Thursday, August 15, 2019

Adjusting to Life With Two Kids

Jack is exactly one week old today.  That means seven days of being a parent to two children.  When I stop to think about it, it seems like time has stood slow but gone by so fast at the same time.  

When Jack was born, I had the comfort of being in the hospital with nurses at my disposal to ask anything to.  I was healing from a c-section while my mom and husband cared for Scarlett at home. It was just me and the baby in the hospital room and he slept the majority of the day.  While I cared for him during the day, I sent him to the nursery at night so I could get some rest.

Once it was time to go home, everything seemed a little more overwhelming.  Scarlett was used to being the only child for almost 5 years now, and we were so past the newborn and baby stage.  I was concerned at how I was going to manage taking care of a new baby around the clock while making time for my older child.  Not to mention maintaining the life that I was used to with time to myself since she is self-sufficient to an extent. 

I'm not going to lie, the first night was extremely rough.  Scarlett has been sleeping through the night since she's 6 months old.  It's very rare that Jay and I have a bad night's sleep and we are very blessed with feeling well-rested.  We were up for hours that Monday night and had no idea what to expect in terms of how Jack would do.  There were stretches where he slept, but he made a lot of noises and you're on high alert from that.  The day was hard for me and I questioned if I could do this for weeks on end, or however long it takes him to sleep through the night.  

The following days were much better and things continue to improve as we learn what works and doesn't work, and how to follow Jack's cues.  He's a very very sweet baby and loves to be held and have his head rubbed.  I think he's also a big fan of kisses and hugs too! We are lucky that he eats every 3.5-4 hours and is content to just sleep in the swing during the day.  I'm trying to establish a night-time routine for him even though he's young.  He has a bath every night and I try to not swaddle him as much during the day so he learns the difference between night and day.

Scarlett is very good with him and is concerned when he cries and making sure he's okay.  She understands he's very little and she has to be gentle with him.  She's having a blast being at summer camp this week and it's given us some one-on-one time with him which helps. 

I definitely notice the transition period with her accepting and adjusting a new baby.  There are times where she's been whiny or said things that weren't the nicest, but it's a work in progress.  We're trying to be patient with her and understand that accepting a new brother takes time.  Although we're not letting her get away with bad behavior!

My main focus is making sure that Scarlett has one-on-one time with Jay or myself.  Whether I play Mr. Potato Head with her while the baby sleeps, or just drawing with her at the kitchen table in-between bottle feeds.  It's mandatory that she knows that she is still important and loved just as much as the baby is.  She responds well to this special time and I know it means a lot to her.  I have to let some things go like obsessing that my house isn't clean enough or maybe I won't be able to fold the laundry as soon as it's done.  

Everyday I'm learning more and more and I know in time I'll feel more confident.  These early days are all about learning and growing and making sure I'm doing my best.  I can't wait to see what the future holds for my family. :)

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