One Kid to Two, is it Really *that* Different?Casey Mullins
“One is an accessory, two is a lifestyle.” -Sex and the City.
I ran into a woman in the bathroom at the baby store who felt she needed to explain why her kids were 18 months apart. “I couldn’t get pregnant! I REALLY COULDN’T! I did IVF and finally got my baby! Then nine months later! TURNS OUT I CAN GET PREGNANT! I HAVE TWO KIDS UNDER TWO!!” The crazed fury in her eyes was palpable. Needless to say if you were to ask *this* particular mom if two is a little different than just one? She’s going to say yes. YES! YEEESSSSS!!!!
How do I feel about the adjustment from one to two? Not how I had expected, that’s for sure.
To be fair my kids are six and half years apart. Until Vivi was born I hadn’t changed a diaper in almost four years. Bottles, sleep schedules, nap schedules, diaper bags, blowouts, teething and finger foods were all a thing of the very distant past. I had read that when you have a big gap between kids it can feel like starting all over again. The new mom panic, the “What the hell do I do with a screaming inconsolable kid at two am?” panic, not to mention all the stuff.
It wasn’t like this for me. I know I survived once with an inconsolable kid at two am and she’s in the next room over just fine. When experienced moms tell new moms “Babies cry for no reason sometimes.” It’s hard to believe. With my first I was just certain I was doing SOMETHING wrong. But I wasn’t. Sometimes babies just cry. Feed them, keep them clean, keep them warm, keep them dry, love the ever-loving snot out of them (sometimes by sucking the snot out of them) and everything will turn out okay.
In the aftermath of going from a family of three to a family of four there are some difficulties. I am tired. My husband is tired. But this too shall pass. All too quickly if I’m honest with myself. I keep reminding myself I have my entire life to do other stuff. Snuggle this baby now while she’s a baby. Things just take longer with two kids, no matter what the age difference. Running errands is now more of a walk with a slight limp. Laundry day is more like laundry week. Family dinner is now getting everyone fed within an hour in the same general area of the house.
So here’s where you come into this. How far apart are your kids and how much of a difference was it for you? (Bonus if you have or have had multiples.) If you’re still on one, does the thought of two scare you? Or maybe you’re my friend Emily, steadily having babies every two years until suddenly you’re on the cusp of four.
I’ll be honest, three makes me nervous because A) my husband and I are outnumbered and B) I’d have a middle child C) uneven numbers make me uneasy. Silly right?