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Coping, when 2 becomes 4.

Lindsay, a Gemini mother, describes how her family was transformed by the unexpected arrival of her twins, James and Emily.

James, Emily and siblings

To our family, James and Emily are as different as day and night. I actually struggled to find a picture with both twins in it, since they are so rarely doing the same thing! However, we, too, get the comments about how identical they seem... even though they are non-identical twins. I guess the blond curly hair and blue eyes makes it hard to look past to the personalities (and genders)!

James and Emily are our 3rd and 4th children. They were born when Ben was not quite 4, and Katie was 21 months. Life was incredibly hard when they were born, because Katie has a visual impairment and needs extra help and support, and just having 4 children under 4 was exhausting! We got a lot of help and support from friends, family, and local services and now looking back on it less than 2 years ago, it seems like a lifetime has gone by. I exclusively breastfed both for 4 months, and then continued breastfeeding until they were 10.5 months along with solids. It took some juggling but it is do-able!

Twins don't run in our family at all (and I get asked this all the time) nor am I a particularly aged mother- just turned 31 when the twins were born (and I didn't have IVF, in fact, we didn't really intend to have any more children after Ben and Katie).

However, we wouldn't change our twins or our family for the world. James and Emily have brought us so much and made us a much closer family, both in our own household and also as an extended family. People are constantly amazed at how I manage to do anything, and yet I think that the more you have on your plate the better you get at organising it.

I'm really happy to contribute to the Gemini study as our family has already benefitted from medical research in many ways so I'd like to be part of the new cycle... providing data for research that will help others in the future.