7 Things I Will Do Differently With My Next Child

I have thought about this many times and there are plenty of things I would do differently.
I haven’t really mentioned it on my blog because it’s taken some time for me to crack up the courage, but when Elliott was 20 months old, I was diagnosed with Post Natal Depression and General Depression disorder.
Yes, that long after he was born. It took me a long time to even get to the first GP who then failed to diagnose (or help me for that matter) and then because that experience dulled my confidence even more, it took me ages to see someone else!
Anyway, I’ll talk about my experience more in another post, but having PND definitely put a cloud over many things.
So, what will I do differently?

1. Well, for starters, I’m not even thinking about having another child until I feel better, mentally. I worry how long this may take and wish it would just go away so I can move on with my life, but if I am to give 100% to both children, I need to do this.

2. I will give breastfeeding another shot. I only breastfed Elliott for a couple of months due to his inability to feed properly from birth, no matter what I tried. Having PND (and not realising it) made things even more difficult, I just couldn’t deal with the stress of it and had very little confidence in myself. Now that I know what I do now, I look forward to trying again. I will also buy a nice, big comfy chair. I didn’t have one for Elliott and can remember constantly getting a sore back and a very numb bum!

3. For some reason, I was quite terrible at recording milestones. I know I got some down, but I remember forgetting to do it and then relying on my memory. I was so caught up in just getting through each day that important things like this got left out. This is something I will definitely make a priority next time because it’s something that my children will look back on in the future. I know I have looked back at my albums which Mum made for me.

4. I will definitely try my hardest not to give into the dummy! As much as it was a godsend to us with Elliott, he relies on it too much at night and wakes when he can’t find it, sometimes multiple times a night.

5. Although Elliott will have a lot of ‘hand me down’ toys for his sibling, I will be asking friends and family (and grandparents especially) not to buy toys! Elliott has way too many toys and I think more than anything, I’d probably like to cull the toys we have and introduce some more educational toys, especially more wooden ones.

6. Focus more on routines. I feel better when I’m on a routine, I feel I achieve more and I know that Elliott slept so much better when we were on a routine. It was always when the routine was out of kilter that things didn’t work and we both felt terrible!

7. And lastly, I will try to trust my instinct more instead of rushing to a book, to the internet or to see what other mothers do or think. We all parent differently and no one is right or wrong, it’s what feels best for us and what is best for our children. I need to take my own advice and stop comparing myself!

What would/did you do differently with your next child? 
Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)

Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)

Eva is the Editor and Owner of The Multitasking Woman. She always has her fingers in many different pies but wouldn't have it any other way. Eva is a freelance writer, a social media manager, a Mum to her six-year-old son, one-year-old daughter, six chickens and Benny the dog and wife to Mr G. They all live happily in their little worker's cottage in Ipswich, Queensland, Australia.
Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)

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  1. October 16, 2013 / 9:54 pm

    You know Eva, I think we all would do things differently if we had the chance again. I only fed K for about 3 weeks but that is a whole other story, I would have spent more time with her, I would have documented milestones (I don’t think we did any !!!) – I could go on and on with the “I would haves” but at the end of the day, we did what we thought was right at the time and, not having another child means we can’t change it – it just means we did the best we could with what we knew.
    Don’t be too hard on yourself – I think sometimes we turn into our own worst enemies – love yourself and be kind to yourself – you are a fantastic Mom who loves her son – no child could ask for more.
    Have the best day !

  2. October 16, 2013 / 11:37 pm

    I have three girls. I did a small amount of controlled crying with #1 and it was awful and I vowed never to do it again. With the other two I cuddled them, co-sleptwhen I needed to, only had a loose routine (feed, play, sleep) and made sure I really enjoyed them as babies. It was so much better the second and third time around. I didn’t have PND so I guess I had it much easier than you did. Hopefully you can achieve those things but if not just do your best to enjoy your baby. Also I have heard that paying someone to turn the placenta into capsules is amazing for helping PND. I didn’t need it but I would have done it if I suffered PND.

