Forget About the Labor Pains, It's All About the Boobs and "Me-Time"
So today, as participants in this great online Baby Shower for Christina, Liz and Tammie, I’ve been assigned to give my full blown, best-ever, rockin’ good parenting ass-vice. Considering that the day before I gave birth to my first son 5 ½ years ago, I was hell bent on him never touching a drop of formula, getting anywhere near a pacifier, playing with nothing but hemp-weaved stuffed animals and wearing organic cotton onesies, I say this to the first-timer, Tammie: never say never. My biggest, earth shattering, hit me over the head, moment of parenting came soon after my first baby was born and he wanted to eat. After my rocky boobs were about to explode in a sorry-ass effort to try and breastfeed, I stared long and hard at the six pack of ready–made formula that landed on our doorstep unsolicited just days before in the mail. Somehow, the marketing experts at Procter and Gamble knew that soon after the baby was home I would cave, after a bumbling attempt to get my newborn baby to latch onto a crusty, bleeding nipple to no avail. Damn those marketers. And I continued to damn them as my hungry baby sucked every last drop from the tiny glass bottle of formula, and promptly drifted off to dreamland….finally. Damn those boobs. Damn those marketers. Wasn’t it all part of their master plan? (muhahahahaha).
But alas, I discovered what I called the best invention since sliced bread (or at least automatic windows): the breast pump! And so I duly pumped away and relieved my achy boobs every 3 hours. Thinking I had outsmarted those marketers at P&G, I felt satisfied in knowing that I at least was giving him my breast milk, if not in the traditional way. And this naïve, unsuspecting attitude when on for, I’d say, oh, about…..2 weeks. Until a funny thing happened. The baby needed more to eat. And more. And more. Lest these boobs became insufficient vendors to a growing baby. And we all know what comes next in this story. Back to the formula. And the whole breastfeeding towel was thrown in when he was about 2 ½ months old, as he was sucking gleefully on his pacifier, sleeping soundly in his mass-produced carter's pajamas, clutching his furry, mass-produced stuff animal.
So Tammie, my ass-vice is this: get your ass to a La Leche League meeting pronto if you have the slightest bit of problems breastfeeding. At least those tree hugging ladies can give you some options, and at the very least, if you still end up throwing in the towel, you can say you at least tried. No offense to the tree hugging ladies of La Leche, I love them. Because after my “trial run” with my first, I was a breastfeeding pro with my second after a few La Leche meetings, a hell of a lot of self-confidence, and no more guilt crap. After ridding myself of all that anxiety with my 2nd, I successfully breastfed him, in addition to pumping milk at work, for over 8 months.
As for Christina and Liz, since this is both of your second babies, and girls, unless your ultrasounds are wrong and your babies are suddenly born with a penis, I’m not quite sure what to say on the technical art of raising your 2nd baby, since I’m the mother of 2 boys. But, there are the logistics that go along with it, that whether you give birth to a girl, a boy or a puppy, that will surely be challenging. To be more exact, if your find yourself currently saying, “I have no time for anything,” you will quickly find out that these are the “good old days” and you will wonder what the heck you did with all your free time. As I’m sure you said that to yourself when your first was born, I hate to break it to you, but there will no longer be time that belongs to you anymore AT ALL. In fact, I’m fairly certain you will even not have anytime to think. I’m convinced I have lost several thousand brain cells since the birth of my 2nd child.
And in your undying quest for information, I give you answers to the most popular inquiry:
Does the 2nd kid get the shaft? Yes. See below.
Does my 2nd child have a baby book? Yes, but if anyone were to read it, they would think he just learned to roll over.
Do I know the exact date he got his first tooth? No, in fact, I’m not even sure which month.
Do I know when he spoke his first word? Are you kidding?
When did he first learn to crawl? Can't tell ya. In fact, he doesn't.
When did he first learn to walk? He doesn't. Which is all part of the major-league grand shaft of the 2nd because you just can't dedicate enough time to your 2nd that he/she needs. Which is why he is being put in physical therapy, as per doctors orders.
So what is the ass-vice in all this? Well, I’ve found having more than one child has been a juggling act, and actually each kid gets the shaft in some way. Both of my kids are struggling in their own ways and it seems there is never a hiatus. But, as scripted as it sounds, I couldn’t imagine life without my youngest son. Having a 2nd child was the best decision my husband and I ever made. It completed us.
This has been a long and exhausting post, I know, but get me going on motherhood and I have lots of things to say. Maybe I should start a blog.
Good luck, Ladies! You’re in my thoughts! Congratulations on this wonderful journey!