There is always a light

There is always a light
Don't be afraid if you are alone or surrounded by darkness. In some part of the world, the day has just begun. There is a always a light waiting for you to find your way to touch its radiance.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Fine Art of Parenting: Double Bonanza

By Sharmistha Duttagupta
Vishakhapatnam, India
22nd May, 1998.......The day the radiologist proclaimed, "Oh, we have another one" pointing to another little throbbing spot on the monitor at my first scan had me staring in amazement at the miracle. I sent up a prayer to God thanking Him for such a beautiful gift.

I heard a lot when I was carrying twins that I was in for twice the work -- twice the diapers, twice the bottles, twice the baths.........well, twice the everything. Yet, nothing could be compared to the 'roller-coaster ride' awaiting yours truly when I finally brought them home from hospital after their birth. I remember the first three months were filled with various emotions. The first three months were also the roughest three months of my life. I was sleep deprived beyond imagination. I was overwhelmed beyond imagination. I was hormonal beyond imagination. I was confused.....well, beyond imagination. Life seemed like a blur of distorted images !

Twin mums need to be adept at many things and they need to hone the skill of 'multiple multi-tasking' down to a fine art!! Feeding one baby while cackling to the other, rocking one twin to sleep in a stroller and another in a sling and using one free foot to massage a woeful pet (or husband !!). Reciting crazy rhymes to them while preparing supper which usually ends up in a topsy-turvy of 'less salt and more chillies'!! And most important, to keep an eye on them all the time!!! Most people would think, two toddlers, twice the mess. Wrong ! Two toddlers, at least three times the mess. Because while you rush to clean the mess one of them has made, the other is well into making a bigger mess of the mess already made!!!

I remember the first year as a blur which swung between sheer contentment and the Twilight Zone. An endless marathon of changing diapers and midnight feedings. I never experienced the languid moment of just focussing on an infant----there was always someone "waiting in the wings" to be changed or fed !!

Yet, every stage of raising twins has its own set of delights and dilemmas. Just when you have mastered the logistics of juggling two newborns, you're confronted with two toddlers who, together, can create more than double the mischief. Snuggling with two babies is pure heaven but imagine synchronized episodes of terrible twos’ tantrums....

My twins today are eleven years old....each an individual with separate thought processes, different views about life yet bound together as one. As a twin mama, this has been the most difficult task for me till date---to help my twins grow up as 'separate persons'. My goal has always been to allow my kids to be individuals. It was important to celebrate their differences and individual styles when it could have been so easy to lump them together. The catch lies in defining more their individual personalities and interests than their twinship. Believe me, helping them grow up as 'separate persons' has made them the best of friends. Today, when I see them laughing together over something utterly ordinary, or sharing a joke together in that little world they have built around themselves--I shudder to think what might have happened had I brought them up like a 'single unit' !!
Today, I chuckle heartily when my eleven- year old son tells me that Priyanka Chopra is fabulous and my daughter can't decide who is more handsome--Hrithik Roshan or John Abraham...while her brother naughtily tells her-"Forget it ! They are not even going to look at you". The rest of the words are lost in either loud laughter from his sister or chasing each other all over the house, affection shining bright in both kids' eyes.

Twins are so much hard work. They take over your world. They are the reason I toss and turn, worrying about them, praying for them and obsessing over their well being. They have multiplied the number of grey hairs on my head by fifty!! They make me want to pull my hair out at times.
Guess what ? I love it .
Guess what ? I couldn't imagine it any other way.........


  1. So true, Sharmistha. As a mother of twins, I see the package as a complete bonus from life!

  2. Right you are, Swati. I couldn't agree more...Sharmistha.