Then, just when I thought (in a Greg Wallace voice) parenting just doesn’t get tougher than this…baby two arrived eighteen months later….and I realised that actually yes, it really does..
If you are considering a second child then here are a few tips!!
- Do not bother trying to get anything done ever. While it is tricky to get stuff done with one baby, with two it is practically impossible. In fact, don’t even bother sitting down because as soon as you do someone will need you to do something. I have lost entire days trying to get things done and achieved nothing. You think, ‘I know; I’ll write a list, get organised, tick things off as I go along.’ Easy, right? Wrong. Five days later you realise you haven’t even managed to finish writing the bloody list. So I suggest doing what you can when you can. Better still just use this list:
1. Get up
2. Look after the children.
Anything achieved alongside this list is automatically a bonus.
2) Don’t buy a double buggy. You will use it once, realise it is really heavy and annoying and sell it on Ebay.
3) Do not try to get anywhere on time. With two babies on the go, everything takes ages. ‘Popping out’ becomes a distant memory.
I remember a time when nipping out for milk simply meant taking clothes out of the wardrobe, putting them on, grabbing my bag and leaving the house.
Now it can take hours as I desperately attempt to scrub baby snot from my clothes with baby wipes, clean bums, clean teeth, change nappies, feed baby, break up fights, chase toddler, dress toddler, dress baby, leave house, forget bag, return to house, leave house, forget baby, return to house, get baby, leave house and then when I finally get to shop, I have forgotten what the hell I went for.
Better still, just don’t bother leaving the house at all.
4) Someone always wants something from you. A banana, a biscuit, a drink, a dummy, a poo, a wee, a wipe, dinner, lunch, breakfast, a snack, toys, clothes. Take me outside, take me home, take me to the toilet, take me to the park? Story, piggyback, Play Doh, song. You life becomes an endless cycle of getting stuff for small people.
Some days you’ll want to quit. Other days you’ll want to scream. But you still get them the stuff. Because at the end of the day, it is far easier than being asked for the fucking stuff, over and over again, for the rest of your life.
5) When you are expecting your second baby you will secretly worry whether you will love them as much as you love your first. Surely, it must be impossible to love another human being as much as you love your firstborn? There could never be a baby as cute, or as funny, or as beautiful. Then baby two arrives and they are just as cute, just as funny and just as beautiful. And before you know it, you can’t imagine life without them.
6) Get an extra pair of eyes to put in the back of your head because, at one point, your children will try to kill each other. Not intentionally, of course. But toddlers seem to be under the impression that ‘dangerous’ means fun. For example; “It will be so funny to whack my sister over the head with a mug.” And “I wonder what will happen if I stick this pencil right up my sister’s nose.”
7) Buy two of everything. They always want what the other one has. Toddler could pick up a dead frog and Baby would still drop whatever she was doing and decide she desperately wants that dead frog more than anything in the world. You can tell them to share until you are blue in the face. But apparently ‘share’ is toddler speak for ‘snatch’. I would also suggest that all the children’s cups and bowls are the same colour. We have a single blue bowl that is currently making my life hell.
Having two children close in age can be exhausting and frustrating. It is rare that a day goes by where I haven’t silently sworn about something. But mostly, it is pretty amazing. And there is a great comfort in knowing that no matter what, they will always have each other.
When they are not trying to kill each other, they are best friends…at least until they both want the blue bowl.
So how do you survive with two children under two?
Coffee, a sense of humour and shit loads of blue bowls.
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