12 Things That Change With Baby Number 2
Article By: Crystal Bassler
The first baby is always difficult we don’t know what we’re doing, and we’re constantly making calls to our pediatricians after every little cough and sneeze. So, naturally when it comes to having baby number two most of us think, “been there done that, we knew what we are doing this time around,” but do we really? Having a baby can be stressful, to begin with, but having a baby and having another child (or maybe multiple children) on top of it can be way more stressful. We thought we were sleep deprived before? Well now, coffee is becoming our best friend. Suddenly everyday tasks like showering, shopping, cleaning, and cooking become that much more difficult.
Of course, there are also a lot of positive sides to having baby number two. For example, delivery (given there are no complications) is way easier the second time around. We’re not freaked out by the smallest cough or sneeze anymore, and we no longer look like overly paranoid parents. Our lives change greatly when we bring children into the world. The first time around we give up a lot, we become a whole new person, and we experience a love so strong that we didn’t know was even possible to feel. There are the ups and the downs, so let’s take a look at 12 of the things that change in our lives when we decide to introduce baby number 2 into the world.
“Do I really need breakfast?” Our priorities change when we have kids, suddenly showering is a treat we give ourselves after a long few days of baby spit up and dirty diapers. At least with baby number one, we could get a shower in during nap time, but with baby number two nap time does not matter because in that time we still need to tend to our other child.
Doing our hair and makeup before leaving the house is just not as important anymore, after all, we do have two kids to get dressed now and a diaper bag to pack. If the kids are clean and look good, then that is a win in my book! We may not get out with friends, go drinking, shower often, or look our best anymore, but that’s all ok because we have a new priority, which is taking care of our children, and as long as they are ok and happy then that is all that matters.
I only had one new baby, right? Then why has the laundry tripled! With baby number two, we may notice that there is way more laundry than before, like at least two loads every single day. Between the spit up and occasionally explosive diapers, not only does baby have a lot of wash to be done but so do we, seeing as how it somehow all ends up on us.
We end up changing shirts at least three times a day. We may find ourselves wishing we could just burn that mound of clothing and go buy new stuff because, let’s face it, who has the time to do all that wash on top of cleaning and catering to two little humans.
The stigma seems to be that when we have a baby we will never get any sleep, but honestly, with baby number one we can sleep during the baby’s nap time and it’s not all that bad. With baby number two, however, forget about it!
While your new baby naps peacefully in his or her room we need to be out taking care of our first born, and then when our first born is asleep for the night the baby needs to be up every few hours to eat. On top of that, they sometimes wake each other up and we might as well just keep that coffee pot running at all times because we’re gonna need it!
9. Getting Ready To Go Out
With one baby getting ready to leave the house was simple, well maybe not as simple as it was before kids, it was definitely more simple than it is now. When it comes to getting ourselves ready we just throw on whatever clothing is laying around. Forget brushing our hair, throw it up in a messy bun! However, when it comes to getting the kids ready, it can be super stressful.
We now have to pack the diaper bag, get our first born dressed, get the baby changed and dressed and depending on the age of our first born, get them dressed again (if they are in that undressing all the time phase) and, of course, pack extra clothing because everyone knows that the baby will need his or her clothing changed within an hour of being out anyway.
8. Forget Going Out To Eat, Better Order Delivery!
Everyone knows taking kids to a restaurant is difficult, children don’t like sitting in one place for too long and they start to get cranky and cry. Then they don’t want to eat their food. With a kid and a baby, it is even more impossible.
Our first born does not wanna sit still, the food is, of course, yucky, and the baby needs to held and fed and changed. Then there are the eye rolls of people who seem to think a crying baby is the worst thing in the world and how dare we ruin their night! So unless we have a babysitter, it is best just to put a call into our local pizza place.
7. First Born’s Attitude
We’ve talked about how our world changes when we have baby number two but it changes greatly for our first born as well. Suddenly our first born is no longer the center of attention and jealousy sets in. All of a sudden mommy and daddy are constantly holding and feeding a new person and it does not seem fair so the first born may start acting out to try to gain our attention.
