How to cope with having a new baby after a long time in-between kids

I remember when we found out that we were expecting a baby boy just 9 months after our daughter was born. we were excited, we felt contented, grateful and a sense that our family was now complete. No need for another child we thought. I’m done I said. How was I wrong!

Fast forward four years later, our last born started primary school and I felt like ‘now I can focus on my career’. spend quality doing what I always wanted to do, then the yarning for a another child began. I suddenly became all broody again. I was getting older and I felt it was either now or never. I guess it was easier to say never initially because, firstly it wasn’t happening anyway, I mean I was able to get pregnant straight away after the first time but not this time. Secondly, my husband got reassign to a different country – continent, so we hardly saw one another and I am not Mary so no hope of an immaculate conception there! Lastly and most importantly, because the older two kids were so close in age, I struggled in those first two year. I had two under two, working full time, schooling full time. Saying it was difficult would be an understatement. So I was not going to give much thought to adding another baby. But as soon as they were both in full time education, I felt free and could think rationally. I’ve always loved and wanted a big family and if judging from my mom and grandma who gets to menopause early , it was now or never.

Its always nice to plan and do things with logic and analyse every decision however what we failed to realise is that while we were debating weather to have more children or not, time was going. our last born was nearly six years old. meaning it was six years ago since I last had a baby. I had gotten ride of all our baby things, I have forgotten what it was like to be pregnant or have a little baby. I am now at a different stage of parenting.

Some people told me that it would comes back to me, that it was just like riding a bicycle, although that is somewhat true. maybe it isn’t so much as coming back to you but your mama instinct does immediately kick in. you begin to know and remember what to do. what you don’t know however is that each pregnancy is different, each baby is different so what you already know or read may not be applicable anymore.

The age gap has its disadvantages and its advantages. having a big gap between kids isn’t all bad. I have come to appreciate it and thought it was a situation that turned out to be favourable to us. the kids are older and wiser. I could explain things to them and they would understand it. like why mommy was always so tired when I was pregnant. why mommy keeps forgetting things and sending the wrong things to school or signing the wrong school trip letter. they know about mommy having baby brain. We could involve them in the family decisions like what would we hope the new baby would be, a girl or boy? how about names? and so on.

Being older also meant I didn’t have to buy and wrap gifts from baby which they would have figured out because they know a new born baby can’t go to the shops and buy them gifts. one major worry I had was coping with the demands of the older kids versus the demand of the newborn. with the older kids, I have to take them to school, attend PTA meetings, help them with school projects and homework unlike when I was last pregnant, where I didn’t have to do any of those, they were a year apart. after the birth of my second child, three of us stayed at home together, went out together, they are just one academic year apart which means most of everything relating to school was done at the same time.

My favourite part about having an age gap is that the older kids are now very helpful. I have told them time and again that I do not know how I would have coped this few months with a new baby, new apartment, new city and new continent without their help. from helping to change the baby’s diaper to holding her while I take a quick shower. they sing to her, talk to her, read to her. they can see when I’m over whelmed and either give me a back rob or offer to hold her while I close my eyes for 5 minutes – quite literarily.

Its not just the benefits to you, its what it does to them too. my first born daughter was not as excited about having another sibling as she did with this new baby. it was simply because she is older and more mature. not only that, it has led to wonderful conversations like exploring other means of having a family such as adoption and fostering a child because they saw all the pains I went through and instead of it to discourage them from having kids, we looked at other means of having a family. they are more caring, gentle, kinder, compassionate and considerate. they have learnt and matured so much over the last few months.

Personally, the benefit of spacing kids out weighs the negatives. Yes it would be nice to have them all at the same time and get it done with but that maybe too much for some of us. Spacing them out gives you a few moment to catch your breath while you dive in again. If you already have kids and you are thinking about having more kids but are worried about the age gap, don’t worry. so far your doctor has cleared you, go for it. it won’t be easy but having and raising humans isn’t easy anyway, but it would be fun! I always say ” don’t let fear stops you from your dreams”. Go for it!

