Well, we’ve been home for 7 days now. It is both harder and easier than I thought it would be. The first few days were pretty hard. Arlie had a really hard time and was acting out a lot. Plus, my sister came to visit with her husband and son and they ended up taking Arlie with them for a lot of adventures. This was helpful, but it also resulted in Arlie being really awful for about 48 hours. She was exhausted while they were here, but when they left and we tried to settle into our new normal, she was really difficult. Her cousin is exactly one year older than her and he is way less well behaved than her. I love him, but my sister and I parent very differently and I feel like she picked up some bad habits from him. It has taken us a couple of days, but I feel like she is back to normal.
Tate is pretty easy. He is calm and he sleeps a lot right now. His only real requirements are to be held sometimes, fed when he is hungry, and changed when he is wet or dirty. He is content being swaddled (with one arm out) and laid down somewhere. Today is the first day that I am home alone with both kids and it is going ok. Up until today, someone was always holding Tate because there was always two of us around. But he seems fine with just being warm and at least in a room with everyone else.
The biggest adjustment so far has been the sleeping situation. When I got home from the hospital, we sidecared the crib to my side of the bed. There was still a small gap between the edge of the crib mattress and the bed, so I made the decision to have Arlie in the crib next to me and Tate in the middle of the bed. The first two nights were a little rough on Arlie but nothing too bad. She seems to really like having her own space and she is sleeping well again. M and I are both a little sad about this because we both love cuddling with her so much, but in reality it was going to happen soon anyway. Hopefully when Tate is a little bigger we can give her the option of coming back into the big bed, or she can stay in her own bed. She’s doing really well with naps too because we figured out that if we just go upstairs for the naps and have her in either the big bed or her own bed, she falls asleep quickly and stays asleep.
Tate seems much more mellow than Arlie. The weird thing is that I really thought Arlie was an easy baby, but he is way more laid back than her. He cries way less than she did and he just seems so much calmer. The first four nights at home, he slept really well. The last few nights have been a little rough. He seems to get more gas at night and is much more cranky about the feedings. Plus, I have a wicked let down and I think that this pisses him off a little. I have been pooped on and peed on a few times so far and that has been kind of rough. Boy parts are a little different and I am learning quickly. He isn’t a huge fan of having his diaper changed so I have learned to do them at warp speed. I’m happy that his umbilical cord has fallen off because that is one less thing to worry about.
So overall, it is going ok. I am tired, that’s for sure. I would like to be able to sleep about two more hours at night (I feel like this is a reasonable request… Maybe Tate will acquiesce) but it is no where as bad as it was with Arlie. I think this has to do with a confidence thing, but also with Tate’s overall demeanor. I’m no where close to as scared as I was with Arlie. I remember being completely overwhelmed with Arlie. Constantly freaking out about everything. I just don’t have time to freak out this time around. Plus, I have a much better idea of what is normal and not this time around.
I have 9 weeks of leave left so I am hoping that I can get a good schedule set in the next week or so. I am also trying to figure out how to successfully go out in public with two kids. It is way harder than I thought it would be. I decided against getting a double stroller and I totally regret making that decision. I ordered one yesterday so hopefully this will combat the difficulty of going out with both of them on my own. I also need to figure out what my schedule will be for the kids once I go back to work. I am not comfortable leaving my little man with the baby sitter yet, so I think he will be with my mom most of the time and maybe after the first of the year, he can be on the same schedule as Arlie. We will see I guess.