It's been 17 years since my twin sons were born, and reading It's Twins! brought back many memories of those early years when I wasn't sure if I was going to make it through another day. Now I can laugh when I read other women's stories about trying to breastfeed twins, or answering those weird questions ("But they don't look alike at all—are you sure they're twins?"), or trying to go grocery shopping with two babies. I could go on and on, but I don't have to—this book says it all.
The author's experience as an editor for the series, Chicken Soup for the Soul, is reflected here, since the book contains stories by different people at different stages in their parenting journey. I could have written some of the stories in this book, which showed me that my experiences were not unusual, even if I thought they were at the time. I would have welcomed this book when my boys were young, just to show me others went through the same things that I did.
There is also plenty of general child-rearing advice, making it an all-purpose parenting book—very useful when you don't have much time to spend reading. Throughout the book are "Points to Ponder," questions related to the topics just covered, with space to write a few lines. For those of us who are already journaling, these questions are wonderful prompts to help us write about our experiences as a mother of twins.
One of the most valuable pieces of advice in the book comes in the toddler and preschooler section, where Heim says, "Respect each child's individual differences. Emphasize each child's strengths. And don't allow one twin to dominate the relationship to the detriment of the non-dominant twin." This is something I have always tried to do with my boys, and now that they are 17 and soon to graduate high school, I feel confident that each is an individual prepared to start his independent life.
This book was very enjoyable and a quick read. I think parents of twins (or more) will find it inspiring, fun, and informative. So take some of that precious free time when both babies are actually asleep, and you aren't, to read this book.
Susan M. Heim is a writer and editor specializing in parenting, multiples, and women's issues. She was a senior editor for the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. She is the coauthor of Oh, Baby! 7 Ways a Baby Will Change Your Life the First Year and author of Twice the Love: Stories of Inspiration for Families.... with Twins, Multiples, and Singeltons. Visit her blog on parenting.
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