Before I had one kid. I wasn’t sure what to expect. Then we had Lolo and suddenly everything changed. Then with two kids, I wondered – how do you cope with two kids?! When I was pregnant with our AJ I started worrying about the logistics of actually getting out of the door in the mornings with two kids. Then I had our second. Then I really started worrying because, the second created so much additional-ness in our lives! We’d just got into a nice routine with Lolo, we’d thought. But that’s it, when you have the one, your life becomes so much fuller that you can’t make it to the toilet alone, you don’t have time to eat, or read or pick your nose. Then you have your second and it IS possible for your life to get fuller! It’s bursting at the seams! But it all changes.
I remember noticing when Lolo was very small, that babies move through different stages quite fast. Just as you start getting used to something, their rhythm changes. They start sleeping through the night. Then they start sitting. Then they start eating. Then they start moving. Then it’s cruising. Then it’s walking and talking. Although you move through each day with them and it can be a relief when they’re finally in bed, it all goes by quite fast. Having our second, I’ve almost been surprised by the different stages when they show themselves because you’re already living in such a busy world with other distracting elements (namely a 2y9m old with a loud voice) that they can catch you by surprise. And let’s not forget that the first one is still growing and hitting new stages themselves. The changes with the second are nice, they are filled with nostalgia for the first baby and lots of ‘ah yes, I remember when…’s, sadness that your little baby is growing up and starting to not need you, and relief that that they are growing up and soon you’ll be a free agent (oh the lies I tell myself, I know)! These last 2 weeks for example we’ve seen AJ starting to crawl backwards and in the short space of a few days he’s started crawling forwards. A stage his sister never went through. It’s so lovely and new to see. Yet it reminds me that nothing is a given. Kids are the same. And the same kids can be different in other ways.
So how DO you get out of the door?
- Everything changes. Initially it’s hard when they’re new born, but it gets easier to dress/feed/manage timings. Now they both have breakfast for 30 mins, I encourage Lolo to start getting dressed and get him ready at the last minute
- You still have to be selfless. You still have no time to eat, drink or pick you nose. Your tea will still be cold by the time you get to it
- They keep each other company. Once you’re not worried about the 1st one ham fistedly whacking the newish second one on the conk, they are actually great company for each other
- It’s different. Your dynamics are different with an added extra and don’t be fooled, the kids will be a mixture of different and the same. Things you thought you’d cracked first time round will through you a blinder the second. The best thing to do is be open to change and…
- Let it go. The frozen chick was right. Just let it go. Although I think routine is helpful to help get the kids well rested and in bed / up at a decent hour… I am learning to let everything else go. I don’t always have dinner ready for myself and hubby on time. Sometimes I don’t have dinner ready at all. I don’t always have to make a home cooked meal for each sitting. Not each meal needs to be at a table. Not each meal needs to be finished. The house does not always need to be tidy. I don’t always get the shopping in. Clothes aren’t always 100% clean. Nappies get changed a bit less. Baths aren’t always had each night. The keys and the TV remote will be chewed … My life has actually become less stressful, if that’s possible. It’s ok. Let it go.
It’s nice to remind myself sometimes that having kids is about just that, the kids.