Lola and Max are 13 months apart, so they’re not officially Irish twins if you go by the definition of babies born in the same calendar year or 12 months apart. But I think the experience of mothering them will be similar.
Having Lola put in my arms was pure joy. Well, also fear. But mostly happiness, gratitude, and a kind of dreamy I-can’t-believe-it contentment. Having Max is happiness with a big dollop of guilt. Having a newborn stuck to your breast is a real turn-off for toddlers, it seems. Lola has perfected an aggrieved, “Who the hell is that guy?” look that makes me feel like a very bad mother indeed.
I feel guilty about not giving her the avalanche of attention that I would like to give her, and I also miss her, terribly. For the past three months I haven’t been able to go to the park with her every afternoon as I used to… this week I started going again, with young Max in a kangaroo pouch or his pram, so I can chase her around and enjoy her again. It’s time to reclaim my little girl… I just hope that doesn’t mean I end up feeling guilty about neglecting Max.