It is just as difficult as I expected, but it gets better. And, faster than I expected.
It really does. Even with a child that is struggles with reflux and weight gain, it still gets better with each passing week.
I swore that two under two was something I would never experience. Now I have a double stroller jammed in my swagger wagon, two sizes of diapers stuffed in my purse, and two monitors in my bedroom providing surround sound grunting, whimpering and wailing.
I was terrified of the physical practical aspects of caring for two kiddos. Just exactly how do I maneuver an infant seat and a toddler in and out of a car in -20 wind chills (I've never coveted a garage so much)? How do I feed an infant while at the same time keep my toddler from falling off the side of the couch...flushing toys down the toilet... getting stuck behind the furniture he wedged himself between...
Not to mention, how do I shower? Cook dinner? Get sleep? And, finish A DISSERTATION??
You know what? It WAS as hard as I expected. BUT, it gets better. Toddlers and babies change so much faster than we imagine. Preston has (mostly) adjusted to the new regime, and I trust that Everett will eventually get used to this whole acid reflux thing and start sleeping better.
I was also terrified of the emotional aspects of having two tiny beings need SO much from me. My toddler talks. A LOT. And it can be exhausting. And, we all know that babies cry. Sometimes A LOT. And, that can be exhausting. Children need discipline, affirmation, education, and all these things that take so much emotional energy.
You know what? It WAS as emotionally difficult as I expected. BUT, it gets better.
Unlike the out of body experience I had when I first saw wrinkly, red newborn Preston, I felt an instant love for Everett. And it grows each day. My relationship with Preston grows as well, as he communicates more and more verbally, as his little personality takes shape and as I see him interact with his baby bro.
We have plenty of difficult moments, and baby Everett is HARD. Poor guy is only in the first percentile and barely eats because he is in pain. I'm not sure why God decided to give me a difficult baby when I'm already stretched so thin, but I trust that it will get better and I am thankful that his health issues are minor.
I WILL say that Preston seems SO much older now at 22 months than he did at 20 months when Everett was born, and so I can't help but think that spacing children a little further a part makes the transition a little smoother. But, as my mama said, God ordains when each of us is born for a reason. So, I suppose we as parents are just the vessels for that purpose...very, very tired vessels... :)
Preston learning to identify his feelings:
Everett learning to flail his limbs towards toys: