I'm 5 weeks into having 2 and honestly it has been MUCH easier than 0 to 1. The most difficult thing is balancing time between the two. Each day gets a little easier though and you just kind of learn as you go how to do it.
My toddler had a couple weeks where his listening tanked and he was quite a handful. However, he is adjusting now too and so that is getting better. We haven't had any jealousy with the baby but I stay very diligent to make sure he gets one on one time with me as well.
I tried to be forgiving of myself with watching extra shows and things like that. When the baby was clusterfeeding during the day, there was a lot of things I couldn't do (like chase DS around the house). So we spent a little bit having more movie days. Now that the baby is falling into more of a routine it's a lot easier on that front and we are doing more of our usual play activities. I'm also taking advantage of out of the house activities (storytime at library, going for walks on nice days etc). Keeps the cabin fever at bay.
I found 0 to 1 incredibly hard. DS was glued to my hip and I had literally zero time to myself. Everything completely changed. 1 to 2 though is an adjustment of course, but you know more what to expect and hasn't felt like a shock. My oldest was a terrible sleeper (awesome now) so I was prepared for a repeat. However, so far DS2 is an amazing sleeper and has made things go smoother. It's nice because he goes to bed and I usually get some time at night to myself. There is also usually an hour or so in the afternoon where their naps overlap and I can get laundry done, prep dinner, watch YouTube, sleep....
Big lifesaver has been baby wearing and would DEFINITELY recommend having a sling, wrap, carrier, SOMETHING because it makes things like cooking dinner or grocery shopping possible most days around here
I was terrified of how things will go but I have been pleasantly surprised that it hasn't been hard. Now I'm thinking of a third because it's been so good so far lol
If you have any specific questions feel free to ask...It's taken me over 30 minutes to write this (it does take FOREVER to get things done these days) and kept losing my train of thought. So I'm sure I've forgotten things
ETA- our boys are just under a 3 year gap. I don't think I could do any less of a gap than what we have in our case. If you have a more hands on LO, I would suggest a bigger gap than smaller
It really depends on your situation and the personalities of the los.
But we have 21 months between our two and for us going from 0-1 went well but going from 1-2 was not easy. And I looovve them to death and they are so amazing together. It fills me with joy to see them together and we got very lucky with how they get along for which I am very grateful. It is beautiful.
Having said that I would not be super keen to repeat this age gap and wud not necessarily very proactively recommend it if someone were to ask me.
Tho it can't have been too bad because tbh I am hoping to convince dh to have a fourth when the time comes (3 dh already agrees with) with another small age gap 🙈☺️. I know it wud likely be difficult again but I am hoping dc3 and dc4 will have eachother like ds1 and ds2 would. And for that possibility it wud be worth it for me. Now I only have to convince dh 😇
But for now we are planning on trying for no. 3 with a bit of a bigger gap which I hope wud be easier.
I do have to say that our decision and this being a difficult adjustment is partly because ds1 is such an easygoing little guy and ds2 is kinda spirited (which we loovve but can be hard work) as well as a really bad sleeper (still at 1 year 7 months 😵. So that is very specific to our situation
Anyway just go with what you both feel is right for you and ur family!
I have a 6-year-old girl and a soon to be 3-year-old boy and I work full time outside of the home. I didn't find adjusting to the actual caretaking responsibilities to overly that taxing. My boy was a great sleeper and so we could still give our girl the attention she needed while he slept. It is a lot more juggling, but you adapt and after time it doesn't feel like more actual work than one kid.
The hardest thing though, and one I totally underestimated, was the cost factor. Daycare costs for two are exorbitant. Even now that my girl is in Kindergarten, we're having to spend more on activities, day camps, school projects, field trips, etc. Even though it doesn't cost anywhere near what daycare cost for my daughter, we're still spending a lot.
Being able to stay-at-home or have a relative look after your kids helps but I think kids are going to be expensive no matter what. It's easy to say before you have them that your kids are not going to do XYZ project and won't get ABC toy, but that can be hard if all your kids peers are in those types of activities.
We're still hoping to add one more to our family, even with the extra cost and time though. It's all about your personal preferences in the end. Some people like to be able to focus all their attention and money on one child. Others don't mind the constant juggling and budgeting you have to do with more than one. Three would be our absolute max.
