I’m not sure if it’s amnesia, but sometimes I feel like having the second child has been quite a big change to get used to, more so than having the first child. It doesn’t quite make sense, because a baby would change any couple’s life dramatically, and a second one shouldn’t make much of a difference.
Let me illustrate. You’d imagine that there would be economies of scale, and to some degree, with perhaps material goods such as clothing, (provided that you had the same sex child the second time around) or toys. But having 2 is also means 2x:
- sleepless nights (trust me, they can go at it one after another)
- expenses in outings, meals, etc. not to mention enrichment classes! Although, with 2 you might not even have time to take the second one for parent accompanied classes, so you might be saving there.
- resources (like milk bottles and washing of milk bottles)
- trouble looking for caregivers (1 most people can handle, 2 is another ball game altogether)
- less of “me” time, see above point on caregivers, and even if you can find a caregiver, there’s just so much to do and so little time.
I think the last point is what I’ve found most difficult to get used to, although my ILs are great at helping out, I feel really bad dumping 2 with them, although it’s necessary for my sanity from time to time. (Usually I try to do so mid afternoon, after E has been put down for his nap, which can last for 2-3 hours.)
And now that I’m not working, I don’t feel like I’m enjoying the freedom of not working because every day is just so darn busy. I haven’t had any time to go for a single yoga class, and suddenly, for the first time since I had E, I really started to envy couples who didn’t have any children. Couples who have a lot of couple time, go on lovely holidays, or who can spontaneously take off for some drinks or shopping or dinner. I am sometimes even wistful of those dating days when everything is so new and exciting and carefree.
Of course it’s not that I don’t love the boys and our family, but I think everyone needs some time to do the things that they love, whether it’s a little exercise (and everyone needs some, to keep healthy right?) or a hobby, or just some time to breathe. And it’s not just hobbies – I’ve also been meaning to help the hubbs with his work, but just not had much time to get down to it.
I keep having to remind myself that God only gives us what he thinks we can handle, although I do sometimes wonder if that applies to those who can afford nannies and maids by the truckloads.
Anyhow, I think I am slowly settling in into the routine and the demands of having 2 monsters, and given that there’s going to be school holidays soon and we’re still at the ILs most of the time, I’m going to take the chance to slip out for more me time while I still can. Here’s to staying positive and getting through the tough times. Only 15 more years to go, woohoo! Heh.