I feel guilty for all the things my second-born doesn't get

There are so many things you can't do (at least not with the same time and attention) for baby #2 that you did the first time around.

I feel guilty for all the things my second-born doesn't get

A second child defies basic math. 1 + 1 = 2 in all cases except for the introduction of a sibling.

As soon as your attention is divided and there are as many kids as there are adults, life gets exponentially more difficult. There are so many things you can't do (at least not with the same time and attention) for baby #2 that you did the first time around.

While I'm happy to report that we've survived the first year with two little ones, there's still a handful of things that I get a bit weepy about not doing as well for my second:

Sleeping on me. My first son often napped snuggled into me while I read a book on the balcony of our apartment. Sure, there was stuff to do, but there were far fewer things that had to be done right then when we only had one. I love the moments when my younger son falls asleep on me, but those moments are fleeting with a toddler in the mix.

Good naps. Speaking of sleeping, once baby #2 made it out of the sleep-all-the-time newborn phase, he's been lucky to get one good nap a day, let alone two like his brother used to take. Our youngest is tougher to put down for a nap, but that's likely because we aren't doing things the same way—there's less time to rock him to sleep, and we are on the go much more than we were when his big brother was peacefully napping his way through his first and second years.

Homemade baby food. I did make baby food for my younger son—once. Two whole trays and that was the end of that. Fortunately, he got teeth earlier and progressed to solid foods quickly, but store-bought jars and pouches of baby food were much more of a staple for my second than for my first.

Reading. From the day he came home from the hospital, we read to my older son every night before bed and often at other times during the day. As my husband and I learned to juggle baths and bedtime with two, we were both so wiped out by the end of the day that letting the baby fall asleep with a bottle while we watched (or dozed in front of) TV became the norm. We finally got our act together and now read to our youngest every night just like we do with his brother, but it took a while.

One-on-one time. The divided attention that comes with a second child is unavoidable, and the struggle to devote time individually to each kid is tough. Sure, my husband will occasionally take our 3-year-old out for a bit, giving me some one-on-one time with his little brother, but if the timing is right, I often try to get him to take a nap so that I can do one of the million things on my to-do list while our toddler is out of the house.

Milestone excitement. I didn't tape the little one to the ground when he started learning to crawl, but I'd be lying if I said it didn't cross my mind. So many of the milestones that were so exciting the first time around can bring a strange mix of pride and dread with baby #2. ("Yay, he rolled over!! Oh NO, I can't take my eyes off of him EVER again.") However, the start of real smiles and "mama" squeals were just as awesome the second time around.

Adding a second tiny human to a household is tough, and there are times that I question if I'm giving my second everything his brother got. The honest answer: I'm not.

During those times of doubt, I focus on the fact that my second-born has an older brother who was so excited the day they met in the hospital that he squealed with delight, an older brother who is genuinely excited to see his little sidekick every morning when he wakes up.

And as a fellow younger sibling, I know that, despite the things I may not be doing as well this time around, my youngest has an automatic best friend, a secret keeper and a life adviser. He has someone who will always have his back and family dance parties are way more fun. Those things are worth a few missed naps.

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We're so glad to live in a time when modern baby gear exists. Sure, no one is going to argue that having a baby is easy—but it can be easier with support from some gadgets designed to help your baby and put your mind at ease.

As you build your baby registry, look for products that go the extra mile to make your life a whole lot easier. For example, what's better than a bassinet? A bassinet that can rock by itself. And what's better than a traditional baby monitor? One that allows you to actually take a peek at your baby. Believe us when we say these upgrades can make all the difference.

Here are 10 baby gadgets that will make your life so much easier… relatively speaking, of course!

A bassinet to promote safe + sound sleep

HALO Innovations Bassinest Swivel Sleeper Essenta Series Nautical Net

The safest place for your newborn to sleep is in your room, but not in your bed. Thanks to the swivel function of the Halo Bassinest, you can easily tend to your baby during the night—which means more sleep for you, too. Trust us when we say that is the best gift you can give a new parent.


A smart swing for your baby

4moms mamaRoo 4 Bluetooth Enabled High-Tech Baby Swing - Classic

Believe it or not, many babies are born with strong opinions about how they want to be rocked, swung or shushed to calm down. With the mamaRoo's various motions and reclining positions, you'll be able to find a setting your baby loves when you need to free up your hands for a bit.


A complete travel system for car + sidewalk

Chicco Bravo Travel System - Indigo

No matter where the day takes you—or what mode of transportation you need to get there—getting a complete travel system for your baby will equip you for anything.


A swaddle you don’t have to wrestle

Love To Dream Swaddle UP Original

What do babies and Harry Houdini have in common? A knack for breaking out of tight constraints—which can be a headache when swaddling is the best way to help promote good sleep. Thanks to a breakout-proof swaddle that allows your baby to sleep with their hands up, you don't have to work up a sweat just to get your baby comfortably swaddled.


A nursery wherever you need it

Baby Trend Lil Snooze Deluxe II Nursery Center

During the early days of parenting (when you are feeding and changing your baby around the clock), having convenient access to everything you need with a go-anywhere nursery station can save you serious time and energy.


A little help for stuffy noses

Fridababy NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator

Up until the point years down the road when your child is able to blow their own nose, the sniffles can be a real struggle—but not with a nasal aspirator that makes it easy for you to get that snot out of their nose.


A way to keep an eye on your baby

VTech 5" Digital Video Baby Monitor - VM5251

Trust us when we say you'll sleep better when you know your baby is also sleeping soundly. That's why we're so thankful for modern-day video monitors, which allow you to check in on your sleeping baby without running the risk of waking them up when you sneak in for a peek.


A bassinet for hands-free rocking

Simmons Kids Silent Auto Gliding Elite Bassinet - Odyssey

Babies are soothed by rocking motions. But what does that mean for you if you can't rock them throughout the night? With an auto-gliding bassinet, they can comfortably drift off to sleep... and continue snoozing.


An easy way to contain diaper smells

Diaper Genie Expressions Pail

Sometimes it's the little conveniences that make a big difference in the quality of your day-to-day life. That's why a great diaper pail should not be undervalued: By containing the smell, you will save yourself dozens upon dozens of trips to the garbage can.


A white noise machine that pulls double duty

Hatch Rest Sound Machine, Night Light & Time-to-Rise

A phone-controlled sound machine may be something you never considered until now, but it will be a major lifesaver for years to come, especially as it can also function as a time-to-rise clock that promotes good sleep habits for your child.


And as for securing all these awesome products? Well, a Target baby registry is the way to do it. By creating your baby registry with Target, you will also enjoy their Year of Benefits registry program, which includes perks like a welcome kit with more than $100 in savings and samples, two 15% off coupons to complete your registry, and a full year of returns. The benefits are better than ever right now: Target just launched the Year of Exclusive Deals perk as one of its registry benefits, and this includes a year's worth of discounts on baby essentials (think diapers and formula) and comes complementary when you sign up for Target Circle.

Because while parenting may not be "easy," deciding to register with Target definitely is an easy decision. Start your Target baby registry now and enjoy shopping with a Year of Benefits featuring a Year of Exclusive Deals available via Target Circle, two 15% off coupons, a year of hassle-free returns, a free welcome kit and more!

This article was sponsored by Target. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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