I am a young newlywed and pregnant for the first time. While this is an exciting time, I recently learned that I am expecting twins, and I find that I am suddenly filled with worries that I had not anticipated. I have twin brothers, so I was not altogether surprised to learn that I was expecting two, but I am surprised at the level of anxiety that I am starting to feel, and the way that it seems to be growing exponentially with every passing day.
Being a first-time mother, you would think that I would be terrified of the pregnancy and delivery of twins. I will be trying for a natural delivery and already have a doula lined up. I realize that there is a chance I may have to have a C-section, but my mother was able to deliver her twins vaginally, and my obstetrician seems fairly optimistic that I will be able to do it too. Maybe it’s because I have heard so many stories of my brothers’ birth, or maybe I’m just naïve, but it’s not the birth that worries me.
What I’m starting to panic about is what life will be like after the birth. My husband and I have grown used to it just being the two of us, and it is nearly impossible for me to imagine what it will be like when the size of our family doubles. As things stand now, we have a nice, tidy life. We have leather couches and framed artwork, a deck and outdoor furniture that overlooks a meticulous garden, and cars that still have that new-car smell. Will all of this change? Will our couches soon have rips and stains and our artwork be hanging askew? Will my garden become overrun with weeds and our cars smell like spilled milk and stale Cheerios?
Somehow, I don’t think that any of this will matter. I will have far more important things to worry about than material possessions, like…oh, I don’t know…the health, happiness and well-being of our two beautiful daughters. I doubt that I will have time to worry about silly things like these once the girls are here. Maybe all of these paranoid fears and fantasies are my body’s way of preparing for the reality of life with twins, almost as if to get it all out of the way now so as not to stress out when they are here.
I have tried to talk some sense into myself, but I can’t stop my mind from creating scenarios in which my carefully-built life comes crashing around me in a chaotic mess of twisted metal and broken baby bottles. Every time I buy two of something, those fears seem more and more ridiculous, and it is my hope that they will eventually go away, replaced with the excitement and joy that I feel every time I envision what my daughters will look like, or what the look on my husband’s face will be the first time he cradles them in his arms. Those emotions are the ones I will cling to as I prepare for life as the mother of twins.