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Are They Twins?

This is a question I’ve had to answer MAAAANY more times than I ever had to answer the one ‘Are they triplets?’ And I don’t know why this is.

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Maybe back then when I had the three babies out and about, it didn’t register with people because my son Benjamin used a wheelchair. Maybe because he was in a chair, people didn’t notice they looked to be the same age and size. Maybe they didn’t want to bring attention to the fact that he was in a chair. Maybe they didn’t know what to say. Or just maybe it was obvious, and they just didn’t care. This last one is totally fine with me btw.

The very first time someone asked me the twin question was only a couple of weeks after Ben died. It was the first time I was out with just Ava and Colin. And someone asked if they were twins. Just out of the blue. I panicked and said YES … not knowing what to say or do. I didn’t expect the question. I didn’t have a prepared answer. I hadn’t needed to navigate the world of acknowledging my son who died. I have a third child making them triplets – he’s just not living anymore.  

Talk about severe sadness and guilt. I didn’t walk through the door where I had the opportunity to tell someone about him. He existed and lived on this earth for almost four years. Yet I panicked and implied he didn’t.

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I decided that day it wouldn’t matter the situation, the person, the question. I would ALWAYS tell someone about him. I would ALWAYS let someone know that my kids aren’t twins, but triplets. They have a brother that lived for almost four years.

A short time after that, the cashier at Walmart asked me ‘are they twins?’ I told her they were actually triplets but we ‘lost’ their brother recently. She looked at me and responded with a confused look, “what do you mean lost?” Ok, so what do I say to that? Clearly I needed to adjust my response.

“No, they’re actually triplets. Their brother died when he was three.”

Every once in a while I’ll get the kind person who responds with how sorry they are. They may also ask how he died and when. I appreciate those questions because then I can talk about him even more, and they acknowledge he existed.

So I’m sorry in advance if you come across us somewhere and ask if my kids are ‘twins’. The answer will always be the same canned response. And sometimes Colin may even pipe in with “we lost our B”.