(This is Part Two to Surprise! Wanted and Too Soon. If you haven’t read Part One you can read that Here)
After having our first son Harland my husband and I decided we WANTED to try for another baby. A few months later I was ecstatic to find out I was PREGNANT!
God had blessed our little family and I was so excited! I had a surprise plan to tell my husband with a “fake delivery” to our house. Inside was an egg shell that he had to crack to get to a poem that said, “We were once 3 soon to be 4”.
My husband was shocked and excited. We told our 9 month old he was going to be a big brother (even though he had no idea what we were saying) and the three of us hugged.
We let our older son announce the news by wearing a special shirt I made. It said “I Have a secret” on the front and “I’m going to be a big brother” on the back. A few people including my mother read the front and said “oh you have a dirty diaper?” without reading the back.
Many people were happy for us but a few were skeptical of how close our kids were going to be. I even had a seven year old tell us we needed to slow down. How wonderful it is to get parenting advice from a child.
Nine months later our second son Ephrome Theodore was born. We named him Ephrome (pronounced eff-rum) for three reasons. The first was because I had the name picked out for a while and almost named our first son that.
The second was because I absolutely love vintage boy names from the 1800’s and the movie Hello Dolly with Barbara Streisand. There was something about the way Dolly talked about her late husband Ephraim Levi. The way she speaks about how wonderful he had been to her, made me want one of my sons to grow up to be a husband like that.
The last reason we chose that name was because Joseph in the Bible named his second son Ephraim. It means “doubly blessed” or “blessed in the land of my affliction”. We felt this was very fitting because we were doubly blessed with two boys. I picked Theodore as his middle name because I have always loved the name. I also felt if we never had another child, it would be a waste if I didn’t use it.
I noticed right away how different having a second child was. We had very few people visit us in the hospital compared to our first when everyone wanted to come. We had even fewer people come to see the baby when we finally made it home. We were left scratching our head as to why it couldn’t have been this calm and quiet when our first was born.
Some of our friends and family had intruded into our space the day after he had just come home from Intensive care. We understood everyone was excited to see the baby but he was our first, and we were scared of him getting sick. Since he was in the NICU at the hospital he was at a high risk of going back there if he got sick.
Now I had read all the articles I could on what life would be like with two kids. My husband and I were confident because we had the only child parenting routine down. Everyday was pretty much like clockwork and we knew what to expect from our only child…until we had our second. Our oldest adjusted pretty well, I like to say he was a backward sour patch kid because he would be sweet and then sour. He would give his brother kisses and then seconds later try to hit him with a toy.
Every month that went by my oldest adjusted better and started to show more affection to our new baby. Having your children a year and a half apart is hard. Mostly because the oldest is still a baby mentally and still needs you. About as much as a newborn does just in different ways.
As parents we felt overwhelmed with two kids. Being a stay at home mom, I was with them 24/7 and after a while it was driving me crazy. They both had different schedules and the baby kept us up at night, and my toddler woke up bright and early at 7 am everyday.
(My boys and I bright and early in the morning! Don’t we all look tired?)
My husband and I had little rest, were trying to adjust to two children’s needs while trying to juggle DIY projects our new house needed. We had moldy drywall behind our kitchen sink that need to be fixed quick, especially with a new baby in the house.
After a couple months we got the two kids parenting thing down. I wouldn’t say it was clockwork or anything that resembled a working machine, but we managed and were able to handle the kids. My husband and I became a team and encouraged each other when we needed it most.
We decided that we would wait to have more kids until the boys were a little older. I wanted them both to be potty trained and more independent before we got pregnant again. Waiting for us meant we wouldn’t try for another like we did with our second.
However God had other plans for us and our family which you can read more about Here on Part Three of this post Surprise! Wanted and Too Soon
How did you feel finding out you were pregnant again? How did you handle having two kids, was it easier or harder then what you expected? I would love to hear from you in the comments.