I’ve often heard that the transition from one child to two children is the most difficult transition. I’m coming to agree with this statement.
WAYS THAT HAVING TWO KIDS ROCKS:
1. Ivalee is four and she is definitely old enough to be a great helper. She loves to hold Naomi; and she really loves when Naomi is awake – which is not really all that often yet.
2. As with my pregnancy with Naomi, I am trying to slow down and enjoy more of these fleeting moments. I’ve learned from experience that these early weeks pass way too quickly.
3. Twice the kids; twice the love.
WAYS THAT HAVING TWO KIDS IS HARD:
1. I don’t have all the attention to pour onto Ivalee that she has been used to having all for herself. So whenever I’m busy with the baby (endless feedings!), Iva is willing to accept negative attention (misbehavior and the resulting discipline) over having no attention. We’ve mostly maneuvered our way through the worst parts of this one, but we still have some tense moments. (Ivalee is a Quality Time and Physical Touch kid. Gotta be intentional about creating time to meet both of these need for her.)
2. … I don’t have another one yet. The attention / time issues is the main one so far.
HOW I’M COPING
1. Our church and family and friends are taking good care of us by providing meals for us for about two weeks. Kyle’s mom has come over and spent lots of time loving Ivalee and doing laundry and dishes. (My mom would be doing the same except that someone in her house has been sick for almost two weeks straight.)
2. Relax on needing everything at the house to be done perfectly. If you ever look at my house, you’re probably laughing that I’m having to talk myself into relaxing my standards. They’ve always been pretty lax. Should go without saying but … there are things that are going to go undone or be done less-than-perfectly. I’m trying to choose the major things. If it’s going to be gross (food trash, dirty dishes, gross laundry, or un-wiped counters [we’ve been battling fruit flies around here!]) it’s a priority. If it doesn’t have to be done perfectly, I do what I can to keep it from being gross and focus on getting rest and snuggling a baby and a big kid. Kyle and Iva are helpful with helping to hit the reset button on common areas each night. (The bonus of having a small house is that this is a pretty quick process.)
3. Accepting that – for this time – there is going to be more tv time for Ivalee than normal. And forcing myself not to feel guilty about it. It’s temporary. We’ll find our new routine soon.