From Twin Pregnancy to One Year Old Twins with Shawn Armstrong – Podcast 266

Joe Rawlinson by Joe Rawlinson - June 18, 2022

raising one year old twins

Episode 266 of the Dad’s Guide to Twins Podcast Show Notes

Today we continue our father of twins interview series with Shawn Armstrong, father of twin girls. Listen as we explore his twin parenting journey, including:

  • Getting through numerous miscarriages leading up to twin pregnancy
  • When Mom was sent to hospital at 26 weeks with preeclampsia for 30 days
  • Balancing work while wife in hospital
  • Why twins had to be delivered early
  • Experience during delivery as a father
  • Twins in the NICU for 78 days to grow and gain weight
  • Having twins as a older father (46)
  • Challenge with crawling twins (and now walking)
  • Infant twins and sleep interruptions
  • Why their “ten minute crying baby rule” helped maintain parents’ sanity
  • Managing finances of having twins
  • Day in the life schedule of one-year-olds

Connect with Shawn via email

Podcast Transcript

This is auto-generated so please forgive any mistakes.

00:00 Sometimes you have healthy twin babies, but getting to that point has a few rollercoasters and surprises. Today, we were talking with a father of twins whose wife had to go into the hospital for about a month before delivery. And then as girls were born really premature and spent about two and a half months in the NICU.

00:16 We jump into the details of that experience and much more today on the show. Welcome to the Dad’s Guide to Twins podcast. The podcast that’ll help you survive and thrive as a father of twins. Now here’s your host, the author of the book, the Dad’s Guide to Twins, Joe Rawlinson. Hello there, and welcome to the 266th episode of the Dad’s Guide to Twins podcast.

00:39 This is Joe Rawlinson as always. You can find me on the web at DadsGuidetoTwins.com. Today. We are continuing our father of twins interview series with a father of identical twin girls. But before we jump into that conversation, I want to let you know that today’s show is brought to you by my second book for dads of twins, it is called dad’s guide to raising twins out of thrive as a father of twins.

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00:59 I spoke. We’ll guide you to the first couple years with your twins. To help overcome the challenges of sleeping, feeding, parenting, and more. As you get started on your journey as a twin parent, you can learn more about this book and get a copy for yourself at raisingtwinsbook.com. Once again, that’s raising twins book.com today, I would like to welcome to the show father of twins, Shawn Armstrong weld.

01:21 Welcome to the show. Good. Thank you, Shawn. How old are your twins right now? And what’s something exciting about this age? so they just turns one on Christmas day. So the Christmas babies, so a little over a year now and actually the, well, I guess the first was it’s exciting right now is, they’re starting to walk.

01:45 So, yes, you can say second board, by one minute was, is actually starting to wear a walk first. So watching them start taking their steps and, and standing on the row and, and, and doing all of that is a, probably an accomplishment as itself. Yeah. That’s a fun transition when they start to walk.

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02:07 Cause I mean, once I figured that out, there’s no stopping them ever again. Yeah. Everybody warns you. They’re like, oh, what’s that happens. Watch out. So, it’s true. It’s true. But I would have to say crawling into things and over things, there’s actually a worse than that. So what kind of trouble do they get into?

02:29 well, right now it’s a, we have this, downstairs. Well, our living room is kind of a sunken in a living room. And so they have their own about, well, the whole living room is their whole PlayStation. but, more than anything we have, like the, the side tables for the coffee table is. It’s like secure it around like a bunch of, stuffed animals and pillows.

02:51 And they’re starting to learn to crawl over that now. So, everything is interesting over on the coffee table. So is there anywhere else that your childproofing might’ve failed? Ah, actually so far the wa the way our house is right now, they’re just confined to that one area. So it works perfect for us right now.

03:13 we’re actually looking into kind of getting something bigger. So we know that we’re going to have to put childproof. My wife has already have this, childproof kit and she has all the accessories, but so far we haven’t had to go into the full house yet. So, but it’s coming, it’s coming because once they, once they start wanting.

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03:34 walking in and going forth and, and playing in the kitchen and all of that, it’s it’s going to happen. Did one of your twins figure out the crawling or walking thing before the other one or are they. Actually, and that’s the thing about our Mike twins right now is, so what we’ll refer to her as baby a is, is Madeline and baby B is, Lillian.

