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by Nate Viland
Never in a million years did I think I would be a new dad of twins -- especially twin girls!
However in hindsight, when my twin girls Harper and Delani were born, I can't imagine my life without them.
One of my favorite things as a dad-to-be was telling people we were expecting twins. Jaws dropped, people screamed and some were even speechless. My wife and I decided we weren't interested in finding out the sex of the babies -- finding out we were having twins seemed to satisfy any immediate need for surprise.
To prepare for our two bundles, we painted the nursery a gender neutral yellow, purchased some baby clothes -- two of everything -- and attended a class for expectant parents of multiples at a local hospital. However, I have to be honest; I don't remember anything they talked about that night. You can try to do everything in your power to prepare for fatherhood, but really most of it comes down to practice.
The day the girls were born was completely surreal. I was at school teaching when I got a call that my wife had gone into labor and would be having a c-section later that night. Once the girls were born, I got to cut two umbilical cords! My wife stayed in the OR while I went back with the girls and nurses to get them cleaned up. Three days later when we got home it all became real -- very real. The nurses were gone, the 24 hour coffee machine was gone; it was just us -- our new family.
Finding out you are going to have twin -- or more -- babies is exciting news, but also a welcomed challenge.
Here are some tips to keep in mind once you become a new dad of twin babies.
You may not remember the first month after they're born -- it is okay.
You will get a lot of strange looks and questions. Some people act like they have never seen twins before, have fun with it.
If bottle feeding, stock your bedroom with formula and bottles each night.
Take time off work (if possible) after they are born. I was lucky enough to spend every day with them for the first two weeks.
Don't only take pictures of your babies, include yourself and mom.
Recruit help, even if it is so you and your wife can take a nap to recharge your batteries.
Establish a date night once a week or run errands with your significant other, just the two of you. All of your attention is focused on two babies, so make time for each other every now and then.
People tell us all the time,"I can't imagine having two at once." We always say,"They're our first; we don't know any better." What's the bonus to twice the feedings, baths and baby supplies? We have twice the kisses, hugs, and laughter, too.
Parenting: "New Dad: The Twin Edition"