Jessica Biel called in to the Ellen DeGeneres Show yesterday. She’s executive producer of the Freeform series Cruel Summer so she was promoting that. But they ended up talking mostly about Jessica’s sons, Silas, six, and Phineas, 10 months. Apparently, she and husband Justin Timberlake just got finished sleep training Phin, which Phin responded to really well, but then all his teeth came in, so they are back to sleepless nights. Ellen asked Jessica if it was hard having two kids as opposed to one and Jessica said the workload goes up 1000% when the second one comes.
When asked if having two kids is harder than one, Jessica confirmed that it’s definitely not easy.
“A very wise friend of mine said, ‘One is a lot. And two is a thousand,'” The Sinner actress joked. “That’s exactly the way it feels. You’re like, man-on-man defense, one person’s here, one person’s over there. It is a wild, wild ride.”
There is a silver lining to the chaos, Jessica explained: the adorable bond between her two kids.
“It is so cute to see these two together,” Jessica shared. “They both think the other one is hilarious. Silas, he is the performer, he wants to make the jokes and he wants all the attention on him, so Phin only has eyes for him. Everything that Silas does is hilarious and then anything that Phin does is hilarious. So they just laugh at each other all day long.”
I’d heard some version of this too. I’d heard the amount of work between one and two is something close to Jessica’s numbers. But the work per child after two was negligible – so like three and four was no more work than two. I found the problem in numbers to be mobility. When the first kid can walk, but the second stays put, it’s tough. When both are motorized, all hell breaks loose. Honestly, I’ve blocked out so much of that time. I remember it was hard, but I was trying to remember why. I think it was because when I had one, he always needed something but when I fulfilled that need, I had a minute or two before he needed something else. With two, as soon as I met one’s needs, the other needed something. Or the other found my phone and dropped it in the dog’s water dish. Things like that. I’m a little surprised with Jessica’s situation, though. That’s a pretty big age gap. And after age five, the kids get so much more self-sufficient. I mean, Silas is six, he’s probably entertaining himself for at least short spurts of time.
I did love the second part of Jessica’s comments, about Silas and Phin reacting to each other. That’s a magical time between siblings. If you’re lucky, it stays that way. It’s one of the best arguments to have two or more. No matter how old they get, they will always look out for each other. I’ll bet Jessica finds a little time to get something done when Silas and Phin are together. I’m sure her nannies, night nurses, housekeepers and personal assistants probably make sure she has a moment to put her feet up when she needs it, too. I think we can assume Justin isn’t on the diaper duty rotation.
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