Having another baby 7 years after my first put me in panic mode because everyone around me said my first baby would be jealous. He always wanted a sibling but I was fretting. I didn’t know how I was going to divide my time. I hoped I wouldn’t get caught up with the new baby and neglect my older one. Also, I knew I couldn’t handle having 2 babies at the same time. Baby 1 was going to have to grow up faster than either of us had planned. I knew some adjustments had to be made but I had to be really careful to avoid any sort of friction. I know so many homes with intense sibling rivalry that begun at infancy. So I hope this article helps mothers with one kid planning to have second kid.
The first thing I did was to break the news to my son.
DON’T HIDE THE COMING OF THE SECOND BABY – I called him, sat him on my knee and told him he’s going to be a big brother. He was more interested in the sex of the baby than anything else. When I told him I couldn’t tell him yet, he just said okay and went back to what he was doing. In my mind I was thinking, wait…what just happened? But I let it slide. I didn’t talk about it again till I started showing and feeling tremors. Then I’d put his hand on my belly and say “oh look that’s the baby’s head” I tried my best to build some excitement and anticipation. It worked a bit. After that, I’d be sleeping and he’d just come touch my belly and suffocate me with a barrage of questions.
EMPHASISE THE IMPORTANCE OF HIS ROLE – When we found out we were having a girl and I told my son, he was a bit disappointed. He had been expecting a brother to do brother stuff with. I was super excited though, I didn’t have any sisters just brothers, so for me, it was a new experience. I wasn’t about to let my little man know that. I told him our unborn baby was lucky to have him as a brother because he was the absolute best. And I let him know he was going to protect her and take care of her. That was when he decided he would be a superhero in future, Super kid, Brother Protector.
INDEPENDENT BATHING – This was one of my major challenges. I was still bathing my son at 6. I didn’t have any issue with it but with a bun in the oven, I needed as much free time as I could squeeze out so I started teaching him how to bathe himself just before the second child was born. Huge relief I tell you.
SNACK MAKING – New mothers know how important that daytime nap is. It’s like the only time you can squeeze in for yourself. Everyone else is out of the house so it’s just you and baby who is probably sleeping. When one other little human wakes you up because he wants to eat, it can get a bit frustrating. I put all the things my son needs to make himself a snack within reach, bread and chocolate, cereals, beverages, etc He goes to the kitchen and sorts himself out.
MUMMYS LITTLE HELPER – letting him know where all her (second child) essentials were was very important, diapers, wipes, socks, bibs, etc. He helps me get those things when my hands are super busy. Plus, he’s perfecting his diaper changing skills. I let him watch me do certain things so he can help out on occasion and feel involved. My son and I have always been really close and all I did was make our circle wider to accommodate our new baby. I was apprehensive, I didn’t know how he was going to take it but I needn’t have worried, he is awesome and I’m so proud of his maturity.
Ms Ssygala, is the mother of two rambunctious kids and blogging is her last line to sanity
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