because he was building it with the small square blocks, but he eventually managed As he finished and turned around with that look of amazing accomplishment on his face, Pudding stepped up and knocked it over. He was fuming! Pudding on the other hand just loves arty things. Her whole face lights up if you tell her we are going to paint, she will just go sit at their table and chairs and draw with the crayons and f she find an adult pen lying around you would swear it is Christmas! She literally skips and jumps if you tell her we are going to cook or bake. She loves helping mommy cook and I love that we are already getting into this together.
And that’s the thing that I think may just make twins so hard to handle. The endless fighting and competing and fighting and arguing and did I mention fighting? Some days they are great, they are starting to get the idea of sharing, but that does not mean they are willing to do it. They understand taking turns, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t always the same kids turn over and over and over. And with Chris having been away quite a lot on business the “my Daddy”, “NO, my Daddy”, “NO MY Daddy” is endless. And Sausage has an evil glint he gets in his eye and he does something he knows will irritate Pudding and says “noy, noy, noy” which roughly translates to “annoy, annoy, annoy”. But at the same time they look for each other if the one is out the others sight. They give each other the cutest cuddles and kisses and can be so sweet together.
Potty training is going well. We still have accidents more often than I would like, but honestly they are both doing well. We have no nappies during awake times now and very few accidents. We have found that if they have a nappy on there is bound to be something done in it and if they wear panties or underpants it obviously feels too much like a nappy because it also results in accidents. Then the other morning we woke up to shouts from Pudding of “I need to WEE”. I had to rush in there, get her out her sleeping bags and nappy and onto the toilet and she made it! The other morning Sausage was sitting on my lap watching TV (yes we do TV first thing in the morning rather than too late in the day when it seems to over stimulate them?) and he said to me “Mommy, I not poo on your yap (lap)”. I looked at him a little confused until I realised he was pretty much warning me that he wanted to poo, but wasn’t going to do it on my lap. LOL. So every day it seems we are getting closer to fewer accidents. I do have to watch them very closely and have to ask and remind them constantly, and if they are too distracted we have accidents, but I guess this will be a fact of life for a while still.
In the last couple of weeks we seem to have hit a growth spurt or something? I have never seen my kids eat so much! We went to a friend for dinner last Wednesday and they each ate three portions of dinner! Two weeks ago by 7.00am they had had three bowls of cereal for breakfast and then had toast later in the morning too! Weirdly though Pudding seems to be slimming more and more, some days if I hadn’t de-wormed them recently I would be worrying about worms. They are also pretty open to trying new things and tasting whatever is around, no guarantee they will eat it, but willing to try at least.
They are testing the boundaries all the time and I have to say that some days I feel totally ineffective as a disciplinarian. I used to think I would be such a strict parent, but it turns out I just don’t want to spend all my time saying no or disciplining them. And so I try to pick my battles, but even then I seem to have little effect on them. Chris on the other hand seems to be able to get them to listen more often, I am sure they sense my weakness and are trying their luck. On the up side time out in the corner seems to work very well now. They normally go without too much fuss and when they come out (we don’t stick to the full minute per year yet) we get kisses and hugs sorry and it certainly seems to help to calm them down.
I honestly could just go on and on, but I am sure I have lost you as readers by now.