How to cope with the age gap

  1. Make the most of the situation, see it as a blessing. Having the age gap means you have had a breather, you are wiser, more confident. the things that gave you anxiety as a new mom does not bother you anymore. who needs a changing stating?
  2. Your older kids are your helper. They do love helping and it is a good character building to allow them to help with the new baby. I try not to take advantages though, I watch them to see if they are tired, not in the mood to hold a baby, or if they simply rather play at that moment. They do not help much during week days because of homework and wind down time.
  3. Although you may have to start buying the baby thing all over again, I see it as a positive. I love shopping, both in person or online. New baby things come into the market all the time so it would be fun to see whats currently trending. You don’t actually need much things, except if you are going to have even more kids.
  4. Remember that your life does not stop once you have a new baby, especially for the older kids. do what you normally do with them, go out for family meals, do home work together. when the baby is crying and the older kids needs you, attend to the older kid first, that will show him that he is as important. that the baby has not come to take over or take their parents away.
  5. give yourself time to heal. regardless of how you had your baby, you are not as you were when you had your first baby, it may take longer to heal or for things to fall back to where they were. don’t rush it. give it time. do what you can, when you can and how you can.
  6. it maybe harder to make new ‘new mom friends’ but then you realise you don’t need one as much as you thought you did when you first had a baby several years ago. keep the old friends you have and be open to new friendship but remember you are not the expert, don’t tell them what to do simply because you have been there already. if you have an opinion, write a blog : )
  7. unless it is literarily a matter of life and death, nothing else is as important as your kids and family. put everything else aside for now. focus your energy and resources on them.
  8. have an outlet. blog, instagram, take photos of nature, write a book, something that is yours and it is for you.
  9. know that you will feel guilty. the older kids will tell you that you don’t love them, that all you care about is the baby. they don’t mean it, you may know that, they may come around and say sorry they didn’t mean it but you will still feel guilty. Communicate, explain to them why you need to attend to the baby more. babies are fragile and helpless. you did exactly the same for them when they were younger.
  10. Stock the house of everything you use and need. not just food, stock the house with light bulbs, memory cards, batteries, etc.
  11. Keep some money aside. you will find Uber eats and deliveroo to be your best friend. the age gap means different routine and schedule for kids so there will be very little time to be cooking from scratch. Eating out/takeaway/delivery cost a lot more than making your own food.

A Trip to Science Museum London 

Over the years we’ve taken the kids to the science museum London. They enjoyed it as younger kids but didn’t understand much then.

Since the kids got a little older and started full time primary school, we haven’t taken them for a while, until it was science week at their school and they needed to submit a project. Time for a little adventure!

To keep the kids entertained on our tube ride, we picked up a tube map for them to navigate our stops. Being it was a Sunday, there were engineering works going on on the London Underground, which affected our journey. 

The science museum London is a free entry museum (donations accepted and we highly recommend it), it’s easy to locate. To get there, follow the signs from South Kensington underground station, past the natural history museum on the left. The Victoria and Albert Museum on the right until you get to the end of the subway and then you turn to your left. 

You will need to go through security check and then your adventures begins with locomotives and stem engines, many interesting things to see, do and discover on the ground floor,all the way to the top floor. 

Exploring space. 


We went on a space tour learning interesting facts like how astronauts do number 2 in space and bring the sample back to NASA to analyse the content of their poo. Space is pretty but its poo business isn’t pretty. 


Then we took the stairs all the way to explore more matters and materials. There is lift, clean toilet with baby changing facilities and a cafeteria (first floor) that sells hot and cold food. There is a gift shop on the ground floor. 

Next we explored matters and materials. 

By the time we had lunch and toured the second floor, we were tired. There was School the next day and I didn’t want to tire them up. So we had to go but we are coming back over the half term for part 2! 

Baby Gender Reveal 

It’s a girl! 


We are so happy to be having another beautiful little baby girl in 5 months time. 