03:59 And so, Matty is, the smaller of the two and she was actually the one who, Was getting the nutrition, the, like the smaller aspect and the other one was taking all, everything. So when they were born one smaller than the other, so in growth aspects, Lillian is actually doing more and Maddie’s about two weeks behind her and usually on everything so far.

04:30 So, Maddie is, is doing other things, Here and there, but when it comes to like the walking and the crawling and then saying the words and all of that, I, that’s the one thing I’ve seen so far is, is one is doing the other about two weeks behind each other. So that’s been pretty consistent. It will be interesting to see if that pattern continues as a hit, hit new milestones going forward as well.

04:56 Yeah, it’s a lot of, well, I mean, it’s a lot of unknown for me as I would love to see them both equal right now, but as an all parent would be, but. It’s difficult to watch that because it’s like, oh, she’s she sees her sister. And I think that’s helps a lot is that she sees her sister, she’s learning from her when it comes to that.

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05:17 So I think that helps the connection there to, yeah, we saw something similar with our girls. I have this hypothesis that having twins, as soon as one of them figures it out, whatever it is, some milestone crawling, walking, talking, because the other twin is always watching. The other twin catches up a lot faster than maybe they would have on their own.

05:36 Oh yeah. Oh, I think that’s a very true statement. I’ve had, two older ones on my, I mean I have two older children and they were both singletons and, It is a huge, different, it’s a whole new world. I always say it’s like a it’s, everything’s learned differently and done differently and you, you can’t expect anything.

05:59 and that’s the thing is in a lot of things that I’ve talked to people and talk to other twin dads and moms, do I hear my wife talk it off all the time? And. you can’t compare the Singleton life to the twin life because development and learning are totally different when they watch each other versus the don’t watch each other, or you have a bigger brother.

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06:22 So Hey, that bigger brother, a bigger sisters walking around. Why can’t I? So it is a little different when it comes to that. Now you mentioned you have girls, are they identical or. my first two boards are girls, they’re singletons and they’re in their twenties. so we, we actually, started to try for, for kids probably about said, well, actually it’s been a while back now, but, and so we were getting towards the point where we’re like, okay, we’re just going to be, this is my wife now.

06:56 And we were getting to the point where it was going to be a. It’s time to kind of say, okay, this is not what’s going to happen. And so we started to work towards like, Hey then what were you going to do for vacations? What do we want to do as an adults? And, and then, we found out we were pregnant with our two identical girls now.

07:16 and so that changed, that changed everything. So we had to rewrite our five-year plan and go from there. Yeah, twins will cause you to review, right. A lot of plans. That’s so true. So let’s go back to, when you found out that you would be having twins, what was your family situation like at that time? And how was the.

07:40 it was just me and my wife, and our, and our two dogs. And I think, our dogs raised us to the point of having twins, but, and, we found out we were pregnant about eight weeks into it. We went through, We went to, I think it was our first ultrasound, just as a normal load, your sound and everything’s going great.

08:03 And so the, the, the, the nurse, or the technician was like, so here’s one heartbeat and, oh yeah, here’s another heartbeat. So yet you’re having twins. so I guess she’s done this before. We did not. and she’s like, you can swear, you can do whatever you want right now. and both of us just looked at each other and just laugh.

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08:28 I just, that’s all you could do. I mean, that’s and we’re still laughing. I mean, to, to this day, we’re still laughing. I was just talking to my wife, over dinner the other night and I just. I was, I had one girl on one side, we were feeding dinner and having dinner and she had the other girl and, we were at the kitchen table and I just looked at her and I says, can you still believe we’re half twins?

08:52 It’s still odd. It’s it’s like, wow. I mean, you just can’t, you keep on laughing about it. it’s just a whole different aspect to it. and identical, I mean, we weren’t even trying, this was, there was no medication. There was no, We weren’t even trying for this. it’s it just happened to them and it’s like, okay, well, w we’ll take that and, we’ll go with it and see what we can come.

09:22 So it was good to have a healthy sense of humor as a parent of twins. I’m glad that helps you laugh your way through the ups and downs of the challenges so far. yeah, we like you are, our girls are identical and it was a complete surprise. as you may know, identical twins are just random, random surprises and, you know, we got surprised.

09:43 So, how did the pregnancy progress for your wife and for the twins? So that was a difficult one. And I think what was a lot of difficulty on this one was because we have been down this road before and I think what made it, so, I I’m, yeah, I’m going to use the word scary, throughout all of this is, cause we lived through.

