For some reason, so many things related to having and RAISING KIDS are shrouded in secrecy. Almost like people are afraid we will stop procreating altogether if we know the truth about everything from pregnancy to labor & delivery and even what happens when you bring those sweet little cherubs home from the hospital.
This high-level hush hush also extends to having baby number two. Until now, because the jig is up. Get ready for the quick and dirty on six truths about having your second baby.
Whatever you think you remember about sleep deprivation – quadruple it.
You think you remember what it’s like to get maybe two hours of sleep broken up over the span of any given night. There are vague memories of 2 a.m. feedings and washing bottle parts you can barely see through your sleep deprived eyes. If you think hard enough, maybe you can remember crying as your baby was crying because she had enough gas to power an oil tanker and the gripe water, Mylicon and bazillion natural remedies aren’t making a dent.
But the truth is, everything you remember is like a “lite” version of what really went down. It’s a weird psychological game we play because if you really remembered what it physically felt like to hang on to your sanity by a thread feeling so desperate you start to think about all the things you would do just for a solid three hours of sleep, you would seriously question having another baby.
Two really does feel like 10
Remember all those times your friends were like, “OMG, you only have one…you have no idea, wait until your second”, and you were like” CTFD, Susan…I’ll be fine, it’s just one more.” Susan was right. That one more makes it feel like you have a tiny army. Filled with soldiers who whine, cry, puke, poop, pee and eat all day.
Of course, they do not do things on the same schedule either. Naps, eating, down time. All of it is a wash. They are in two different directions at any given moment and you start to wonder how the hell people do this?
And how, for the love of god, HOW do people go beyond two? YOU FEEL OUTNUMBERED and like you have lost control of the ship.
You will feel like you fu*ked up your family at some point
It will happen.
Maybe you’ll feel it in the final moments you are staring into the eyes of your firstborn knowing that things will never be the same. Maybe it will be when you bring the baby home and you now have two little humans under your roof for the first time. Maybe it’s when your firstborn says things like, “You are just always so busy with the baby” and you feel like someone kicked you in your postpartum gut.
But make no mistake, at some point you will think, “Did I just screw everything up? How long will this feeling last? Does anyone else in my family feel this way? Will we EVER get back into a groove?”
You will swear off sex
It won’t last forever, but YOU WILL WANT NOTHING TO DO WITH SEX because sex is the culprit behind the coup going on in your house right now. The one where you have been dethroned by something the smaller than a Thanksgiving turkey. You want nothing to do with any activity that could lead to you being knocked up again.
Also, you probably have stitches somewhere – either across your abdomen (RIP abdominal muscles) or on your undercarriage – and are still sitting on ice pack or using medicated wipes like a boss. Nope, not today Satan.
Your older child will be jealous
Even the most excited big sibling will feel your diverted attention. They’ll see you drop everything to tend to the tiny little life that they love but that is also seriously infringing on their mama time.
Walks into school turn into drop offs in the carpool line instead. You can’t come help in the classroom as much because their sibling is hanging on you like a baby koala bear. The changes are insurmountable and that older sibling is feeling it too.
You will not be able to get your sh*t together
Remember when you used to be Type A and knew every single order of business happening in your household? You checked things off your list like a pro, never missed a text, cut the crusts off those school lunches with finesse and made beautiful dinners.
Those days are over. Now you forget to send in field trip permission forms, you can’t remember if you put on deodorant and you drop your older child off at school wearing the clothes you slept in the night before.
Bottom line, a second baby will rock your world. Everything you knew will be old news. You will cry and laugh and cry again, A LOT.
You will question yourself. You will feel like there is never enough time in the day. You will miss wearing real clothes and brushing your hair. Life will never be the same.
It will be better.
Because once you navigate the ins and outs of two kids you will look at how they look at each other and it will slay you. You will hear them giggle or see the older one quietly reading a book to her sibling and say to yourself, THIS is what I was meant to do. This is what my family is supposed to look like.
You’ll get over the incessant crying, whining, puking, pooping, peeing and eating and know that even with all the chaos, you wouldn’t change a thing.