Dealing with one kid in diapers is tough enough, but add in an infant and it can be complete chaos. The stress about it can start as early as your confirms the imminent arrival of a second baby. Through your pregnancy you might worry about how you are going to handle two kids under the age of two. It might not be easy, but it sure isn’t as difficult as you think it will be.
Learn what it's really like to raise two kids under 2 years old. And how you can do it without entirely losing your mind.
At times, both your kids will require you to tend to their respective needs. You might be busy feeding the infant, while the toddler suddenly demands your immediate attention. Such a situation can be daunting, and every now and then you’d probably feel like running away somewhere just to get some time for yourself.
Instead of thinking that you can actually satisfy both needs together, accept that you can’t. When a situation like that presents itself in front of you, prioritise and tend to the more urgent need first. This way both kids learn to wait their turn and also realise that they have to share mommy. You can also make the toddler feel a part of your equation with the infant by involving them in activities like bathing the infant, fetching something for the infant from another room, etc.
You are as used to giving your first child your complete attention, as they are used to receiving it. But with the second kid, you realise that it’s just not possible to give it the undivided attention, because now you have a toddler to tend to too. A lot of moms feel guilty about this shift in dynamics, and it’s natural if you feel it too.
As time passes and you ease into your role as a mom of two, you’ll realise there’s no way your love for either kids can diminish, no matter what. So, don’t be too hard on yourself. If you think your toddler may be affected by this sudden change, rest assured that they are too young to fully understand their surroundings, and willassume that the baby was always in the picture. They have also not fully grasped the idea of independence or dependence, and are very much engrossed in their own world. Although, to strike a better balance and make sure your first child doesn’t feel left out, you can have your partner spend more time with them when you are busy nursing your infant.
Handling two kids under two is a lot of work and it will leave you with no energy at the end of the day. Between changing diapers, feeding one and then quickly running to tend to the other one, cleaning, and other things, you realise you have no energy left, physically as well as emotionally.
It’s completely normal to constantly second-guess yourself and push yourself even harder to compensate for it. But just accept that as long as your kids are growing well and healthily, you are doing enough. Take some time out for yourself and do things that give you calm and peace. Also remember that the more you try to do it alone, the more exhausting it will be. And since this is a long-term responsibility, you do not want to burn out very soon. Parenting is a team-effort, so trust your partner. You don’t have to do everything by yourself.
Getting two kids ready to go out somewhere is tedious. You have to nurse the infant, get the toddler dressed, then get the infant dressed, pack the stuff that you’ll need and then finally step out hoping that neither one of them begins crying or has a toilet emergency.
You can help things along by having a buffer time. Always ensure that you have an extra half an hour or so in your hand before stepping out for any of these last-minute shenanigans. Consider keeping a travel bag ready with spare supplies at all times, so you don’t have to pack last minute. Also prepare according to where you are going. If there is going to be a lot of walking involved, you can carry your infant in a baby carrier, so that both your hands are free for holding the toddler. Pick places which are either meant for kids or are frequented by a lot of parents and kids, as these places are kid-friendly. Plus, your toddler might end up making a friend or two and get engrossed in playing!
A little bit of patience and a lot of teamwork from you and your partner can work wonders in making this juggling act easier. Don’t forget to give yourself a break every now and then! If you have any queries regarding parenthood, or conception, ask us!