Everyone warned me that having a second baby would be 100 times harder than having just one child. So I was prepared for the extra work. But what has reduced me to a sobbing pile on the floor has not been the extra work exactly — it has been how much I miss my older son.
Cash and I have been nearly inseparable for the past six years. I even defied his preschool teachers to keep him out of his full-time program the two weekdays that I was off of work so that we could have those days to play and explore the world together. So when Catcher arrived seven months ago, it rocked both our worlds. And he has turned to Daddy to fill the void. I know I should be happy, and in many ways I am. They have become closer than I ever thought they would be. They share secrets, wrestle on the floor and go out for ice cream and movies. But I'm left behind, nursing on the couch every three hours, looking longingly after them.
This isn't to say that I'm not enjoying my time with Catcher. I never thought I could love another child as much as I loved Cash, and of course that changed as soon as I met Catcher. But my heart still aches for my time with Cash.
So we have started going on dates alone. We hold hands. We hug. And we just spend time together like we used to. We go biking. We go to the library. We make ceramics together at the Randall Museum's classes. We go to local children's theater and magic shows. And most importantly, one night a week, we leave the baby with Daddy and I take Cash alone to his swim class. I don't get on the phone, read the paper or talk to other parents. I focus on Cash, cheering him on, giving him two thumbs up and sometimes two toes up when he really nails it. He loves that. After swim class, we head to our favorite ice cream store, Mitchell's. We get our cones and sit on the bench outside and just talk and laugh. It is one of my favorite nights of the week.
Dating isn't as bad as I remember it.
Let us know what you do to make your children feel like they still have time alone with you.