Two of Me

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Categories Attitude, Difference, From the Mouths of Multiples, Mommy Issues, Perspective, RelationshipsTags , , , , ,

I needed to assemble some new furniture recently. I put the first bookshelf together while my 6-year-old daughters were sleeping and presented it to them proudly when they awoke. J was unimpressed.

J: You did that by yourself.
Me: Yes, honey. Do you like it?
J: How did you do it by yourself?
Me: The same way I did the dining table. I just followed the instructions.
J: It’s supposed to take two people.
Me: I could see it being easier with two, but I was fine by myself.
J: Last time you had someone else.
Me: I don’t think so. Do you want to help me with the others? I’d love some help putting your book bag cubbies together!
J: You need two people. Two of me is one you. M is another me because we’re sisters and twins. Sometimes she has some different thoughts, but really, she’s another me. So me and M together is one you and we’ll help.

They did end up helping me assemble the cubbies we’re now using to house their schoolbags, dance bags, and piano books. M’s contribution was minimal, since she spent so long washing her hands that we were nearly done by the time she showed up.

When the girls were first born, I would have bristled at anyone saying that M was “another” J. Over the years, though, I’ve learned to embrace the similarities and closeness between my girls, while also celebrating their individuality and differences. Both my girls are well-adjusted, independent, and happy. Most of the time, they love being together, but sometimes they need time apart and they argue often.

I don’t think J’s conception of M as her other self was imposed on her from outside. It’s just one more aspect of the relationship that M and J share, one that might have existed even if they weren’t identical, even if they weren’t twins, perhaps even if they weren’t sisters. I kind of like the idea of my daughters adding up to “another me” when it comes to physical labour, too.

How do your multiples perceive their siblings in relation to themselves?

Sadia is a divorced mother of 6-year-old twin girls, living in the Austin, TX area.

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Sadia

Sadia (rhymes with Nadia) has been coordinating How Do You Do It? since late 2012. She is the divorced mother of 10-year-old monozygotic twins, M and J. They live in the Austin, TX suburbs, where Sadia works full time in information technology. She contributes to a number of parenting websites and magazines and also runs The Mommy Blogging Guide, where she answers mommy bloggers' technical questions.

4 thoughts on “Two of Me”

  1. This is so cute! I love when you post your girls’ rationale on things. I wonder if different gender twins will think of themselves as regular siblings, or as one unit.

  2. It’s so interesting to me to observe our girls together. I think they’re pretty independent-minded, but they seem always to revolve around each other to some degree. They might be playing separately, but one always knows — on some level — where her sister is.

    I think it’s interesting when people ask me if our girls “get along” with each other. They do…but they don’t know anything different. They have always been together, and the give-and-take seems completely natural to them.

    I love your girls’ description of their relationship…knowing, as you said, what strong minds each of your girls has.

  3. Don’t know the answer to this one yet – or maybe I do and have not analyzed it myself.

    Yesterday we started organizing their new grade books – writing their names, covering the books in brown paper etc and I continued the task after they went to bed and this morning when they woke up and saw that it was almost done – They weren’t pleased that I decided to go ahead without them :)

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