By Michael on October 2nd, 2012
Last week, the OOM family added two new members and we couldn’t be more excited! Jessica, our Librarian blogger (and my co-conspirator here at OOM) gave birth to TWO baby girls, Marilyn Grace (Maggie) and Amelia Claire. All three are doing great and, along with Jess’s husband, are settling into the enchantment of their brand new family. (Jess–just in case you missed my post on not sleeping, don’t worry…it’s OK to think a crib rail is a comfy pillow!)
Maggie and Amelia aren’t the first set of twins in the OOM family, though. They aren’t even the second! Both Morgan and Megan are twins (and both of them are identical!) so we thought it would be fun for them to share some twin wisdom (I resisted the urge to call it twins-dom) with the girls:
Morgan: Even as an adult, it’s hard for me to describe the bond I have with my twin sister, but I know this much is true: twins love each other in a deep, complicated way that can be hard to understand, and just plain baffling to anyone who has never interacted with twins. Managing to be both a twin and an individual can be tough–there’s always a level of twindom there that never goes away, an instinctual connection to another human. My twin sister is a part of me, with all that entails, all the time, whether we’re sharing an apartment or we’re 2,000 miles away from each other. And the truth is, one of the hardest times of my life (but also the most rewarding) was when my twin and I lived in different cities. For once, being a twin wasn’t the most obvious thing about me, and that experience taught me so much.
In practical terms, here’s my advice for parents of twins: give them the space — and the permission — to leave each other so they can find their way back. Encourage their differences, but remind them that each is the grounding the other will need, at various important moments all throughout their lives. And finally, take pictures. As an adult, there’s nothing I love more than seeing photos of me and my twin, in all our twinness, back when we dressed alike.
Megan: Let them share a room until they want their own. My sister and I loved sharing a room together. We listened to books on tape before we went to bed and had these awesome matching headboards that looked like houses. When we moved into a new house and it came time for us to have our own rooms (we were about 5 or 6), I’m not sure we were ready. Also, let them be mad at each other! Our parents were swift to encourage us to make up, but your girls are going to have to spend A LOT of time together in their lifetimes, so they need to learn how to be mad at each other, take some space, talk it out, and make amends on their own. They have the rest of their lives to spend together—there is definitely going to be some fighting. Finally, a note about how it feels to be a twin, because I’m sure people will ask Maggie and Amelia this all. the. time:
People always ask me what it’s like being a twin. And I usually say something obvious like “it’s a lot of fun” or “it’s great,” but what I really mean is that I’m not exactly sure, because I’ve never known anything else. I’ve never known what it’s like to not have someone there with you, even when she’s not right there physically. And I have trouble explaining how that feels. Though I am reading a sensational book right now, and I came across this passage that made my heart swell because I think it’s the closest I’ll ever come to being able to describe it: Marilynne Robinson in Housekeeping writes “Having a sister is like sitting at night in a lighted house.” I’m usurping this line and swapping “sister” for “twin,” and I’m sure Maggie and Amelia will feel this way when they’re old enough to understand.
Despite admonitions not to buy identical outfits and matching giant teddy bears (with different color bows, of course,) we are sending Jess and her family double the love! Congratulations!
PS–when can we come visit?
No comments yet