Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Two Under Two: We Might Survive but not Without Massive Head Injuries

Guess what! I'm still pregnant. But, as promised, I have some great guest posters lined up for you. Rest assured, I'll be posting photos and updates on my bleeding nipples intermittently (I wouldn't want you guys to miss a thing), but to hold you over, I've got good collection of funny, heartwarming, and heartbreaking posts to keep your interest.


This first guest post is from Casey over at Half as Good as You, and I am so lucky to have here today. Her babes are about 16 months apart - mine are about 17. Her blog assures me that having children this close together is completely insane, exhausting, and ear-shattering but never dull and, if you have a good sense of humor and aren't afraid to laugh at a little baby shit in your eye, it can even be fun. So here is a little advice on parenting two from Casey. Oh, and Casey, if you think that 1,000 miles is going to keep me from taking you up on your babysitting offer, you are sadly mistaken.

I’m honored to be posting over here while Jenni is popping out her second kid. I feel like I should be simultaneously holding one of her legs and telling her to push while I type this sentence. I’m pretty sure Nelson has that area covered so I’ll stick to the blogging part since I’m sure Jenni will be more comfortable pushing if she knows someone is holding down the blogging fort. Hey, I’d even offer to watch Oscar if it would help but the commute to FL might be a tad much for the little guy to handle.

When Jenni asked me to guest post, she suggested I give advice on bringing home baby number two. I think I actually laughed out loud when I read that. You see, my kids are a week short of sixteen months apart. They’re currently seven and twenty-three months old and we’re BARELY surviving. I’ll give it a shot though, here are some thoughts on bringing home baby number two:

When I was pregnant with Elliot (my youngest), we noticed that my son Graham had somehow turned into a grabby, selfish clepto. He would cruise by and grab ANYTHING out of our hands and claim it for himself. I’m talking about things he never even cared about before, a shoe or a spoon, he NEEDED immediately because WE had it. As parents of an only child, we never thought twice about handing over said item because it didn’t make a difference to us if he held the spoon or not. Or so we thought. We knew that baby number two was coming soon so we devised a plan to teach our then fourteen month old to learn to share. We refused to hand over things he grabbed until he patiently asked to share. “No, Mommy is using the book, you need to wait your turn. Ok, I’m done with the book now, Mommy will SHARE the book with you.” We were super cheesy for months, SHARE SHARE SHARE was the only thing on the menu. They could have filmed a new and improved episode of Barney at our house except that instead of a big purple dinosaur, I played the part of huge pregnant sharing whale.

We were pretty damn proud of ourselves the first time Graham asked to share. His baby-talk pronunciation for share sounded more like “sha! sha!” and we were more than happy to oblige. We gave each other a pat on the back and went along our merry sharing ways. Things were great for awhile, Elliot was born and we brought her home into our cheery universe. Graham tried to “share” a few toys with his new sister by throwing them full speed at her head. I’m pretty sure he was aiming for her soft spot but we had to praise him for sharing at all. A few months later, Elliot (who survived the dive-bombing toys) learned to grasp her own toys and later crawl to objects of interest. This didn’t go over so well with Graham. Elliot frequently gets pushed to the ground and screamed at. We’ve had to relearn “share” to teach Graham not to steal from his poor sister.

These days Graham uses the magic word on command. The problem is that sharing is a one-way street with him. He marches up and DEMANDS that we share with him and then grabs the item from our hands. We are promptly greeted with a big fat NO when we ask him to share his toys with us or his sister. We continue to remind him to be nice to his sister and to share his toys. It’s a learning process, we’ll get there someday. So my advice to Jenni on easing baby number two into the household? Buy a helmet. You’ll thank me later.

21 comments:

Veronica said...

Maybe I'm lucky that all my efforts at TTC baby #2 really close to my daughter failed! Our's are going to be almost 2 and 5 months apart.

However, I'm still contemplating a helmet!

Keely said...

I think you need a helmet no matter how far apart they are, but you guys are just crazy.

Katie said...

A Helmet! I love it. It's fashionable AND good advice. You did a very nice job filling in, Casey! And good luck to Jenni & her new target, I mean baby.

Ray said...

Hi, Jenni. Welcome to the Sprout too! I wonder how the Oscarelli will respond...


