When Helga from A World of Twins contacted me to see if I wanted to share our story, I was super excited to be able to share with the twin community here online some of the special things we have experienced as parents of twins who are now expecting our second set of twins.
How many children were you both planning to have when you first met each other?
Clarissa: “We planned to have about five children. Jesse, my husband, comes from large family of five children, four boys and one girl. I also come from a large family with nine children, six girls and three boys. So Jesse and I always wanted a big family so the children have brothers or sisters to grow up with. We both enjoyed our childhood years and enjoy telling stories about growing up with our siblings.”
What was your when you found out you were expecting twins for the first time?
Clarissa: “I always had a hunch I might have twins. Even before I had my first scan at 13 weeks I had thought about how I would tell my mum if I was having twins. My mum had always wanted twins but never did get her wish. At the time I thought twins didn’t run in our family so I had no reason to suspect I would really have twins. Perhaps it was God’s way of preparing me for the idea of twins.”
Jesse: “I was surprised and couldn't wait to start telling people.”
Were your twins born on time?
“Yes our twins Amelia and Sophie were born on time. I was booked to be induced at 38 weeks exact and was induced that day and had them naturally.”
What are some of the unique or special moments have you experienced as parents of twins?
We find that the differences between the two of them quiet fascinating, they really do have their own unique personalities. Even their differences when they were little babies are something we found quite amazing to experience and witness. “Having two babies at once to cuddle is so special and that we can cuddle one each is wonderful,” Clarissa said.
What do you think about societies reactions to large families these days?
Jesse: “I think society's reaction to large families these days is understandable given the generations and lifestyles have changed in a way of families becoming more independent and not relying on extended family as support.”
Clarissa: “It is people that don't know us that tend to say the silly remarks like, 'you know what causes that right?’ I find that does get annoying when you hear it all the time. However, people that do know us well and know that our family and kids are very important to us totally understand. We believe when we grown old, having children and grand children to watch through life is precious and so important because life to us is all about family! I often hear from elderly people and others that work with the elderly that their biggest regret in life was not having more kids. I don’t want to have that regret, and feel blessed to have the kids God has generously put in my heart.”
What tips / advice do you have for other families expecting twins or wanting a large family?
“Make sure you have great support in your partner. As parents we both work as a team together. There are no his jobs or her jobs. We both do whatever is needed to run a household together until everything is done.”
What tips would you give to new parents expecting twins?
“My advice for anyone expecting twins is to get some support; you will need it as well a great routine. Suggest feeding your babies at the same time and put them to sleep at the same time too otherwise you risk having no sleep or rest yourself. My husband and I worked as a team through our midnight and 3am feeds for 6 months until they started sleeping though the whole night. Jesse would burp and change nappies and pass them over to me to tandem feed. To keep me going, he would even feed me snacks as well. I would have been extremely exhausted and sleep deprived if it wasn't for my wonderful husband.”
What was your reaction when you found out you were expecting twins for the 2nd time?
“I always thought it would be amazing if I were to get a second set of twins. I had read stories of families having two sets of twins and thought they were so lucky as I would love to have another set. This time when I found out I was pregnant my doctor was concerned because my levels were so low. He said that I was at risk of having a miscarriage so he organised more blood tests. After a week the levels returned to normal and I was sent for an ultrasound. I remember on the way to have the ultrasound, I said to my sister that I was hoping that one was in there and safe after the scare, but if there was two, wouldn't that be amazing. Turns out it was twins! I was thrilled, I couldn't believe my luck, and God had heard my hearts desire and blessed me yet again.”
Jesse's reaction was happiness to hear of the new set of twins but not as surprised to hear of the news as the first time round.
Is there anything you would like to share with the community on your experience as a parents of 4 beautiful children, twins and 2 single born children expecting their 2nd set of twins?
Jesse: "With 4 kids on the outside and 2 on the inside I still feel I have a lot to learn and am learning more everyday. It is not easy being a parent. Harder than any job I have had to do and it doesn't stop. I often take the four out by myself to the beach or park. To others I think I must look in control and I put on a happy calm face, but on the inside I am terrified. Last week at the beach was particularly challenging with the oldest trying to catch waves and the youngest trying to follow us into the rough. You kind of have to put on a brave face and do your best. Don't become lazy if you've got a lot of kids. You can still get out there and have fun with them. I've heard others say it and think it's true that having lots of kids keep you young."
Clarissa: "sometimes people say to me that I'm amazing or inspiring - probably because I have a large family and I am still sane ha ha. Honestly, I don't think myself as amazing. I'm just a mum and I have flaws just like the rest of everyone else. I have times where I need a break from the kids if it all gets to much sometimes and I may go out to the shops for me time or go out for a date night with the hubby to have that break and I think that's ok. So I guess I say to parents, don't compare yourselves to others, we all have our own strengths and weaknesses and being a parent is all about learning as you go and doing what works best for you."
So what do twins Amelia & Sophie have to say about having more twins in the family - read more here.
Do you have a similar story, more than one set of twins, triplets or more in the family?
Submit your comments below, thank you.