Tomorrow I might even try to wash some dishes, all productive-like.
December 14, 2012

As of yesterday evening, Evie has been earthside for five weeks.  FIVE WEEKS!  And the newborn fog that has been lingering around these parts is only now beginning to lift.

Charlotte is CONSTANTLY hanging onesies “up to dry” by clothespinning them to the drapes.

That parenting two children requires exponentially more effort, creativity, patience, and energy (currently on about half the sleep) is a reality that I was, frankly, unprepared for.  At least five million times over the past month, juggling both of my daughters and meeting their many, MANY needs has seemed impossible.  I have never felt more humbled, more exhausted, or more defeated.

But little by little things are getting easier.

And then, yesterday, the day that marked five weeks of a fatigue unlike any I have ever known before…things went…really well.  PERFECTLY, actually.  Things went perfectly.

Yesterday, I did not lose my temper or wind up in a battle of wills with Charlotte.  Not once.

We’ve been working on making monkey faces lately…

Yesterday, I focused on re-establishing our home rhythms.  And I (mostly) succeeded.

Yesterday, I took both of my girls to the library and it did not take any more time or effort than it used to taking only one child.

Yesterday, I expressed six ounces of milk, ran two loads of laundry, brushed my teeth, and showered before 8am.

Yesterday, I did not feel touched-out.  Even when I tandem-nursed my daughters in the afternoon.

Yesterday, I read to Charlotte for a full hour while nursing the baby.

Yesterday, I did not feel an overwhelming urge to pawn my children off on my husband and hole up in the back of the house for ten minutes of silence as soon as he arrived home from work.

Yesterday, I looked in the mirror and felt comfortable in my postpartum skin.

Yesterday, I managed to somehow go nearly the entire day without Evelyn reaching deathstar crying level.

Yesterday, I sang “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” at least ten times with Charlotte.  And I did not lose my patience.

Yesterday, I put Evie in the Didytai and set up Charlotte on her tricycle and we meandered through the neighborhood for over an hour.

Yesterday, I did not answer a single one of Charlotte’s endless “Why?” questions with “That’s just the way it is,” or “Because I’m your mother.”

In fact, when yesterday came to a close I was pretty damned proud of myself.  I nearly forgot to serve Charlotte lunch (oops) and we had to leave the library early because I left the diaper bag at home (oops) and I accidentally bonked Evelyn’s head against the doorjamb when I was bringing in the laundry (oops), but overall it was a really good day.

I’m really starting to enjoy this parenting-two business.

(But still wouldn’t turn down a few more hours of sleep.  Just saying.)

** Charlotte is three years and four months old.  Evie is five weeks old.

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  1. By Jill on December 14, 2012

    Congratulations…. always an inspiration Sarah!  It seriously is the small routines that make one feel human again, huh? Love it.

  2. By elizabeth Mackey on December 14, 2012

    Love Evelyn’s pretty hair :)

  3. By momiss on December 14, 2012

    And you didn’t even have an exploding diaper episode.  I remember when that happened with Charlotte and you had to take off your shirt.  That was one of the first posts I ever read and I so felt for you.  I also thought you handled it with panache.  lol
    So happy for you!

  4. By on December 14, 2012

    OMG, when I noticed that I’d left the diaper bag at home, THAT experience was the first thing I thought of!  I was terrified Evie would have an explosive diaper and I’d be done for.  Who makes that same stupid mistake twice?!

    Although at least this time I was wearing two shirts lol…

    But no, we managed to make it home without incident.  Whew!

  5. By on December 14, 2012

    I will be parenting-two in May, so I am learning all I can from your experiences!  Thank you for sharing!

  6. By on December 14, 2012

    I have a 3 yr old and 10 week old, and yesterday was not a good day for us. However, we have had a few really good days where I have felt super productive, not lost my cool with the 3-year-old, kept the 10-week-old fed and diapered and happy and yes, those day propel you onward. You will have more of them in the weeks to come.

    I’ve also adopted the mantra “am I a good-enough parent today?“ I’m not expecting as much and am finding I end the day so much more at peace…not needing my husband to come home and rescue us all. Good luck to you. Keep fighting the good fight. Hope you had a good day today!

  7. By on December 14, 2012

    At this point (12 weeks and 21 months) I consider it a good day if I make it through with both children clean and fed. A great day includes getting a load of washing or three and the dishes done. An exceptional day means my house is in a state I would find acceptable to visitors haha.

  8. By Karen on December 15, 2012

    While I am expecting it to be incredibly difficult to balance the needs of two children when my baby comes, I know there is no way I can fully prepare myself for the reality.I appreciate you posting about both your struggles and successes. When our turn rolls around I will remember that I am not alone in the experience!

  9. By on December 17, 2012

    It’s such a relief to hear you say all those things. Every time I see a Mom of 2+ kids, they always look so “together” and relaxed. I felt completely inadequate for a long time. Like you, things settled and mellowed out a bit, but every now and then, I feel like I’m losing it… AND James is at daycare 5 days a week! Alone at home with Claire isn’t too bad (despite all the racket in the basement), but when the two of them are here, it can get pretty hectic. I have SO MUCH respect for SAHMs and families of multiple children or single parents, etc. This is much harder than I ever imagined it would be.

  10. By Crystal on December 18, 2012

    Newborn fog! What a great way to describe it. It’s been twelve months this time around since I have been in “that” fog. Sounds like you are taking all the right steps to regain some of your normal routine while taking into consideration ways in which it has changed forever. Good for you! :)





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