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April 4, 2014

NASH: Let’s go to the mall

— For the last few weeks, when bad weather has made my days off work a little miserable, I have been making the suggestion, let’s go to the mall. People who really know me know that I am really not a “mall” person. I am not much of a shopper at all. I have just needed a place to go to stretch my legs and move around before I went crazy just sitting around the house.

For most of the year so far we have been very much home bodies with the birth of our twins. As cold as it has been for most of the winter we have not been able to go out and do anything and we have been cooped up in our house for the past three months. Staying home is good for the kids when they are this small but mommy and daddy need a chance to walk around every once in a while and to be around other adults.

My wife thought it was a little weird the first time I made the suggestion to go to the mall. I didn’t have anything in particular to buy and she knows that I hate to be in a store while she is shopping. By the time we had the stroller out of the car and the car seats fastened in, we finally had the freedom to move around that only the mall can provide when the weather is too unpleasant for infants to be outside.

No matter where you go, if you walk around with a baby there are going to be people who notice and want to ask you questions. When you walk around with twins that number is increased exponentially. It doesn’t matter where you are there are always people who are curious and want to know more about the bundles of joy that you are pushing around.

The first question that is usually asked is “are they twins?” I am walking around with a “twins” stroller with two similarly sized babies who are dressed alike. What are the chances that a single mom and a single dad with very small children just happened to meet and are now a couple and are raising their  kids together? I guess it’s possible that we are professional babysitters who take our tiny wards out together at the same time. Do I look like someone that others would trust to watch their infant children?

The next question that is asked the most is whether or not our twins are identical. We have tried to teach some of these people about simple biology but others we just nod our heads “No” and move on.  Many people do not understand that for twins to be identical their genetic material must be exactly the same. One baby has an (XX) pair of chromosomes (the one with the pink hat) and the other has an (XY) pair (the blue hat).

My children may appear to look alike, especially when they are newborn. Their appearance is not connected in anyway to the fact that they are twins. They will have naturally similar features because they have the same parents just like any two siblings would. Our two children look a lot alike now but will probably be different shapes and sizes when they get a little older. I have trouble looking back at infant pictures of my other children deciding who is who.

The third most popular question, and easily the most invasive is asked when it is discovered that we had a boy and a girl. “Are you finished now?” It is no one’s business whether or not my wife and I are planning to have any more children. This is a question that we don’t even know the answer to yet and it is too soon to even ask.      

Right now we are going to enjoy these two for as long as we can because very soon they will be on the move. In the next few months they will start to crawl and chasing them around our house will be our focus. I was told this week by another parent of twins that as soon as they are able to move they will be headed immediately in the opposite directions. I don’t even want to contemplate what it will be like when the start to walk or run.

For now I am happy to get out and walk around the mall to get a little exercise on my day off. Hopefully very soon the weather will cooperate and we will be able to walk around a little more outside. We have made quick trips to the Big Four Bridge and New Albany’s water front but we look forward to getting out and seeing as much of the world we can.

— Matthew Nash would like to dedicate this column to Ted Evelyn Mosby who once got trapped under a fake boulder at a mall, congratulations. You can email Matt at dmatthewnash@gmail.com

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