Today I got to spend time with just Anne and I. We were celebrating her birthday and a dear friend of ours watched Jamie (which was about 6 hours!). I commented during my time with her that it was so much easier with just one to take care of. Especially since I have life with 2 as my reference point. Someone mentioned that she couldn't imagine having more than one, that it would be extra work, extra stress, extra everything. I didn't know how to answer because no doubt about it, that is very TRUE! Life with 2 kids is so much extra stressful and busy and chaotic. I have a hard time finding time to do what I want to do-to fit in workouts and house cleaning and chores and the time I do get to spend on those necessities, I feel guilty because I am not with the kids. And when I am with Anne, so much of my energy is devoted to Jamie because he is so needy. That is the nature of who he is at this moment in time. Gone are days of crafts and doll house and other activities that involve delicate material because those things end up destroyed or in my son's gut. Having Jamie dictates that time with Anne be running around or playing something that Jamie cannot destroy or ingest. And yes, she probably does get the short end of the stick. Thankfully she does not notice.
All these things ran through my head as I heard my friend say that life with two would be too hard. The thoughts of losing ME time, what I want and need, loosing time with my eldest, losing activities with her, losing quiet and sanity. That is all true. But what also ran through my head so much more intensely was what I have gained having two. I cannot even put into words how full my heart is. I cannot describe what it feels like to have two children who love me with all they are fill my heart and arms quite literally. I feel so blessed to get to do it all again with Jamie-to recognize certain moments and realize they are fleeting, to be able to cherish them because I understand them more deeply. But also, I get to balance Jamie's neediness and intensity with Anne's ever growing big-girl-ness, which by the way, I love and adore. So yes, life is busy and stressful and chaotic and most days I want to sell my children to the highest bidder, at least for an hour or so, but it is also so fulfilling, so gratifying, so blessed. I am indeed blessed and grateful.