Cayt: “Did you dress them in lots of pink/blue so that they would be easier to tell apart later? If so, what would you have done with two of the same sex?”
I did dress them in a lot of pink and blue, to help tell them apart in photos and also because it was so! dang! cute! My mom gave me two three-packs of footed outfits, one pink set and one blue, and those were the best: each set had one solid, one striped, and one patterned, and also there were MATCHING HATS.
I found that I pretty much ONLY wanted to use outfits that coordinated. I used the non-coordinated clothes when I had to change a baby midday because of a blowout or something, but in the morning they were almost always coordinated.
It was pretty easy to coordinate them at first: lots of companies make their infant lines basically the same but one pink and one blue. As they got out of infant stuff, though, the coordinated stuff was way harder and soon I stopped doing it.
If both babies had been girls, or both boys, I think I would have chosen a color for each—probably pink and purple for girls, blue and green for boys. Well, or maybe not, because one of the things that appealed to me about same-sex twins was that they could share clothes. Maybe I would have used a pin-on ribbon or a fake beauty mark or something.
Anonymous: “I have one very important question. How did you come up with their names? Please share with lots of details!”
Oh, man, that was, like, the biggest naming project of my LIFE. “Elizabeth” and “Edward” are pseudonyms, which makes it a little tricky to discuss the naming process without giving away the real names but I’ll try. Early in the pregnancy I’d started lists of boy name candidates and girl name candidates. When we found out there were TWINS, I started combining from the lists, making three new lists: Boy-Boy, Girl-Girl, and Boy-Girl. The problem was that our first choice candidates didn’t really coordinate with each other—or went together TOO well, like John and Jane.
My IDEAL would have been to have some small gimmick: matching initials, or same number of letters/syllables, or SOMETHING. But we tried again and again to come up with something like that for boy-girl twins, and there was just nothing we could find that didn’t mean choosing a less-liked name just for the sake of the gimmick.
Finally we decided to treat each name separately: we pretended we were having a girl, and we chose her name; then we pretended it was two years later and we were having a boy, and we chose his name. We ended up with two names that are very different in style, popularity, syllables, letters, and initials; they have NOTHING in common. The names are something like Joe and Clarissa. I love both names but still wish there was a little Twin Gimmick.
I’m looking at my name lists now, and it’s so strange to see names I don’t even remember considering. Iliana! Jenica! Laken! Perrin! Brindle! Abbott! Dutch! Cullen! Joren! I still really like Brindle.
Rah: “Have their developmental milestones come together–did they walk/talk at the same time, etc.?”
Sort of, but not much more than any two siblings. The one thing I noticed was copycat developing: if one did something, the other noticed and tried to do the same thing, so this may have made some of their developmental milestones closer than they otherwise would have been.
Shelly Overlook: “I want to know if what you hear about twins developing their own language is true.”
My particular twins haven’t, though I’ve heard a lot about this. I wonder if it happens more with identical twins? I HAVE found that they seem to understand each other better: if one of them is saying something and I can’t figure out what it is, I ask the other one.
Beth: “What’s been the thing that surprised you the most about having twins, either in a good or bad way?”
I think what surprised me most is how little their twinness affects our household. I guess I’d expected it to be more of a big deal, or for Twin Issues to be something we would have to deal with often. Part of it is that they’re not only fraternal twins but also boy-girl fraternal twins—so they don’t really seem Twinnish. They look different, they like different things, they don’t dress the same, they don’t seem to have any Magical Twin Bond.
Jive Turkey: “My appetite was INSANE when I was nursing – was it twice as insane for you having to nurse twins?”
I do remember eating quite a lot, but what was amazing to me was that I was eating TONS but LOSING WEIGHT. I dropped all the pregnancy weight and just kept going. I have it written down somewhere but can’t find it, but I lost something like 15 pounds past my pre-pregnancy weight. (I got it all back later.) It was like I couldn’t keep up. It was fun to see what it would be like to be one of those actresses who says she has to work to keep her weight up.