When the First Child Becomes Jealous
When my firstborn, Kate, was just over a year old, I was surprised by a second pregnancy (a lovely surprise, but still). And my second daughter, Sara, was born five weeks early. I didn't feel like I had enough time to prepare for mothering two girls just two years apart. And although a lot of my friends now have two kids, when Sara was born, most of them were still only contemplating a second pregnancy, so I felt a little alone.
Everything started off fine, with my husband home from work and my in-laws and parents around to help. It was bittersweet but amazing to watch Kate -- who had been my baby just days earlier -- transform into my big girl. Plus, Sara slept most of the day, so I had quality time to spend with her older sister. I can do this, I thought gratefully.
But after a few weeks, it was like Sara suddenly woke up. And if you weren't holding her, was she mad! Putting her in the bouncer while I tried to read to Kate or take a shower was a nightmare; she'd scream and scream. Having to serve two kids at the same time was just one of the initial challenges of second-time motherhood. My friends and I have identified others here so what we learned can help you too! And here's some reassurance: Things keep getting better as Sara gets older. The girls are now 3 and 1, and I think I'm out of the thickest part of the woods!