Sunday, 3 June 2012

Twice as nice

G&T - 2-and-a-half  M- 8 months

So, one week on, and potty training doesn't seem that bad after all. A few accidents, yes, but many requests for, and deposits in, the potty, a sticker chart full of rewards, a few toilet attempts... All in all, progressing very nicely. Well, it would be if I was only training one child.
The other day, T just got it. We managed to time it right to catch a couple of pees in the potty, and that was it. She suddenly started telling me when she needed to go, and the puddles virtually disappeared. OK, so she's having a bit of a timing issue with more solid deposits, seemingly telling me she needs only when they're actually on the way out, but we're getting along very nicely thank you. And as for G? Nothing. She just won't do it. Stickers, chocolate, cuddles, pretty pants, princess-themed toilet seats, twin-induced peer pressure... Nothing can convince her that potties are the way forward. Yes, I might just have to accept that for all her intelligence and language, when it comes to this, she's just not ready. But I don't think that's it. She's just waiting. Waiting until she's seen her sister test the water first. Waiting to assess all the pros and cons. Waiting until she can do it perfectly before she even begins.
That's my little G all over. It was exactly the same when they learned to walk. G took her first steps within a week of her sister, at 11 months. But whereas T went on to slowly build up her ability a few steps and tumbles at a time, G just went back to crawling. Nothing could convince her to get up and walk again. Then, when she was 13 months old, just when I was beginning to worry she was being left behind, she simply stood up and strolled across the room. Within days, she was just as proficient a walker as T. It was the same recently when they discovered the mini carousel in our local shopping centre. At first sight, T launched herself at it, attempting the scale it herself and demanding Daddy feed it money. G meanwhile stood back, observing. Waiting. Then,the other day, after several weeks of careful observation, she turned to me and said: 'My go now, Mummy.' And we haven't looked back. She's the carousel queen, grinning and waving as she trots round on her favourite horse. She just likes things to be just so, just right before she commits. In this, as with everything else, she takes after her dad. A scientist and an accountant, he's careful and considered when it comes to anything new, analysing all the variables before making a choice. It turns out, G is not only his double in looks, she's a little mathematician in waiting too. But she has an advantage her father didn't have. She's a twin. And she's a twin with a sister who takes after her mum. T, like me, is more of a leap in head first, think about the consequences later type of girl. She's perfectly happy to be G's personal tester.
Once again, I'm in awe of people who have just one baby. My girls are so lucky to have each other, and the fact that they are such opposites does them both good. Sometimes we just can't believe they are so different, that of all the possible embryos created during IVF, fate gave us one perfect little clone each. (M, by the way, is shaping up to be a Mummyalike too. Not that I'm keeping score...) So, I'm just sitting back and letting the twin-ness work its wonders. G's back in pull-ups for now, until she decides it's time. Until she's let her whirlwind little sister show her it's all OK. And that's fine by me. When I found out I was expecting twins, although I always knew I might be, I was still shocked, still a bit apprehensive. Scared even, about the challenges that lay ahead. But now, it just makes sense to me. Of course children should come in pairs, each with a ready-made friend and confidant, a foil for their little quirks and a ever-present rival to push them along. Sometimes, I'm even a little sad that M isn't a twin. Until I think about having to potty train two at the same time all over again. Maybe singletons aren't that bad after all...