Monthly Archives: January 2014

Survival Mode

Today is baby boy‘s one month birthday!  We’ve made it.  Sometimes I feel by the skin of our teeth.  (That’s an expression, right?)

The ups and downs of having a newborn have reappeared, but having a toddler to care for adds an extra special dose of crazy to the mix.  I never imagined the guilt I would feel about having to split my attention between My Girl and My Bear.  I have sobbed thinking about this and have teared up watching my daughter throw a tantrum saying “No feed brudder!”  I never imagined I would lose it in front of my daughter for the first time.  I did when taking a solo road trip with both kiddos for the unexpected death of my grandfather.  I never imagined I would miss Christmas morning.  I did when My Bear was readmitted to the hospital for severe jaundice and I sobbed and sobbed about having to celebrate on the 26th.

Those are the emotional aspects of life with two; the physical craziness is there too.  Running on (hopefully) four hours of sleep every night for a month while trying to keep up with a non-napping, early-rising toddler has left me utterly exhausted.  We are eating too much processed food.  My Girl is watching too much TV.  My house is a cluster of dog hair and dirty laundry.  We are in Survival Mode.

But the upside to the second time around?  I know this is temporary.  I know I will eventually get to actually sleep instead of taking glorified naps.  I know My Bear will begin smiling and acknowledging my presence.  I know he and My Girl are going to be the best of friends and the sadness over “feeding brudder” will pass.  I know this Survival Mode is just a fleeting phase, like newborn snuggles and sweet size one diapers.

This perspective is a gift allowed to those who have already earned their first mom badge.  It is hard-earned and well-deserved.  And it is the one thing that keeps me going when 5am rolls around and I’m nursing my sweet newborn when my toddler begins calling for me.  And I think, bittersweetly, “This too shall pass.”