And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from lissafro. Show lissafro's posts

    And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Someone had mentioned wanting to post a separate thread about strategies for second (and third!)-timers handling toddlers and a newborn simultaneously. 
    As it is, handling a toddler (DD will be 3 next week) while being pregnant has had some unique challenges so far. 

    So, anyone who has first-hand experience with strategies, please offer tips! 
    Also, anyone who just wants to commisserate about panic and fear and overall gripes about being overwhelmed or just having a sore back or whatever, feel free to vent here too.

    I am personally focused on the fact I won't be able to go swimming with DD this summer after the baby is born, until I get an all-clear and heal from giving birth.  I know this sounds silly (I asked my OB about it and she was like "duh, you can't take a bath for a few weeks of course you can't go swimming in the ocean!") but I really love swimming and so does DD.  I'm nervous the fact I can't take her in the water the way I did last summer is going to be the straw that broke the camel's back when it comes to things she's feeling frustrated about with a new baby in the house (if that makes sense). 
    Also, going in just to my thighs isn't an option; last year at 2 yrs old DD felt comfortable dunking her head under and she was TRYING to swim underwater already.  She's been "practicing" in the tub all winter and talking about this summer going swimming for months.  We live 3 blocks from the beach. You can see the ocean from our back yard.  There is no way I'm getting out of this with distraction or other activities haha.
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from KAM2007. Show KAM2007's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Lissa, I found I just had to surrender in the early days of brigning DD home. DS was great and excited, but still under 3 by a few months. The hardest part was bedtime, DD would be in her high fussy time, and DS would be too. It was awesome. THere was no way I could have dealt with DD and put DS to bed. Two people were definitely needed. Now that DD is older we have a routine it can be done by one person.

    DS def wanted me to do things I ususally did with him, but just couldn't. I always explained why (boo boo on my belly) and DS always wanted to see my boo boo (thankfully I could show him my belly button and he was fine with that!). But keeping him invovled also helped. There were times he would sit on the changing table and help me change the baby's diaper. He definitely likes to be a little helper so we used that.  

    DS definitely likes to be a big kid now. So playing on that is big. When I was getting really big at the end I would challenge him to do things on his own. And have him help me - we had a morning full of laughter as I asked DS to help ME put my socks on. Tons of giggles.
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from KT75. Show KT75's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    We were neck deep renovating a house when DS was born and had to move when he was a month old, it was a great time.  DD was just under two when DS was born and she adjusted really well.  There were moments that were difficult, especially where DH was working at the other house anytime that he was not at work..thankfully I have family close by.

    I'm sort of perplexed over the swimming because I was allowed to take baths as soon as I was home from the hospital.  I had c-sections though, so maybe its different?  I know you said she won't be distracted but...What about if you got a sprinkler or one of those sprinkler beach balls?  Also, what about when DH is home you go as a family and then pick out rocks and seashell and make it a painting activity for the next day? 

    As far as fear, I worried about them both being up at night together but that did not happen (thank god) and I worried that DD would hate DS.  DD still went to daycare for a while after DS was born, so he got special time with me while she was at daycare and when she was home I tried to make things just as they were before DS was born.  She really loved him right from the beginning and it just warmed my heart (still does). 

    I agree with KAM on playing into the Big Kid role and being a helper, DD loves that!  I also sometimes have her do things with her dolls while I do them with DS and she gets a real kick out of that.  She also loved loved loved to hear about all the things she could do that he could not.  Like he can't have cookie, he will choke, only big kids...she still will talk about that.
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from lissafro. Show lissafro's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Oh, with a vaginal delivery your uterus is open to infection for a few weeks.  Showers only.  Plus you have lochia leaking out for ages and ages, so it's really really messy (mine leaked for 5 weeks.  5 weeks of VERY heavy period, no tampons allowed).  I would deal with the gross mess but I can't very well risk a uterine infection.
    Also, this one thing is kind of becoming the symbol of ALL the things I'm nervous about when it comes to dealing with an infant all over again and taking care of DD too.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Lissa, is there someone you could bring with you to the beach who could spend time with your DD in the water while you stayed nearby, toe-deep?
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from Trouble30. Show Trouble30's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    I think, at least in the beginning, you really have to divide and conquer.  You need at least one other adult around for help.  If you could get a family member to stay with you for the first 6 weeks or so, I'd say do it.  

