I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss our firstborn while waiting for the delivery of our second. At times I worried if our firstborn ever felt left out while we stayed at the hospital.
We’ve talked to him several times about going to the hospital to bring home his baby brother. Although he understood he was going to be a big brother, he didn’t quite understand what it meant when we left him with my father the morning my water broke.
It Started With A ‘Pop’
I’ve always joked about “when I was going to pop” and then it happened. My water broke around 4 a.m. and I heard and felt a pop down below. Our firstborn did too and said “mommy” as to signal something was to come after.
He was right.
His baby brother was delivered that day by VBAC and we were in the hospital for three days.
Our firstborn didn’t mind that we spent the initial night at the hospital without him. The following day was the toughest since he was brought to the hospital to meet his baby brother. Our firstborn was excited to have us together again. He even made room for everyone on the hospital bed.
My husband and I even joked about where our husky would go. It was a sweet moment, and there were tears of joy.
The following day, we got a phone call from my dad and could hear the screams of our toddler. He begged my dad to take him outside and into the car to see his baby brother at the hospital.
It was touching, yet painful to hear our big boy in tears. Without hesitating, my husband decided it’d be best to pick him up from the house and bring him over. I left some food for them to share since it was dinner time. It was one of the best things I could’ve done to calm his nerves because he felt like we weren’t abandoning him, but instead, including him again.
It became obvious to use that our firstborn was worried that we wouldn’t be paying attention to him anymore. To be honest, it was tough for me to balance both a toddler and newborn after my dad left back home.
Adjusting to the new lifestyle seemed terrifying at first. After discussing with my husband and coming up with a game plan on how to tackle this role of parenting multiples, it was time to execute our plan.
At first, we were concerned with how our youngest would feel. It wasn’t until we remembered about the newborn routine. They eat, poop, and sleep several times in a day. This allowed us to focus on our firstborn and include him in activities with the baby.
How To Stay Sane While Parenting Multiple Kids
To help adjust caring for a toddler and newborn, I learned there were a handful of things that needed to happen.
First, it was a given that both children required my attention. So, here’s a list of ways my husband and I did to juggle parenting multiples:
We made time for both.
The children were a product of our love, and it was important for us to show our toddler and newborn that they’re equally as important. We learned to divide and conquer. If I was busy with our newborn, my husband would explain why I wasn’t available at the moment to our toddler, and he’d keep him entertained.
We continued to share precious moments with our firstborn.
Our big boy loves to cuddle on the couch and watch TV as a family and share snacks with us. My husband and I made sure we kept his “tradition” while we were at the hospital and beyond.
We’ve always enjoyed snack time as a family, and I’d save fruits and juices from the staff just for our son to share with my husband, and my husband did the same whenever he’d grab a bite outside the hospital. Our toddler would climb on the hospital bed with me and chow down.
This really made a difference for him since I’d have the baby changed, fed, and napping by the time he’d arrive. It felt
We’d get little inexpensive gifts for the big brother.
The hospital supplied two little animals made out of towels and stickers for eyes. We kept them to the side for our toddler to play with while at the hospital. It made his day whenever he’d see them.
During one of my husband’s trips to a local CVS, he picked up a small Mickey Mouse figure for our toddler to play with. Our big boy was so excited to show me the next morning over FaceTime and walked around the entire house so I could see everything that was going on while I was away.
Talk to them both about each other.
My husband and I had been telling our toddler about his baby brother since the moment we knew we were expecting our little guy. We’d explain to him that no matter what, we’d equally be there for them.
Do you have any tips for parents who are caring for a toddler and newborn?
If you enjoyed this post, head over to other parts of this series. Below are other installments of the Giving Birth Series:
First Trimester Tips You Need To Know
Second Trimester Tips For First-Time Moms
Third Trimester Tips: What You Need To Know Before Going Into Labor
Things To Remember When You Create A Baby Shower Registry List
5 Baby Registry Items You Won’t Need And Those You Don’t Think Of Adding
Why Choose Multifunctional Baby Products
30 responses to “Parenting Secrets To Caring For A Toddler And Newborn”
It’s so important to make sure our older kids feel included as we care for our newborns. It’s so easy to let the older ones feel neglected with all the care a newborn takes. Great tips here.
Thank you for sharing your experience! Children are such a blessing.
My oldest two children were 18 months apart. I absolutely love the tips you have here. I like especially the one about talking to each about the other one!
You are doing a great job. I remember when my youngest was born, there was of course love from her older sister but also some jealousy that she was no longer the centre of attention, its tricky but there is a balance to be found. They all work themselves out in the end!
Reading good quality posts on the before and after pregnancy is so helpful and supportive. Different experiences make it a huge support base to lean on.
Reading this makes me so sentimental. It’s been decades that my daughter was a toddler. Also, I have only one child, so I cannot really know what it is like between two of those jewels 😉
Our toddler twins will be 3 this Sunday, it was challenging and beautiful in the same thing, this double toddlerhood.
That “pop” noise is real! With my youngest, I was afraid I was going to go into labor early. I hadn’t had my water break with the first two so I didn’t know what to expect. My friend told me it feels a lot like a rubber band snapping. As soon as I felt it, I knew.
I am not a mom but I have friends that are and I know the ones with multiple children really do a great job with this and keeping them feeling loved and important!
My kids were pretty close in age when I had them. I had a toddler and newborn at one point too. I actually thought it was great because they got along so well.