Well, that all changed now! DD1 is getting her molars and just seems overall "off", so she's been much clingier and crankier lately, and DD2 is either going through a growth spurt, getting teeth or something else and she's been much more fussy. She's having a really hard time staying alseep at all and very unhappy in any carrier.
I try to do stuff outside or out of the house, for DD1 to get some activity, but DD2 is cranky and it's been really hard. I'm also starting to potty train DD1 but finding no time to actually do it.
I find myself resentful of both kids for taking time away that I should helping the other one. I feel like I'm constantly yelling at DD1 and DD2 is always being put down while I do stuff for her. I just feel drained, exhausted, and sometimes just frustrated with the whole situation. I know it will get better and everyday I say that it's going to be a better day and that I'm going to stay calm and loving, but it never ends up that way, then I always feel so bad. I feel like I'm just barely surviving and not at all enjoying my girls. I'm sure they feel this too and that makes me so sad.
Anyway, I guess I just need to vent to other mom's because my husband doesn't get it since he's not here all day. Any words of advise would be greatly appreciated!!!
I'm trying to mentally prepare myself since I'm also going from working full time to SAHM with 2 kids... EEEKKKK! I'm totally freaked out about it.
Mommy to Little Girl, Age 3. Baby Boy, Age 8 months.
I have BTDT and relate to your entire post. I found that the newborn stage was very hard, but also the next age (around 3-6 months) was very hard too, because, like you mentioned, your babe is no longer so sleepy and is less content to be carried around etc. And like you I found that during that stage I was just trying to survive the day to day.
First thing mama is to forgive yourself. This can be tough stuff and you are doing the best you can. As you know from when your first was a baby things do get easier as they get older - they become interested in toys and can entertain themselves a bit, their sleep tends to become a bit more regulated, etc. This will happen with your dd2 as well. Today you might just be surviving (which is ok!), but it won't be too long before you'll be feeling more on top of things.
Forgive yourself too the fact that sometimes you need to attend to one child and that means leaving the other one unhappy for a minute. It's all about prioritizing. In the ideal world you could pop dd2 up on your back (happy as a clam) while you clean dd1's pee pee mess off the floor, but the sad reality is that sometimes your baby is going to cry or fuss for a minute while you quickly attend to your older child, and sometimes your older one is going to have to wait an extra minute while you are dealing with the baby. This will always be the case, but gets a lot easier as they get older - as baby becomes more easily distracted by toys etc, when dd1 is old enough to be able to wait patiently a bit longer. But, yes, right now it is hard mama, so cut yourself some slack. I am sure you are doing the absolute best you can. This is a big adjustment, and you are also dealing with all the sleep deprivation, etc that you dealt with with dd1, but now you also have a toddler to chase around! You are super mom! Just surviving the day is something to feel proud about!
Another thought... I am a hardcore babywearer (I make mei tais, am a volunteer with our babywearing group, etc), BUT I wouldn't hesitate for a minute to try my baby in a stroller if I couldn't get her happy in any carrier/carry that I tried. The most important thing is doing what you need to do to make life work for you. My best friend has a baby who doesn't love being worn. She loved it when she was wee tiny, but since about the age of your dd2 it got trickier. They were using an SSC (Beco Butterfly) and ajusted it so it was quite loose (not comfy for the wearer, but oh well) so that their baby wasn't right up against them. The other thing that worked ok was a hip carrier once her neck control got good enough. Now that she's 6 months old she's up on their backs and likes it a lot more, but still they end up using a stroller way more than they ever thought they would (they never even bought one at first - just thought they'd be wearing her all the time). All this to say... if you would feel bad about trying dd1 in the stroller, don't. Of course first you can try out some different carries (shoulder hold in a wrap, back carrying, supported hip carry, etc), but if right now she'd be happy(ish) in a stoller, but doesn't want to be worn, then just pop her in the stroller - NO GUILT - and get out to the park or wherever.
Good luck mama. You have my empathy. Sending big hugs and may-life-get-easier-really-soon vibes!!!!
Kate, mom to 7 year old Djuna and 4 yr old Alden. Missing our good friend Hal the cat who died June 2, 2010
I would also put off the potty training. If you are able to get outside help, a mommies helper can be wonderful, a kid from your area who can come by after school? Is there a moms support group near where you can take both kids and comisserate with others? That is what I did and it helped so much. The group leaders had such good ideas.
I want to preface everything I am about to say with this:
I was waaay over-extended when #2 was born, and I had very little ability to try to meet my own needs, and so I was a pretty grumpy mama a lot of the time. It's fair to say that I had a lot of anger toward my older child, whom I needed to be able to handle things better than he did, play more independently than he did, help me more, etc. He was only 22 months old when #2 was born. How could I have expected anything from him?! Again:
Looking back, I see how the situation developed. I think I did my best, even though my best was pretty crappy a lot of the time for the first 5 months or so. But when I was in the thick of it I was just soooo hard on myself for not having better days. It felt miserable.
This thread helped. And this one too. And even this one, which got me laughing and made me feel more normal.
Hope this helps, mama.
