I feel like I should say welcome back since it’s been almost a week since I last posted! This 2 under 2 life is no joke, especially when they’re both sick and I spend all of my time running between doctors appointments and rocking little ones to sleep.
That being said, not everything has been harder having two kids! In fact, a lot of things have been way easier this time around, so if you’re pregnant with baby #2 and panicking about how you’re going to handle two kids, I hope this helps ease your mind a little bit!
This probably won’t be the case for everyone, but breastfeeding has been much much easier this time around for me! I knew how to hold and position a newborn with one hand while using the other to help baby latch. I knew what a good latch looked like, and how to fix a bad one. I knew the signs and symptoms of mastitis and how to do as much as possible to prevent it.
I also knew how to tell when my milk came in, if it was enough, and how to increase it. I knew when to start pumping to increase supply, and to start using a bottle early. Just having all of this knowledge made breastfeeding so much easier, and while it was still a little painful, it was nowhere near as difficult or painful as the first time!
Taking Care of Yourself
I was so scared to move a sleeping baby with my first! If Reagan ever fell asleep on me I literally wouldn’t move to eat, drink, pee, or even get more comfortable for fear of waking her up. I also never napped because I felt like I needed to pick up the house or make dinner or catch up on chores. I stayed up way too late and was just miserable all the time! I have learned how much better and functional a mom and human being I am when I take care of myself. I make sure I get a shower and nap when I need it, and I lay Elliott down when she falls asleep so I can get things done for Reagan and I.
Asking for Help
I rarely asked for help after having Reagan, and when I did I felt like I was inconveniencing people so much that I never took advantage of the kid free time. I wanted to be this supermom who could handle everything on her own and now I realize how stupid that was! I’ve asked for help a LOT after having Elliott, and I always accept help when it is offered to me. There is no shame in admitting you need an extra set of hands, and people legitimately want to help you!
Going with the Flow
I had Reagan on a schedule from day one. I’m pretty sure this is why she was such a good sleeper but I would have major meltdowns/panic attacks if we got off of her schedule. With Elliott, I try to keep some semblance of a routine but if she wants to sleep during wake time then girlfriend gets to sleep. If she sleeps through feeding time, I just pump and call it good. There’s not really a great way to have a newborn on a schedule when you also have a two year old and a work schedule to work around, so we’re just not stressing about it right now!
Juggling Two Kids…
…And a diaper bag, car seat, stuffed animals, blankies, and snacks. I remember carrying Reagan’s infant car seat around and thinking it was SO heavy! Now I can carry an infant seat and baby, a two year old, and a diaper bag up a flight up stairs to our apartment and I just barely break a sweat haha. On particularly good days I can even grab a couple bags of groceries! You just learn to adapt and your arms get really really strong.
As in, going back to sleep at night. You’ve done the whole waking up in the middle of the night several times thing before, and now your body knows how to just drift right back to sleep! I used to have the hardest time falling back asleep after midnight feedings, and now I can’t even remember how many times I get up in the night because I go back to sleep so easily.
Doing Things One-Handed
Because now you really have less than one hand, it’s amazing the things you learn how to do! The other day I took Reagan to the potty which entailed taking off clothes, picking her up to put her on the toilet, and picking her up to get her down…all while breastfeeding. I was SO dang proud of myself for that one! You also get really good at picking things up with your toes, or in my case using your toes to do puzzles with your toddler.
What do you think? What were some things that were easier the second time around for you? Thanks for reading!