    DD was 15.5 months when DS was born, so she was still very much a baby herself.  She warmed up to DS right away and initially called him a cat and tried to pet his head.  But since she still needed so much care and attention herself, DH focused on her needs and I focused on DS.  (can DH take DD swimming?) When DS was a week old, my MIL came to stay for 6 weeks.  That help was invaluable.  By 12 weeks everyone starts to get into more of a routine and it gets a little easier.  

    Dinnertime was always the worst in the beginning.  Trying to get dinner together during DS fussy time was an everyday nightmare.  But it passes by so quickly I can barely remember it now.  Our savior was a fisher price travel swing that was a fixture on our kitchen table until DS started on solids.

    Don't worry, you'll do great!
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from cwagner13. Show cwagner13's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Right now, since I am expecting number 2 right around DS's second birthday... I have been trying to encourage more bonding with DH for DS... I know I will always be his mommy (and when he needs just plain old comfort especially when he is not feeling well, he will still look for me to snuggle with) but some things shift more to DH like breakfast, bath time and some activities (swimming has always been an activity with DH since I do not like being in the water that much, and the chlorine smell seems to be way stronger with my pregnancy). He seems to like having me outside watching while he and DH potter around the yard with some gardening tools, so I may just get into sitting outside in the chair and read while they potter around.

    We both can read stories, go to the playground and play indoors with the toys so we do trade off back and forth, and some routines we are trying to shift more to DH now so that when #2 comes, we are hoping he will naturally still turn to DH for some routines so that he does not think #2 is taking his spot.


     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from wrkingmom. Show wrkingmom's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Lissa it really sounds like you are going through what I went through for part of the pregnancy which really caused a lack of bonding with this baby and I wish I could take those weeks back.  Can you talk with anyone in person who has multiple kids and just find out what was great about having siblings.  I am really trying to focus on the "cool" stuff - the new bedding, decorations and toys ds has recieved for his new room, the sibling bond, the fact that in a year or two  your daughter will have someone to swim with.  I felt like I went through a bit of depression with out really realizing it.  I had panic attacks, guilt, sadness almost to the point I wish I could have taken the baby back and now I feel guilty for thinking those things about this baby now that it is moving around in me and we have bonded more.  It was alot like post partum yet obviously not post partum.  Mine might have been more severe but I was really focused on what I would NOT be able to do for ds and that was sort of the outlet for this "depression" and it sounds like you are focusing on something similar. 
    The only thing that really helped me though was finally talking about it with my Mom - she was much more understanding than dh and making a conscious effort to not dwell on the what I viewed as bad.  So gripe or worry away here cause it may just help!
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from luvRIboy. Show luvRIboy's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Can't speak to any strategies or suggestions, but I am right there with you in terms of figuring out what will happen when #2 arrives in about 6 months.  Of course, right now, DD is in a super clingy mommy phase, which doesn't help me feel any better! 

    Couple of things we're trying to do now to get her ready, and to keep DH on her good side.
    -- He always does the mornings with her...gets up with her, they have breakfast, hang out, listen to sports radio (he has whole conversations with her asking what she thinks about such and such trade, or whatever).  We'll keep that up!
    -- Usually he'll start to feed her while I'm finishing dinner, so that's another daddy-DD time.
    -- trying to shift our nighttime routine.  That's always been mine...bath, books, bottle, all of that.  We're going to try over the next three months to break it up a bit, so that I'm not doing all of it.  We've started by having him do a story every night with her...we're only on day 3 of that plan today...we'll see! 
    -- Leaving them together more...aside from that morning time they have, it's usually DD and I or all three of us.  We've been trying to give them more one-on-one time so she's used to that.  Sometimes as simple as the two of them walking to the corner store for a newspaper, but things that he used to run out and do on his own, he's been including her in. 

    I'm honestly a little petrified about two.  I just love DD so much...I hate to think about rocking her world with the arrival of #2.  But I keep reminding myself that my sister arrived when I was just 2, and I can't really remember life before her...so we'll be fine!!
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from Micromom. Show Micromom's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Totally understandable fears, the emotional and logistical impact of an addition, no matter the number feels scary, but you work it out.  

    For what it's worth, once you're in the thick of it, it's not as bad as the anticipation.  You sort of triage, who has the most pressing need, and deal in order of priority.  Yes, there are challenging moments, but it also teaches both kids about patience and collaboration.

    It's definitely helpful to have extra hands around, while you get your bearings.  If you have friends or family, set up a schedule for back up.  One thing to consider in the summer is a mother's helper type.  They're usually less experienced which doesn't matter because you're present, and more importantly less expensive than a standard babysitter.  Plus, available in the summer.

