Featured Blogger: Robin of The Story of Us and the Bair Cubs

This week our featured blogger is Robin of The Story of Us and the Bair Cubs! Robin is the proud MoM to 19 month old twins Taylor and Luke (fun fact: Robin’s twins were born the day after mine, same year). Robin balances a freelance graphic design business, life as a stay at home MoM and loving wife with ease and grace!

 

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What was your journey to parenthood like?

My husband and I wanted to have kids right away since we felt like we were older. lol I was 29 when we got married. Anyhow, it didn’t happen that easily and I grew tired of the comments one gets when you’re married and not pregnant yet. Why is it that you’re reproductive business is somehow up for public discussion once you get married? Two years passed and we decided to get some testing done as well as looking into foster care and adoption options. Everything seemed fine medically test after test until they did blood work on my hormone levels when I ovulated. My levels weren’t high enough to sustain a pregnancy. So they suggested Clomid. The first few rounds weren’t raising my levels high enough so they increased my dose. When on the increased dose I had the very rare side effect of distorted vision. This was not cool. One night I remember walking into the house at night and the doorways were all warped and every light had trails as I moved. It made me very uneasy. I called the doc and he told me to immediately stop the medicine because that side effect could potentially be permanent. I went to bed praying it would be gone in the morning and it was. I’d had had my discussions with God. Lots of them. During the 2 years, every month was a disappointment and I felt like a failure. Why wasn’t my body doing what it was supposed to? I felt like I wasn’t good enough for my husband who LOVES children. I felt that I was letting him down. Everyone around me seemed to be getting pregnant and having babies and it was painful. I was feeling all those things no one ever talks about. I wanted a baby so badly. Not just for me but for my husband. I felt like I was cheating him out of what his dream was. I ended up crying out to God one night and I remembered my favorite verse clearly.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

And then I remembered this verse:

Isaiah 55:9 For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.

All my prayers had been “I WANT, I WANT” and “WHY GOD” and I was stuck in my own little world of pity and frustration. I surrendered everything to God that night in the bath tub. (where I do my best praying) As hard as it was, I said…God, YOUR PLANS ARE BETTER THAN MINE and YOUR WAYS ARE BETTER THAN MINE. I was scared to let my dreams go but I felt peace that God was going to give us children some how in his way, his timing and his plan. I had talked to Nick and he had also given everything over to God. He had done this much easier than I. He came from a family with 4 adopted children and foster kids and he told me he wouldn’t be disappointed if weren’t able to have biological children. That was a dream I had trouble letting go of.

So knowing that I didn’t get a full round of Clomid in, I wasn’t very hopeful that month and I knew I wouldn’t be able to take that drug again because of what happened to me. Nick and I had also agreed in the very beginning that for us it didn’t make sense to go into debt or pay lots of money for a chance at getting pregnant when we could put that money towards adopting. I felt that’s where God was leading us because the other doors were closing. Then I took a pregnancy test and it was POSITIVE! I know that God took us on that journey to show us that when we surrender to his way and his plan that he’ll bless us. Not only did he bless us with one child but two. Not only did he bless us with a boy but also a girl. It overwhelms me every time I think about how good he’s been to us. He doesn’t just provide what we need but he blesses us with our heart desires. This theme has since played itself over and over…as we surrender God leads us and blesses us in ways we couldn’t have planned ourselves.

My pregnancy was amazing really. The first 4 months were rough with sickness but I gained a total of 27lbs and the babies were born at 5lbs 3oz and 4lbs 8oz. I had lots of contractions starting at 23 weeks, had a few hospital visits but medicine, staying off my feet and lots of praying from family and friends got us to 36 weeks. Emotionally and physically it was hard at the end but I had learned my lesson and trusted God. I ended up having pre-eclampsia once I was in labor so they induced me. Even then, it took forever to have them but after 23 hrs of being in labor, they were born. Taylor’s heart rate gave us a few scares but I was able to have them both vaginally and neither one had to spend any time in the NICU. It was all worth it and when I saw them for the first time, I understood a little more about how much God loves us. Birth story here. http://bairsdouble.blogspot.com/2008/05/luke-taylor-have-arrived.html


How did you react to the news of twins?

We were thrilled! Taylor was smaller on the first ultrasound and they said she only had a 50% chance of surviving. Nick always joked when we were dating that we were going to have twin boys. He was partly right. 🙂
http://bairsdouble.blogspot.com/2007/10/bair-family-doubles.html


How did you come upon the decision to stay home? Is it something you knew you wanted to do from day one?

Nick and I had agreed before we got married, actually in marriage counseling, that we wanted to do whatever we could so I could stay home. So we did. We made some big sacrifices that changed our lifestyle quite a bit. It was hard, I won’t lie. I loved my job and I’d been there 10 years and had great benefits. Our income went to less than 1/2 plus we lost our good health benefits which now came out of Nick’s income. We sold Nick’s house which we rented, and sold mine and bought a much cheaper one to reduce our debt. We sold our cars and bought one used with cash. We don’t go out to eat much or shop like we used to. It was so worth it…and God has blessed us for that decision in so many ways. I’m still able to continue my graphic design business during the kids nap and when Nick is home. I LOVE design and I’m glad to be able to keep doing what I do. (http://robinleedesign.blogspot.com/) Financially it’s more challenging for sure but it’s made me appreciate everything more and I try to be creative with how to save money. Going from being successful in the work force to staying at home has been an adjustment for sure. I no longer get good evaluations, raises or pats on the back. Another lesson God’s teaching me. My worth is in him and not in what I do, how much I make, or what I accomplish. It’s the hardest job I’ve ever had and he’s teaching me how to be confident in who he made me without the worldly success and other’s approval and praise. I also get the bonuses of hugs, kisses and giggles from Luke and Taylor. 🙂

What is the best piece of parenting advice you have ever received or given?

