A friend of mine just had her second baby. While she was pregnant, the subject came up a few times & even checking on her lately, it still comes up. Having more than one child, in our cases having two is hard. Ironically I have two boys and she now has two girls.
Whenever I think about life before Karter it's always life with Keyyon. It's rare I'm referring to any situation before Keyy.
I was having my nightly phone call with my sister and I was venting and that long winded vent inspired me to write about it. It's not completely rare for people to have more than one child nowadays, right!
I'm going to break it down in three parts
| 1 | just Keyy
| 2 | with Karter
| 3 | the two together
part • one - my soldier
Keyy was planned. A very stupid plan, but in the end a blessing I didn't know I needed but saved my life.
Keyy is my soldier. Since he was born it's been us. Me and him. My little partner in crime. I'm 110% sure I learned more from him than he did from me before his second birthday.
What do I mean?
I mean we had it rough. We rented a basement from a stranger together (twice). We moved to a new state together. We lived in a shelter together. We've struggled together. As weak as it may seem, Keyy has been my everything his whole life. So when I say he's my soldier that's exactly what he is. Not that he had a choice, but he's been my backbone, strength, reason to smile and everything in between.
Raising him was hard but we always had fun. I got pregnant at 18 and had him when I was 19. I was a "teenage" single mama. So we've been growing up together for the past 6 years. Being so young I had no idea how to be a mother. All I knew was a little boy depended on me, I did not want to be like my parents, and I had someone who loved me for me , all ways, always. And that's all I needed.
Because it was just me and Keyy I was also VERY protective. He was mine , I was his and if anyone didn't like that, was mean to him or tried to interfere I was full on mama bear, full of tears and armed with claws.
He's very much a mama's boy and to this day no matter what anyone says I feel like I need to cater to him in a way no one else understands whenever he needs me because every night for almost 6 years he's been there for me.
part • two - my surprise
Karter was not planned. I was with Anton for four years . I knew he was my soul mate and the man I was going to marry but that was it. I WANTED to marry him but he didn't ask me. & in 2008 when I had Keyy I promised him I wouldn't give him a brother or sister until mommy was able to fully take him/her on the right way.
I was shocked but honestly my birth control was making me sick , I stopped taking it to see if that was in fact the reason & I was not denying Anton any loving. So bam Karter was baking; we were having a baby!
I was happy. We had three miscarriages already & I was afraid I would never get pregnant & carry it full term. BUT I was mad at myself for a few weeks because the single mom struggle was real in 08 and it was going to be extra real in twenty thirteen.
But my co-worker Briana prayed with me & for me, everyone was happy for us & Anton was on cloud nine!
During my pregnancy aside from the vomiting and torture Karter put me through, some of the people in our life made me feel insecure about our newest edition!
"Is Anton hoping for a boy, it will be his first boy, I know he wants his first to be a boy" Those words cut so deep. His first IS a boy; Keyyon. - but more on than later.
So in June , Karter Eli was born and everyone , ESPECIALLY his big brother , was excited!
Karter was my love child. He was made with love, surrounded by love, smothered in love!
I got to enjoy my pregnancy (when I wasn't sick) & I got to enjoy his first few weeks! I was officially a stay at home mom with my only worry being my boys.
Karter was gods way of reminding me of how phenomenal I am. He was here to bring our family of three more life and love. And since June 10, 2014 that's exactly what he's been doing.
He's six months & doesn't even know what it's like to be without mama for more than a couple of hours. I'm able to nurse him to fully belly, to sleep & for comfort. We can play all day while we wait for brubs to finish school. I'm here to witness major milestones when they first happen!
I'm able to enjoy motherhood to the max without the stress of working and missing out on things. & I love that. Karters my sunshine.
part • three - the juggling act
I always knew that having two kids wouldn't be the same as having one. But what I worried most about was how I would parent them. A friend once told me "the first one is made of glass, the second ones made of rubber." No. I'm a helicopter mom - a level 6 on a 1-10 scale. I'm involved & overprotective . Having my husband be in charge of certain things gives me anxiety. But in just six months I realized that I can't always be right there like I was with Keyg. I only have two hands & there's two of them. One for each right? No. Keyy needs me to cook while Karter needs me to nurse. Karter needs a bath while keyy needs help with homework. It's a struggle , it's new, it's motherhood of two boys; six years apart.
