Week one with ALL THE BABIES: Not so great
Let me start with some sweet and perfect things. Bunlet has started tracking my face. The first real sign that he is human. (Aside from that magical Not only am I human, I’m YOUR CHILD…please don’t defenestrate me smell.) And Bun Bun has started talking a little. First official word (clearly articulated, used only in the appropriate context): yay. I think that’s a brilliant first word. AND, a while I back I taught her that when she sees a picture of a snake in a book, she should trace the shape of said snake while making a hissing noise, and then flick her tongue in and out. Charming enough on its own, right? But today she patted the question mark I have tattooed on my ankle, and then traced it and made a hissing noise! OMG I about died of the adorableness.
BUT. It’s been kind of a joyless week. I’m definitely feeling like a total failure. I am dealing with two easy babies, and yet I cannot keep my temper for more than one fucking SECOND.
(I mean, Bunlet is not as easy as Bun Bun was. He actually cries. That was a bit of a shock, and I’m still adjusting to the horror. And, being only three weeks old, he still wants to eat at night. And in fact, he wants to eat a lot in general, more than Bun Bun did. Perhaps because he’s larger. Uh, anyway, he’s not a hard baby by any stretch of the imagination was what I was getting at. And I guess it was all her father’s fault or something, because Bun Bun has reverted to something much like her pre-sibling self. Thank god. Complete Toddlerhood averted for a little, anyway. So two easy babies.)
I guess it’s just that someone always needs something. There’s a lot of shifting between the two of them, and very little enjoying either of them. Or doing right by either of them. I mean, Bun Bun got all this pure, uninterrupted LOVE when she was a newborn, Bunlet gets left somewhere or other to cry while I do the necessary things for Bun Bun. Not to worry–Bun Bun’s getting the shaft, too. The week has been all about ignoring her other than to feed or change or nap her, or to prevent her from getting into deadly, or at least really gross mischief, which I do by abruptly yanking her away from things. And then when I have a chance I cuddle her super desperately; it can’t feel great for her to have this insane hot and cold Mama. It’s putting me in a psychological state where I’ve lost confidence in all my parenting choices and the logic thereof, but that’s a post for another time.
Anyway, I’m sure at least one of you is all sympathy, but the truth is, I don’t deserve sympathy. I’m only posing as a parent of two children. You see, our nanny is coming back after next week. Because we’ll need childcare when I go back to work in January, we needed to either keep her employed or find someone new. We like her. So she’s going to be taking care of Bun Bun three days a week, and I’ll be taking care of Bunlet.
I have a lot of conflicted feelings and a ton of guilt about this arrangement. For one thing, I feel like I’m missing out on the experience of having two kids. I mean, I’ll have that experience on Mondays, but this feels like cheating, like pawning one of my offspring off on someone else because its Just Too Much For Me. Even if that’s not why it’s happening. And for another thing, I hate the idea of someone else caring for my daughter while I’m RIGHT there. How will it feel? I can’t imagine it feeling good. And I hate the idea of sharing my house with someone else, of having to figure out intersecting routines, of losing my privacy and peace. Pretty much the only thing I like about the situation is that I get to have time with Bunlet alone. Several of my fellow baby hoarders have written about how valuable this is, and I’m looking forward to it.
But I wish I’d been able to figure out some other option. Because despite this week being hard, I can’t help but fantasize that I would have figured it out eventually, and found a rhythm, and while it would have continued to be hard, I bet it would have been rewarding, too.