    I always tell people, for me, having one and being pregnant was harder than having two.  I don't know why, but the fatigue, worry, anxiety etc was hard, but once you have to lovable kids, you just love them, like moms do.




     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from dz76. Show dz76's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    As someone who went from a family of 3 to a family of 5 with now stop in between, I understand how overwhelming it is.  When I was pregnant with the twins, some of the male doctors actually ordered me not to pick up my almost 2 year old.  Like that was actually going to happen since I didn't have any real medical reason why I couldn't other than carrying twins. 

    Not sure what your situation is but if you are a SAHM, you probably will have a hard time with DD and the beach since you will have less help available (I'd assume) and much more opportunity for DD to ask.  If there is not help available, put her off any way you can that does not involve the baby or you being unable to swim because you had a baby.  You wouldn't want her to resent the baby before he even gets a chance to earn the resentment by touching her toys.  ;-)  I was so paranoid about that although it didn't happen until DS could touch her toys. 

    Is there swimming lessons she could take that would enable her to swim with another adult make sure she was safe since she loves swimming so much?
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from amy-lynn. Show amy-lynn's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    lissa - I don't know where you live, but the Y has swimming classes that start at age 3 without a parent in the water. Before that all the classes are parent + kid, so maybe an option would be to sign her up for swim lessons that she can do, with beach time reserved for playing in the sand, wading, and going in the water with someone other than Mom. It is probably easier said than done (I know how willfull a 3 year-old can be). But the Y is really good about teaching water safety, so swimming lessons might actually make her listen to you more about staying where she is safe versus venturing out to swim on her own. 
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    In Response to Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...):
    Also, this one thing is kind of becoming the symbol of ALL the things I'm nervous about when it comes to dealing with an infant all over again and taking care of DD too.
    Posted by lissafro

    This is a very wise statement.  I do this same thing, of making one part of the issue into the spokes-issue for the larger situation.
    The nice thing about it is this: you can deal with the swimming thing, using all the advice you've gotten here and your own wisdom.  You can do this particular thing.  And then you can do the next thing... and the next thing... and the next thing, and so on.  The big picture looks hard, but each of the things you can totally do.
    So it's a good way to look at it!  :)
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from smileyd. Show smileyd's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Have a good, supportive partner and remember not to lose focus on the older child.  We had my DD (2.5 at the time) start swim lessons with my husband about 4 weeks before the baby was due and continue for about 4 weeks after the baby came.  It was their thing that the two of them had together, and DD loved it.  We made a big deal out of asking if the baby and I could come and watch their last lesson together, making sure that DD knew it was all about her and not the baby. 

    Getting the older child involved is also a great idea. 
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from purplecow89. Show purplecow89's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    The biggest problem you'll have with a 2 or 3 year old and a baby is the kid ignoring you for half an hour then as soon as Baby needs something, #1 needs your attention.  NOW.  Or the world will come to an end. 

    Get Kid #1 used to self-occupying and self-entertaining for short periods of time before the baby is born.  You don't want their first experience of having to wait for Mom to finish something to be when it's doing something for the baby.  So if DD is not used to, say, coloring a picture or putting a puzzle together without Mom's attention while you do the dishes or whatever, start by making sure she has something to do and you go do something (and make sure she can see you being busy at whatever it is) and meet up when you're both done.  Not all afternoon, but a three year old ought to be able to be around you, but doing something not involving you, for twenty minutes or so.  And get them used to you having to just get things done, without it being an interactive learning experience with them "helping" because there just will not be enough hours in the day to play sock color match every time you do the wash, etc.  Sometimes, sure, but not every time.

    Also, keep an eye on her toys and activities to make sure she's not bored by things she's outgrown.  If she's got something interesting and challenging to do it will be a lot easier.  It can be easy to lose track of stuff like that because your attention is divided.  We gave our almost-2 year old some of her birthday toys early because we realized she was bouncing off the walls and driving baby sister crazy not out of competition but out of sheer boredom.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from misslily. Show misslily's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    I have no "real" advice for you, but I just wanted to say that I felt the same way about having twins. "How and I going to do this?"  ...help!!
    You will do it, it will all work out. Almost everyone has to deal with a toddler and a new baby. It's how most people have their families.
    My best friend was pregnant with #2 when I was pregnant with the twins. She had the same worries as you do. And it was much easier than she expected.
    I remember her emailing me and saying "shhh...don't tell our friends with only children, but two is so much better than one!" :)
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from lissafro. Show lissafro's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Phew!
    Thank you so much for so many good ideas and supportive reassurances! 
    I do have family nearby, which is really nice and helpful.   After I take a few deep breaths I can see how all this is going to be possible.  I just some reminding some time.  This time around everything seems a little harder because I sort of have some idea how grueling that sleepless newborn time can be.  The first time around you just feel blissful about how awesome it is going to be to have a kid without realizing exactly what you're getting into! haha.  DH is VERY supportive and he works 7-3 so he's home at that horrible pre-dinner time, which is invaluably helpful.  I'm just getting all worked up thinking since I don't have much I can DO about it right now.  As someone said, the anticipation is worse.  Once I'm in the thick of it I'll be ok.  hopefully.

