Recently some old baby/childhood pictures were unearthed by my Aunt, and seeing them took me right back to childhood again. In the spring of 1976 when I was 6 years old, my Mum went to hospital and because Dad had to work I was sent to live with my Gran. My Mum didn't come back for over 4 months. I expect it seemed like an eternity to me at the time, and as the school holidays rolled around anyone around at that time may remember, so did the great heatwave of 1976. I probably didn't understand a lot of what was going on, and I cant even recall visiting Mum, although I know I did. I do recall my Uncle taking me home to visit my pet rabbits and becoming really upset because he didn't have a key to let me in to my own house (Dad was working), and also I was stung on the ankle by a bee ( a traumatic day indeed).
Mum was not ill though, she was in fact in hospital desperately trying to hang on to her twin pregnancy. Medicine was not nearly as advanced then and premature babies had a lot less of a chance than they do now. Anyway, Mum and the twins were amongst the lucky ones and she held on to them until 36 weeks. They were born on 9th July 1976 and both weighed under 4lbs each. They were both quite ill and with one baby in particular it was touch and go. My parents were advised to have them baptized if they were that way inclined.
I cant remember the exact date, I am sure Mum does, but I do remember the day the car pulled up outside and in the back Mum was holding one healthy baby and Gran was holding another (yeah, no car seats at that time).
Now I was properly a big sister to my twin sister and brother. They were still tiny and a bit odd looking, but I fell in love with them. I remember that new baby smell filling the house and I am sure to this day that's when I decided I wanted to be a Mum. I think I really got a sense of how precious they were.
They will be 35 this year and both big and healthy with children of their own but to me they will always be my little twins.
|Me with Tiny Tears, Christmas 1976|
In the interest of full disclosure here are two more photos, the first is my sister when she got home from hospital, September 1976. The second is a rare photo of the twins on their birthday. My sister lives in Auckland NZ, so it is rare for them to spend birthdays together, this was 2006.