So, I’m on round two.  Little E is three and Baby M just turned 4 months old.  I have a little experience with the baby stage.  If I had to complete a resume prior to having Baby M, I would have put “Well Qualified in all aspects of babyhood – sleep training expert, breastfeeding pro and wonderful playmate!”  Have you ever been hired for a job and realized after a few weeks, that it was a little harder than you expected?   Maybe you aren’t as qualified as you thought you were?

So, that’s how I’m feeling now.  Not in a negative, what did I get myself into way.  I love being a mommy to two completely different individuals. I love watching them grow and explore and start to become more interested in each other.  But, I did think it would be a little easier the second time around.  And, I shouldn’t complain because both my kids have been pretty easy considering.  I just am amazed at how many times I am still consulting my “What To Expect” book in the middle of the night.   If any of my neighbors happen to be awake and looking out their window at 2am (this would be wierd), they will see a strange beam of light through the curtains of my bedroom window.  This is me, reading “What To Expect” with my flashlight so as not to wake up my husband or Baby M.  Or, this is me, shining the flashlight towards Baby M to make sure she is still breathing – for the 4’th time!

I have to laugh at myself sometimes.  I really think I’m a little more paranoid and hovering the second time around.  Maybe this is because I know how precious this time is and I am sad it’s going by so quickly.  Maybe it’s because I’m secretly afraid that this may be my last baby and I don’t want it to end.  So, this is why Baby M has stayed in our room until 4 months old.  Little E was in his room when he was 3 months old.  And I remember being happy when it came time to move him to his room.  Ahhh, the freedom.  My husband and I didn’t have to tiptoe around downstairs after 8pm anymore.  It was nice to have adult time and adult space again.

But, the second time around has been so much harder for me.  We moved Baby M to her room this past weekend.  My stomach was in knots the whole evening anticipating it.  And I knew I was over-reacting.  I mean she was just going to be upstairs and I have a baby monitor and a night-vision camera monitor (see, I told you I was paranoid!  But, in my defense, upstairs is really far away.)  So, of course, she did great.  She is sleeping better and so are we.  And my neighbors are no longer freaked out by wierd light beams shining from my window.

I think in a way it’s a blessing that I am finding the second time around different and more challenging than I expected.  It really makes me stop and think and enjoy the time with my two children instead of sailing through on cruise control.  So, here’s to all you Mother’s out there experiencing your second, third or fourth time around.  Is it harder, easier, more challenging or more rewarding than you expected?  Or, do I just really have a problem and need to lock up my flashlights and night vision cameras?