Reece and I have always given my parents shit about not taking us to Disney, Hawaii or any other extravagant vacations as kids (Tom is too nice to ever complain about anything so we do it for him as well). I can now confidently say that I know why.
Because taking kids anywhere that’s outside of your routine is total hell.
We (Brandon, my parents and I) recently got brave and decided to head up to Michigan from Dela-where? for a family wedding. Taking 5 month old twins on a 14 hour car ride? No big deal, we got this.
We left at 3am, hoping to get a few hours of quiet before the minions woke up screaming because they hate being strapped in their car seats. My dad will say they were great and my mom is already planning our next trip while Brandon and I decided we are just going to move to MI because that would be less exhausting than having to pack everything up 499x/day during another vacation (trip). Luckily, I have an enormously large/amazing family who held them 99% of the time we were there so that was GREAT and the only reason we survived.
I learned a couple of things that I’m writing down to remind myself for the next trip we take because just like I said there wouldn’t be more dogs, there will always be another trip. (I’ll never say that about kids #becausetwins)
1) Pack (their cribs) and Play (while they sleep)
The only thing I have ever raised before these humans is dogs. Dogs are amazingly easy in comparison and sometimes I truly miss the days of simply corralling 3 wild animals who eat couches for fun. Life was so simple then. You can always get new couches, you can never catch up on sleep.
Whenever we’ve taken dogs to new places, they sniff around, get a sense of where they can or cannot pee and lay by your feet and fall asleep for the night. As long as you’re there, they’re good. Kids do not do this. At least mine don’t. I, for some reason, thought that because they sleep in their cribs so well, they would sleep great in their pack and play. LOL. This was not the case and next time, apparently, I need to acclimate them to the pack and play before I’m expecting them to sleep for a solid 8 hours in something other than their crib in their house. Why didn’t anyone tell me that when they were handing out all of the other unsolicited advice? At one point during a particularly bad scream-fest, Brandon and I looked at each other and started laughing out loud because we didn’t know what else to do. We had run out of ideas other than taking shots of jack to put us to sleep through the cries but eventually, they stopped being brats and fell asleep just as Brandon and I decided we would just start packing our bags to disappear into the night. Note to self: practice sleeping in the pack and play or suffer a fate worse than getting your eyes scooped out with a spoon.
2) WTFs a schedule?
Let’s just say this, the only thing that stayed on a schedule was pumping and that’s only because if I don’t pump, kids don’t eat and feeding your babies isn’t a good look.
Here’s a fun fact for ya, kids don’t sleep in just because they went to bed later or because they skipped a nap. All that happens is they become crankier and crankier as the not-ever-sleeping-just-crying cycle continues until finally you have to throw your hands up, crack open a beer and try to remember that these little screaming mouths are the “best things that ever happened to you” (or whatever). Note to self: bring vodka to put into beer because beer alone won’t solve this problem.
3) Forget the idea of a vacation, accept the idea of work (parenthood)
The days of vacations that include sandy toes and clear water, fruity drinks with little umbrellas, no responsibility and sleeping in have been replaced with trips that include trying to contain blow out diaps so we aren’t ruining other people’s furniture, trying to keep babies happy so we aren’t annoying the hell out of everyone around us and trying to keep our sanity in the process. A lot of trying, not a lot of relaxing. Note to self: don’t jump yet, you’ll get a vacation someday again, maybe.
4) Grammy! Grampy!
This one is simple. Always travel with Grammy and Grampys. There were plenty of times that I handed a poopy child to my dad or told my mom I was done forever and she would take over until I was finished throwing a tantrum because I’m a mom-child. This one is the most important lesson of this trip. Never, ever leave Grammy and Grampy at home.
5) You survived it.
Pat yourself on the back mama (and daddy), you survived to see another day. As with all things twin, it wasn’t easy but you did it. It won’t be the hardest thing you’ll ever do but it was another thing to check off of the list that you said you would never do and DID IT ANYWAY.
I guess I’m speaking too soon, I’m writing this at 4am trying to stay awake so I can help Brandon stay awake while he drives, even though Carter only let me sleep for an hour (he’s a real jerk)
.. because there’s nothing worse than driving a car full of sleeping people when you’re tired AF … except for having twins. That’s pretty damn bad. Just (serious) kidding!
Wish us luck…