Becoming a mom for the second time has certainly had its moments, both good and bad but I think for me the biggest challenge in moving from mothering one child to mothering two children has been finding the balance in it all. Actually with each passing day I feel that we as a family are finding better ways to balance it all and we certainly have a lot to learn about keeping all the balls up in the air but that has been the part that I’ve battled with.
The balance between Kade and Gemma. The balance between the kids and Cliff. The balance between my direct little family and our extended families. It’s not easy to try make everyone happy. Mix sleep deprivation, two bouts of mastitis, a demanding toddler and a husband whose in the process of changing jobs one gets a grumpy woman and some not so nice days, thankfully though the grumpy, not so nice days have so far been outnumbered by the good ‘we’re a family of four’ days.
Honestly in terms of caring for the baby, it’s so much easier second time around. You know that the baby won’t die if she cries for five minutes. You know that the sleep deprivation will come to an end. Breast feeding is easier cos you have experience from the first time around. You’re calmer as a mom , not so ‘freaky outy’ as you are first time around. As much as each baby is different, you’ve “been there, done that” and the simple fact that you’ve managed to keep one baby alive makes keeping a second one alive all that much easier.
The difficulty lies in making time for everyone and everything. But as is so often the case in motherhood (and fatherhood) it’s about tackling the challenges each day at a time. And having a partner who is not afraid to muck in and help you.
I would never have coped without Cliff taking up most of the toddler slack.
I think as we approach the 14 week mark of Gemma being on our lives we’ve found a good balance in splitting the parenting tasks. We both handle both children at times but for the most part I handle Gemma (she needs me more while I am still breast feeding) and Cliff handles Kade. Once I go back to work we’ll need to redefine our roles and the tasks we handle but I am confident we’ll figure it all out again.
At the end of the day we both know how incredibly blessed we are to have been given the gift of a second child and we will do our utmost to parent her and our son to the best of our abilities, taking each day as it comes, relishing the joyful moments and trying our best to not mess them up too much along the way.