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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Pulley of Twins

Let me weave for you the story of my morning:

The twins wake up. Dulce wakes Natalina up, which means Dulce starts out in the good mood, Natalina the bad.

Knowing that a calm, helpful mood earns happy parents, Dulce capitalizes on this. She eats her breakfast without complaint, gives me hugs, and is generally chipper and easy going. Natalina cries about wanting to go back to bed (which is an option she could have taken), cries about eating breakfast, calls us all mean, and is generally ornery.

This goes on for an hour.

Then, Dulce finds a little plastic puppy she'd painted yesterday. The paint had somehow gotten messed up. She freaks out, throws herself on the ground (by the way, these instances are a lot rarer these days. Most of the time, my kids are actually human beings at this point. It's glorious.) Anyway, I send her to her room to calm down, where she continues to be inconsolable. I turn to Lilly.

Who has miraculously transformed from cranky, pissed-off child to happy-go-lucky, compliant girl. She even offers to take the mistake dog instead of Dulce and attempt to repaint it. (Unheard of). She cheerily got dressed and made her bed. Because Dulce was crying.

And when something happens and Natalina starts tantruming, the pulley will shift again.

In this way, I perpetually have one "good" kid, and one "bad" kid.

Which is better on the face of it than two tantruming kids, but underneath, not so much. It speaks to a larger issue with my twins. Their perpetual, frustrating, maddening competition with each other.

Every single thing they do is only to outshine the other. Every single thing that happens is an accolade for one and a slight for the other. They spend nearly all their mental energy thinking about their twin and whether she is in a better position than the first.

And there are no positions in our house. My husband and I make it clear we don't care about the she-said/she-said crap. We don't favor anyone or anything. We have no idea why it is like this. We work to fix it by repeating that they are different girls and that it is not a competition. To limited success.

Twins. I just don't know about them.

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