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What six years old means to the Mom of twin boys.

Our little men turned six recently and of course we just had to have a photoshoot! With my own kids I not only get to capture their personalities at this milestone in their lives but I also have all the emotions that go along with watching our kids take one more step (or sometimes a huge leap) towards independence.

Watching them figure out things on their own has been the most amazing part of this milestone. They started kindergarten last fall and at the request of the school we split them up into different classes. I can go on for hours about what six means to me, as a mom of twins, but i'll keep it short and sweet to a list of only 4!

1. The most obvious one. I am not the one who fills the majority of their days anymore. I mean I wake them up, feed them breakfast and shuttle them off to school. I pick them up and feed them dinner, play, do homework and put them to bed. But for a huge chunk of the day I have no idea what they are doing. I ask them at the end of every day "best part of your day-worst part of your day" in hopes I can get an idea of their lives now. Six is filled with new friends and experiences to them but for me it's a bit lonely. We used to go adventuring together, they were my hiking buddies and were the best lunch dates because they didn't care how messy we got. I lost two friends in September. With twins you lose both kids at once to everything. There's no easing into things slowly with the first born and being able to prep yourself mentally to lose the second one.

2. They have friends I don't know. This is so new to me! Before school started I knew their friends, heck I was the one that "found" them friends (really they had no choice; they had to play with my friends kids). Now they are selective with who they play with based on their personalities. Everyone assumes twins do everything together and even like the same things. Maybe some twins do, but my guys are different. My younger one (by four whole minutes) is all boy and found the rough-housers, the kids that play army and like to bathe in mud (no kidding...there's probably a club). He's into all the sports; he wants to try them all out. My older one is a bit more serious and while he will play with his brother's friends he has his own set of more reserved friends. You know the kids you see creating something out of old pieces of trash you find on the playground, the ones that you see chasing butterflies on the baseball field when you are supposed to be looking for fly balls.

3. They respect and admire their individual strengths. I'm not saying they do this every time or probably don't even realize they are doing it. They see now that not everyone is great at everything. Some things just come more naturally to one than the other. Last year they had the "I can't do this as good as him" mentality and they would just give up and go brood in a corner somewhere. Now they ...dare I say..compliment each other and ask each other for help and advice. I always knew being away from me would be amazing for their development but I never thought being separated from each other during the day would be this beneficial for their individual self image....not at six at least.

4. They still want to cuddle. I thought when they started school they would be too cool for cuddles and the mushiness that Mom's just love to hand out freely. My "eldest" needs his cuddles on the down I'm annoying him most days. He says "Mom, why do you need to tell me you love me so much?" I asked him if he would like me to stop...and he responded with "no, I know you love me, you don't need to say it all the time". He's the one that wants cuddles after he's had a hard day at school or at night when he's having a hard time falling asleep. My little one on the other hand runs to me at dismissal and throws his whole body into mine. He's not bashful about displaying his love. He still needs it visibly and loud.

Did you figure it out? My oldest is on the left! He's the more serious of the two..even in his newborn photo he's got that serious expression.

For their first five birthdays we have been the ones to teach them about the World; how we understood it to be. But from this birthday on out they get to see the World as they understand it. We are still here to guide, support and explain things along the way, but there are so many variables about being six (and every year moving forward) that we can not control.

Location: Bel Air

Mural: Jack Pavis

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