It’s a Circus: The Reality of Feeding Newborn Twins

My babies were overall very good newborns. They would sleep, eat, poop or pee all over me, and then go right back to sleep. They spent anywhere from 14-18 hours sleeping and were basically koalas.  As we approach the 3-month mark their temperaments have changed a little; they are sleeping way less during the day and eating way more.  When they are both awake and hangry, it’s time to send in the troops.  

Our Feeding Journey//

If you would have told me 3 months ago that I would spend  8-16 hours a day feeding the twins, I would have laughed. Hysterically.  Clearly, I had no idea what was in store for us.

Since the babies were born we have traveled quite the feeding journey. Starting from cup feeding them drops of colostrum like baby kittens, to learning how to pump after 36 hours of no sleep on day 2 at the hospital, to supplementing with formula right away because I didn’t have milk and they needed to eat, to learning the literal juggling act of tandem breastfeeding (which basically qualifies me for Cirque du Soleil)… we have been busy.

We faced a few challenges at the start getting the twins to latch (teeny preemie mouths), and then getting them to keep food down so we could get their weights up.

The Preemie Plan//

So here’s what I did as recommended by the specialists:

  • Breastfeed Twin A for 15-20 minutes
  • Pass Twin A to Husband for burp and formula top up
  • Breastfeed Twin B for 15-20 minutes
  • Pass Twin B to Husband for burp and formula top up
  • Re-Burp Twin A and B
  • Pump for 20 minutes
  • Repeat every 2-3 hours, 8 times a day

If you read that and thought, “Oh, hell no,”  you are not alone.  But that’s what I did. Everyday. For the first 3 weeks straight. Then, my husband went back to work and I was suddenly home alone with two babies who needed to eat every 3 hours.

Let me tell you, trying to manage two awake and hungry babies who have gone from sleeping angels to screaming banshees in a matter of nanoseconds is NO JOKE.

Feed Meeeeeee!

I spend my days constantly going back and forth between them attempting my best to feed, console, and keep them from piercing my (and each others’) eardrums.  When I’m home alone it is really hard to tandem breastfeed, at first because they were just so damn small and now because I can’t get them into the right position on my own.  So if they are awake at the same time I end up boobing (that’s what we call breastfeeding in our house)  one and bottling the other or, depending on the nuclear level of crying, straight up double fisting bottles. 

I have had to come up with some very creative and MacGuyer-esque solutions to feeding time. They all seem like a good idea at 4am.

 

A Puker and a Dribbler//

Because they were both preemies, we went back and forth between boob and bottle multiple times a day to be able to track exactly what they were getting in volume.  We were especially focused on Hayden because she came into this world under 5lbs with the cutest and smallest little mouth, and was a puker from birth.  Now Hayden LOVES to eat. And she LOVES to eat really really fast.  Like, so fast it’s as if she has never eaten before and will never eat again. This usually means she will spit up within minutes of finishing a bottle. (I die a little bit inside every time she barfs up my breast milk.)

We started out with those teeny tiny slow feed bottles they give you at the hospital with the super rubbery disposable nipples. Once we graduated from the hospital bottles, we used whatever bottles we were gifted at my shower, but man did they make her gassy and cranky from the air.  And the spillage. SO. MUCH. SPILLAGE. (Mostly for Hunter.)  There wasn’t really a good middle bottle that could help bridge the gap between the super slow flow hospital bottles and ones that are meant for full-term newborns.

Milk Drunk

The Simply Natural Feeding System//

So here’s what is absolutely floating our boat these days: the Nuk Simply Natural Feeding System.  Now here is the thing; yes, I am partnering with Nuk via YMC to help promote the product. BUT, I can honestly and sincerely say that I am thrilled with these bottles. They have totally changed feeding time for me and the twins and here’s why:

1// The nipples are… actually shaped like nipples! Amazing concept, right?? I don’t know about you my boobs do NOT look like most of those other brands. Maybe after pumping for 45 minutes, lol.

