Even though, with my oldest at just 20 months (today), I feel like I am a newbie to this whole parenting world. I’m a constant work in progress. Nonetheless, having 2 kids only 15months apart, I have learned some things that I feel may help a parent in a similar scenario.
1. ASK FOR HELP! This one was really hard for me. I had an emergency c-section with my first and a scheduled with my 2nd. After refusing all help with my first, I had to ask for help when my husband went back to work after my 2nd. It was hard swallowing my pride to ask my mom for help watching my oldest. But is a HUGE adjustment balancing 2 kids, let alone a 15month old and a newborn. It’s ok to need help. That is what friends and family are there for. And trust me, they want to help! Taking help doesn’t mean you are a bad mom, you are a resourceful one!
2. MOMMY TIME! This isn’t want you are thinking. Although, it’s good to set aside some time for yourself now and again. This is referring to daily one on one time with each of your kids. Especially the older ones if you are adding a baby to the family. My (AWESOME) pediatrician gave me this advice. Since a new baby, especially a breastfeeding one, needs so much time with mommy, it was such a great idea to schedule some much needed one on one with my son. Every day I’ll say, “It’s mommy and you time!” We go for 15 or so minutes and go play one on one with no distractions. No cell phones, no tv, not even his little brother. Just me and him. We might play cars, read a book, or just put together a puzzle. Doesn’t matter what it is, it is just special bonding time together. (Helps cut down on jealousy too!)
3. Feeding Time with 2under2: KEEP THEM OCCUPIED! My hardest adjustment to life with two kids was the whole breastfeeding time. Every time I would sit down to breastfeed Giovanni, my oldest Dominic would get into something. I would then have to unlatch and go get him and start the whole process over again. I figured out that he was just fighting for my attention. I got together a few things he and I could do while I was feeding his brother. We read books, watch short little videos on the computer, and even sing songs. Keeping him busy helped keep him away from the wrong kind of attention.
4. PUT THEIR SCHEDULES TOGETHER! With Dominic, I never really had a schedule. We just went with the flow. I slowly learned that with two, nap schedules are the key to happiness! HA! No seriously, I worked on getting the boys on the same napping schedule. It took time, but now they take two naps at the same time. This gives me time to clean house, cook dinner, heck even take a nap myself!
5. GO SOMEWHERE! Stay at home moms: Leave your house once in a while. You can do it. It may seem scary to leave with two young kids, but it gets easier each time you do it. Changing the scenery is good for you and your kids.
Enjoy each moment..for this too shall pass.