things I’ve learned from baby no. 2

I love summer time because I get about twelve straight weeks with my little ones.  No work.  No worrying about rushing around.  Just fun, relaxation, and time with my kids.  This past Thursday, No. 1 spent the day at summer camp while I got to spend time with my littlest two.  I got to witness No. 2 in the oldest child role, with no older sister to lead the way.  I started thinking about my little No. 2 and realized that I could fill a novel of stories about her and things I’ve learned from her.  I would love her to stay three forever, but since she can’t, I figure I better start documenting NOW!

Things I’ve Learned from Baby No. 2

It is completely possible to love more than one child more than you can even imagine.  While I was pregnant with No. 2, my only real worry was that I would not be able to love a second child as much as I love my first.  I couldn’t even wrap my head around how that would be possible.  Until she was born.  The second my little No. 2 was born, I knew that it was possible.  I loved her with my whole heart instantly.  I can’t even come close to putting my feelings in words.  Now that there are three little ones in my life, I know it’s possible for a mother’s heart to keep expanding and opening up with love for her babies.  I suppose I feel love in different ways for each of my children, but as soon as No. 2 was born, I knew it was possible to love more than one with the same intensity and the same devotion.

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Babies can scream.  A LOT.  No. 1 was a peaceful, calm, easy baby.  No. 2 was the opposite.  Until she was between six and nine months old, she screamed all the time.  Uncontrollably, inconsolably.  My husband and I used to take turns taking her out in the car before bedtime to put her to sleep.  I would drive twenty to thirty minutes away, then drive back and pray as I parked the car that she wouldn’t wake up {Which leads me to my next lesson learned…}.  I would rock her in her car seat in the living room because that was often the ONLY place she would fall asleep.  I would take her on walks just to get some peace and quiet.  I would shut myself in my room for five minutes and cry while she screamed in her crib.  I made sure to treasure every single peaceful moment with her, and hold those moments permanently in my heart.  We did make it through, and now she rarely screams, but when she does…oh boy…watch out!

It is okay to let your baby sleep as is.  My little No. 2 didn’t often make it into her crib, swaddled nicely, laying on her back to sleep.  No, she slept in her car seat, her swing, my arms, her Boppy…most of which are big NO NOs according to “the experts” {however, if you know me, you know that my opinion is…do what works for you and your baby.  You are your baby’s expert and no one else can really tell you what to do or what will work!}.  Essentially, I learned to relax a little.  If baby was sleeping happily, then I was happy too!

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You can completely and unconditionally love a difficult, screaming, fussy, difficult baby.  It’s strange, and I can’t really even describe it.  I love my little girl more than words can say, even though we did not have many picture perfect, pleasant moments in the first six months of her life.  For some reason, those moments just made me love her even more.  I think it’s something only a parent with a difficult child can truly understand…

Kids really DO say the funniest things.  I honestly have never met a funnier more charismatic kid than my little No. 2.  Again, I really have no words.  She just cracks me up each and every day.  It’s the little things from the looks she gives me to the words that come our of her mouth {but sound like they should be coming from someone so much older and wiser}.

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There is nothing in the world cuter than your own children.  I guess I really learned this lesson after I had No. 1, but No. 2 definitely reinforced this fact.  I think all parents out there will agree.  Nothing and no one beats your own little munchkins.  They are adorable, lovely, and wonderful in every way {yes, even when they are screaming at 3a.m. and even when they make a giant mess}.

Children can be amazingly compassionate and considerate.  It’s the little kiss on the cheek and the big bear hug.  It’s the words, “mama, it’s okay” or “mommy, I love you” that melt your heart.  It is amazing how perceptive children can be.  They just know when you need a hug or a kiss.  And you know what?  No matter what is wrong in the world at that moment, that little kiss and those little arms wrapped tightly around your neck are all you need to help your problems melt away.

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I know I’m not done learning yet, there is much more to come.  I look forward to the next chapters in my life and plan on enjoying every moment along the way.  What lessons have you learned from your children?

Jenny

 

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