Dear Tunester, today let’s talk about what to do when you’re feeling second child guilt – that you’re not giving attention to your eldeset once the baby comes along.
If you have more than one kid you know the torture of Attention Divided. The guilt! The yearning!
Every minute feels like a modern parent’s Sophie’s Choice – do I tend to the toddler crying by the slide or the baby who needs to nurse asap? Do I leave the toddler in the living room and spend the time I know it will take to put the baby down in the crib? Do I play another game with the toddler while ignoring the baby in the bouncy seat?
The constant weighing is enough to drive a mama insane.
There is only one cure for this predicament:
Reducing your attention to ONE – spending time with each kid one on one.
Perhaps right away you’re thinking – impossible! I don’t have time for that! I barely have enough time to make dinner, never mind a blessed yoga class.
But dear Tunester, your date can be short. And with the hack I’m about to give you, it will still be impactful for all.
How to make a date with your kid count
Your date doesn’t have to be long for your kid’s love cup to be filled, and for YOUR cup to be filled so you can do away with some of the guilt.
Of course, excursions like going to a museum or movie are exciting. But they’re not practical on a weekly basis.
Here are some short mini-date ideas:
- Going to have a hot chocolate at the coffee shop.
- Going to the park to collect leaves.
- Sitting in a separate room and drawing together.
- Taking a bikeride.
- Even going food shopping.
Now here’s the important part.
Your date needs to FEEL special. It has to give your child the feeling that you’re putting down everything to be with them. They want your undivided attention whether it’s for 15 minutes, 30 minutes or an hour.
How to make a shift from normal day to day to Date Time.
The best way to kick off your date and make it clear to your child that you are theirs for the next period of time is with a SONG.
Your song will do many things. It will:
- Make the transition clear from regular life to date time.
- Make things feel light and happy.
- Put YOU in the mood and remind you to shift your focus.
- Develop a “together song” that you’ll share with this child and will have forever.
Having a song that you only sing every time you start your Together Time will make it feel special and will help you both shift your mood and your focus to each other.
So what’s your song going to be?
Here are some ideas:
- You are my sunshine (my version 🙂
- Together at last (Annie)
- We go together (Grease)
- Better Together (Jack Johnson)
- Together Forever (Rick Astley)
- Happy Together (The Turtles)
- I Want to Hold Your Hand (Beatles)
- The More We Get Together (Rafi)
- A Bushel and a Peck (Doris Day)
- Just the Two of Us (Bill Withers)
- Make one up!
Here’s my promise to you:
If you actually do this, and sing your song every time you set out on a date together, no matter how long it is, this song will become magical for you both.
It will set the tone for togetherness for years to come.
Once you’re on your date, try this game to make your child feel adored and appreciated.
Speaking of siblings, do you need some ways to help your kiddos get along? Try these 10 hacks.
So dear Tunester, what do you think? will you try to have a date song to kick off your time together? Which will you use?
Do you have a friend riddled with second-kid guilt right about now who needs to hear this? Send this their way! Tell them to sign up for more helpful tips in the future.