Slow Down, Baby

Mom confession: I couldn’t wait until my newborn wasn’t a newborn anymore. Those first three months dragged by, in my opinion. I’m sure it’s a combination of sleep deprivation and out of whack hormones, plus my dislike of and struggle with breastfeeding, but man, those days were hard. Happy to report I survived and am feeling a little more stable now. I find parenting a 9-month-old so much more fun and rewarding. He’s not so delicate now, he sleeps mostly through the night, he’s eating real food, and slamming bottles and growing chubbier. His spit-ups and acid reflux seems to be getting better. He smiles and laughs with abandon at his sister, crawls around and pulls himself up to explore the house … it’s delightful to witness.

My only problem is now I want him to slow down! He literally went from getting up on his hands and knees, to crawling, to pulling himself up, to cruising along furniture within 5 days of each other. He’s trying to climb things now. (Thankful I have no stairs in my house.) I know in a blink he’ll be walking. It’s all moving too fast! He already tries to get away if I snuggle or kiss his cheeks too much. I know the days of running away from mom are coming.

Just not yet, baby. Let me carry you some more, smell your head, cradle you in my arms after your bottle as your eyes slowly blink closed. Let me keep whispering in your ears, “You are so beautiful. I love you so much.” I relish you right now. Please don’t grow.

9mosb

I remember these days with my first child, and how quickly they flew by. There was that period of time when she ran away from me, not to me, and she didn’t want me to carry her or hug her. She was too busy exploring. It took forever before she was happy to see me when I picked up from the nanny’s. Now she’s 4 1/2. And she wants to cuddle and spend time with me and play with me … and a lot of times I can’t because her baby brother needs my attention first. My heart breaks a little each time she asks, “Mommy, will you play with me?” And I can’t. “In a little bit,” I tell her, “First, I have to feed your brother/put him to bed/change him/make dinner/get laundry going,” etc. I know she needs me. And I’m sad for her. I hope she’s growing up a little, and not being neglected in this phase of her childhood. She’s learning to play by herself, which I know is good for her development. But I know we need more mommy/daughter time. She’s so hungry for my attention, I mustn’t dismiss it.

In the meantime, her father makes sure to spend time with her, while I have the baby. It’s just how it goes. He adores her. They have dance parties. They read books in a tent outside. They go out for ice cream or donuts and walks around the block. They play Candyland and race cars. They do the messy stuff I hate: playdoh, painting, jumping in puddles. When we get our time alone together, it’s usually to go to one of her friend’s houses for a playdate, where the kids play and the moms chill. What I need to do is schedule more mall dates. Nail appointments. Lunches. “Just us girls?” she asks. “Yippee!” Just us girls.

magnatiles

How do you moms of more than one balance time with each child? Did you have any jealousy issues when your first child became a sibling?

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