When my twins were infants, everything I did reeked of “New Mom”—I hauled an overstuffed diaper bag everywhere, I sanitized everything they touched, I would pack the stroller with enough provisions for a trip up the Himalayas, and when I wasn’t rocking, feeding or burping one of them, I was online researching what I’d need for the next phase of babyhood.
I never had any other children (and have no plans to), so I’ve never really been able to shake that “New Mom” feeling. I’m more relaxed now than I was when they were infants but as they get older, every new stage is still uncharted territory. What I want more than anything is the cool confidence my friends with different-aged kids have. While most of them were nervous and made plenty of mistakes like me with their first baby, by the time Baby No. two , three , or four came along they’d seen it all before.
My veteran mom-friends don’t sanitize anything any further than licking it, they let their kids fall instead of nervously clearing every pathway for them, and they know that soccer is a waste of time when kids are three years old. They don’t waste money on crib bumpers, they don’t panic if their baby is still just crawling at 16 months, and they know that Motrin reduces a high fever faster than Tylenol but is harder on the stomach.
I never know these things. And it’s bad enough to subject one kid to the anxiety and mistakes of a new mom, but I’ve got to drag two children along on this steep learning curve I’m on.
As much as I love being a mother of twins, I can’t help but feel jealous of women with children of different ages, because I wish I could have a second chance too. I’d be a better, more confident mother the second time around. Hindsight is a wonderful thing when you can learn from it, but with no other children beside my twins, hindsight is basically lost on me.