First off, thanks to all for the comments and emails regarding A-Rod's birth story. All is well and happy over here, and for that the Universe has gotten much acknowledgement over the last couple weeks. Xie Xie, for reals.
Since the weather has been... what's the word... (Oppressive? Horrible? Unbearable?) lately, I've had a lot of time to think about all the ways in which having a second child has been nothing like I expected. And I knew what to expect, thank you very much. I've been down the newborn road once before. But you know how people always say that no two babies are alike? Well guess what-- THEY ARE RIGHT.
Here are a few 'helpful' pieces of advice that people gave me, and my assessment of their accuracy.
1. Anna's going to be super jealous. Get ready for it.
For the most part, Anna hasn't been terribly interested in Aaron. She calls him 'brother', as in, 'Hey, brother!' when she notices him. There have been a couple of swatting incidents around feeding time, but other than that, AB is doing alright with the change. For now, anyway. I guarantee she reserves the right to change her mind at any point between now and age 18.
2. Breastfeeding is much easier the second time around.
Yes, one is still bionic. Yes, it was still a bit painful at the beginning. But now I know what all those lactation nurses meant when they said Anna just never had a good latch. A-Rod might have given me a roller coaster of a pregnancy, but he eats like a champ. PHEW!
3. It takes a really long time to recover from a C-Section.
There are people who read this blog who I must look at in the face on a regular basis, so I will spare you some of the details about this. I will say, however, that there are a lot of plusses to a C-Section. The ability to sit down right now and type this post is one of them. The only bummer currently is I can't lift Anna Chunkeroo, but we'll be back to bath time together before I know it. Fear not the C-Section, all ye women in your thirties!
4. Daniel's going to freak out... again.
Okay, in fairness to Dan the Man, he didn't exactly 'freak out' when we brought Anna home. He wasn't all that happy, either. He moped around the house for a few weeks, and even had a couple of accidents inside, which he never does. I was prepared for that to happen again, but so far Dan has been totally fine with the new addition. And by fine, I mean totally uninterested.
5. The second is so much easier than the first, because you know what you're doing.
The second is so much harder than the first, because adjusting to two is harder than adjusting to one.
Assessment: FALUE. TRALSE.
I had so many women say contradicting things about this that I didn't know what to expect. Now I can see why the opinion is so varied. In some ways, yes, we are much more confident this time around. When the postpartum blues hit, I knew what they were and had the tissues ready. I don't fastidiously document Aaron's feeding and sleep schedule this time around, because I know that he will eat and sleep when he wants. Logistically, I'm much more sane.
But yes, adjusting to two is hard. It's much more an emotional adjustment than anything else. Turns out I was right to take advantage of my alone time with Anna, because now I have to share my time with her. And it breaks my heart to do it, it really does.
L's sister was here last week and captured this moment:
Not the greatest picture of any of us, but I'm so grateful for it. Anna was playing with sidewalk chalk, and I was sitting down with Aaron. Anna walked over to us and said, 'Sit down?', and for a split second I thought I was going to have to turn her away. But then I moved Aaron to the side, and Anna slipped right onto my lap, and at this moment I am telling her, 'Don't worry, Bub, there's room for two.'
True. Always True.