Mama to DS ('06), DD ('08), and DD (9.18.11).
i learned to try and do less activities and such and focus on being happy and fed and safe.
i feel like with the first baby there is lots of time to coo and the baby, but the second time you cant really do that and then you feel guilty for the older child and guilty for the baby....
let go of the guilt.
get yourself to a place where everyone has a full cup.
i was trying to keep dd1 (almost 3 at the time) tv free and attending playgroups and crafting and and and.
it led to lots of days of me crying and the baby fussy in a wrap and my dd1 doing things just to do them.
i had a friend say, "get up, let the house be messy, feed your kids, go for a walk around the block. come home, put on a movie and cuddle and snuggle. get up, make lunch, go for a walk around the block, come home and watch a movie. repeat until your day feels easy. sometimes its easy for some women right away. its not easy for you right now. honor that"
im telling you that her words saved my sanity.
did i think that was too much tv? YES!
would i choose that for ever? NO!
but i can tell you that id rather my kids have memories of watching too much tv with a baby around than a frantic crying mama sitting at the table crafting with them.
and remember- with a newborn- it gets easier after the growth spurts at 3 months, 6 months, 9 months and a year. it does. it gets hard as they are ramping up for the spurts, then gets easier. at least in my experience.
you just have to hold on and try and stay centered.
where i am falling apart is taking care of myself though. i am heavier now than i was 6 mos ago when she was born...it is sooooo hot & humid here & i have all my great carriers & even decided on a great double stroller but i can't stand to be outside in the humidity...so i am not exercising at all & i am eating quick, cheap meals that are full of carbs which my body does not like.
potty training-one thing that worked well for us was having the little ikea potty so dd1 could sit & go by herself without my help. i can see it from my nursing spot on the couch & talk her through everything but she doesn't need my help except to wipe after poop. she kind of just potty trained herself back in may while i was sitting here nursing 24/7. there are still accidents but everyone has accidents.
dd1s meltdowns & tantrums are breaking us both. she flips out over everything. she was so sweet just 6 mos ago...and now all hell has broken loose! i feel like it's my fault for having another baby! lol i normally have plans 1 or 2 days a week with friends but have felt anxiety over dd1s behavior lately & handling it in front of more experienced parents, getting feedback, criticisms etc.
the sleep deprivation is killing me though-we got dd1 to start out in her own room & just recently, dd2 is starting out the night in the crib next to our bed-but they both end up in our bed & my sides are hurting so bad from being stuck in positions. and just like dd1-, dd2 often wants my nipple in her mouth all night.
i know i would feel better if i could get an exercise routine going daily but i just don't know how to get it started. maybe mall walking in the AC? i find myself looking fwd to cold weather? is that sick? i think something is wrong with me!!!
oh & yes-tv has become a major part of our lives. i let dd1 watch way more than i thought i ever would but it has just made things easier & happier during the transition.
And to the pp - 3 is just a hard age. Don't beat yourself up for having another child. You have given your daughter the WONDERFUL gift of a sibling.
DS 10 DS 8 DS 5, DD 3 and a new DS 3/2011
Thank you so much!!
But, now my kids are 3 and 7. They play together beautifully. It was definitely worth it! Hang in there!
But, now my kids are 3 and 7. They play together beautifully. It was definitely worth it! Hang in there!
now that my older two are 5 & 2- its awesome to see the companionship they provide each other.
sibling love is sweet
DS1 also watch ALOT of DVDs while DS2 was a baby. DS2 stopped being able to fall asleep in the living room with us (too many interesting things going on) so the only way I could get him to sleep was to take him into the bedroom, and have it be dark and quiet while I nursed him to sleep. The only way I could get DS1 to be quiet was to put on a movie. Once I gave in to the telly, it made life so much easier! Was it ideal? No. Did it save my sanity? Yes. Do they still watch so my telly? No.
There are moments of intense guilt when you first have your second. You feel so bad because you're tired and grumpy and you expect so much from your older one, even though they are really still baby's themselves but when I see my boys together now it is so great. The love each other so much. DS1 makes DS2 laugh more than anyone else in the world. Recently DS1 and I were out and about, just the two of us and I thought how nice it was. I suggested to him that maybe we could start going out just the two of us more often. I thought it would be nice for him to have some one on one time. He didn't want to because he wanted his brother to come along. It just melted my heart. It really does get better.
Also, I'd probably give up on trying to toilet train your oldest for a while. Unless it is something that she really wants to do herself I wouldn't worry about it. There is no point in making more work for yourself at the moment. Give it a few months and then try again.
My kids are barely 15 months apart. I had a few YEARS where I lost my mind. Being an attached parent to more than one child is a whole new ballgame, and looks really, really different than parenting just one. You can't be "on" for both kids, all the time. It is physically impossible. You do the best you can in the moment and hope that it all turns out all right.
My kids are 5 and almost-4 right now, and they are each other's primary playmates. When they aren't bickering - they are best friends.
It DOES get better. Watching your kids laugh and crack each other up and play together is the absolute best thing ever. Ever.
It gets better. Hang in there! You will make it.
I'm so sleep deprived, cranky, impatient, stressed, sad...this has been total hell so far. Ds is suddenly waking up at night and coming into our bed, which wakes up the baby, which wakes up DS, which wakes up the baby again....
YOu're not alone!!!
my kids have the exact age difference as yours, but my babe is now 6 months old. our days got a lot better when the baby was able to interact more with her older bro. they absolutely love playing together, and she worships her brother--which of course he loves.
Hang in there!!!!!
and I hear you on the babywearing-- #1 wanted to be worn 24/7, my baby hates it. it is hard. we got her an infant seat with bells and whistles. when we're in the hard i put her in the stroller and stroll her from place to place.
also, search out the little joys where people are happy. for example, both of my kids absolutely love the grocery store. my babe has been SO mad lately because she has a tooth coming in, but she absolutely loves the grocery store. and my son could spend hours opening the greeting cards that sing songs. We spent an hour there yesterday morning and then another hour there in the afternoon!
A little outside help with cleaning etc. may work out for the better . I wish the husbands could say some caring words !! We can enjoy more with the kids any age if we just get the hold of our emotions, when pushed. Don't worry, give them all your love and care and in no time they would grow up as caring individuals and would love you for everything. You can do it !!
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