Received: My nurse who was also a twin mom gave me this advice, It’s okay not to breast feed. She said the first 6 months she was miserable and almost resented her babies for how hard it was. She cried all the time and was exhausted and she regrets not being able to enjoy those precious first months. She said if you can be a better mommy mentally and can better enjoy the short time they are babies…that is healthier for them than any breast milk. A sane mommy. 🙂

Given: Focus on the Family has great resources for parenting. My husband and I are big fans. We have been listening to these resources for years since we’ve been involved with youth and children’s ministries at our church.
http://family.christianbook.com/fotf-parenting-radio

What are some activities you like to do as a whole family?

We like going to the park to walk and swing when it’s warm enough. Ring Around the Rosie, chasing each other around, tickling and hide and seek are big around here.


What question do you have for the other parents?
At what age do you suggest separating boy/girl twins into separate rooms? What things do you do so they have individual time? (alone and one on one with you). And how do you keep your home from looking like a day care?

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Be sure to leave you answer to Robin’s questions and then stop by The Story of Us and the Bair Cubs to leave some bloggy love!
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9 comments

  1. God bless you and your precious family! God is good! Your family is beautiful and I love that you give all the glory to God…we are nothing without him.
    I have identical twin 6 year old girls and feel blessed every day to have them.
    Thanks for sharing your story!
    http://www.twin-spiration.com

  2. Your babies are adorable! I have 21 month boy/girl twins as well and love every second (well I dont know about every second) LOL of them!! I was curious to see about the whole seperating them as well, will look forward to seeing what others say. I can so relate to making many sacrifices of staying home and going down to one income – we have had a rough 2 years but is worth every second.

    Michele

    http://www.wallaceclan5.blogspot.com

  3. I never thought about seperating boy/girl twins. Having boy/boy twins I guess I don't think about the other side. I really enjoyed reading this post!

  4. I loved reading about her. Her infertility struggle reminds me so much of my own, even down to the two verses she mentioned. At some point, I had to let go and let God lead me.

    Her twins are beautiful!!! Such big beautiful blue eyes!!

    I have a hard time finding one-on-one time with each of my kids. I tend to lump them in pairs because that's the way they came to us…LOL. My daughter and I love to get pedicures and go out for lunch after wards in the summer. With the boys, it's a little bit harder but my husband will often take them to car shows or when we go to the park, I'll try to take one aside and spend time just pushing him on the swings or whatever he wants to do. It's a challenge to get that one-on-one time that they really need!

  5. Sean Patrick and Emma Jane

    Mine are almost 3 1/2 and I still haven't separated them! They have no desire to be separated, either. I was thinking maybe once they started kindergarten or sooner if they ask. I'm not sure they would sleep well without the other because they are so used to it! They hate being apart for long times!

    I have a similar story to yours and I think the same thing everyday. I can't believe I finally got pregnant, with twins, a boy and a girl, and carried them to 38 weeks! I feel so very blessed! your children are beautiful!!

  6. What gorgeous children and what a special testimony.

    I have boy/ girl twins who will be 6 months on Thursday and I'm really interested in what others say about separating them. If I had a bigger house, I'd have done it by now so they'd both sleep better but alas, they have to share. Eventually they'll have to each have their own rooms so we'll have to move.

    I know a blogger, Tertia, http://tertia.org who has 5 year old boy/girl twins who also still want to share a room!

  7. Great interview. Beautiful family, God bless them.

  8. What a great interview…God deserves the praise for all things, as I a humbled by the things HE has changed in my life. Your testimony about giving it all to God, was really something I needed to hear right now, Thanks!!

    We have B/G twins that are almost 17 months. They do everything together and really enjoy being together(I think). My husband laughs, because I say I will separate them when they are 18 (leaving for college), but I actually want to keep them together for as long as possible. They are best friends and I think in the future it will keep them honest, if you know what I mean.
    Our living room looks like a daycare…and for the longest I tried to hide everything. Then I had a revalation…we have TWO kids, the living room is going to look like this. I think once they are a bit older, we will move stuff to their room, but for now we just accept it.

  9. Jamie,
    That's exactly what I said to my husband. We have a small group that meets in our home once a week so I was trying to make it look "cleaner" and less cluttered. As I was struggling to hide the massive amounts of toys and organize them…thinking I don't want my home to look like a daycare…I realized…right now our home IS a daycare! 🙂 They spend the most time here and well…this is who we are right now…I'm not trying to put on a show for anyone. I figure…..this is what a small living room looks like with 20 month old twins. 🙂

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