So about a year ago I was at BlogHer and met this really cool chick on the way to the Queen Bee Market. After admiring her fancy camera, dorking out over bracelets devoted to Game of Thrones (Winter is Coming… in case you didn’t know) and realizing we went to rival high schools in Northern Virginia, I decided that I was officially obsessed. Then I read her blog.
If you haven’t stopped by bebehblog.com, you are MISSING out. She’s hysterical, super duper crafty and an awesome mom to two little gingers who plan to take over the world some day. She’s so flippin’ put together that once I stopped freaking out about being pregnant with a second, she was the first person I thought of. After all, if she can craft, cook, design, blog and keep two crazy kids alive, then she’s got to have some really good pointers on how to do it. Or at least some pointers on how to look like you know what you’re doing.
With that in mind, I asked her what were the best and worst things for her about having two kids… especially since I’m an only child and obviously a novice at this sibling thing. After reading over the worst things? Gah… I think I’ll just focus on the best and pretend I didn’t see the rest.
Is it weird that even though we’ve only met once I squeed when I heard Ashley was having another baby? Well I did. Out loud. She’s just super cool and her kid is adorable and who doesn’t want more cool and adorable in the world? With a 3 year old and a 19 month old, at this point I think I’ve gotten the hang of two kids pretty well – except on the days they’re both naked and screaming and running through the house trying to ride the dog and lasso the cat and throwing goldfish at my head. Those days are rough. And frequent. So here’s a little bit of what I’ve learned, to prepare Ashley and anyone else making the leap:
5 Best Things About Having Another Baby
1. Sibling Love. From that moment in the hospital when your older child first meets the new baby, to watching them run down the beach holding hands, nothing beats knowing they have a friend for life. Plus the other kid learns really fast how to fetch diapers and Diet Cokes.
2. More Hugs. And cuddles and kisses and snuggles and squishes and tiny little feet and hands and necks to sniff.
3. You Learned So Much The First Time. You’ve done the run to the emergency room after Junior cracked his head on the coffee table. You’ve asked all the relevant vaccination questions at the pediatrician. You know FOR A FACT that letting the baby scream for a minute while you pee won’t kill her. Neither will eating those raisins (wait, are those raisins?) off the floor. Even though my second was a VERY different baby than my first, I had so much more confidence in myself as a mother I handled the challenges much better.
4. Hand me Downs. Even if your second isn’t the same sex as your first, you can reuse everything from shoes and jackets to sippy cups and strollers. Which means you can spend more on truly ridiculous things, like matching family Christmas jammies.
5. Your Heart Doubles in Size. When you’re pregnant with your second, you wonder how it’s possible to love them as much as you love your first-born. You love your first baby with your whole heart and soul and being – where will another baby fit? But as soon as you hear that first cry and someone hands you a piece of your body that is now a whole separate person you will realize you love BOTH your kids more than you could ever imagine. I promise!
5 Worst Things About Having Another Baby
1. Sibling Hate. The fighting, pushing, whining, shoving, hitting, shouting and general discord on any given day ranges from a couple of minor squabbles to SOMEONE CALL JIMMY CARTER. You might be literally torn in half by your children.
2. More poop. So. Much. Poop.
3. Babies Are Different. You thought you had that rocking/shushing/bobbing thing that always put your first to sleep down, right? Turns out your second hates it. She wants a dark, quiet room completely alone and every floor squeak or car alarm within a 3 mile radius will wake her up. Your first loved mashed peas and baby pasta? Your second hates everything besides organic peaches and Nilla wafers. You have to buy a baby swing that glides instead of rocks and no matter WHAT size cloth diapers you use the leaks are terrible.
4. More Stuff. You will say this: “I swear I hardly bought ANYTHING for this kid – why is my house so full of crap???” (Answer: gifts, toys for two different developmental stages, you never clean because you’re too busy keeping them alive.) Repeat after me: Goodwill is my friend.
5. You Probably Won’t Ever Sleep Again. Or at least not for the next 5 years. May I suggest my preferred daily self-medication routine of caffeine all day followed by pills and wine at night?
OK, now go back and read the good things again, because it’s way more important than things like laundry and sleep. And remember this: I’m still planning to have more, even after living with 2.