2//  The milk/formula comes out of the nipple like… an actual boob! Ok, newbie mom alert: I legitimately did NOT know that breast milk comes out of your boobs more like a shower head than a garden hose, if you catch my drift. I think this is the coolest feature because the 0-3 month slow feed bottles have 3 tiny holes and the next step up has 5 tiny holes. Also, I’m able to seamlessly go from boob to bottle in the same sitting without either baby putting up a stink.

3//  The slow feed is….actually slow! This is the first bottle Hayden has eaten from where she does not sound like she’s doing a keg stand at a varsity basketball party. There is no gulping to be heard, and she is eating less like a baby hippo and much more like a baby human.

4// There is minimal to zero leakage. Thanks to the boob like features, the babies can really latch on to the nipple and create that magical suction they are capable of. Hunter became 80% less of a spilly mess the first time we used it with him. He’s down to 95% less spillage as of today, but that’s only because he’s started smiling while he’s eating and dribbles when he does. I’ll allow it because it is adorable.

5// The Simply Natural Feeding System comes with a breast pump that… looks like boobs! If you ever wanted to channel Vogue-Era Madonna AND pump, look no further than these glorious boob cups that fit inside your bra. Yes, inside. No more external dangly bottles.

Multitasking Like a Mother//

My all-time high point of feeding the twins came on the day I was able to boob Hayden, bottle feed Hunter AND pump my spare boob. I finished their entire feed in 40 minutes, down from an hour and a half.  If that isn’t mama multitasking, I don’t know what is.

Hangry Babies

 

Breastfeeding, bottle feeding and pumping. Oh yeah!

Now that I’ve reclaimed so many hours in a day, I can focus on other things like washing my hair and playing with the babies 😉

What’s the most challenging thing you found about feeding a newborn?  Share with me in the comments!

Interested in learning more? There is a Scratch and Win contest happening right now until March 31st with over 10,000 prizes and discounts. To enter or for more info visit www.nuk-canada.ca/simplynaturalsweeps  

 

Disclosure: I have partnered with YMC and NUK and have received compensation for this post. All opinions in the post are my own.

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9 Comments

  • Reply Tara March 29, 2018 at 12:51 pm

    the twins are SO beautiful! and you’re superwoman – I don’t have kids but have the highest respect for new mamas, especially with twins!

  • Reply Joscelyn March 29, 2018 at 12:22 pm

    You are supermom, period. I thought I had a hard time feeding one, but can’t even imagine how it would’ve been with two. It seems as if you got some sort of system going now which is great! You seriously deserve and award or something!

  • Reply Natalia March 29, 2018 at 10:33 am

    Feeding one baby may be a challenge, but feeding tweens seems to be a super challenge.

  • Reply Renee Rocco March 21, 2018 at 10:30 pm

    You, ma’am, are a rock star. My second child was the perfect baby. She gave me not a single challenge, feeding or otherwise. My first, child never slept, so the nighttime feedings were the worst for me. I was also anemic with her, so I always felt drained. Turned out, I was also suffering from depression. She was an IVF baby. So, feeding her when I desperately needed to sleep was brutal.

    Your twins are adorable!!

  • Reply All She Things March 15, 2018 at 3:07 pm

    I have seen my mommy friends struggle with sleep when their babies were just a few months old. Hats off to all the moms around the world for all that they do!

    http://www.allshethings.com

  • Reply Jill Conyers March 14, 2018 at 8:48 pm

    My biggest challenge all around with a newborn was sleep deprivation. I’m sure you know nothing about that, right 🙂

  • Reply Christine March 14, 2018 at 5:17 pm

    WOW!!! You are amazing! My good friend actually had twins and went through the same thing. Your babies are beautiful! I know this is NOT EASY but enjoy every minute of it because they grow so quick!

  • Reply Patricia March 14, 2018 at 4:56 pm

    That sounds like a great feeding system! I am so glad for you and your children, that feeding times are much easier for you now that you use the Nuk Simply Natural Feeding System!

  • Reply Wendy March 14, 2018 at 4:36 pm

    This story hit home. My sister had twins boy/girl. They are now three years old and what a ride and a beautiful journey it has been for the whole family. Twins are magical. It will continue to be exhausting, but it will also be lovely to see the world through those eyes.

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