When your pregnant, your so preoccupied by the birth and the safe arrival of your little one, that you can sometimes forget everything else around you. Once Cataleya was born and the dust had settled, I had this moment, a kind of aaaagghh moment, suddenly, I was a mother of two and life was about to get crazy for a while whilst we adjusted to the new wants and needs of our growing family.
As soon as Cataleya was born, the joys of being self employed took its toll as Danny had to get straight back to work the following day leaving me to fathom out how all this works. Fortunately I had my family, but ultimately it’s down to me to provide the essentials for my new daughter and her big sister.
At first, I was still in the elated state, beaming from ear to ear thinking I was the most special girl in the world, little did I know how much adjustment my body and I would have to make in order to make the next few weeks as easy as possible.
The first thing to get to grips with was feeding, even though I had breast fed Eivissa for 18 months, it’s like going back to square one the second time around. Thankfully, I remembered the tips and techniques and was able to get Cataleya latched on pretty quickly, but still your body has to get used to this and I’d forgotten how much babies eat. The first few days I felt like a human cow, being milked at every possible second but I was safe in the knowledge that I was creating a bond and giving my baby the best start to their life.
I love the mother-daughter relationship and I knew how important establishing a special and lifelong bond with my daughter is.
Those precious first few weeks with your newborn baby are an incredible time for any mum and dad.
I personally, felt an instantaneous intense attachment after the birth of Cataleya, which was a welcome relief as id often wondered if I could love another baby as much as I loved Eivissa, but it seems you can. Bonding has to develop, and I did every trick in the book to make sure our bond was a special, lasting one. Breast feeding gave me that instant bond, knowing that im responsible for the growth and nutrients that she receives. I also make sure that we have as much skin to skin contact as possible and take every opportunity to look and play with her. Babies do tend to bond with their primary care givers, so care and interaction with my baby was and still is incredibly important. All this is easier said than done as any mother with a 2 year old will know. Whilst we are trying our best to have our special bonding moments the eldest wants to jump on your back at any given opportunity and demand instant play time
I knew I had to adapt, to make sure both my girls are getting the love and attention they need.
My girls are my world and its my job as a mother to make sure that they have everything they need to help them once they grow into themselves. The most important thing I can give them is love, it’s so simple, they don’t want gifts, the latest toy, the new dolls, although all these things are great and trust me, my girls have all of them, it’s not what defines them. The love, the care, and the quality time I give my girls is what really makes them who they are and even though my time was now split between the two, I always make sure I have time dedicated to both of them.
A newborn will occupy a lot of your time and naturally the older sibling can feel some kind of loneliness but this was never an option for us. Eivissa was still going to have the love and attention she needs and this was done by making her a part of her new sisters life, when changing Cataleya’s nappy, I get her involved, when feeding, I explain what I am doing. My method was to be inclusive not exclusive, making her feel special and included made her feel more loved than ever before.
We wanted to create an environment where by Eivissa could create her own bond with her new sister and encouraging her to show affection and take part in things has resulted in such a special bond between them.
Getting into a routine was the tricky part, trying to juggle all the plates and responsibilities of motherhood whilst creating structure was difficult at first. It took me a while to understand that all babies are different, I know this sounds obvious, but in a way I just presumed that her habits would be the same as her sisters, I found out soon enough that she had her own agenda.
I was doing the same as what I had done before and it wasn’t working, Eivissa used to feed for 30-40 mins each time and used to sleep solid in between for a few hours, I was trying to apply this to Cataleya but I didn’t seem to work for her, I then went back to the drawing board and tailored a routine to what she wants, not necessarily what I knew. This involved more frequent feeds for less time with small naps in between. She is now a very happy, content baby.
We put too much pressure on ‘routine’ and experience has taught me to be adaptable, to listen, to take note of our babies and as they grow and change, so should our habits. There is no ‘one size fits all’ routine, they are there to be customised to fit each child and each family.
In amongst all this, I still had to recover, after all, I had just given birth and this is a hard process that requires rest in order to recharge, I think every mother would agree, that our needs are surpassed by our children’s needs and I wouldn’t change this for the world, I think the happiness that I gave my children in those first few weeks helped me heal, after all, a happy heart helps heal the mind and body.
So, after mastering the first few days, I soon discovered more obstacles I had to face, and the next one was somewhat, lets say, tricky.
I was braving my first day out and as Danny had the car I thought I’d take a taxi. Little did I know the difficulty that getting myself along with my two girls into a car, which should be the simplest thing in the world turn out to be the most stressful.
The taxi arrived and I just couldn’t work out what to do first, do I put my children in the car first, then go back for both pushchairs, all my bags, all their bags. Do I put the bags in first, leaving the girls in the house, I just couldn’t work out what the safest thing to do would be, how can this be so difficult. In the end, it was stuff first and children last, the whole process must have taken 15 minutes. The lesson I learnt from this, no matter how prepared you are, leaving the house will never be a simple task ever again.
It’s so important to have the support of your spouse in these early days,
I’m thankful that our wants as parents are aligned and we are singing off the same hymn sheet. The love we give our children should be the same love we give one another, we are our children’s roll models and we want to make sure that our relationship is happy and healthy so that our children grow up knowing what a good marriage is. It’s so easy to forget one another and put all the love into the children, but remember to keep some love back for each other.
Every night in those first few weeks, we would sit down on an evening over a cup of coffee and reflect and be thankful for the lives we have created. We would talk and laugh and be husband and wife, not just mum and dad.
The first few weeks flew by and as another day passed I slowly started to feel at ease and confident in my own abilities. Every parent wants to be the best they can be and the truth is we all fall short, it’s human nature, none of us are perfect after all. But the thing that makes me go to bed with a smile on my face, is knowing that I’m trying the hardest I can and that is recipe for success.
We’re so grateful for our little family and feel blessed to be parents. Seeing the girls flourish as a result of our work is so rewarding, probably the most satisfying thing we’ve ever done.
the love eivissa has for her little sister is precious, she dotes on her and knowing that these little angels are growing up to love each other and loving us really makes everything worth while. I encourage all parents out there to remember how important our roll is and how the little things really can make a difference to our children’s lives.
I love being a mum of two and I am so excited to see the friendship between my girls grow as they get older.
We are truly blessed and have loved every second of becoming parents again. I’m broody already!