There is something to be said about feeling understood.
When we set out to create this community, we had one purpose in mind…to create a space where parents raising multiples could find resources, encouragement, and support. Oftentimes in the parenting world, things go unsaid because we feel ashamed and guilty, leaving us to drown in self-doubt. We are going to try and let you in on some of our more personal experiences so that you know that we are in the same boat as you. Don’t worry, we are still a valuable online resource when you need sleep or feeding tips, to learn about twin pregnancy, or to find parenting advice that meets a specific situation. But we are also real moms with real feelings and are walking side by side in this parenting gig with you!
“The Time When…” will be a monthly series where we share with you some of our parenting stories. The idea is to start an honest conversation about #realparenting and hopefully provide some comfort to parents everywhere who are drowning in the guilt of their parenting mishaps.
Our new monthly series, “The Time When…” starts now!
It happens to most of us, somewhere along in our parenting journey.
The first time one of your kids get hurt or takes their first big spill.
For me, that time happened while on a trip to the mountains with all of my college roommates and their families.
My husband and I were tucked in a room in the basement in this huge mountain home. That way, if our 9-month-old twin babies started screaming in the middle of the night, we wouldn’t wake the 20 other people staying in the house with us.
As we were going through our bedtime routine that night, we were simultaneously trying to set up the pack-n-plays where our boys would sleep. When it came time for the swaddling and diapering portion of our routine, IT happened.
I can still hear the sound of my sons’ little body hitting the hard floor.
My husband and I were each with a baby, but when I slowly turned away (for only a split second) to grab the butt paste my son rolled right off of the bed.
White in the face and shaking, I tried to keep my composure. My son started crying, as did I. I felt awful.
How could I have turned my head for a second and let this happen?
Was he OK?
Immediately guilt and shame took over. I was sad and so disappointed in myself. At this point, both of our babies were so worked up, with big tears flowing down my cheeks and a huge lump in my throat, all I could do in that moment was try to keep calm, .
We finished up our bedtime routine and walked into the living room where all of our friends were hanging out. I didn’t have to say anything. They could just see it on my face: the distress of a new mom struggling to keep it together.
My husband gave them the short version of what had happened. And before I could get a word in, every single parent in the room was there with a comforting story.
“My son fell off the kitchen counter, I understand what you are going through.”
“My daughter tipped over in her high chair at a restaurant. It was terrible!”
You see, if those friends weren’t there that night, my guilt would have completely consumed me. Trust me, I couldn’t have felt worse at that moment, but for some reason, knowing that every parent in the room had a similar story helped me get through it.
In my heart, I knew that I wasn’t a terrible parent, but after my infant rolled off of a bed, it was easy to feel like one. It was nice to have other parents to commiserate with me and help me understand that in some way or another, things like this will happen to all of us at some point.
I checked on both boys all night long, just making sure everything was OK. I was a first-time mom, exhausted, and honestly, not used to feeling less than confident in what I was doing most of the time.
While my boys are now 4 years old, accidents and injuries continue to happen. But with experience, I now know that all I can do is take things as they come, adapt, and give myself a little grace along the way.
We’ve had our fair share of bumps, bruises and doctor’s visits, that is all part of raising kids. But that doesn’t mean that I am not doing my very best to keep my kids safe.
Parenting is a wild ride. Hold on tight, do your best, and know that there are a whole bunch of parents in your same shoes, trying to do their best too.