As much as we may try to balance the time we spend between the two kids it is impossible as babies need so much attention and to be fed so often. All we as the parents can really do is try to get our first born to understand that we still love them.
I thought shopping was tough with just a toddler, always begging for candy and toys and then throwing a fit when they don’t get their way, but now I have a baby to shop with on top of it. How does one even fit two kids in a cart? I found myself having to get two carts; one for groceries and one for kids.
My husband would push one cart and I would have to push the other. It definitely isn’t easy. Dealing with a crying toddler that’s upset, he can’t have his favorite candy in the checkout line is one thing, but throw in a cranky baby who now needs a diaper change and a feeding, and we might as well find ourselves a grocery delivery chain.
5. The Diaper Bag
With our first born we always go way overboard packing the diaper bag, always making sure there are about 5 different outfits, a changing pad, wipes, diapers, pacifier, pacifier wipes, bottles, extra bottles, toys, and such. The second time around, throw in some diapers, wipes, and a bottle and we’re good to go!
We realized that the majority of the things we packed the first time around were pretty much pointless and never ended up being used, of course being overly prepared can be a good thing but I mean, come on, who wants to lug that ten pound bag around. When it comes down to it, babies really only need the essentials when going out, diapers, wipes, a change of clothes, and food. Everything else is unnecessary as babies typically just eat, poop, sleep, and repeat.
With baby number one we are paranoid about the baby coming into contact with germs! We are always telling people to make sure that they use hand sanitizer before touching our baby and making sure we wipe everything down with Lysol wipes. With baby number two we realize that it is impossible to avoid all of these things, our first born is probably scratching their butt and then hugging the baby and what the heck right, they have to build their immune system up somehow right?
Now, there are some things we still do like for instance, wiping down the grocery cart with a sanitizing wipe before setting baby inside, or washing our hands after handling certain things before having contact with our babies. We’re just not as crazy about it this time around.
When we gave birth to our first born child we all experienced a love that we never knew we could feel, and our hearts felt whole as we were overcome with this tremendous amount of love. With our second child, some of us might worry that we might not be able to love our second child as much as we love our first born and that we couldn’t possibly have much more love to give. Some parents may worry that the bond that they created with their first born could never be the same as with their second child.
Then there are some parents who feel the exact opposite and worry that having their second child will take away from the love and attention that they show to their first. That all changes the moment that we give birth to our second child, we once again experience that intense love and we realize that we love this child just as much as the first.
2. Doing The Deed
It was tough to find time to do the deed with one kid… well now it is almost impossible, really the only time that we can do it is when both kids are asleep but let’s be honest, both parents are so exhausted by that point, there’s no way it’s happening.
There will be special moments where the baby will take a nap and our first born watches tv, that we can sneak off and get it done quickly, but who are we kidding! It will never be the same as it was before kids. Maybe that is a good thing though, if we parents don’t have the time to do the deed then there is no time to make more babies! Which could be a good thing.
1. Our Bodies
Now, everyone knows that the human body changes a lot after having a child, but at least with the first one we are able to bounce back relatively fast and the stretch marks are not too horrible. With baby number two, however, the amount of extra skin from our stomachs stretching is plentiful, the stretch marks are like tiger stripes, and we probably have a few gray hairs by now.
With all of that said, our bodies are stronger, and no matter what anyone says those stretch marks and extra skin are proof of how strong and beautiful we really are. When it comes to our bodies and giving birth the first time around is hard, we go in blind not really knowing how to push, however the second time around our bodies are stronger, we know what to do and it is easier. It is truly amazing what our bodies are capable of and all of those stretch marks were well worth it.
Samantha is the author of "My Bipolar Mind: You're not alone," she is also a freelance writer, blogger, and mental health advocate who runs and manages her own mental health blog MyBipolarMind.com.