Written by Alexia Rowley
When I fell pregnant with my second child, I wavered between excitement and fear. I now knew how wonderful life can be with a baby. Yet at moments I questioned my sanity! What on earth were we thinking planning number two just 10 months after our first?
This pendulum of emotions took me though my pregnancy. Thankfully the birth of my son was a positive experience and instead of my love being divided, as I’d feared, it doubled!
The early days alone with them both were daunting and a matter of trial and error. I learnt quickly that my imagined view on something was often very different to the reality….
Imagined… I will take my son in the sling whilst pushing my daughter in her pushchair to the park. An idyllic day.
Reality… My daughter screamed as she didn’t want to be in the pushchair, she wanted to walk and be carried (simultaneously). Which meant holding her, pushing an empty pushchair and sweating whilst my son was strapped to me. Or putting her down, bending over with the sling which nearly sent my son toppling out.
Imagined…. Taking both children to multi roomed playgroup. A great way for both to have fun experiences and age appropriate toys and stimulation.
Reality… it turns out being in two places at once is pretty difficult. And when my daughter was brought back to me soaking wet because she fell in the water play whilst I was feeding my son, it made me feel awful.
Imagined…my daughter would coo over her brother and gently kiss and cuddle him
Reality… my daughter adores her brother, so much so, that laying her full body weight over his, and often his head, became her way of showing him. Me screaming things that I never thought I’d say ‘Gentle; don’t sit on his head’ or our favourite ‘That doesn’t go in his ear!’
Yet on the other hand the reality was better than the imagined. Having two is obviously exhausting, but also lovely and not scary or overwhelming, it’s a steep learning curve but I’m working it out as I go along.