I knew that the transition from one child to two children would be hard. And it has been. Very hard.
In two months, however, we've gotten into somewhat of a routine. A chaotic routine, but a routine nonetheless where both baby and toddler can coexist. Then the sickness took over our house.
Nathan had a fever, glassy eyes, runny nose and a cough that would not stop. He was whiny and miserable and wanted nothing more but to be cuddled and loved.
In the past, I would have brought him endless glasses of juice while stroking his hair, kissing his cheeks and making sure his emotional and physical needs were met.
Then came Noah.
Yesterday Nathan needed his mommy and I wasn't there. Sure I was in the house, next to him but I wasn't the mom he needed me to be.
He needed love and cuddles. He constantly begged to be held and comforted and I had to turn him away. I was either feeding Noah, changing the endless parade of diapers and dealing with life in general with two babies.
All of this while being sick myself.
I was a mess. Nathan refused to eat, refused to drink. He was constantly acting out. Making a mess. Complaining. Crying. Whining.
I lost my temper and raised my voice more than I should have.
There were time-outs.
By the time Cornel got home it was as if he entered a war-zone. The two kids were screaming hysterically, one because of his medicine and the other because he was hungry and wanted out of his crib.
I failed. I failed as a mother. By the time the dust had settled and both kids were calm, I broke down.
I cried for not handling the day better; for not being the comfort that my sons needed from me. The guilt of the day was eating me alive.
After I got Noah settled down for the night, I went to lay down with Nathan. I hugged him and kissed him. I sang songs with him and held him close until he fell asleep.
I needed him to know that I still loved him that I would always be that comfort, but how can I make that promise?
How can I be the same mother I used to be to him and how can I be the same type of mother for Noah. How can I split myself in half to give them both the comfort they need while keeping my sanity?