The age difference matters. They have completely different needs but that keeps me on my toes. It allows me to experience the crawling and baby talk full force but this time I have a sidekick. I use Keyy to influence and help Karter, he can teach him all things I taught him, that we learned together. I use Karter to remind Keyy to be little and laugh and snuggle with mommy even if it's not cool.
As I said before, people had me feeling insecure about something that I should've been swooning over! And by default Anton got the bulk of my hormonal rampage.
Keyy is our first baby, OUR. Anton has been there since Keyy was nine months old. He's his daddy; and nothing and no one could tell us any different. People are so rude , why would they even say those things.
Even after Anton told me that none of that mattered and people don't get it, reality hit me when Antons family came to visit Karter for the first time. They were all excited. Anton is an only child to his mother and an only grandchild to his grandmother. So Karters arrival was a big deal. They had bags and boxes to prove it.
And then there was Keyy , pouty lips whispering to me "where's my present". I instantly cried. He's left out. How dare anyone make my baby feel left out. How could I let this happen.
D R A M A T I C ! I'm blaming it on just having a baby - right ;)
It wasn't even like that. His family didn't make the baby shower so of course they had a truck load of stuff. Plus when people hear "baby" they melt and credit cards get swiped with no remorse.
So like the mama bear that I am I went to my God mother and cried my heart out. And she told me something very hard to hear but very honest - "I have to let Antons family have their joy. Karter is in fact their first grand baby and great grand baby . They're allowed to be smitten with such an amazing blessing. A blessing made with love. Does that mean Keyy is less important - no. They all love Keyy as their own, he's been in their lives for five years. They welcomed him with open arms and including this day have never made him feel like less than their grandson. All I can do is take this time to love on Keyy more. When they're holding Karter I can hold Keyy. And there's a good chance I'm seeing it as way more than Keyy is. To him he just didn't get a present and his baby brother did." BINGO - mama always knows.
(Btw they ran out and let Keyy choose a toy)
But that was something I had to deal with. And even if Keyy was Antons first born I still would've had to deal with it.
When you have two children the first thing in your mind is "how in the world can I love someone else like I love my first born."
My answer is - you can't. What I had and have with Keyyon is very different than what I have and will have with Karter.
Keyyon made me a mommy. Keyyon saved me and brought me joy when I was broken and at my worst. Keyy showed me what parenthood was all about. Keyy is my soldier. He's Antons kick in the butt. He gave Anton another reason to love me. He gave Anton the opportunity to step in and be apart of a little boys life in a way they both needed. He made Anton a daddy.
I love Karter. He's my sunshine. I fell in love with and married his daddy and we made him with love. He's the reason I'm able to spend all my time loving on my children in a way I couldn't working. He's the reason Keyy has matured and turned so protective. He's the reason my husband brags about "his boys" . He's our chunky monkey, our baby "brudder".
Is it easy having two kids? Yes; at 10pm when I'm laying next to my husband and they're both asleep. Or on Saturday mornings when Karter is drooling on daddy's chest and Keyy is showing me how to build legos without actually letting me build. It's super easy when I get to capture them loving on each other because Karter eats Keyy up & Keyy uses Karter as the star in his karate show :)
Is it hard having two kids? I was late to every appointment the first 3 months of Karters life. So yes; first thing in the morning when one has been awake for two hours and is "starving" while the other one has a poopy diaper and wants nothing but to nurse. Or when it's raining and I'm alone at the store and I have to decide to maneuver the baby bjorn in the front seat and squeeze the three of us under an umbrella. Or when Keyy needs both of us and so does Karter. Especially when I'm home all day and need a break but that break doesn't and won't come for hours. But it's hardest because they are almost six years apart.
Was it nice with one - yes. One other person to get ready and shop for. Sitting a table of three is easy right. Fitting one extra person in the bed at 2am is easy. We got to enjoy Keyy and give him all of our attention until he made the big boy leap to kindergarten!
The perks of two - they will protect each other. They will entertain each other. We will have both of them to take care of us. We can experience some great times in different ways because of their age gap. We get double the wrestling, laughs, hugs, kisses and LOVE. Squeezing two cuties in bed at 2am is hard but great Saturday morning. We are doubly blessed.
Is it amazing having two kids? Yes .
Is it hard having two kids? Yes.
Do I want another? Eh.
I love both my boys. That's it. I don't love one more than the other. I love them equally for different reasons. ❤️
To my sweet Tori - you're a bad ass level 9 helicopter mom. Rose & Daphnee are very lucky little girls and you're already doing an amazing job. love you ;)