Bee and I had recently reconciled after spending a year apart. Everything was going great for us! I’d just taken a huge leap in my career, we’d just sold the house in New Zealand and were already onto buying our first home in Australia. Why not throw in another huge life decision? We’re already moving 100 miles an hour, might as well keep up the pace? Why not try and have another baby? It seemed like a good idea! We were in such a good place with each other and in the best financial position we’d ever been.
The next thing I know I find myself booking a coffee date with my boss. I was so nervous. I wanted to sit her down and chat about my career and how having a baby would impact this. Hell, what I really wanted to bluntly ask was, If I go away and have a baby will I still have my job? I don’t know why I was so worried! She was all for it and gave me peace of mind that my job would be as safe as she could keep it.
So to the TMI part…I went home that night and we started trying! and tried some more. Remember this is the month the gods told me that we would bake a girl. Anyway, two weeks pass and I am getting way too impatient. I take one or two tests and they are negative. I had been saving one test as my “lucky test”. I decided one morning why not give it one more shot. I waited and waited and then hello a very very faint positive line. Long story short, that faint positive was a definite positive.
I went on to work full time throughout my pregnancy. Kyson was in his first year of school and Bee was working full time at the factory. Routine has always been a must in our household. It was the usual getting up at the crack of dawn, showers, uniforms, breakfast, watch the news, a bit of downtime, hair, make up, school drop off and then off for my work day either by car or train. Then the afternoon rolls around and its school pick ups, training, homework, showers, dinner, chores, off to bed to repeat the whole lot in eight hours time.
Sounds pretty straightforward right? I was really looking forward to being able to loosen up on some of that once I was on maternity leave. For example, ditching the hair and make up part! In my mind for some reason I thought it was about to get easier since I didn’t have to be at work and had more time at home.
Boy, was I wrong!
Fast forward nine months and here is our beautiful Hazel. I was sent home from the hospital no more than 9 hours after birth. They seem to think if you are a second time mum you’re an absolute pro and don’t need any of that breakfast, lunch and dinner delivered to your bed or the nurse coming in to take your baby for a walk while you rest. The second we walked in the door it was all on. Hazel was making noises I was unfamiliar with, she was extremely gassy, she didn’t have the long sleep like they say most newborns do the first night, my nipples were already extremely painful, I’d forgotten all about the wonderful world of breastfeeding, I couldn’t sleep because I needed to make sure she was breathing, I was googling every single little thing she did like “Is it normal for a newborn to have smelly farts?’ – this is no joke! Not to mention it was bloody 40 degrees outside. I had no idea how to regulate a newborns temperature in that heat. We don’t do 40 degrees in New Zealand! Good news, we survived the first few nights.
Lets now fast forward to two weeks old – Bee has to go back to work and my mum and sister have gone back to New Zealand. Oh shit! I am all on my own with this routine stuff. Now I think I mentioned in my last post that I suffer from mild anxiety. On top of that I am a planner. ALWAYS have to have a plan and if that plan doesn’t go according to plan well……..I may just lose my mind.
It was my first day of school drop offs. This is where it all starts to really kick in that I am a mother of two! My plan was to get up before Hazel, eat, shower, get my six year old babe ready for school, feed Hazel, put her in the pram and walk to school.
Plan didn’t go according to plan. Hazel woke up before me, I didn’t get to eat, I had to get changed in less than a minute because Hazel had lots of wind and was screaming, Kyson had to get his own breakfast but was moving at snails pace and the walk in the pram was now cancelled.
Onto my next dilemma – the car. Hazel wasn’t a fan of her car seat. The time comes to leave the house and already we are having a screaming match before we have even left the driveway. How was I going to walk Kyson to class with a screaming two week old baby? I was almost at breaking point by now. Telling myself this was all a learning phase and to just breathe through it. Man being a mum second time round is already so different at this point.
But I had another plan!
While I was pregnant I’d made what has now become a life saving purchase. A literal investment! Its called the Chekoh Wrap (I am not sponsored to promote this). My plan was to put this on before leaving the house so that I am all ready to put Hazel in it the second we pull up. So that is what I did. It is SUPER easy to tie on. And because its so light and comfortable I can wear it while driving. We pulled up and I put my little babe in the wrap. Then boom! Silence and calm. We walked to class, I gave my big baby a kiss and hug goodbye. Back to the car we go and its time for round two of screaming.
The Chekoh wrap has become my regular go to. If I desperately need to get something done around the house, out for an appointment, school pick up or drop off or even if its just to get the babe to sleep. Best $100 I have ever spent. I highly recommend them! You can find them on Instagram @chekohbaby or http://www.chekoh.com. I’ve featured a couple of pics of how it looks and how awesome it is. Warning – Major mama bags and dark circles around the eyes will be pictured in these photos!
Now what happens during the day?
So then we have the in between of the drop off and pick up. I have 6 hours to get the housework done. Surely this is enough time? I figured before having Hazel that she would be like her big brother at his age and just sleep during the day while mama gets stuff done. I think I forgot that you have to feed and burp in between. Breastfeeding also requires sitting and sitting means doing nothing. The sleeping time hasn’t yet become a set time either. I’ve found myself having breakfast either really early or really late, emptying the dishwasher takes about four or five goes, vacuuming has to wait till dad gets home, laundry is just done whenever the hell you find time. Somewhere amongst all of this I have to find time to relax and catch up on my tragic reality TV. SIGH! Then dad comes home from work and I am saved! Then it all becomes a game of tag between Bee, Kyson, Hazel and I. Homework is a priority then we all do what we can when we can.
So I think it is safe to say there is no such thing as a routine for now in my household. What I plan in my mind is not likely to go to plan. Somehow I am going to have to come to terms with this without going crazy!
I’m sure I am not alone and would love to hear how other mums go about their day with school aged children and a newborn.
I must say for the mums reading, don’t forget to find your “me” time. Papa bear isn’t there for show. When he gets home or over the weekend, take at least an hour to do something for you. Go get a mani pedi, take yourself for a long walk, go to a quiet room for a nap or even just go to the supermarket by yourself without B1 & B2 in tow. You deserve it!