Bringing Home (a Second) Baby: P.S. It’s not that easy

I have always told my husband that I wanted four children. A few weeks after giving birth to our second son, I have to wonder… what on earth was I thinking? FOUR?! I can barely keep my head above water with two. Bringing Home (a Second) Baby: P.S. It’s not that easy

I was 100% completely unprepared for how things would be when I brought our second baby home. After a whirlwind 9th month of pregnancy (planned Cesarean section, cancelled, try to induce labor on my own, no progress, reschedule c-section, contractions! quick VBAC delivery), and a restful two days in the hospital, I was on cloud 9 at the thought of having my two boys at home. We would be a perfect little family of four.

Sure, I was nervous how I would manage things, but certainly it couldn’t be that hard, could it?

I mean, I had done the newborn thing once and I could do it again. My toddler (B), though struggling with some communication delays and behaviors (as a result of his autism diagnosis) was a champion sleeper, loved to read books and was a fairly “easy-going” toddler. He had amazing service providers that were coming to our home and daycare nine times a week that were helping him expand his vocabulary, master new skills and make sense of the world around him. He would continue attending daycare two days each week as to not “rock the boat” entirely, and keep some of his schedule consistent. He loves our daycare provider and his other friends there and mama would get a break a couple times a week!

Well, it all started to fall apart at the hospital when we got a call the day after our new little man (K) was born saying that B had spiked a fever. Our daycare provider was kind enough to let him stay through nap time, but said that he would need to be picked up early.

So our plan of having our two boys meet in the hospital that evening was squashed. His fever never really returned, which we attributed to teething, so off to daycare he went on Thursday and we brought K home from the hospital.

Despite leaving my cell phone at the hospital (mixed up in my bed sheets and thrown in the laundry chute – gone! Ugh!), we were happy to be home and we all rested for a couple hours.

My husband got B from daycare that afternoon and their first meet up was less than what I had expected to say the least.

Me: “B – come here! We have something to show you! It’s your new little brother! Come and say hi!”

B: “NO!”… shoves the baby out of the way on his way to the kitchen.

Hmmm. Okay, we’ll try again later.

Fast forward to Friday morning when I was changing K’s diaper and B walked into K’s room.

B: “Up, up, up!”

Me: “Okay, you want to see your brother?”

I lifted B up and he tried to grab K’s arm and leg and yank him off the changing table. I immediately put B down and he started to trash K’s room – knocking over the laundry, swiping the books off the bookshelf and trying to break K’s lamp.

Whew. This is going to be harder than I thought.

And when it rains, it pours… on Saturday, B was diagnosed with a double ear infection and I had my first ever migraine. Not a great day!

Over the next few days, we didn’t force it, but let B come to the baby. Whenever K would cry and B was within earshot, he’d go over to him and give him a quick snuggle with his head and a kiss as well.

B was slowly realizing (maybe?) that his new little brother was going to be a constant fixture in our house from now on.

My husband has been amazing spending lots more quality time with B one on one since mama is quite often nursing the little guy. Thank goodness our school vacation fell this week — otherwise I have no idea what I would have done! My husband returns to work shortly and I’m already dreading how I’m going to handle a toddler and a newborn on my own. I guess the answer is one day at a time?

To those mamas out there with two or more kiddos – I salute you. Seriously. This motherhood business is not an easy task!

I wish I knew how “easy” I had it when I only had one baby to take care of. I had friends tell me that going from zero babies to one was extremely hard and going from one to two was pretty easy.

Snort::giggle. I would love to have been at their house the first week to see how they did it!

Throw breastfeeding into the mix, sleep deprivation, toddler tantrums, refusal to take naps, housework, idle time, an autism diagnosis, applications for preschool looming overhead, dinner waiting to be cooked, a toddler that desperately wants your attention and will kick, bite and head butt to get it… whew.

But one day at a time, I know it will get easier. It will become a new kind of “normal” and will take some adjustment for all of us. I know my boys will be best of friends as they grow up, my toddler will eventually stop biting me and our newborn will eventually sleep through the night.

In the meantime, thank goodness for coffee, the Boba Wrap, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and supportive friends and family.

Cheers to all you mamas out there… whether you are expecting your first or have eleven of your own. You are doing fabulous… one day at a time.

2 Responses to Bringing Home (a Second) Baby: P.S. It’s not that easy

  1. I hear ya mama! It’s totally a “new kind of normal” it’s pure craziness :) We will all just keep hanging in there. Cheers!

  2. I waited until my daughter was 5 1/2 before trying for #2, but even when they’re old enough to understand why the baby is so needy and they’re getting the short end of the stick – it still sucks. She’s the best sister ever, but it’s still just one day at a time!

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