Working motherhood is a constant, evolving lesson in doing your best and failing hard. It makes the "nailed it" moments feel like winning an Olympic gold medal. I'm six weeks in to being a mom of two. Here are six things I've learned so far.
1. Everything Isn't An Emergency
The key to enduring two screaming children is ignoring them both. I'm not neglecting them (calm down sanctimoms), but the fact that #Gingerbaby can't reach the ball he just threw behind the TV and #QueenZee dropped her Nuk for the 10th time in 30 seconds does not constitute a state of emergency. No one ever died from patience, so taking a moment to let the kids figure it out will hopefully make them more independent humans down the road. Or it will send them to years of therapy. Ignoring both tiny tantrums also ensures they know I don't have a favorite child.
2. I Am Octomom
Other than an extra human and a set of hemorrhoids, with the birth of a second child you also grow six extra arms. I'm pretty sure I could drive, nurse, entertain a toddler and "cook" dinner (macaroni and cheese) at the same time, but apparently that's frowned upon.
3. I'm Never On Time
I used to be annoyed by tardiness, but now I get it. We've become "those people." Sometimes everyone (including my husband) poops at the exact moment we need to leave the house. Sometimes "one more goal" becomes an entire soccer game in our living room, and sometimes the infant isn't finished doing her business when you put on a clean diaper. Four diapers and a World Cup later, we may get out of the driveway. Other times we're early because "everyone needs to get in the car before I lose my mind." There's only so many errands I can run or loops I can drive around the restaurant before it's time to go in. We'll probably be finished eating by the time you get there.
4. Mobile Milking Is My Jam
On my first maternity leave with #Gingerbaby, I started out very confused about where it was and wasn't ok to nurse. What if I was in the car and he started to cry? What if I was on a walk and he got hungry? I was obsessive with timing, making sure I was at home every two hour mark. Today, I nursed at a coffee shop, in my car and almost in the dairy section at Target- fitting, I know. Not everyone has it this easy, so I'm incredibly thankful that I have an abundant milk supply and the modesty of a nudist. I use a nursing cover most days, but I'm fairly certain everyone has seen my boobs due to flailing infants, distracted momming and the occasional toddler escape in the middle of #QueenZee's meal. Most days, I'm pretty sure Z just dangles hands-free from my boob.
5. Patience Is Not My Virtue
Before Z, I had the patience of a nun waiting for Jesus. Now, not so much. On Sunday, I had zero chill as #Gingerbaby protested a nap for an hour in between REM cycles. I strongly considered day drinking, but again, I'm pretty sure that's frowned upon. So many rules....
6. There's Room For Everyone
Though it doesn't feel like it everyday, there's room for everyone. Somedays are Cooper days and somedays are Zoe days. We're lucky enough to have family in town, so mom and dad days are on the horizon. With two jobs and two side hustles, our marriage moments are late at night, laptops out, deliriously laughing at ourselves over a bag of chips. Things get messy and people feel left out, but the longer I dwell on the guilt, the less time I'm spending really soaking up the fleeting family time we have together.