Recently I had the honour of creating newborn portraits for a Banbridge family with two beautiful twin girls, Annie & Ivy. This isn’t the type of session you get to do every day, it’s so special to have the opportunity to photograph twins. It’s also no mean feat! I had an assistant to help me with safety and posing the entire time (thank you so much Jade!). All hands were on deck to ensure every detail was perfect for this fantastic family.
Initially I thought about blogging “top tips for parents of multiples” but honestly- I don’t have twins so how could I give advice on this? I reached out to Annie & Ivy’s mum, Judith, who was truly wonderful in putting together some advice. It wasn’t what I was expecting- it was so much better. I have happy tears in my eyes reading everything she has written. If this article can find one mum or dad who needs to hear/read this right now, I would be elated.
The one thing any twin/multiple mum will know is that, when you tell people you’re pregnant with twins, they always focus on what they feel are the negatives. Things such as:
- “you’ll never sleep again”- My girls are 7 months and I get pretty good sleep 90% of the time.
- “that will be such hard work”- It is, but worth every joyful moment.
- “you’ll need a nanny”- It’s amazing what you can adjust to and how you find your own routine.
- “they will probably come early and need NICU”- Mine didn’t arrive early or need NICU.
- “that’s going to be some adjustment for your eldest”- My 4yr old daughter is besotted with her sisters, from the moment she met them- the bond is amazing to watch.
(***Amazing big sister alert! ↓↓↓***)
People don’t mention all the amazing things that are coming your way. It’s a cliché but it really is twice the love, twice the fun and twice the giggles- it’s amazing watching them grow and develop together and showing their separate personalities. To see two babies develop together is something special.
My top tips for any twin/multiple mummy-to-be would be:
- don’t stress about them arriving early. I did- I had a hospital bag packed full of tiny baby clothes and neonatal outfits and both my girls were bigger than my singleton. If they do arrive early, the hospital teams and neonatal wards are amazing, don’t waste time on something that most likely won’t happen despite what people tell you.
- be prepared early on. Have the necessities you need for first few weeks, you can get the rest later. You don’t want to be trawling round shops whilst 30+ weeks pregnant with twins.
- don’t panic about reading books of what you should do, routines, etc… I did and barely remembered anything or used anything I read. Things come naturally and each mother/baby is different.
- look after yourself and take it easy. Try and get a day of pampering in before your babies arrive.
My top tips for when they arrive are:
- the first few months is hard. Managing two+ babies that need fed, changed & winded every 1-3 hours is rough, especially when you’re still recovering yourself, but each phase is short and it does get better (a lot better). I wish someone had told me this.
- ignore the need to follow what people feel you should do with twins- do what suits your family. My twins sleep in separate cots and are rarely dressed the same, never mind co-ordinated outfits.
- don’t stress about breast feeding. If it happens and is right for you, fantastic, but don’t lose sleep if it doesn’t happen. Remember- fed is best! The most important thing is love, warmth, affection and a happy mum!
- be prepared for a lot of attention. You will get stopped by a lot by people to chat about your babies- remember that people just want to share your joy.
- take any help offered from friends and family, and never be afraid to phone to the health visitor, midwife or GP. They are always happy to help.
- although it’s hard work, get out of the house when you can.
- don’t be afraid to set the babies down somewhere safe for 5 minutes and get some fresh air at the back door when things get overwhelming.
“Twins are a treasure and something I feel very privileged to have, and although you have bad days or times of feeling overwhelmed or outnumbered, I always try and remember how lucky I am and how many others would lose a limb to be in my position.” – Judith
For extra support for parents of multiples in N.Ireland visit Home Start.
See our twin baby boys’ photoshoot with Leo & Ollie here.
See our full newborn photography gallery here.
To book your newborn photography session, call us on 02840 627014 or call in to see us at The Little Green Studio, 20 Linenhall Street, Banbridge, N.Ireland.
*Some edits have been made for clarity.