I have two adorable kids. S is 3 and sing and chatters all day long. Y is 2 and follows his big sister around all day. They are blessings to myself and my husband and we try not to take them for granted. They are mischeiveious, adorable, fun, lovable and the absolute lights of my lives. They are also challenging and completely draining at times. Many a time actually. And while I know that some of it has to do with CMT, from what i understand, most moms with two little ones who also work full time find running after their kids challenging. In a way its absolutely crazy that i had them together (they are 14 months apart). But its also wonderful for all of us.
Just btw - I never thought about not having children. For me, I knew I wanted to be a mom and I never once thought that CMT is bad enough to not have a child who may inherit it. I understand not everyone feels like this but for me, it was never even a consideration not have children despite CMT. Anyway, onward. Or I should say, backward:
I had S on a wintery Saturday morning in January 2008. And while I found being a new mom hard I didnt find it overwhelming. Especially when i was off from work. I got to rest a lot and didnt do much more than nurse, change diapers and hold her. I still got to surf a lot, watch my shows, hang out with DH, etc, I just couldnt run around as much but that as OK with me. Although I was on birth control pills I hated taking them and never remembered the right times. Plus I knew I wanted a boy sometime soon to complete our family and name after my dad. Being that I was nursing full time and it took almost a year to get pregnant with S i kinda gambled a bit and told DH i'm not taking the pills anymore. a couple of months later there was a fun surprise accompanied with nauseau, swelling and general morning siockness. I was pregnant. And I had a tiny infant. Oh god what did we do. At least it takes 9 months for that thing to grow inside you, right?
Fast forward to March 2009. The Drs delivered a beautiful baby boy and I started crying. A girl and a boy how absolutely amazing. How shocking for me and not even my type (i thought id have to have 4 girls before a boy popped in. How scary. S was a chunky baby who was not yet walking and I have an infant to add to the mix. How were we going to manage?
(By the way I just wanted to stick in that unlike some other moms with CMT i never had issues with pregnancies or childbirth. I loved being pregnant --made me feel like there was a reason to walk funny! And my birhts were quick and natural, one with an epidrual and one without).
So that year I basically said to myself 'this is survival year'. And thats what we did. Before we were sending S out to a sitter, this time we hired a great full time sitter at home. she also helped with some housework. I even took her to the city when i spent some time there. She was a salaried employee, paid weekly whether i gave her off or not. On my days off, id take her with us to go to the mall or shopping or to the park or whatever. Or id meet DH for lunch like a rich lady. I was very spoiled though I definitely needed it. in the afternoon, I came home to a tidied house with no dishes in the sink and was able to nap while they were still napping. At that point we were living in a basement apartment down the driveway (so no steps) and my landlady was amazing. They often took S to play with so i could relax or focus on Y. DH was a huge help. I also crashed at my sister almost every Sunday when DH had work. My sister has three girls ranging from 6-10 who are huge helps and love my kids. Whenever i go anywhere with them i barely even have to take the kids out of the car. They were lifesavers and i'd take one or two with me whenever i'd go anywhere.
Those first 18 months were so challenging. They were somewhat of a haze at times. THey also flew by. and they were also the best months of my life at that point. SInce my daughter was born, life has only gotten better and more fulfilling for me. Even if its draining. In August we moved into our new home. There were stairs (although only 4 to get inside which was big for me). As fall came along, we made a financial and social decision that my daughter who was almost 3 was ready for playgroup. We couldn't find someone to share my sitter with and she was more expensive than we could afford so I became a big girl, took a deep breath and let her go. And this past year included me picking the kids up every day (including up and down stairs and in and out of car seats, so fun). And doing all the chores my sitter used to do. And amazingly enough, i'm surviving. In fact, more often than not i'm thriving. THe winter was a little tough. But now S can open the door herself, climb in her carseat and buckle her top. Y can climb in himself at least. Thats huge for me. I found the whole car seat thing so hard, I almost banged their heads so often while putting them in.
So I feel like we're getting to a good and easier place, slowly. And as hard as the beginning was, my kids are the very best of friends now. We dont need playdates because they have each other. And they keep each other entertained (although its more S thats ordering Y around, but still).
I want to write more on the challenges of parenting small children / babies and thoughts for the future but thats for next time.