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10:09 I think, and my wife can probably correct me if I’m wrong, but I think we went through about six miscarriages, through all this, this was the seventh pregnancy. so when you get through all of that, it’s, it’s still a scary road and all the way through. And so during this whole time, My, my protector kicked in and I’m like, okay, everyday.

10:33 I was like, how you doing? And, we went through the whole, you need to rest, you need to do everything. And so, the, pretty much the caretaker in me just was like, okay, let’s. Do this it’s it’s longer than it was before. And so, it’s things are different. And so, we progressed into, I’d have to say it about, 26 weeks.

10:59 and then things got started getting real a little bit when she got, She got put into the hospital for a preeclampsia. And so she had to stay on 26 weeks. They checked her in that was, I stayed at a doctor’s appointment actually, and I was still living. And, she called me, she’s like, Hey, they’re going to take me and put me into another room and, and watch me.

11:27 So I said, okay, so, got off work and we’re going to go to the hospital for, almost 30 days. it was every day in the hospital. just still getting off of work. actually I would go into work and then, get off of work and go to the hospital and I wouldn’t get off until about eight o’clock at night and, and then just head home so I can get some shut eye a little bit.

11:54 And then just Washington. and just keep on watching her. And I knew that she was in safe hands at the hospital, so that was always a good thing. But, so yeah, it was a, it was a tough road when it started to come to that, it was, started to get really real, because that all of that was happening and she was going through all the tests that she was going through and the monitoring and, and you get worried.

12:20 I mean, you hear a lot of stories about, Twins and, and how, the twin pregnancies can be very, rough. And, and so do you just get into your head? I mean, that’s really what it is is you really get into your head where you just are doctor MD and okay, well, what’s going to happen and what’s this and you go through all kinds of scenarios.

12:45 So, So, and then, so for about a whole month, she was in the month of December. She got checked in around the first December and then, the doctor on Christmas day, Yeah, I actually, we were talking, trying to get the doctor to let her how it go. I had a hotel room right next to the hospital and we tried to get the doctor to release her just for a day for Christmas so that she could have, she can get out and we can have some dinner and all of that.

13:17 And it came really close. The doctor was almost ready to say, okay, you can do this for a day and we’ll give you a. and so, about, I think it was on Christmas Eve ish. he’s like, yeah, he changed his mind, said no, that’s not a good idea. So on Christmas morning, I brought her some breakfast and we had breakfast in the morning.

13:44 And then, towards the afternoon, I said, Hey, I’m going to go take our dogs out, go back to the hotel and unwind for a little bit. And then I’ll come back. And, and so, I got back to the hotel room and just sat down on the bed and my phone rings and she’s like, you need to get back here. they’re, they’re going to induce me and we’re having the baby.

14:08 And so, well, like all fathers, you freak out. So I was like, oh my gosh. sorry, the hospital was right down the road. And, and at that time we had just found, some dog sitters, that, the dog sitters were watching the dogs during that time period. So I called her and I said, Hey, The dogs are going to be in the car.

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14:32 Can you come get him? And she’s like, yeah, no problem. And we had a plan already in place. And so, she got all the way when I got him to the hospital. And then, yeah, so at 29 weeks we, we had the girls on Christmas day. Well, what a Christmas surprise Christmas present that was, oh yeah. Oh yeah. So while, so while your wife was in the hospital, did the doctor say.

14:55 The Hey, she’s going to have to be here for, until the babies are delivered or what was the outlook like at that point? I think more than anything, it was day by day. and it, and it just seemed, I think initially it was, Hey, we’re going to have her for a day. Hey, let’s try one more day. And then after I think three or four days, it was, I think we all knew.

15:17 I mean, I don’t know if the doctors told her, but I pretty much was like, assuming it’s going to be here until, until she has the girls. And so, I think the most important part was that was, delivering early. So any day after that was, the worry was okay or the, is it going to be this day? Is it going to be that day?

15:41 So, for me it was a. It was the worry aspect of how well is their health hell I mean, my wife and the girls, how are they doing? so it took a day by day, but not really. It wasn’t long-term after that, it was like, okay, well, we’re just going to keep on monitoring. So I don’t think it really got said if they’re going to be in there for 30 days, but after a week, We kind of all assumed, I mean, it was like, okay, this is going to happen until they’re born.

