Hi, all! I just wanted to reassure you that I’m not dead. Yet. I just had a baby, that’s all. 🙂 Giving birth and caring for a newborn and a toddler while recovering and then dealing with mastitis (twice!–more on that in a later post) has briefly put me out of commission as regards blogging. I promise I’ll be back as soon as I can!
In the meantime, I’ve discovered something and I wonder whether other parents have had the same experience. Briefly, I’ve found that having a new baby has made me more compassionate toward my toddler.
Lottie, our new daughter, won’t fall asleep unless she’s held and often won’t stay asleep unless she’s touching someone. (Side note: For those who want to talk about cry-it-out or Ferber methods of sleep training, we actually tried those with our oldest and won’t be doing it again. Just not worth it to us, so consider saving your time by saving your comments.) She doesn’t tolerate being set down and left, even if someone is touching her. In short, now that I have a semi-independent toddler, once again having such a “needy” newborn is a little bit of a shock to my system.
Furthermore, I’ve learned quite a bit since having my first that really lends weight to the attachment parenting style. I’m not going to bedshare with Lottie through two or three years, but there are a lot of things we plan to do differently, one of which being a recognition that babies have an intense need for touch.
I’m not sure whether it’s the mental shift of caring for a completely needy baby suddenly applied to my toddler as well, whether it’s a newfound respect for attachment parenting, whether it’s a recognition of the baby’s need for emotional support suddenly applied to the toddler, whether it’s my subconscious attempt to stave off jealousy, or whether it’s a combination of the above… But I definitely have developed greater compassion for my toddler since giving birth.
Moms of more than one: Have you experienced this?
And perhaps this is a reminder of God’s love and patience for us. Human love and patience pale in comparison to God’s, but occasionally, the very best of human character can give us a tiny picture of God’s character and His glory.
9 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! (Matthew 7:9-11)