There are moments of peace and quiet, the baby settled and Lylah enjoying playing with something for more than 20 seconds.
There are moments where the screaming from both of them is so loud I literally don’t know who to deal with first.
There are moments full of love and overwhelming happiness, where my little family is all together, cuddling on the bed, giggling and playing, and most importantly, not crying.
There are moments when everything is so chaotic that pulling my hair out seems like the only reasonable option.
This is day 6 after Chris going back to work, although today doesn’t count, as he has a day off. But days 1-5 have been…interesting.
I should firstly officially give my baby boy a Jugglehood announcement. Baby Malachy Christopher Boyd arrived with us on 30th April 2015, at 12:14am. He is absolutely wonderful, and if you’d asked me in the first 2 weeks (funnily enough while Chris was still at home with us), then everything was going swimmingly, and I was finding the whole experience of 2 children surprisingly calm.
I have been feeling great, he is feeding really well and gaining weight, he is sleeping between feeds with very little fuss and Lylah responded really well to our new addition and adores her “baby brudder”. Then Chris went back to work…
To start with, things were going well. I’ve basically worked out that as long as one is a) asleep or b) occupied for more than 5 minutes, then I can deal with the other one. It’s the needing me both at the same time scenario that I’m not quite sure how to deal with! It can’t be that hard, I know a lot of people with 2 or more babies, and they all make it look so easy!
I can deal with the night feeds, I can deal with the tiredness, I can cope with the 2-3 hour feeds, I can even cope with the reality that with baby number 2, there is no going back to bed after their early morning feed while they sleep on, because of a certain two year old shouting for their Weetabix! But I am struggling to manage the double screaming episodes. The tantrumming toddler (who has become so defiant since daddy’s return to work that I feel stupid for thinking that she had adapted to the whole scenario like a dream) VS the new addition (who is so cute and cuddly that it surprises me when he screams so loud and shrill that it hurts my ears).
The first episode occurred on day 1 of daddy’s return to work. Lylah needed a bath, but I didn’t have the time to give her the whole bath time fun we normally have, so we opted for a quick shower while Malachy was settled in his chair watching the fun. She went in okay, but then the showering fun turned quickly into the mother of all tantrums when she refused to have her hair washed. Amidst this tantrum consisting of throwing herself around the slippery shower tray and crying so hard she was starting to cough and choke, the baby started to scream. Just out of the blue, no real justifiable reason that I could see or think of, just screaming. This made me panic beyond reason, as my instinct was to go to him and calm him down. But then I had the realisation that if I did this I would be doing a couple of things. 1) Lylah would probably slip and injure herself and 2) I would be going straight to him when Lylah was clearly in need of the attention. Agree or not with giving your attention to a tantrumming toddler, but in the time when a new sibling has been introduced to the environment they are used to, I have felt that ignoring her tantrums may have a longer lasting negative effect.
Anyway, I had to leave Malachy to cry, which was hard, but he was strapped into his chair and I could see that he was safe, and I managed to calm Lylah down. The miracle was that as I was sorting Lylah out, Malachy just stopped crying and fell back to sleep! And then it was all fine and calm again.
These daily blips are, I suppose, only to be expected, but they have increased my stress levels and I’ve noticed that in 5 days, my grey hair count has gone up.
But with time, this will be a breeze. 2 children? Easy…she says!
Welcome to Jugglehood, Malachy Boyd. I’ve got a feeling this is going to be fun!