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6 Things Every Mom Who Has Two Kids Under 2 Understands

It's midnight, and I am settling into bed after changing my 18-month-old daughter and soothing her with a little warm milk. But I sit in silence, waiting for my other child to wake up. Sure enough, 10 minutes later (just as I am dozing off) I hear another small voice calling for me, scared by the storm.

As a mom who had two kids in less than two years, this is my normal—and I know I am not alone.

Whether two back-to-back pregnancies were exactly what you planned, or you simply had a little happy surprise, having two very little ones underfoot is a wild ride. Before you can catch your breath from putting out one fire, there is another diaper to change or boo-boo to kiss. If you had multiple kids in hurry, you are sure to identify with these 6 things every mom who had two kids in less than two years experiences.

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1. Coffee is life

Unless you are one of the lucky ones with kids who sleep through night, exhaustion is your new way of life. When you have two kids back-to-back, chances are your oldest will still be waking in the night after the new baby arrives.

And when they do sleep? It is never at the same time. I swear, my daughters have been plotting against me by staggering their naps and taking turns waking in the middle of the night.

2. The supermarket sweep

The only chance for a successful trip to the grocery store is when you're armed with snacks, toys, multiple pacifiers and a strategic map of the store. Tackling an hour of shopping with a breastfeeding infant who eats every hour and a barely walking toddler is no easy task.

3. You are no longer fazed by the stares

As a mom of one, I was mortified anytime my daughter threw a fit in public. Now, I am no longer fazed. Yes, both of my children are crying, and yes, I know there is spit up on my shirt ... your point?

4. Was this one a surprise?

Announce your first pregnancy and you'll hear a whole lot of "Congratulations!"; announce a second pregnancy months after the birth of your first and you'll hear a whole lot of "Was this one a surprise?" and "You know what causes that, right?"

5. You become a multi-tasking ninja

Nothing sharpens you parenting skills quite like having two babies in less than two years. Breastfeeding, diaper change and talking on the phone at the same time? No problem.

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6. That feeling you get when you realize things are getting easier.

After months of juggling infant feedings and toddler emotions on just a few hours of sleep, it starts to feel like survival mode is all you will know. But one day, usually when you need it the very most, you will discover your toddler doing everything in her power to make her sister laugh or picking up her toys without prompting. Things do get easier. And you will be grateful you made the choice to have two babies so close together.

Photograph by: Mary Sauer

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