    Work has been crazy lately, not necessarily in the bad way, so I'm going through a bit of the "ohmygodIwillbehomealldaywithkidsinsteadoftalkingtoadults" stage too.  I missed work last time around, despite loving being home too.  It's a big transition.

    You guys are awesome!!! Thanks!  Keep the advice coming, if you've got it!
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from rama8677. Show rama8677's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Lissa, no advice to add but wanted to thank you for starting this thread.  I'm going through the same emotions as you and I am happy to see it's fairly normal.  My DD will be 2.5 when the baby is born this summer.  I am overwhelmed thinking about how we will handle the needs of two children but the most overwhelming feeling I have been feeling is sadness thinking about how life will change for DD.  I am super close to my siblings and those relationships are invaluable and I want her to experience that too, so I know there are countless benefits for DD in terms of having a sibling. I am trying to focus on what DD will be gaining rather than what she will be losing.  It's tough though.  For the past two plus years, she has been the center of my world and it's hard to imagine loving another baby as much as I love her.  But, everyone tells me that is what happens, and I'm sure it will once the baby is here and we have a chance to bond.  In the meantime, I will be taking the advice of other posters above and trying to get my DD used to playing on her own, spending more time with DH alone, and lining up plenty of help for the first few weeks. 

    Thanks to all the second time moms who posted their advice.  Much appreciated!
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from quadgirl1234. Show quadgirl1234's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Lisa,
    I had the SAME issue about the swimming.  DD was 2 1/2 last summer and LOVED , I mean LOVED the water.  DS was born in July.  So had about a month of being able to swim with her, and then for the remainder of the summer I could go in.   Because the beach was not an option with the infant, we went to our local pool and my sister in law went in with DD since her son is older and does not need assistance in the water.  I just sat and layed in the sun while DS was under the canopy sleeping on most days.   It actually was quite enjoyable for me and gave me a break and a few hours of relaxation.  By the last 2 weeks of the pool, I was able to go in and swim with DD and it was lots of fun.  By the end of the summer she was swimming with just swimmies.  It was actually the first time I looked at her and I was like, "what a big girl". 

    As far as juggling the two?  You just figure it out.  It can be hard.  DD took to DS from day 1 and was over joyed by him so that part was easy for me but she requires and needs a lot.  Shes a toddler!   I also potty trained her while I was home which added extra stress on me and I dont think I needed that. Just poor timing.    Being off in the Summer aloud us for lots of walks and outdoor time.  DS loved to be outside so it was easy just to carry him out in his car seat. 

    I will say, My biggest fear was leaving the house with the two of them.  It took me weeks to do it by myself.   Peice of cake!  Like second nature now.  One tip to get out of the house easier is when you get home, repack everything so you can just go right out the door when you need to.  That helped me alot.  Still to this day, the diaper bag/s are always packed and ready to go. 

    Good Luck, you will do great!
     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from winter09wedding. Show winter09wedding's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    I have continued to be totally swamped at work, which has caused me to revisit this discussion thread (I barely feel I can do it all now... with just one). And I feel a little guilty for failing to keep up on the postings... my apologies for that.

    However, I have been struggling with a few things. I feel that this pregnancy has been a lot more low key than the last one- sometimes I "forget" I am pregnant until I crash into something. I am certainly not on the same timeline, and the whole nesting thing seems to be this hopeless mirage that I will never obtain (that being said, I have another 3 months... but still no ideas for the room, etc.).  Aside from the enormous guilt I have about the disruption to DS's life and that I feel I am already neglecting one kid (DD) before it is born (what pregnancy scrapbook?), I don't understand the whole etiquette around second babies.

