- Breastfeeding. It helps that Matthew could latch and suck right away, whereas Jackson was not so good at that. It took about a month to really sort out nursing Jackson. Matthew was a pro from birth, but needed bottles of formula for medical reasons for a week or so, then got lazy...but now he's a boob man and is refusing bottles. Just in time for me to return to work. Huh. Also, because of the trouble Jackson and I had getting our breastfeeding relationship established, I tracked feedings (and diapers and sleep) on a phone app and it came to border on obsessive. I tracked for almost A YEAR. Haven't done it at all (app long ago deleted in a moment of clarity) with Matthew. He gets fed, changed, and napped whenever and it appears to work out just fine without documentation for posterity or obsession.
- Labor. Nope. Sorry. It was horrible, mostly because it was way too fast and the epidural was useless for second stage (it did relieve back labor for a while, though). Throw in the shoulder dystocia and Wham Bam No Thank You, Ma'am. Second labors are generally faster (6 hours for Matthew vs 12 hours for Jackson) but that can also mean they are more precipitous, which means OUCH. Prepare thyself.
- Daily routines. SO MUCH EASIER. I no longer cringe (much) at the sound of a baby crying, so I can take a shower or make a cup of coffee or go to the bathroom and live through the crying long enough to finish a task and not feel like I'm breaking the baby. Jackson hardened my heart with his colic, maybe. Also, I have learned that babies don't die from crying a little. I also don't worry much about taking Matthew places, knowing that if he 1) shits I can change his diaper, 2) cries for the boob I can stop and nurse him (I hardly even care about remembering to bring a cover now -- if some dude gets off on seeing my droopy, veiny boob then tip o'the hat to him for his low standards). I came close to being a shut-in with Jackson for several months for fear of public crying and anxiety of public nursing. Meh. Matthew gets lugged around to wherever I need to go. And he's fine with it.
- Sleeping. Also nope. Sorry again. Getting up every several/few/every hour(s) still sucks.
- Returning to work. It hasn't happened yet but is in the works for Feb/Mar, and it is thus far not as awful as before. The situation is quite different, though: with Jackson I was returning to a full-time job for a large corporation and had to put him in full-time daycare; with Matthew I am returning to part-time freelance work. I haven't even decided yet when I will start sending him to daycare (which is also a Montessori preschool, one Jackson is thriving in and that I want Matthew to attend). Can I get work done for 10-20 hours/week with a baby at home? Is a part-time nanny on 2 days/week enough? We'll see. A huge issue for me is wanting to avoid pumping milk. I HATE THE PUMP. We are not friends. As long as Matthew is home, I can nurse him whenever, even if I'm on the phone or working on the laptop. Once he starts daycare, I have to pump. So. It will come down to decisions around getting enough work done without too much stress vs despising the pump.
- I'm probably forgetting a lot. See fourth bullet for an explanation.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
A catalog of differences between Baby #1 and Baby #2 from my point of view. (I don't know what the babies think. Who does?) Emphasis on what is easier this time around, to give hope.