A group of Cranston East graduates posed on the steps of their alma mater last week, reminiscing about a class photo taken on the same spot in 2000, the year they graduated. This time, they had something else in common; the five women are all mothers to twins.
“We talk about the good things but we also talk about the struggles. It’s an incredible bond,” said Cassandra Giusti, the first of the classmates to graduate to motherhood. Her twins, Adrianna and Olivia, are now 6 years old.
The women were friendly in high school, but hadn’t all kept in touch. They were friends on Facebook, though, and when Giusti saw that Kelli Green was pregnant with her own set of twins, she reached out.
“I sent her a message, ‘Hey, how’s it going? I had twin girls, how funny that we both had twins.’ Before you knew it, everyone was having twins,” she said.
Green’s twins, Benjamin and Ricky Foster, are now three years old. They were later joined by Beth Liese and her 6-month-old twins, Hannah and Madison, Nicki Pace and her 3½-month-old twins, Kennedie and McKenna, and Tiasha Black and her 3-month-old twins, Elijah and Xavier. All of the mothers stay in touch through Facebook and often text one another with questions or anecdotes. Having a network of mothers experiencing the same things has been a source of support and comfort for the women.
“We love Facebook,” Green said. “We’ve all felt the same way. It’s a challenge to make sure we’re attentive to our children but also to our marriages.”
Giusti’s girls are the oldest, but she now finds herself asking for advice for her new baby.
“Having the girls was easier than having one at a time,” she said, laughing. “I still look for advice after seven years of having a baby; something new pops up.”
Black admits that she is in “zombie mode” now, as her twins are still so young. Traveling with them was a challenge, and she now lives in California and flew to Rhode Island for the “twin mommies” reunion.
“We make each other feel better. I always have to go to the twin mommies,” she said.
In addition to the struggles, they share victories as well, like first words, first steps and other milestones. They agree that twins are unlike anything. Liese says she can already see the bond between her infants.
“If mine nap together, they have to be touching,” she said.
Green, too, said her boys are as thick as thieves and “had their own language” when they were first starting to talk. Though a crying fit with one used to set the other off, now they turn to each other for comfort.
“They soothe each other now,” she said.
While the women now say they love being moms to twins, not everyone had the same reaction when they found out about their bundles of joy.
“I was thrilled. I felt like not everybody has the opportunity to have twins, and that was a blessing,” Giusti said.
Pace, who was living with her husband in Connecticut at the time, decided to drive home to Rhode Island to deliver the surprise news to her family.
“I was shocked. We never thought we would have twins because twins didn’t run in my family or my husband’s family,” she said.
Black laughs, admitting that her response was slightly beyond shocked.
“I cried for three days. I didn’t know what I was doing,” she said.
Within four months, though, Black was ecstatic and her lifelong birthday wish of having a baby before her 30th birthday came one week late, but with double the force.
“It’s a lot of work, but it’s amazing. It makes you feel like a ‘supermom,’” she said.
And for the twins, it’s not a bad set up either.
“It’s cool,” said 6-year-old Olivia.
When asked what her favorite part of being a twin is, she looked at her sister and replied, “That she’s my sister.”