Multiples Invading My Subconscious Mind

Last Monday, I wrote a post about becoming emotional after seeing triplets at a birthday party, then later learning that my friend is pregnant with twin boys, just as I had been six months ago—before losing one of my sons in September. This morning, in my final dream before waking up, my subconscious mind was working overtime to help me process my feelings.

In my dream, my friends Jessica and Adam had just had twins, a daughter with a full head of dark hair and a completely bald son. For some reason, Jessica and Adam couldn’t take care of their newborns for the first few days of their lives, so I was serving as substitute mom to them—and breastfeeding them—until Jessica and Adam were available.

Now my friends Jessica and Adam are real, but they don’t have twins, nor are they pregnant with them. If they did have twins, they’d take care of their babies themselves—or if they were somehow incapacitated, their parents or siblings would come to the rescue. Plus, being 34 weeks pregnant with my own son, my milk hasn’t come in, so I couldn’t breastfeed. And breastfeeding my friends’ children is an act I’ve never considered. But dreams often don’t make sense, as with all of the above elements of mine. But wait until you hear the rest.

As my dream continued, I was alone, trying to breastfeed the twins, struggling to position them—and get them to latch on—with only one arm and hand available to hold each. As I was finally feeding both, I looked down to see that, as I had contorted my entire body to try to lift and support them, my skirt had flipped up, so I was revealing my super-sized underwear.

Then, as I looked to the left, I saw a baby girl lying on a bed and realized that I had forgotten about her, that Jessica and Adam hadn’t had twins, but triplets, and this one still needed to be fed. I panicked, thinking that, after these first two had had their fill, I wouldn’t have any milk left to feed their sister.

Feeling overwhelmed, as if caring for these two—and then three—babies was impossible, my final thought was I’m so happy I’m only having one.

Thank you to my subconsious mind, I experienced a scene of what my life would have been like if I had carried my twin boys to term. I’m 41, and, although I’m normally high-energy, I no longer have the stamina of a 20-something. My husband is 44 and has a very demanding job. My husband and I already have three other sons, ages 15, 14 and 5, to care for. And, regardless of what temperment our twins may have had, parenting twins would have been overwhelming.

So although I will still mourn the loss of my baby boy, vicariously experiencing one breastfeeding fiasco has helped me put my future in perspective. With only one more child, I will be able to a better mother. And with only one more child, I will enjoy parenting my last child, rather than constantly beating myself up for not having enough body parts and hours and energy to satisfy the needs of twins.

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