  3. October 18, 2013 / 2:11 am

    Thanks for sharing, Eva, it is hard to put yourself out there but we are blessed because of it! I recently had my second, (2 boys 16 months apart) so this issue feels pretty fresh for me. I think one of the hardest things about the second child is that you think you have a bit of an idea of what parenting is about from the first one…and then number 2 is a whole different kettle of fish. Number 1 was a bit of a dream child so I wasn’t looking to change too many things but then a lot of my strategies didn’t work this time around so I’ve had to adjust. I guess that is parenting in a nutshell though 🙂

  4. October 18, 2013 / 4:11 am

    I’m glad you finally found the help you needed with PND, and I’m sorry it took so long to get it. I have 3 children, and the thing that changed each time was that I was more laid back, and really trusted my intuition more and more. It’s so hard as a first time mum to even feel like you know what you are doing , without adding PND into the mix. Your list is great, and well done on being a great mum!

  5. October 18, 2013 / 5:26 am

    I have really tried to take more of a chill pill with my second little girl, and I think knowing that we don’t intend to have more kids has really helped with this. We spend heaps of time at home, cuddling, playing, just chillaxing. I don’t feel the need to rush out to mother’s groups and other outings. I don’t read about what milestones she should have achieved each month. I only care that she’s happy and healthy.

    I also fed her to sleep a whole lot, and she’s very used to being picked up in the night when she cries. I know these are both ‘bad’ habits but I don’t give a damn. We both love the one on one times together.

  6. October 18, 2013 / 5:45 am

    Sorry to hear you are suffering PND.
    When you have another child, things are SO much easier! It is such a pleasure when you have learned everything the first time around! Having had my 6th less than a year ago, I must say it just gets more pleasurable with each! I hug her a lot and keep her close, just for the fun of it. I remember with the earlier ones, I always wanted to put them down and do other things! (Maybe to escape)!

  7. October 18, 2013 / 1:16 pm

    I have five sons, and I have had post natal depression with one of them, its damn right scary!
    I would easily parent my teenagers differently if I had my time over again 🙂
    And I would be kinder to myself, after all its a lack of sleep that I suffered along side my post natal depression, I think that if I had asked for help earlier on so that I could catch up on my sleep would have helped our family situation.

  8. October 19, 2013 / 12:27 am

    We live to learn right?? I have recently just had my second baby and things are so different this time around. There is so much more calm and those things that I would have gotten anxious about first time around, don’t exists. I reckon routine, although I loathed it with first bub, is the best way of feeling on top of things and in control. You learn to trust the gut more and the results are far better than when I was trying to follow some book. I have not looked at one of the many baby bibles I bought with no.1! You sound like you’re well on the way to being in the right head space for no.2, even if you don’t know it just yet!

  9. October 19, 2013 / 12:30 am

    Oh hindsight! You have done as you felt at the time as long as your baby was cared for and happy. You think you have routine sorted and then bam it all changes again. My second baby all that I am doing differently is holding him more, baby wearing, keeps him happy and keeps me happy as I can get things done. I had to wean him of the dummy at 6 months it was hell for 6 days he cried so hard, but now I am so glad I did it. We were having the same problem with it falling out at night. Now he goes to sleep happily with his teddy bear. It is so great you are able to write down your feelings to try and understand your PND. Keep going Mama x

  10. October 19, 2013 / 1:02 am

    Trusting your instincts is a really good one!! It’s amazing how much we know without giving ourselves credit for it. I was only diagnosed with PDN around 8 months after my first born too. Sounds like you’re doing a great job xx

  11. October 20, 2013 / 11:20 am

    I agree with all of these SO MUCH, we have a very strict dinner, bath, bed routine and it works so well. Instincts a big one for sure. Sorry you had to go through PND 🙁 And promise not to beat yourself up about things you did the first time around, live and learn – you did a great job!!!

  12. October 21, 2013 / 12:03 pm

    Trusting your instincts is a good one – never underestimate yourself and what feels right or wrong to you. I hope you continue on the path to mental wellness – I’m currently on the path to recovery too, it can be a long road but I think you are definitely approaching it in a healthy way x

  13. October 21, 2013 / 10:08 pm

    Thanks for this very honest post Eva. Even though I don’t have children, I would agree with Kirsty and say that trusting your instinct is so important. I think this can applies for everything in life.
    You’re the mother, you’re the one who knows what’s best for your child.

  14. November 1, 2013 / 9:09 am

    Thanks for sharing Eva – a beautiful, thoughtful post. xx