...hopefully sooner than later.
Before I really get into this post I just want to say that every experience is different and every child is different. I know there are a lot of pregnant mamas out there expecting their second child and I don't want to scare anyone. This post is just to vent the troubles I had during my first week home alone with two. It is also so I can look back and see that it does indeed get better.
I swear she was content before I picked up my camera
Even before I got pregnant with Finley I would always ask woman who had a toddler and an infant if it was hard. Their response was always yes. Now that I am in their shoes, I have found that I am no exception to the rule. It is hard, it is REALLY hard.
I had it pretty easy the first month of Finley's life because I had a lot of help. My husband is self employed so he was able to stay home for a whole month to help out with Aubrey. Also my parents who usually only winter down here in Florida came down for the month of September to meet the baby and also help out. My nights of course were still hard but having people around to distract Aubs while I was taking care of the baby was so great. That all changed on October 1st when the hubs went back to work and my parents went back up to Pennsylvania not to return until December. On top of that Joey's mom who usually makes us or has us over for dinner at least twice a week happened to go on a business trip that same week. So basically I was thrown to the wolves.
Monday through Wednesday were really bad. There was a lot of crying- from all three of us. Aubs went into a little bit of a shock mode not having an additional person here to play with her and wanted me to pick her up every time I picked the baby up and sit on my lap every time the baby was on my lap. My independent girl who prefers to play by herself most of the time was now wanting constant attention. On top of Aubrey being super clingy, Finley is was I guess you would call a "high maintenance" baby. She doesn't like to be put down pretty much ever and when I am holding her she prefers to walk around, be bounced or be patted on the back at all times. So 8 times out of 10 if you stop moving she starts screaming. I could go on and on but I think that sums up the main reasons why being home alone with two kids two and under from 8:30 am- 6:30 pm had been so incredibly difficult. I knew it was going to be hard but I never imagined that it would be quite this hard.
Even though it's only been a week, I have already found some ways of coping and no they don't include alcohol (although I kind of wish they did- if I only had the energy). I found that it is best to get out of the house. My worst days (including yesterday- which was my worst yet) happen when I don't leave the house at all. I sort of have a fear of breastfeeding in public and that's why I avoid going anywhere. I would of course do it as discreetly as possible but I'm terrified of encountering someone who is rude to me about it. I decided that I am just going to have to get over that fear if I want to maintain my sanity. I have still avoided having to do it so far because I am only out a couple of hours at a time but I am at least willing to try if I have to. Another necessity is baby wearing. I have Fin in a wrap an average of 3 to 4 hours a day. Finley can be so colicky that a lot of the time the only way she will calm and go to sleep is when I have her in the wrap. This also give me a chance to do things with Aubs that I wouldn't be able to do otherwise because I wouldn't have my hands free. It especially comes in "handy" the 50 times a day that I have to help her pull down her undies so she can use the potty. Lastly I wouldn't be able to survive without coffee, granola bars and apples. The coffee for obvious reasons and the apples and granola bars because sometimes I have absolutely no time to eat.
So it's basically we are in a state of emergency over here and that's why I haven't been posting. For the first time in a few days both girls are sleeping at the same time and Finley isn't demanding to be held. Although I have to admit that the swing is doing my job for me right now. She only likes it sometimes so I take it when I can. At night I don't have time because I am still going to sleep between 8 and 9 because Finley is still sleeping like the newborn that she is and I am unable to get naps in because I am up with Aubs. Anyway, I have faith that it will get better and this will all be worth it in the end. Please feel free to leave positive vibes and success stories in the comments because this overtired mama could really use them.
I can only imagine what the transition to 2 is like (I have just a 1 year old) but I get where you're coming from with the need to get out - I am finding that with just having one kid, the days are so much smoother when we get out, even if it's only to Target! Friends that have a toddler + newborn have told me that although the early days can be somewhat hellish, it really does get easier and you realise how worth it it is when you see them playing together for the first time. Keep up the good work there mama :)ReplyDelete
You can do it mama! Hang in there. If you need to really vent, feel free to drop me an email.ReplyDelete
I thought of you yesterday, when I was at the library for story time with the girls. There were two mamas there with a toddler and a babe, both of whom nursed during the stories. I highly suggest finding story time in your area. Nobody is going to look at you funny or judge you for nursing when you'r with a whole group of other moms with little ones. Plus, it's a half hour or so of entertainment for Aubs.
You're really on to something, already understanding that getting out of the house helps. It took me a long time to realize it, but just being physically outside the walls of the house does wonders for providing entertainment for toddlers, which will free you up a bit for dealing with Finley. Do you take them for walks? Maybe that would help, too? Good luck!
I have a feeling I'll be right there with you in a few weeks! That's all I can say!ReplyDelete
It will get better. It has to. I'm only on my first one, but we have our own set of challenges and I am comforted by the fact that they are only this tiny once and things are bound to get easier as the night-time wake ups lessen and we all fall a bit more into our rhythm. You got this mama. Just really do your best at just taking one single day at a time and then focusing on the next one. Before you know it this will all be a distant memory.ReplyDelete
I only have the one (and wont be going back for another) but have so much admiration for those crazy mums that manage more than one small bub. There's no doubt that it's hard, but so many people do it and come out OK on the other side, so I'm sure you will do well too, no matter how hard it probably seems now. When you get those baby smiles and toddler 'I love you's you it will all be worthwhile. Good luck and hang in there!ReplyDelete
Hi Mal! I felt like I needed to comment on your post because I feel your pain! I have a 4 month old, a 20 month old AND my sanity... my sanity is finally back after a two month hiatus. I don't remember exactly when having 2 became easier but I promise you it WILL happen! I agree that getting out of the house is the only way to entertain a toddler while also trying to take care of an infant. At first it felt like leaving the house with two kids was such a process but now it's second nature. I'm not going to lie, when both kids are crying I want to run screaming from my house but nothing beats watching them smile at each other. Hang in there. Soon you'll feel like your back on top of things and in a good routine.ReplyDelete
I can't even imagine!! I was talking to my husband about this last night...adding another kid to the mix and how hard it would be. Oh Mallory...praying for rest, peace and contentment for you!!ReplyDelete
Thinking of you... it gets easier... I felt normal at around 10 months... I know that's not what you want to hear, but it gets easier. The most important thing is to make sure Aubs gets the attention she needs, Finely wont remember, but Aubs will. Deep breaths... you are doing a great job!ReplyDelete
sorry you are having a difficult time adjusting right now. I promise it does get easier, and luckily you have so many people to lean on when you need support. it is good to vent your frustrations. so glad you shared this!ReplyDelete