Home with Two Babies

What is it really like?

It’s exhausting, challenging, bursting with joy between the random busts of tears. There’s a lot fun, a lot of poop, a lot of cuddles, constant food preparation and not a whole lot of sleep. It’s mentally draining, under appreciated and a million times more work than any job I’ve ever had. It’s fulfilling in ways my heart never knew existed before. It’s selfless work that has taught me about myself in incredible ways. It’s a life altering shift in responsibilities, priorities and perspectives. It’s stepping on toys, a perpetually messy house and endless laundry. Its a lot of time parenting and not a lot of time for myself or for their father and I as a couple. Its family adventures on the weekends and a new adventure at home each day. It’s lots of laughing, crying, singing, screaming, dancing, learning, growing, chasing, falling, playing….. It’s exactly everything I never knew I always wanted.

A week before my daughters first birthday we brought home her brand new baby brother. My memory is already a little hazy about the first month bringing him home, but I know for sure there was an extreme lack of sleep in the household for everyone. I’m not sure where the term “sleep like a baby” came from, but it’s incredibly inaccurate and misleading! My newborn of course, slept like a newborn (needing to be fed every three hours all day and night) and my girl was adjusting to the big new changes and wasn’t sleeping as well as she had been anymore either. My partner stayed home during the first few weeks of recovery (thankfully) and my mother came up to care for my baby girl while I was in the hospital for the birth of my boy and also helped me for a couple weeks after too. Then all too quickly, my mother had to fly home, and my partner had to go back to work. My new job as a stay at home mom on maternity leave with two babies under two years old began.

In the beginning was always a juggle to give my daughter the attention she needed as a one year old while still caring for a newborn and recovering from my own c-section too. Once I moved past the lack of sleep and hygiene and got into a bit of a routine it actually wasn’t as hard as I was expecting in the early months. There were even a few glorious months when they both napped at the same time. As much as I loved every minute with them, I also needed a little break to myself every now and then. These were the months I was able to kick start my workout and weight loss effects during their morning naps.

Fast forward to about a year in and rarity of them both sleeping at the same time during the day is what their father and I call “the eclipse”. When an eclipse occurs I don’t even know what to do first. Should I clean, shower, work out, do a face mask, fold some clothes, empty the dishwasher, scroll through Instagram for an hour? If he’s home maybe watch a show together, cuddle, eat a meal without being mauled. The possibilities are endless, until less than an hour later one usually wakes up.

Baby girl prentending to sleep with her dolls

Leaving the house is really really really hard, especially when its just me getting them ready. The moment I shift my attention a little too long on either one of them the other one is likely up to something. I’ve had my day bag unpacked, mittens and hats thrown into a toilet, dresser drawers emptied out, water and milk spills. Even if everything runs smoothly there’s always that chance that right before I buckle them into the car….one of them poops.

The benefits of having them so close in age outweigh all the struggles though. Watching how the two of them Interact with each other melts my heart every time. She absolutely loved her brother the moment she saw him in the hospital. Before she even took her first steps she was using all her strength to pull herself up onto anything to get a closer look at him. She wants to hug him all the time (or partially strangle him lovingly, so I need to be on top of that). They love to play together, although neither of them share well they still prefer to have each other close by when playing with their own toys too. He thinks it’s hilarious to copy what she’s doing, and laughs hysterically at her peek-a-boo skills. The most precious though and seeing her run top speed to him when he’s crying in order to pat him on the back, hug him or kiss his head. If none of those work she will go find his soother or toys and bring them over to cheer him up.

I get to witness them growing and leaning right in front of my eyes. Hear the words they didn’t know how to say the day before, watch the joy in their face when they climb something that was too high to get onto the last time they tried. Watch them try over and over again to achieve something they can’t yet do and then finally see them suddenly just do it one day. Their personalities and minds are developing and I’m so grateful to be right here with them through this first part of their lives. My days are busy and often chaotic, but home with my babies is exactly where I want to be.

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