Wait. I think that title should have a question mark at the end – followed by an exclamation point:
“How to Balance Two Kids and Not Go Insane?!”
Because I have no idea. I’ve been asked often how different it is having two. My take: It is NONSTOP. If you read our “First 4 Weeks of Life” post, you already know what the new schedule is like. Guess what? Week 5, not so different. In fact, I see no “different” in the near future.
Before having two I heard people say, “Once you have 2 you might as well have 10.” Now, while I agree that having two can FEEL LIKE having 10, I really can’t imagine more than two, period. With two you have to divide and conquer already (if you’re lucky enough to have two parents – I have NO IDEA how my mom did it as a single mom with twins for many years). With more than two, I guess you just have to wish them all luck… Or pick your two favorites?
Come on, I think we humans have two hands for a reason – that’s all we can handle.
Now so far this post hasn’t been so helpful, but I DO have some learnings that I hope will pan out over time:
- Make Lists. Yes, I’m already a list-maker by nature, but I literally have a short list for each kid of key things I need to get done. For example, Ella = Tummy Time and Zoe = Bring 11 mini-pumpkins to school (don’t ask).
- Breathe. Lack of sleep can do many things to a person, but the first thing it’s done for me is zapped 98% of the very little patience I had already. So remembering to breathe has been mission critical.
- Ask for Help. I’m working on this one. I like to be independent and personally think I can do anything I put my mind to, which makes it REALLY HARD to ask for help…
- Make Another List. This week I started a list just for ME time. Blog, walk, yoga, read, something!
- Tell Them You Love Them, Often. Even though I can’t be with Zoe every minute of the day (which of course right now she’d prefer, and sometimes asks for…), I CAN remind her that I love her. And I can also remember at 2 am when Ella is a little less interested in sleep than I am that I need to look at her with love instead of frustration so she knows everything is ok. They are, as it turns out, still just kids ;)
- Appreciate the Little Things. To be fair, Ella has had several 4-hour stretches between feedings. That’s something at 5 weeks old! And Zoe drew a bat – AND wrote “MOM” all by herself:
We’ll see how it goes, and hopefully before I return to work I’ll have a better list of suggestions (or at least feel better about balancing everything by just living it). In the meantime, we’ll just keep doing the best we can, and seriously, we’re all ears for tips and suggestions.