I always knew that having two children in under 24 months was going to be a challenge, and throughout my pregnancy with Molly people were not shy in telling me. “You’re going to have your hands full”, “Wow, 2 under two” and “I hope you’re ready to be run ragged” were all phrases which I heard on an almost daily basis over those 9 months. And I remember thinking, ‘Yes, Thank you. I’m sure we will cope. How hard can it really be? People do it all the time!..
Well, now Molly is 6 weeks old and we’ve had six weeks of experience with having two kids under two; I feel that I can comment on those phrases which I heard so much throughout my pregnancy. And I honestly wish I had listened to people a little bit more, because having two under two IS tough. Tougher than I had expected.
“You’re going to have your hands full”..
I’ll be honest, I had forgotten about newborn life with Georgie. I’d forgotten about the constant stream of feeding, cleaning, burping.. sterilising, nappy changing and comforting which goes with newborn life. And the tiredness, oh how I had shoved that to the back of my mind and put that somewhere to be forgotten about. They say that in the first 24 months of a child’s life, the parent’s lose around 6 months worth of sleep(!) I feel like most of that is in the first few weeks of having a new baby! Now, take that newborn struggle and throw in a crazy, whirlwind toddler who enjoys climbing and is currently teething. That’s what my life is currently like.
I remember saying to people, it won’t be that bad having 2 because Georgie pretty much entertains himself with his books and toys so we’ll be able to sort out the baby and he can just play. That would have been the ideal, but reality is that toddlers get jealous and don’t want to share their parents with a little sprog, who just appeared in their house (in Georgie’s eyes that’s what happened anyway). So gone are the days of Georgie entertaining himself when we are tending to Molly, and now he needs attention 24/7 as well. There have been many occasions when Georgie has deliberately thrown himself on the floor, or off the sofa, to get attention when Molly is being fed, or burped. If Molly cries, Georgie also feels the need to have a whinge and there’s been multiple occasions when Georgie has run over to us and tried to tip Molly out of our arms, or pull her onto the floor so that he can have a cuddle instead. Oh yes, he does not like her sharing cuddles with Mummy and Daddy.
“Wow, 2 Under 2”..
Yes, I have had two children in under twenty-four months. Get over it. I do not need a constant reminder that in the last two years I have pushed two children out of my vagina, and for christ sake if I hear the words ‘that’s a small age gap’ one more time I think I might claw my eyes out! We wanted a small age gap, it’s what we had planned so I do not need your constant comments about it. Thank you very much.
I know it’s going to be tough whilst they’re young. Poor Georgie doesn’t even really understand what’s going on, but at the same time I don’t think he remembers Molly not being around any more which has made life easier because he’s adjusted to life as a family of 4 relatively quickly. But I’m looking forward to seeing the bond they have as they grow up together, share experiences together and enjoy life as siblings (who hopefully are going to get along).
“I hope you’re ready to be run ragged”..
To be honest, Georgie ran me ragged on a daily basis anyway so what’s adding another little one to the equation. Georgie, bless him, is so full on and he has the attention span of a gnat so he is constantly changing his mind about what he wants to do and what toys he wants to play with. He loves being outside and doesn’t like staying indoors for more than a few hours so we pretty much spend the majority of the time either in the garden, or out and about. It’s fun! Now Molly’s here she just comes along with us and joins in the fun (really she spends most of the time sleeping at the moment) I’m actually really excited for all of the adventures we can have as they grow up, I’m hoping that Molly loves the outside as much as Georgie does! So being run ragged, that doesn’t bother me. I’m used to it.
I do feel that once Molly is in more of a routine life will get easier. We will be able to plan our lives a bit more, rather than just throwing caution to the wind and muddling through. Because at the moment that’s what I feel like we’re doing, muddling through in our sleep deprived, chaotic state that sums up newborn life with a toddler in toe. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. We always wanted a small age gap between our babies as I want them to be able to grow up together and share so many experiences together; I just wish I had listened when people had told me life was going to be crazy! Because that’s exactly what it is. Crazy.
Do you have any tips for adjusting to life with a newborn and a toddler? Perhaps you can offer some advice to other parents in a similar situation. Leave a comment below, or drop us an email because we always love hearing from you! We will be sure to share any useful advice on the blog and our social media accounts as well.