There are some things about parenting that I did not get as a mother of only one. It was the experience of parenting two children that taught me these little truths.
You no longer think having one child is hard
Dealing with crying, breastfeeding, potty training, tantrum, GTM, manners, keeping the house clean, traveling, … hanya dengan satu anak yang diurus? Easy.
Well, it didn’t feel that way when you only had your first, tapi jika dibandingkan kondisi ada dua anak (atau lebih), one child was a piece of cake.
You no longer trust any advice from mother of one
Karena jika mereka begitu yakin pola asuhnya dapat membesarkan buah hati yang kelak berguna bagi nusa bangsa, why they’re not having another one? We all know that the world needs more good people.
It was mostly the child, not the parenting
When parenting only one child, banyak ibu-ibu yang ke-GR-an bila anaknya supel, suka bercerita, banyak bertanya, tidak picky eater, dll. They must be thinking that they’d done all these parenting things right.
You know that’s not true. Mostly, it’s just the character of the child, or the circumstances at the time. You can do the same things you did with the first one, tapi anak ke-2 (dan mungkin yang berikutnya) will still turn out totally different.
You can’t help but compare
Of course you see masing-masing anak sebagai individu berbeda and cherish every aspect of them. Tapi tetap saja, you have many moments of deja vu and you can’t help but remember how things were the same (or different) with the first.
You care less about anything like you used to
You no longer go on whatever online baby development site untuk mencermati milestone per bulan, kurva berat badan ideal sesuai usia, dll.
You don’t care what the books say. Ever again.
You know that there’s no such thing as a perfect family photo
It’s just a myth. Because getting two (or more) children to look at the camera—and smile!—at the same time adalah misi yang sulit dilakukan. You will have to take thousands of pictures untuk mendapat foto yang agak-lumayan-oke.
Sekitar 50% orang yang suka usil bertanya kapan mau tambah anak, will stop…
…tapi 50% sisanya will still ask you the question e-v-e-r-y-t-i-m-e they see you, tanpa peduli jumlah anak yang telah dimiliki. Lihat tabel.
You know the real meaning of a noisy house
Mother of one has no friggin’ clue. Seriously.
You forget the rules
Not all of them, obviously…
…but well, most of them.
You can love another child as much as your first
You don’t have to share the love. You double it.
And no, you don’t have anak kesayangan—karena setelah melewati fase bayi yang imut nan menggemaskan, each child annoy you equally 😛
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Amelia Yustiana is a mother of two imaginative little boys. Now she’s pregnant with baby number three. She does have a husband who tolerates her random personality, but she’s not sure why. She previously worked for Jawa Pos Group and Femina Group, where she spent more than 9 years with the last position as senior editor before quitting the office job and becoming a stay at home mom.