16:14 So the longer we stay there, the better. So, and that’s what our outcome was. Had your wife been working before she went into the hospital? fortunately she was a realtor, so, she didn’t have too much, he was working on her own and, and all of that. So, because of that, it helped us out to the. To the point where we didn’t have, we were already living on, an income unless you sold a house, but, that was pretty much helpful on that aspect.

16:46 Yeah. That is, extra flexibility, particularly when you’re locked down in the hospital all of a sudden for a month. Yeah. We actually sold our house. and before we found out we were having a girls, Because, Hey, we thought the market was great. We’re going to get some good money off our house. So why not just rent some little bit?

17:04 So we had a little bit of money in the pocket for the Housewives, so that also helped to, so was there some impetus for why the doctor needed to induce the girls? Was there some issue that came up, there that Christmas? That was the preeclampsia? Yeah, that was the, so that morning, they were doing the heart meter, heart, Correct fetal monitor, every day.

17:30 So they was like on a daily basis. And so they would hear the heartbeats for over like a half hour, hour type. And you could tell that, baby A’s heartbeat was actually getting, lower, and baby’s B’s was still strong. So they, they were after monitoring that they knew that a baby B was taking the nutrients from baby a and so it was pretty much time.

18:01 So what was your experience like at the delivery as a father? Ah, it was quick. it was, actually by the time I got there, because I had already, I was already, within the hospital. I, they said, Hey, we brought your, we brought your wife in, And so they were getting her prepped, but even by the time that it was prepped, they said, Hey, let’s throw on some downs.

18:27 And here’s some, PPE, I stood out in the hallway for probably 10 to 15 minutes and thinking that is just starting to begin and. I entered the room. The room was set up, nurses were all there. it was happening. I literally just sat down and by the time I sat down and looked at her and held her hand, I was rushing over into the other room to see how the girls were doing.

18:58 I mean, it was, it was almost that quick. so I really didn’t really get to experience, all of that. In the, in the room itself. it just got scary. I mean, more than anything, it was just scary. How what’s going to happen to the girls. Are they coming out? Okay. eh, the, after the fact, I mean, we were, we were having babies at 29 weeks.

19:23 so what what’s going to happen now is, I mean, so many things running through your head. I honestly, can’t say that. I remember the whole thing. I just remember going in there. And then all of a sudden I’m going into the other room, just to check on one of the girls, to see, see how things are going.

19:42 Is there a heartbeat? Is there cry? Is there, that kind of thing. So, and then from the. It was, maybe AA came out and Maddie came out and then Lily was right behind her. and so just a group of nurses on one baby, a group of nurses and doctors on the other baby. it just was all surreal. It was just so fast.

20:06 by the time it all happened, it was, I had a nurse coming up behind me going, would you like to cut the umbilical cord? so. Once I knew that that was happening. I kind of felt better at, at ease of the whole situation. Once I knew that I could cut the umbilical cord, I knew that everything was, in stable hands and everything was going okay.

20:30 According to plan, Also at the same time I’m asking nurses, how’s everything going? How’s your head. So, and then running back to my wife, because she was over a nurse was sat next to her. once I left, and talking to her and everything. And so I was going back and forth going, okay, we got five fingers.

20:49 We got five toes. we got that. So I’m running back and forth. It just, I mean, I think I was in there for maybe 15 minutes and it just, it just went so quick. Well, because your girls reporting so early, surely there was some complications after birth. What did your girls struggle with after. That’s the hard part.

21:07 so they were in the NICU for 78 days. a lot of it, was growth, just needing to grow, needing to, get to be on their own, taking a bottle. I think that’s what the longest timeframe was just that had they, they had to grow, Knock on wood. I can’t say that it was any complications. they had jaundice a couple of times here and there.

21:41 but overall they were. I don’t know, even know if you can say this, but it’s healthy premies. so there was not really any red flags when it came to him, except for, they just needed to grow and be monitored and watched and, yeah, it’s grown more than anything. So, that’s the hardest part was, was them in the NICU.

22:09 And just watching them and not being able to, at times not being able to hold them, but then we’ve got, they started to get a little bit bigger where we got to be able to do skin to skin. and, It felt it started to become a routine. I mean, it was just like, I was already used to, to get off of work and go into the hospital.

