The Good and Bad of Kids So Close in Age

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By Kelsey Kitt, BCB Guest Blogger

My first two are less than two years apart in age. The one on the way will be just under two years younger than my second. In my head, I was having them close together so they would grow up close. I had visions of bedroom sleepovers and combined play dates. They would share secrets and cheer each other on. They would entertain each other so I could sit down for just a minute. They would be inseparable. Best friends. Close enough in age to help with each other’s homework and share the same friends. They could carpool to parties and take turns being the designated driver. They would grow up side-by-side, always having each other’s back.

But having them so close together got me a lot more than I bargained for. 

Having two in such quick succession means than I take my eye off of one to deal with the other, so he dumps a cup of glitter down the stairs. Seriously. A cup.

It means stopping a newborn mid-feeding because her brother is potty training and has to go now. Not in three minutes when his sister is done feeding. Not once your let-down is done and you won’t spray milk across the room when you unlatch. Now. So you break the seal, set down the baby, and leave a trail of milk to the bathroom.

It means perpetually trying to puzzle massive car seats into a vehicle that was obviously not designed by the Brady bunch.

It’s multiple high chairs, infinite loads of laundry, and never having hand-me-downs because they’re too close in size to be done with skates, bikes, helmets, and snowsuits before the next child needs them.

It’s scouring garage sales for play clothes and used toys, just so you don’t have to buy every single item brand new. 

It’s maneuvering a double stroller in a world not designed for anything wider than a single.

It’s wrapping one child on your chest and the other on your back, because everyone needs snuggles at the same time.

It’s coordinating bedtimes so no one feels left out, everyone gets a snuggle, and no one is left unattended for longer than 30 seconds. Because again, glitter down my staircase.

It’s only shopping at grocery stores that have a double seat in the cart, because if you have to put a child in the bottom of the cart with the food, every apple you buy will have a bite taken out of it, and the bread will be flattened to tortilla status.

It’s never having a free hand to grab the door, because neither of them can be trusted to walk independently without bolting.

It’s understanding why an octopus has 8 arms, and seriously envying them for it. It’s seeing those child leashes you once judged parents for using, and wishing you had one in every animal character.

 It’s spending half of dinner time cutting up food that will probably end up on the floor anyway, and the other half negotiating with them to just take one little bite. Lick it. Smell it. Anything.   

But most of all, it’s getting to watch my children grow up side by side. 

They learn together, play together, fight and compete. 

And today, when I picked them up at daycare, they were sitting side-by-side, holding hands. Having them close in age is a series of struggles I never imagined, but it also means my kids will always have someone to lean on. A built-by-birth best friend that’s going to annoy the living heck out of them, but who will always have their back. It’s knowing that no matter what struggles they come across in life, they’ll always have someone they can trust to give them the advice and honesty they need. It’s knowing they’ll always have someone to count on.

Even if it is just to see how far they can push me before I go absolutely insane. 

Kelsey Kitt is an elementary school teacher and hobby-blogger. She lives in northern Alberta with her husband, 3-year-old son, and 1-year-old daughter. She is expecting her a third child in August 2016.