It’s Wednesday morning in Santa Monica. Jules just went down for a nap and Vera is in school. I’m unshowered in a sweatshirt, battling a case of mastitis. Life is not glamorous these days.
I think having a second kid is going to go down in the books as one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I feel more stretched thin than I ever have. My relationships with Greg and Veronica have been pushed to their tipping points, as have my exhaustion and concentration levels. I know that at three and a half months in we’re probably (hopefully?) in some peak period of second kid transition, so I’m trying to batten down the hatches and just hold tight as we keep on sailing through these turbulent waters.
Vera has been taking the transition particularly hard just in the last few weeks. She’s regressed to baby-talk and constantly wants to engage in “pretend nursing sessions.” She’s thrown more tantrums and had more crying fits in her whole little life, since Juliette was born. And at a time when my patience and temper are at their thinnest, our interactions have a tendency to become explosive.
By then end of every day, or sometimes by the middle, I’m feeling utterly depleted. I feel physically run down, yearning for a small space in which to curl up where no one is touching me, having had the two girls all over me all day. My brain also just feels flat. There is no room left to decipher Vera’s tantrums or keep track of Juliette’s sleep schedule, let alone my own projects and simple things like text messages to return or emails awaiting responses.
That said, we all love Juliette. She’s finally beginning to come through her tough crying days and has become sweeter than ever. Her whole little body rocks with each smile she gives us and she is now very alert and aware of her surroundings (re: her sister hovering over her 24/7). Despite missing attention from us, Veronica’s love for Juliette has never ebbed; she continues to fall more in love with her sister with each waking day, bringing her toys and showing her things and wanting to make sure that Jules is participating in all that we do.
I often find myself feeling both sad and happy when I think about how their relationship will probably be stronger with each other than it will be with me. I’m also unspeakably grateful for the sweet moments we have as a trio of girls. I took this video last week when Greg was gone and we were spending long hours in Vera’s room, entertaining ourselves. In these moments it feels like such a gift to have two daughters.