Since my LO is still a newborn he just sleeps wherever we are during the morning. He sleeps right through whatever noise my toddler makes which is nice. Usually he will nurse while DS1 plays next to us/we play a game/watch a show or something together.Baby falls asleep best when moving so once hes done eating I'll just carry him around (or put in carrier) until he's out. Then put him in his bouncer chair to snooze. All of that is while DS1 is right there with me going about normal activities.
The afternoon is easier because my oldest is also sleeping. I take the baby in my oldest's room in the bouncer chair while we do our naptime routine. If he starts fussing i'll put him on my lap but try to time it so we do nap while the baby is happy. Gives me snuggle time with the toddler while reading books which we both really love. Once we are done getting my oldest to sleep I'll have some play/snuggle time with the baby. Get him down and usually have an hour before DS1 will wake up...we get an hour or so before the baby is up. He doesnt go back down until after the oldest is in bed. So far it all runs fairly smoothly.
Once the baby is sleeping consistent naps I'll start putting him in his bed in the morning (he already is there in the afternoon). I'll let my toddler in the room while I put the baby down. Figure we can all read books together like we do in the afternoon. Im hoping it actually works once we get to that point Really, whatever routine you set will work. The important thing is consistency so your oldest will know what to expect during certain times (feedings, naps, diaper changes etc)
Right now the baby sleeps in my room so there is no waking the older one up. Thats something Im worried about when the baby moves to his own room as my oldest is a lighter sleeper (they will shatre a wall). Will just have to be something he gets used to. The baby sleeps through all of DS1s play and noise. I dont make him stay quiet during naps or anything. Baby got used to the noise while in utero and I really think it prepared him for life on the outside.
No experience yet because we are just pregnant with our second now, but I think what helped me to figure out what was right for us was thinking about what it was that I found to be hard in the beginning and whether that would likely be easier or harder now that we had the experience of doing it once. For me, feeding was a struggle, but I feel a lot more confident about that now and know where to get help when I didn't before, and also just the shift to never having time to ourselves, never being able to leave the house or get a break from being parents 24/7. We're now very adjusted to that and we know we don't get time to ourselves frankly, and we're used to the routine that life is fallen in to as parents, so I expect that will be not quite as much of a shock next time around.
That said, I wouldn't necessarily feel like you absolutely need to know what you feel ready for yet as your baby is still so small. I actually found the hardest part was from about 8 months until closer to 2. Though we had a high needs baby and were up quite a bit during the night and not getting much sleep and not being able to put her down much, early toddlerhood was by far the most challenging bit once she was mobile and had more of a will of her own! So I think if you don't 100% know yet if/when you'll feel ready, give it some time and re-assess in a bit. We always knew we wanted 2, but I definitely did not under any circumstances actually feel like I wanted and was ready for a second right now until our daughter was about 3.
That said, nearly all my friends who have had their second (and that's most of them because we'll have a 4.5 year age gap) said the second was definitely easier than the first because it just clicked into the rhythm of family life that was already there.
My husband really wants a close age gap. I think I would prefer a few years. Money in definitely a concern regardless of age gap too.
What does your older child while you're trying to get the baby to nap? Do they wake each other up during naps and at night?
There are 3 years and 3 months between my two kids. When my youngest was a baby, my daughter was old enough at 3 years old to where she was able to keep herself occupied long enough for me to tend to the baby's needs. At 3 they're usually independent enough to do easy stuff for themselves and are able to be patient enough to wait a few minutes for that glass of water or whatever it is that they need.
With a smaller gap, I think I would have had to put my baby in swing or baby bjorn and tend to the toddler. Both of my kids at 2 years old were not independent or mature enough to play alone for any length of time. They wanted what they wanted right then and weren't able to wait.
A lot of it also depends on your kids' personalities, but it is pretty easy to find a way to make it work no matter the circumstances.
Any opinions, advice, statements or other information expressed or made available on BabyandBump.Momtastic.com by users or third parties, including but not limited to bloggers, are solely those of the respective user or other third party. They do not reflect the opinions of BabyandBump.Momtastic.com and they have not been reviewed by a physician, psychologist or parenting expert or any member of the BabyandBump.Momtastic.com staff for accuracy, balance or objectivity. Content and other information presented on BabyandBump.Momtastic.com are not a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, counseling, diagnosis, or treatment. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical or mental health advice from your physician or other qualified health provider because of something you have read on BabyandBump.Momtastic.com. BabyandBump.Momtastic.com does not endorse any opinion, advice, statement, product, service or treatment made available on the website. If you think you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or emergency services immediately.