It’s fair to say that life with a toddler and a newborn is very different to life with just a newborn. Here are a few of our ‘highlights’ so far…
1 // Getting up in the mornings on maternity leave
First baby: Sure he might have an early feed but then pop him down and keep on sleeping. Perhaps potter downstairs for a cup of tea late morning but then head back to bed to snuggle your newborn.
Second baby: Feed the baby and start to drift back off to sleep only to hear, “I done poo-poo” at 6am. Spend the next hour either attempting to get the toddler to wait for the sun to come up on his gro-clock, or listen to husband attempt the same process. Think about going back to sleep only to have the baby wake and want to feed again!
2 // First bowel movement after labour
First baby: Take it at your own ‘leisure’…dimmed lights, magazine to read, music to listen to…
Second baby: Have many attempts interrupted by the toddler. Finally, a successful attempt accompanied by a loud rendition of jingle bells played on the triangle and a toddler shouting, “You got to push. You done a poo? Well done Mummy. Good job.”
3 // First outing
First baby: Fancy some fresh air on day five and potter out just to the local park for a ten-minute walk.
Second baby: Toddler needs fresh air, leave the house ASAP so as not to all go stir crazy. Pick a relaxing activity like going to the supermarket where they don’t have a trolley for a toddler and baby and you spend your time breastfeeding whilst walking and wrangling the toddler. (In fact, there was no midwife available to check over Little brother prior to us leaving the hospital so we had to pop back the next day. Big brother was very nervous that we might be returning the baby so was very pleased when we brought him back!)
4 // Breastfeeding
First baby: Choose a lovely comfy chair, create a place for snacks, drinks and entertainment and settle in for a leisurely feed followed by some baby gazing.
Second baby: Start sitting down (sometimes) but run upstairs whilst feeding when you hear your toddler shouting, “I done a poo!” then carry on feeding whilst attempting to clean and dress your wriggly toddler.
5 // Physical activity
First baby: Ease yourself in, take gentle walks as and when you please and stop to drink coffee and eat pastries.
Second baby: Run as fast you can (four days after labour) to catch your toddler as he attempts to leave the church and head towards a busy road.
As different as it is this time around I’m actually loving getting up and about much more quickly. What’s your experience been of going from one to two kids? Any comparisons?