When you have two kids (or more) it is hard to achieve balance.
When the Tumbleweed was 2, she was the only child (although the second one was on the way). When we went to playgroups it was for her, family outings were chosen based on her likes, food we purchased at the grocery store was what she liked, and she picked the stories at bedtime. We spent lots of quality time doing things one on one with her. Life was simpler.
Now that the Dandelion is 2, I am struggling with balancing both kids' needs and managing daily life. For example, when the Tumbleweed was 2, she would play in the bathtub with toys & bubbles for 30-45 minutes. But that isn't the case for the Dandelion, he is in & out in under 15 because we have two kids to bathe. And when we go places, he often has to ride in the stroller for me to manage both kids (I know I had stopped using the stroller with the Tumbleweed at this age because I remember taking her along to my OB visits and I have pictures of her walking along the ramp from the parking garage).
Over the past year it has be harder to choose activities. I didn't want to go the the playground or the beach because the Dandelion would run away or eat bark chips & sand. I have had to hide the kid scissors because the Dandelion will run with them. I don't ask either of the kids to help me cook or bake as often as I used to, because I am afraid the Dandelion will get hurt or break something.
Two is certainly a challenging age, and now that the Dandelion has reached it, I want to recognize the person that he is becoming and foster his interests. He is growing into quite the little boy and I need to give him more space to explore & discover. I need to keep reminding myself that he is not a baby anymore, and he can help me cook & clean, paint pictures, play with playdough and follow simple directions - but he needs to be taught these skills just like I taught the Tumbleweed.
As fall approaches I am excited to have some one-on-one time with him while the Tumbleweed is at school. I am also looking forward to him having some playgroups & classes of his own where she does not overshadow him. I think he needs a little of both to grow into a confident little preschooler by next fall.
In the meantime, I am searching for new ways to keep him occupied during the Tumbleweed's afterschool activities this fall. I am sure we have many years of one kid watching & waiting for the other during classes, and I have yet to figure out how make this a pleasant experience, for both of us.
8 months ago