Wednesday, September 19, 2012

How am I supposed to do this?

In 3 months I'm going to be a mom of two.  I feel like I haven't even gotten the hang of one yet.

In my head, I know that's not fair.  My sweet, precious big girl is doing great.  She is developmentally right on track, she is kind, she is funny.  I know that I must be getting it right, that I am not failing her, that we are doing just fine.

But that's not how it feels in my heart.

Almost every day lately, I feel overwhelmed.  I feel like I can't handle her.  Everything seems Big and Important.  Everything is a crisis.

We watch a lot of TV.  A really lot.  We still take swim lessons, we still go to playgroups, we still read books.  But I don't know how to play with her.  When I'm alone with her and there's nothing planned to do, I panic a little.  I don't know how to possibly fill the time.  I lose my patience quickly.  I cry more than I'd like to.

And in the back of my head, there's always a voice that says, "If you can't even handle this, how are you ever going to survive with two?"

When there are two small people I don't know what to do with.  When I haven't had any sleep and still have to chase BG around and stop her from scaling everything.  When the three of us are stuck in the house all winter staring at each other, and I'm the one who's expected to know what to do.

People say that once you have two, you should expect to be in survival mode for a while.  But I kind of feel like I'm already in survival mode, so where do I go from here?


  1. I felt the same way, but you are so self aware. You are not afraid to let people know you are struggling. Lean on both your online and in real life social support. You are an amazing mom, and you will be able to do this. Let us repay your infinite kindness by showing you our kindness.

  2. I feel that way too. Playing with them at that age is really, really hard, and I think it's normal to be overwhelmed at how to handle that. We're trying to find things for C to do when the new one gets here - some classes and some activities. BG is probably too young for those (to be dropped off and left, anyway) but maybe you could create little kits of new toys or activities (or some she hasn't seen for a while) so that you have a plan for her to be occupied when you're taking care of baby.

  3. What I've heard from my friends with more than 1 is that they can start entertaining each other. Not at first of course, but soon they will. Get BG to "help" with the baby--fetching diapers, burp cloths. But I get it. I feel like I don't entertain D enough and it kills me when I turn on the tv, but sometimes it's all I can do. I'm tired too, I'm overwhelmed too. But the fact that BG is doing so well is evidence that you've got this.

  4. YOU CAN DO IT. It won't be easy. But you'll do it. And then when the baby is 3 months old, it will be a little easier. And then at the 6 month mark, it will be a tiny bit easier than that. And so on and so forth. It's so easy to get overwhelmed, and the best advice I ever got was to take it one day (or one hour) at a time.

  5. Oh friend...I'm so sorry that you're feeling so overwhelmed about this. Have you tried searching for groups in your area for mom and babies? We had one here and it was fabulous. The kids played and us Moms talked. Sure it was only one day a week but it gave me a huge breather.
    Maybe you can try alloting time for your wee one. They have to know that we can't entertain them all day and need to learn how to play individually. when I was really sick and didn't have the energy to get out of bed, one of my friends suggested this alloted time thing and you know what? It helped. I found that i looked forward to this time.
    Check out pinterest too. There are a bunch of pins for activities to do with your wee ones.

  6. We're just now crawling our way out of survival mode here. 9 months later. I tell you this not to dishearten you, but so that you will be gentle with yourself and let the survival last as long as it needs to.

    No1 had a REALLY hard time adjusting to being a sister. We still have difficult days when she acts out for attention. The best advice I have is to have lots of help lined up for BG. It'll feel shitty that you can't give her attention. . . it'll feel like you're pawning her off on other people . . . but it'll help her to have someone give her 100% of their attention and it will free you up to be the baby's everything for a little while.

    The other thing I want you to know is that it's okay for it to be hard. Remember how often I begged for advice/help/a kind ear on twitter in those first few months? Don't think that anyone else does it better or has it easier. Let it be hard and soak up any good you can. Trying to make it feel easy is an extra task you won't have time for.

    That being said - I am so excited for new baby to come and for you to glow with pride and love the first time BG makes the baby laugh. There's nothing like it. Nothing.

  7. You keep on surviving until one day you realize that you are no longer just surviving you are, in fact, thriving.

    It will take time. It will not be easy. You will feel guilty for a whole host of things that you really shouldn't feel guilty about and then you will realize that they are doing just fine.