And then there were two, 14 months apart…
Apart from facing my incredible fear of lack of control, having two babies 14 months apart has taught me a great deal. I couldn’t see the possibility of having the babies so close together. I’m an individual who likes to plan for tomorrow but what kept me going, was the good old saying ‘take each day as it comes’ and so I did.
After having Leela, I needed normality with the comfort of my home and surroundings. I have incredible parents who are always there for me and offer their unconditional support. However, I needed Roy and only Roy. We were completely overwhelmed of how chilled and relaxed our princess was, but we also understood Reeyan’s utter confusion. His second word after ‘dada’ was ‘baba’, he blurted it out when coming to visit us in hospital. I did my reading and learnt that when he would come to visit us, I should not be holding Leela, we placed her in the cot next to me. It was only the one night apart (which was long enough), but I also learnt that we had to make a huge deal of seeing Reeyan. So his dad headed out to buy some treats. I wasn’t able to really cuddle him as I would normally do due the stitches but I filled his face with kisses. He was mega excited to see us and it was the first time that he was actually only visiting, as he was to leave with his grandparents an hour later. I was heartbroken when he left.
I did everything possible to be discharged on the day after Leela was born. I was up and about, strengthening those stomach muscles and listening to the midwives’ every piece of advise. I was home that evening.
It is a fact, with your first born, you are wary of every minute thing. Whether it is visitors coming past 12pm or the type of poo he’s passing. You try to do everything by the book. How silly I was, how pedantic, how obsessed. I try justifying this obsession by reminding myself how fragile he was as a newborn.
The midwife caring for both Reeyan and I, described newborns and simplified life in one word, a harsh word;
“Parasitic” she explained. I thought I misheard, but no, a parasite was the term she used to describe a newborn human. An organism which lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by deriving nutrients at the other’s expense. I found myself understanding the concept.
Babies are resilient, they respond to change. Upon reflection, I think I refused to believe this. I was very conscious of the moment, of not upsetting the child, not letting them cry. Now we have two, Reeyan and Leela have been left to cry – A LOT. I am no goddess with multiple arms (which would be damn useful) but if one child is vocalizing their concern and the other decides to kick off too, I have to weigh up the problems. It goes by the following:
- Who is in the most discomfort?
- Can they wait?
- Who was the last to be fed?
- When did they last nap?
- Can they wait?
As one can imagine, the house is a noisy one. I have managed to train my ears to drown out certain cries. A cry of distress is recognizable as is a cry of attention. This comes in really handy when driving with two in the backseat. Until recently I was doing really well. Reeyan is displaying traditional signs of the ‘terrible twos’ and with added pressure of a five month old, with an increasing consciousness – I crumbled on the A40. I turned to look at a screaming Reeyan and yelled “Be quiet!!!”, turned back to the road and noticed that a funny shadow was covering part of the vision of my right eye. An aura, this was a precursor to the awful migraines I have suffered. “Great”. No good thing comes out of yelling.
Despite a few migraines and general tiredness, I have stayed on top if things. No, that’s a lie……I am just about managing, but aren’t all parents?