22:34 So to me that was a routine, but, then my wife was able to, she was released and then, then we started to go to, she started going back to the hospital and then I would go after work and, And then we started to get into the bass thing and all of that, but, it was just pretty much, they just needed to be, to do what they needed to do and get, check off all the, the checkoff, the hearing the site, The weight, the weight was a big thing.

23:04 I think if I remember correctly, baby hay was like two pounds, one ounce, and the other one was two pounds, nine ounces. So, just tiny, just so tiny. I mean, I’m a six foot four guy. Probably both of them in each hand. So it was pretty much at that time it was become so real that the, how tiny they were.

23:28 Yeah. That’s incredible, baby. So, so small. And yet they certainly need it to survive. They make it, they do it. it’s fortunate that didn’t have any complications. They just needed some extra time Mr. Weight. And at times I feel guilty cause I do talk to him and see and hear other stories. I feel guilty that, that, that was just the reason, the only reason.

23:49 I know that a lot of other parents just go through a lot more. and I just feel, I feel lucky when it comes to that, but also feel guilty at the same time because I. Just watching them grow more than anything. Well, every twin pregnancy, every delivery is different. And I mean, your wife was in the hospital for a month.

24:08 Your babies are in the NICU for more than two months. So it’s not like you had an uneventful experience. True. True. I did have my share. Yeah. were your girls able to come home at the same time or where the staggered. No, they actually came home at the same time. We got lucky enough to have that happen.

24:28 one started to take the bottle just about the same time the other day then. And, they got up, both checked off all their, their marks, so they both get to go home. And same time. I have a picture of myself walking down the NICU aisle with a carrier in each hand, which was awesome. The memorable moment.

24:48 How was the transition to life at home with newborn twins? Oh, so let me step back and say I’m 46 years old. so if I would have done this in my twenties, I would have gave you an, a different answer. it’s I have to say it’s, it’s a whole new world. it’s a whole new chapter in book. Actually. I told my wife, I said, this is not even a chapter.

25:14 We just closed the book and re I starting to rewrite a new one. it’s it’s interesting. It’s challenging. it’s sleep. It’s, it’s more than the sleep aspect. and when you have a Singleton, it’s nice that you can put them asleep and, and you’re able to share back and forth or, or I wake up and then you wake up and, and we can do that.

25:43 But when it comes to twins, majority of anything, when one wakes up the other, one’s going to wake up. And so, it’s a tag team event. It’s not like, somebody, I know my wife really wants to take care of me because I work during the day. But, I still get up at night and still help and, and, and do all of that.

26:04 But, initially in the beginning it was a lot of, changing diapers. It was a lot of, staying up and, getting bottles fed and just washing bottles. And, it’s double the work. I mean, that’s, that’s literally what it is. It’s just double the work. And so, It’s been, it’s been, it’s been hard. I’m not going to say I’m not going to say it’s easy.

26:32 it’s been hard and the sleep aspect I think is getting a little bit better. just because we’re, we’re almost a year into it now and all of that, but in the beginning, It affected me. I couldn’t, I had maybe four, two, two to four hours a night when I was regularly eight hour nights. I’m always an early bird and it broke all my routines.

26:57 And, I always had morning routines w as a, as a single, dad, I guess actually singled out of puppies, but I guess you can say, but, it was, it was, it was hard. It was very difficult when it, more than anything, it was the sleep, when it came to that and just, well, finances too. it’s, it’s double everything.

27:22 It’s the formula. It’s the, it’s the, The diapers and the wipes and everything else. And it’s the clothes it’s to prepare for everything. So, it’s, it’s been a challenge. More than anything it’s worked out. Well, I mean, because my wife and I had this plan in place and, and we were taking turns. And so it did help.

27:46 I mean the two to four hours did become a little bit more and it wasn’t as broken. I guess you can say, and that’s the hard part is the broken sleep. you can sleep. Four straight hours and feel refreshed, but sleep an hour here. And then being up for an hour and sleep in an hour is a little different.

28:05 So, we took plans. We took turns into making sure each and one of us, had some straight sleep and, and, and just hoped that it was just one baby. And so I, and that’s the thing is, is you put one down, And one wakes up and you, and you feed her. you have that, you get all excited because you’re able to get her asleep.

28:32 And you’re about to put her back into the crib and the other one wakes up. So you’re like, okay, here we go again. And so there’s the, it gets exhausting when it comes to them. You’re like, okay, well, there’s been times where I was like, okay, my ass, my wife, Hey, can you, can you take her so that I can, I can get some sleep and then she’s done the same thing.

