Whole Parenting Family

Adjusting to Two Children

The past two weeks have been a whirlwind of nursing, playing, activity, sleep, and no sleep. People always told me going from no children to one child was the greatest leap, but second to that is the jaunt from one child to two. And it is quite a trip.

As noted, AA was fortunate enough to have a week off work (Paternity Leave!) wherein he could help me with all my postpartum healing needs (draw me baths, fetch me water, assure me my eyes won’t have these enormous circles under them forever), snuggle with our darling girl, and keep SuperBoy entertained and from going mad with being cooped up indoors.

He’s back at work this week and I’m discovering the many joys and challenges to having two children.

1) Challenge: you cannot hold your second child skin-to-skin constantly like you did your first.

It seems that as soon as I settle into a chair with SweetPea, skin-to-skin, SuperBoy would like help getting his Army guys out of his cupboard, or he suddenly needs me to go and look for Squirrel Nutkin out the back door, or the doorbell rings and it’s the delivery man. Skin-to-skin is very crucial for a number of reasons, to be discussed in a post later this week, but mostly she is getting her quality skin-to-skin either when she nurses or at night when SuperBoy is passed out in his crib.

2) Joy: your firstborn wants your secondborn to also kiss his boo-boos.

Pretty precious when SuperBoy runs up for me to kiss his boo-boos, and then asks his sister to do so as well. Also adorable and loving when he runs past her and shouts “I love you!” Or, in his language, something that sounds a little more like “I wud oo.”

3) Challenge: personal hygiene.

Yes, I had a baby two weeks ago, and yes, I know that it’s not like life snaps back immediately, but I am finding that when I have the time to trim my nails, or wash my hair, I’m either passed out from exhaustion at the end of the day, or finally watching Downton Abbey Season 2 with AA. Or I’m writing a post for the blog πŸ™‚

So if you come to call and I’m in my glasses and husband’s bathrobe, it’s because mine is covered in unidentifiable baby mess and putting in my contacts sounds like a lot of work.

4) Joy: sharing this newborn with friends and family.

I’m overwhelmed by the kindness and love of our friends and family. We’ve had a steady stream of meals (thank goodness as cereal is delicious, but not that nutritious), thoughtful gifts and cards, and best of all, company who comes and oohs & aahs and spends time with us. There’s nothing like having a baby to be reminded of the phrase that it takes a village to raise a child! My family has been critical to my sanity!

What were your joys & challenges?



  1. Andrea on April 24, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    I don’t have any hints or tips because I only have one, but I’m sure you are doing a wonderful job! I can’t even imagine dealing with contacts anytime in the first three months πŸ™‚

    • Natural Mama Nell on April 25, 2012 at 3:11 am

      Love it! Glasses only!

  2. Andrea on April 24, 2012 at 8:11 pm

    I was just looking at the comments on Facebook and I had one more thought. Don’t feel too bad if you can’t get in a lot of skin-to-skin time. We actually didn’t do it all that much because it is COLD here in the wintertime! And we’re fine. So do what you can but don’t feel bad if you can’t. Try it in the moby wrap. Or try to get partial skin-to-skin if you need to keep your shirt on – We did a lot of time with me in the nursing tank top so her head and hands often still on my chest even if we were otherwise clothed πŸ™‚

    • Natural Mama Nell on April 25, 2012 at 3:12 am

      That’s helpful to hear. We’re adapting to it being not too warm too (though those little newborns get so toasty if they are skin to skin). I’ve got her living either under my bathrobe or in the wrap. It suddenly dawned on me today after everyone’s feedback that I could put the wrap on over my nursing bra, and then do a big button down shirt, or robe, over that!

  3. […] to nurse? (Okay, so this should sound familiar . . . yep, this is my life right now πŸ™‚ See post on Surviving with Two.) And if your partner is home on leave, they can play with the older child/children while you […]