    I went through DS's clothing for neutral stuff and planned to do a lot of consignment shopping for girly stuff- maybe take some items from others who have had girls. I had not planned to do much more. But there is this part of me that feels a little guilty for not "celebrating" this one's impending arrival...(not even necessarily with a shower, but with a party of some sort- I haven't even posted it on facebook yet) and then I have had 3 people ask me this week where I was registered and when the shower was. hum. what shower? and why would I register?  what did everyone else do?
     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Hi Winter!  Hope you're well.  Within my friends and relations, it would be unusual (borderline weird) to have a baby shower for a 2nd (3rd, etc) child.  Maybe if there were special circumstances, like a super long gap between the kids.  But I guess everyone's different!
    It does seem like a nice idea to celebrate in some way, either before or after the new baby arrives.  Cookout?  Eat a lot of cake?  I have no ideas.  I just like celebrations.  :)

    Oh, and if you had a pregnancy scrapbook (or even a filled in baby book) for the first one, you are way ahead of me!
     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from luckinlife. Show luckinlife's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Winter and everyone - great thoughts.  As I am sitting here about to be induced tomorrow, all of these issues come to mind.  I, too, feel that I have neglected the pregnancy in part and feel less celebratory than worried.  I am hoping it will all come into place.  I know that this will really impact DD's life but I also think having DD#2 will be a huge gift to her as well. 

    No real shower, just low key get together.  I didn't even think of registering.

    Lissa - I am sort of glad to know that I will miss work.  I did the first time but didn't really realize it until I went back and really enjoyed working.  I think that just clarifies things for me this time around.  I know they will be fine in daycare 3 days a week and that I will enjoy going back.  That takes some of the scary, unknown out of the picture!
     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from dz76. Show dz76's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    My situation was a little different since I was having twins the second time but I did register again at BRU.  It started as a way to show my parents the cribs we wanted for the twins (DD1's was drop side and by the end of her time in it I definitely wouldn't have allowed a newborn in it).  However, remember that after your due date you get a coupon for something like 20% off anything on your registry.  So we put diaper and wipes and other non newborn stuff on it.  It also gave me somewhere to point people when they asked what we needed.  I did not have a second shower or a "sprinkling" as BRU called it.

     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from KAM2007. Show KAM2007's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    Winter-baby showers for the second ones are not very common. People will want to get you things, so I'd register for a few items. I had a work shower for DD (my second) and it was just easier on everyone to know what I wanted for clothes.

    I too saved DS's clothes and reused as many as I could. DD could easily sleep in blue pjs with no ill affect. :)

    Oh, and a baby book-never got around to doing DS! Just starting to write things down for him and I haven't started with DD...sigh.

    I was totally there in that same frame of mind as you. But now, almost 8 mo out of having DD, I can't imagine not having her here and DS really hasn't shown too many impacts. They adore each other! she cries and he comes running to check on her.

    Soon your mind will be consumed with both of your kids.
     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from lissafro. Show lissafro's posts

    Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...)

    In Response to Re: And baby makes 4 (or 5, or 6...):
    sometimes I "forget" I am pregnant until I crash into something.
    Posted by winter09wedding

     I have done this a few times around corners and knocking papers off desks and whatnot so far with this pregnancy but your statement reminded me of a HILARIOUS thing that happened when I was pregnant with my first.

    I teach high school English.  I was 9 months pregnant in a VERY rambunctious class of remedial English.  My kids were taking a cumulative vocabulary exam, a really big grade.  They were all silently focused and working, in tigh rows.  This was one of the once-in-a-blue-moon days where all the kids who struggle with focusing were doing what they should be doing and everyone was on-task and silent, panicked about this big exam.  I was walking around the room.  Once in a while a kid would raise a hand to ask a question and I'd go help.  Somehow, when one of the kids in a totally different row beckoned me over, I was so focused on getting there I kind of forgot I was pregnant and went to squeeze between the desks (the way I would normally when I"m my skinny, non-pregnant self) instead of walking to the front of the row and around. 
    I WHACKED one of my biggest troublemakers in the head with my belly.  I"m not talking grazed or brushed.  The side of my huge abdomen thunked against the side of his head/face/ear.  To make things worse, he didn't even see it coming because for once in his life he'd been focused on doing what he was supposed to be doing.  I could tell by his surprised look that for a few seconds he thought I'd whacked him with my hand and he was desperately trying to figure out what he'd done wrong and why I had hit him in the face.
    I can still remember what that awful thwack felt like on the side of my belly hahaha.  I"m sure I scarred that poor 15-yr-old boy for life.
     
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