Now that Albina is almost 6 months old, I am really beginning to feel like I’ve got this parenting of two little ones under control (most days). Not that things aren’t changing constantly - because they are - but that I can finally just be okay with making mistakes and just trying to do the right thing in the future.
With that in mind, here are 5 things I have learned so far.
1. They are Individuals. Everyone will say this, but I often find myself comparing Oliver’s milestones to Albina’s. Oliver had 6 teeth at 6 months. Albina still has none. I just need to love and appreciate this short time before Albina is a toddler running around like her brother.
2. Special Toys for Oliver. Most days Oliver doesn’t get jealous when I am breastfeeding Bina, but somedays he needs a distraction (as opposed to climbing onto the kitchen table with silverware screaming at the top of his lungs). We have some “specials” that we only play with while I am feeding Bina. And sometimes when I just need 15 minutes. We have a special puzzle with large pieces, Duplos, Mr. Potato Head Party, Stackers, and sometimes I break out the craft supplies.
Oliver playing with his train table, which we store under his bed. Sometimes he crawls under to play with it instead of pulling it out.
3. Food in Shapes. Oliver has taken to controlling what he eats. Some days he will try anything and eat everything. Other days he won’t eat at all. I have found that if I cut his food into shapes he likes he is more likely to eat it. I especially like vegetable cutters and sandwich cutters. Oliver really loves planes and stars.
4. Babywearing. Babywearing has been the key to my sanity. I worre Oliver a lot as a baby in a Bjorn, then a Boba, and sometimes a Kelty for hiking. With Albina I wore a ring sling, an Ergo, and now a Tula. Being able to cook, walk, and go on with life with my little ones near me has made life so much easier, especially when having to chase after a toddler. Some days I wear Bina, some days Oliver, and even some days both. When at the park it is so easy to chase and play with Oliver while having free arms. At the zoo I wear Albina on the front, wear Oliver’s carrier on my back, then chase Oliver all around the zoo until he’s tired, then wear him on my back to the car.
Wearing the Tula I got for Christmas.
Being apart of a babywearing group here in Southern California has helped my journey. Not only has babywearing helped me out in a practical sense of juggling two little ones, its helped all of us bond, too.
Tandem wearing through the airport.
I wore Oliver all the way up until a few days before giving birth to Bina!
5. There is Always Tomorrow. There are really good days, and really awful days, most days are somewhere in between. But at the end of the day, when I check in on my sleeping little ones, I feel so fortunate to have them in my life. No matter how bad our day was, how many tantrums or parenting mistakes I made - tomorrow is a fresh start for all of us. Somedays all the housework gets done (and somedays it doesn’t), somedays we go on adventures, somedays we chase, run, draw, scream, fight, and somedays we just snuggle. Somedays one day isn’t enough, and somedays go one forever. But no matter what, tomorrow is a fresh start.
Time feels like I am in fast forward, and I have so much more to learn. I feel so lucky to have such awesome little comrades with me on this journey.