28:54 So. We always called a, we always called the crying sometimes a 10 minute rule. If you’ve held a baby crying baby for, for over 10 minutes, then, the other one comes and gets her and you switch. so, you just kinda switch out a little bit and take that turn where, so that you can go step away and really.

29:18 Just kind of unwind from that crying baby, for a little bit. So, yeah, it’s been interesting. I like that 10 minute role and what you’re sharing about being true partners and taking turns and supporting each other. It’s just so invaluable. Because it is a, it is a team effort with twins, with her. So little, it’s, it’s really hard to do it.

29:41 We just want, you know, it’s hardest. It’s just both parents together. Let alone trying to juggle that by herself in the middle of the night. you mentioned you had to make some financial adjustments. What are some things that they had to do there to make things work, stop everything. I mean, there’s pretty much, I have to say that I did quit smoking.

29:59 once I found out that they were, That they were on their way. so I’ve been one year and seven months of quit smoking. So that has helped financially tremendously. but other things, everything else is, is a, you had the time and the belts, you knew that, You knew that the, the diapers are coming, the doctor bills.

30:23 I mean, the doctor bills were coming the, the formula, the feedings, and all of that. Now it’s getting into, the teething crackers and the T they’re, the puffs and the, and the regular Gerber foods and all of that. So, it, it does get to the, just, you got to add on. Pretty much. I adjusted our budget to, reflect all of that and, the, the coffee at Starbucks or, or whatever it started at stopped, the smoking stock and that’s helped financially and, and the going out and the, well, of course you don’t go out anymore, but well, unless you have some good friends, but, Yeah, you just, you just your life a little bit, you know, the money that’s coming in, you know, in a budgeted, you can, you can stop certain things to here and there and, put more towards that one.

31:19 But it’s way worth it. Yeah. Adjustments definitely have to happen and you have to be creative sometimes at how, you know, what levers you pull in the budget to make things all, all play out. You lead it to having some good friends of a, have you been able to find some babysitters to watch the girls so you can get out of the house?

31:36 no. I said, if you have good friends, we had great, I have great friends, but, a lot of them, most of mine are, are out of state and all of that. But here locally, it was funny. ironically funny that, twins are, are great in that. when you’re, when you’re in the beginning of it and everybody’s like, oh my gosh, you have twins.

32:01 And it’s a, it’s a fad for everybody and their it’s excitement. And, but when they come over and visit you and see what you guys go through, they’re like, yeah, you don’t see him anymore. So we had a lot of friends that we saw for a while and then not saw. So, it’s, we’ve had some good friends though.

32:21 My wife’s friend, actually, let us have a date night the other night, which is right. That was our first night going out and for the first time, actually. Yeah, for the first time. And, it was nice to get out and to actually have some dinner, take our time. It was hot meal. it was nice, but, yeah, you gotta have those friends that want to stick around for awhile.

32:46 Yeah, it’s not an easy ask to request someone come over to watch the twins. I’m glad you can get out. Hopefully that opens the door for more opportunities that you see it’s possible to escape the house and fully can plant some more of that in the future for you. Yeah, we actually a babysitter. I actually, we, we got, my wife, a lady or a couple of babysitters that do come in and give her a help, some support during the week.

33:14 And, they babysit her, I guess that’s how I say they babysit her. but they help out with her so that she can just kind of. Have some help and support throughout the day. And those are the nice ones that you can, you can call for and get some babysitters on that one. And, but yeah, when we do get some friends to come over for, for free, for free watching, we always asked two friends, so I haven’t yet been able to get one person to do.

33:43 Now that your girls are a little over one, what’s a typical day in the life of schedules, as far as, nap times and sleeping and feeding. Yeah, we’re actually going into the sleeping aspect. it’s been, they, for a while now. my, Lily, who’s the baby, a baby. She, clockwork, you can set the time, wakes up at 10 and one every night and we haven’t had a good night’s sleep or a full night’s sleep for, yet actually.

34:21 and so we started to do the sleep therapy, the sleep therapy and all of that. But it’s pretty much letting her cry a little bit, for, I think we’ve given it a half hour timeframe, where if, we don’t get up and well, we weren’t getting up, for five minutes and letting her cry for at least five minutes and not going in there and picking her up.

34:46 But, the five minutes wasn’t lasting, so we kind of pushed it out a little bit longer and pushed it out a little bit. Like. and just recently last night, last night was the first night. They both slept all night. and so, we’ll see how things go with that. But, we just extended for nighttime YSP extended the time that we actually go in there, while she initially cries or they initially cried, the other one might stick through it might not.

35:17 and all. but we, if we given that timeframe where we start, making it longer a little bit longer, a little bit longer, of course we’re always watching on the monitor, but in the room, but, yeah, that’s the, that’s been the nighttime sleep, for the daytime. during the weekends, I have to say that, I have magic shoulders, when both of them are laying on me, they just fall asleep.

35:46 and so, nighttime, or from that time during the weekends is, can happen a little bit more often than the dead during the week, because with my wife, but, they’re about maybe 45 minutes naps during the. during the week and a with me, there might be a little bit longer than that. and then the sleep, the eating schedule, there’s not really any schedule.

36:12 I think we, they eat dinner with us, when it comes to the, the, the solid foods, but when it comes to a bottle, It’s to the point now where we kind of, well, not kind of, we know who we know what their moods are. if they’re hungry, we can totally tell what they need. If there, we know that, Hey, we gave a bottle of about two hours ago, so maybe we need to give another bottle.

36:39 just we, we did paste it upon their attitudes and how things are going. and it’s worked. It’s worked well. That’s great. So is your wife staying home with them now or is she working? Full-time fantastic. That’s that was something that we were blessed to be able to do as well as have mom stay home with the kids when they’re really young.

36:57 That was really a good situation for them to be in. Well, financially, we looked into it. I mean, it was, she could, she could go back to work and financially, it wouldn’t be worth it. I mean, cost effectiveness. we would be, her job would be paying for child support and, the way things are going now, I mean, we can’t leave out the pandemic, than the schools and how things are growing and all of that.

37:23 And so it just was, it was a smart move. I mean, it’s a struggle with one income I’m looking into, I’ve actually, looking into moving out to Kansas city here soon. So we’ll see what happens there with a better job, but, yeah, you, you just, you, you, you gotta work on that one income and if you can do it, it’s, It’s great to have her home, but yet, for her sanity, you also need to protect her.

37:57 I mean, that’s that’s so I’ve had to not had to, I’ll come home and I’ll ask her, do you need to go take a bath? You need to get to step away from it. You need to go take a walk. so I try to give her a little bit of time during the weekends. Hey, why don’t you go out with some friends, those kinds of things.

38:15 So, just because you’re. So much around the, the girls. I mean, just the crying. They could be the crying, we’re getting into the, tantrums here a little bit. And, I separation, separation from mom. So, she can’t, she can hardly even go to the kitchen without having them cry. So, and even when I’m here, so right now it’s all about mom.

38:41 So that’s. Yeah, you are wise to make sure that she’s getting a break and some separation from the craziness every day. his situation described as pretty common where, you know, parents do the math and the math on daycare costs, and it just doesn’t make sense for one of the partners to be working.

38:59 So, Shawn, as we wrap up today, if listeners want to connect with you, what’s the best way to. Yeah, my, my email address is S T a T 3 0 6 5 8. So [email protected] I’m always looking to touch base with any of the twin dads out there. totally looking for, a new best friend twin dads. So, yeah, always reach out.

39:29 Touch base with me. Fantastic. Well, Shawn, thank you very much for sharing your story with us today. We really appreciate. Oh, I appreciate, your website and your book was great. And, and your, your either daily emails or weekly emails, I mean, I I’ve really enjoyed what you do here, so, I appreciate you, doing all that.

39:50 Hoping to have that chat with Shawn about his adventures as a father of twins. If you would like to share your story like Shonda today, I would love to hear from you. You can connect with me on Instagram or Twitter @twindadjoe. I am also on facebook.com/dadsguidetotwins, or you can email me directly [email protected]

40:07 And I would love to hear from you if you’re still expecting twins or in those early months with twins, I recommend you pick up my book. Dad’s guide to raising twins, how to thrive as a father of twins. As it will guide you through this first couple of years, with your twins and up, you thrive along your twin parenting journey.

40:21 You can get a book for yourself at raising twinsbook.com. If you’re enjoying the podcast, would you please leave a rating and review on your favorite podcast player? It would really do a lot to help other parents of twins find the podcast as well. Thank you so much for listening and I’ll see you next time.

 

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