The Second Baby – One Month In
It’s been over a month since Allegra was born and though we’re in the middle of planning to move and all that, we’ve gotten into our routine, a pretty decent one I think. I posted on Instagram and Facebook, asking if anyone of you had any questions and the response was overwhelming….ly small 😉 None the less, I will address the questions here as well.
First of all, and this was the biggest surprise… it’s incredible how different two kids can be right from birth. I mean, everything! Ean liked to be held, Allegra wants to be left alone mostly. He didn’t like to sleep, she loves it. He liked to sleep on his back, she loves to hang like a monkey on my forearm belly down. He was very interactive, she’s pensive and reserved. He loved to be naked and free, she wants pillows piled ontop of her when she sleeps. I can go on and on and they are not similar in any way, they even have different colored eyes!
Ana’s recovery went very quick this time. With the experience from the first delivery, the added confidence and more confident defiance of doctors recommendations she was out of the hospital and picking up Ean from school the very next day. The baby weight is off, not that I give a what about that but I hear that’s a big subject among the ladies. One advice I can give you, breastfeed! It is insane how many calories are burned to churn that gold out.
Anyway, back to Allegra. The girl sleeps, and sleeeeeeps. At birth she was sleeping around 20 hours per day, now it’s maybe a bit less, but yeah she sleeps long and hard so sleep deprivation hasn’t really been as much of an issue this time around. Timewise, since Ana loves to sleep and I hate it (I only want the required minimum and then I want to do stuff) we split the day. Ana has her afternoon siesta together with her and takes the night shift, thankfully she just wakes up to feed and goes right back to sleep. At 6 or 7 am I take over, which usually just means holding and cozying with her a bit until she falls asleep again and the new day starts. Once she’s a little bit older she’s definitely coming out for the morning jogs with Ean!
One of the questions I got, and honestly it was the thing I was the most curious about. Is it twice as hard to have two kids? The simple answer is, NO. Obviously it depends on the kids in question, how they are raised, how they are and how YOU and your partner are. Having the first one is definitely the biggest challenge. Everything is the first time and it’s scary as hell. I was so afraid to make mistakes that I was reading and studying like it was the most important test of my life (isn’t it though???). With Allegra I already knew my skills and limitations and those of Ana. We work seamlessly, supporting each others weaknesses and taking on the respective responsibilities based on our strengths to make sure we compliment each other.
Ean has been a king throughout all this. Mind you, I’ve been “programming” him since before Ana got pregnant. I teach strong family values, the importance of loyalty and compassion for others. I think because I made him a part of the process, he loved the whole experience. From conception, I was showing him how the baby was growing, what was happening every week, all while showing him photos and videos from his first years, weaving a web between this experience and when he himself was created. It was so wonderful to see that love growing in him, culminating in the proudest and most protective brother you could imagine. Since Allegra was born I’ve been very careful not to push him aside, to give him plenty of time and preference to compensate for the thousand “ssssssh, she’s sleeping” and “be careful, she’s just a baby!”.We watch a lot of videos from when he was smaller and I think by doing that and seeing in real time what it’s like to see a human grow, you develop an empathy for this new helpless being. It helps too that neither one of us is working right now so we have a lot of time to give, not to mention abuelos visiting almost every weekend.
Oh you have no idea, I could write a whole book on my analysis, strategies and over-calculated planning when it comes to the two of them. It’s not something I try to do, that’s how I am, I love optimising everything. I think that’s why I can’t make friends with grownups ha ha, they have their own developed “operating systems” so to speak.
So about me and Ana. Yes I would say we have everything under control, mainly because both of us, in our way, are control freaks. I of the mind and soul, she of the practical things. Do we argue? Oh yes, on a regular basis, but that’s how you optimize. You report bugs in the system and try to squash them. I would say we argue at least once or twice a week, sometimes a lot more than that. But, always a but… it’s important to distinguish what arguing means. We don’t yell and shout, we don’t throw cheap shots and shit on each other and we certainly don’t hold a grudge. We disagree, a lot. We dissect things in ways that most people probably wouldn’t but I feel it’s important to understand the underlying reason for everything because while it can sometimes be an actual big conflict, sometimes you’re just pissed off because it’s really hot, you’ve been sweating for the past 12 hours and you feel like you can’t breath… and when I say you, I mean me, that’s typically me.
We are a good team, for sure. I think it has to do with the fact that we are so different from each other, but we both recognize each others genius for what we’re really good at and allow each other space to make decisions about things we’re really good at. I basically decide anything and everything in relation to psychology, discipline, health, food and behavioural things . She deals with planning, packing, organizing, purchases, paperwork and social life. Ultimately we both try to really listen to each others needs and squash as much as possible of personal ego in favor of the greater good.