All my cravings and motherly instinct told me it was going to be a boy. I craved for very spicy delicious Western Nigerian meals, similar to the cravings I had in my previous pregnancy with my son. My mother also had a dream that it was going to be a boy. But as usual I was a little sceptical and didn’t go ahead to start shopping for everything blue. We wanted to get the confirmation from the 20 weeks scan. After three pregnancies, I’ve come to realise that babies sometimes have a mind of their own. Just as every child is different, so is every pregnancy. 

I’ve always said to those closest to us that I don’t mind much about the gender of a baby. As long as the child and mom is healthy and both are home safely after the birth. That’s what matters to us. Besides we’ve already got one of each so we are very grateful for any additional child. 

The more detailed 20 weeks scan not only should us our beautiful girls’ face but also showed us that she’s doing well. 

Our daughter Victoria is happy to be having a sister she can play dress-up with. 

While our son Daniel is happy to have at least one baby sister who won’t be bossing him about like his older sister who’s always playing the mummy. 


Me? I’m just happy to be growing our family! 

Getting Moms Ready For Back to School

The kids are back to school for the new academic year. You have gotten them ready. School uniforms, shoes, bag, packed lunches, hair, etc. How about you? Have you gotten yourself ready? Someone once said if you fail to prepare, then you have prepared to fail. How do we prepare ourselves for the new challenge? It may not be new for you but after spending over six weeks of summer, kids starting new classes and new curriculum it sure feels like a new challenge. 

One key thing is for us to be healthy. Healthy minds, body and soul. Eat well, move a little more, rest and drink plenty of water. Take supplements to balance up any key vitamins your body is lacking will help you feel better. When you feel better, your mindset will be better and you can be a better mom, wife and colleague. I usually get tired, lack energy and motivation. Taking supplements like Pharmaton helped me a lot. 


Self care isn’t being selfish. I’ve said it several times, it’s important to look after number one so you can look after the number ones in your life. 

Another way to be prepared is to get organised. Organisation doesn’t have to be fancy or complex. A simple calendar with space in the boxes to write down appointments is ok. A more sophisticated planner with dates, telephone numbers, bills, receipts and vouchers is also ok. What’s important is being able to write down key things. When is homework due? when is after school club? when is the next jab or dentist appointment? When are you having your hair done? when is lunch with a friend? When does the fish tank needs washing? When is the parking fine due? When does the washing machine needs servicing? Car M.O.T due?Keep them short and sweet. Bullet points. Try to keep things on direct debit and annual things on yearly reminders on your phone. Most people use smart phones nowadays and they are great planners. Use both. 

Also remember to utilise resources at your disposal. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help. Ask from family, friends and the school for any support or resources that might be available to you. Find out from your local council what support or information is available in your area. Message people you follow on social media privately to ask for the full story behind the seemingly I -got-it-all- together picture. Be polite. Worst that can happen is they say no or ignore you but be proud of yourself that you put yourself out there. There response will speak more about their personality than yours (approache people you’ve built a good relationship with through liking and commenting on their posts, not people you ignore and now wants their help), it’s ok to ask for help from people outside our circle. 

Finally relax. The kids will be alright. Peace of mind and calmness can go a long way. Kids pick up on it. You will forget to return a signed slip, they will go to school without a jumper or water bottle some day and that’s ok. It won’t be the end of the day. There is always tomorrow. The hope of a better day. 

*Disclaimer: This post contains product I have been paid to advertise however all opinions are mine. I have used this product before I was pregnant (not suitable for pregnant women) and I’m now making an honest review. 

Introductions

Hello

In April 2016, we moved away from our six bedroom home in Essex, England into a two bedroom flat in North London. We could not be happier. We became minimalist BY CHOICE. This blog is about sharing our journey and experiences with you. About simplicity and raising a family in London. We will be posting weekly on different topics, ranging  from family, food, fashion, personal journals and many more.

Being a minimalist by choice is not about having less or living without, on the contrary. You will be able to have more disposable income, able to spend more time with families and friends and able to make time and afford to travel. Since starting this journey, we have traveled over 10 different countries. Could have be more but our kids are school age now. So we are trying to fit it around their schooling.

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