It's funny how any pedantic behaviours you had with your first born go out the window by the time you get to your second. I'm not sure what happens when people get to three or more children but I'm guessing things aren't pretty.
When we first had our son, our daughter was two-and-a-bit. I kept calling our new little man "she" and "her" and I would pause before I could come up with his name, referring to him often by the name of other friends' boys, or our daughter.
The poor, forgotten second child.
He would cry and I would hurriedly try to finish whatever I was doing before going to him - usually some drama with his sister - and by the time I'd get there, he'd be asleep on the floor.
There are dozens of photos of him just sleeping on our rug because I just didn't quite get to him in time.
During one of my son's many ear infections, I took him to the after hours doctor where they struggled to find him in the system.
Receptionist: "Have you been here before?"
"Yes – a lot," I replied.
"What's his birthdate?"
"Fifteenth of January, 2015." My thoughts then went: Hey, 15-01-15. Hey that's a really cool birth date, how have I not noticed that before?
"And you're still at [our address]?"
"Hmmmm. There's nothing coming up here."
Some time later, after a few more questions, she says: Oh here he is here. He's the 14th of January."
"Oh. Yes, he is too. Ahh, they all blur into one after a while."
"How many other kids do you have?"
"Oh, um, just one other."
Not long after, in a birthday card for one of my antenatal group's children, I did the standard family sign-off but instead of writing my son's name, I wrote the name of another boy in the group.
The birthday boy's mother sent us all a photo of the sign-off in the card, simply asking:
"Anything you want to tell us?"
Yeah. I just forgot my son. Again.
Some time after that, my husband and I were driving long-distance for a wedding. I group-messaged the same antenatal girls outlining our wishes for our daughter should we crash.
They knew immediately that I'd forgotten him again.
"Poor little guy, we'll take him," replied one of them.
Still, I haven't quite gone as far as one friend did (yet, anyway). She packed up her darling baby girl and associated paraphernalia and drove 5km to town before she got a phone call asking her if she'd forgotten anything.
Confused, she said no.
It was then pointed out that her baby was still in her capsule (safely) sitting at the side of their driveway.
I can confirm that said baby is now an intelligent 13-year-old doing just fine.
Her mum, however, is exactly the same.