*totally pretending Casey is not here* teeheehee

Cameron said...

Helmet....definitely a must. Maybe full body armor???

Sprite's Keeper said...

Helmut, huh? Sprite has a big head, so that may be an issue. Although with the way the economy is going, John won't let me have another until Sprite is old enough to babysit, so this sharing thing may have worked itself out by then.

HeatherPride said...

Sage advice! And I'm so glad someone else finds baby poop in the eye as funny as I do! (at least when it's someone else's eye)

Good luck on round 2!

kirsty815 said...

First Congrats on having a second! I'm constantly being bombarded with we should have another or I want a baby sister!

Hmmmm a helmet? I'll have to remember that. Meggers is six so if I decide to become pregnant again I think I'll need babysitting money..lol

Nice guest post! Wishing you a happy, healthy baby!

mrsbear said...

Buying a helmet is good advice. My kids are all between 3 and 4 years apart, none of them are too keen on sharing and most of them are way past the terrible twos.

crazylovescompany said...

I'm soaking this all in. Right now I need to go read something about how to deal with a spoiled puppy and a new baby.

Krystal said...

so now you tell me the thing about the helmet!! (you would think that after 5 kids, I would have gotten the hint to get a helmet for #6!)

Awesome post!! I think I will stick around to read a few posts in the archives.

beth said...

The big purple beast on TV did a really lousy job of teaching our children how to share. Perhaps, new Moms should refer to the Federal Government as they teach us all how 'to share our wealth'.

Petra a.k.a The Wise (*Young*) Mommy said...

I am a firm believer in the whole big age difference thing because mine are six years apart and they get along great and I only had one in diapers at a time. But more powe to the two of you for giving it a go at the double baby parenting thang!

Toni said...

Funny post!!! I love the Barney reference and the sharing whale. You did a great job of guest posting for your friend.

Baby Bunching said...

I checked in tonight hoping Jenni had that baby! Casey, glad to see you here, too. Hahahh...I love it. Yes, my kids were 10 days shy of 16 months apart and my oldest....wow, couldn't have cared less about the new baby until she started crawling. Although his favorite thing at first was to walk up to her while she was quietly sleeping in the swing and scream "ANNA" at the top of his lungs. One of the 15 words he could say. My Baby Bunching tip for bringing the baby home: Don't be fooled by the 2-weeks bliss of baby sleeping. Use it! Abuse it! At some point all hell will break lose so you have 2 weeks to rest up and get ready. Then the theme is....survival! Go get 'em!

Cara Fox said...

I second the full body armor comment. And really recommend that both children wear it into their teens. My boys are 17 months apart and while they're truly the best of friends, the personal injuries don't show any sign of letting up even though they are 3 and 4...

Good luck, Jenni! We can't wait to hear all about the adventures of Sprout!

Lola said...

I only have the one, thankfully, but my two nephews are about that far apart, and you better make sure it's a full-face helmet if they're any indication of what you're in for. Good luck, and congratulations!

Great guest post, Casey!

Becky said...

Great post. The helmet sounds about right. And good luck, Jenni!

Bug-N-Bee said...

Helmet, definitely.

Mine were about 22.5 months apart and we had a lot of the same issues. I don't think you really get a functional/helpful/sharing/interested big brother or sister until your first is about 4; at least that's what my friend noticed with her two who are four years apart.

steenky bee said...

Wait, I've never given birth, but please tell me that nipples do not really bleed. I'll be okay with it if it's because of the breastfeeding, but I think I'll lose it if it's absolutely anything else. Also, I'd like to think that Casey and are good enough friends that she would also hold my legs for me in whatever capacity.

Lisette said...

My little ones are 15 months apart. The first few months were hell! Especially because the little guy wouldn't sleep anywhere except on me! Since we got him sleeping in his bassinet (and then crib) at about 4 months old things have gotten better. Though I do have to say you have different problems as they get older. My daughter is almost 28 months old and the little guy just turned 1 last month. The biggest problems we have is my daughter pushes her little bro down (he's still a little bit wobbly - after all he just started walking 3 months ago), for which she goes right to the corner. The other problem she has is the whole sharing thing. Other than that they do pretty good together - for now!! LOL

Lisette
http://lisettelovesahm.blogspot.com/