Thursday, October 2, 2014

Thoughts on Adding a Baby

Nell and Reid have both started calling baby girl by her name, or at least what we think her name will be. I asked Nell once to choose between Coraline and Nara and she choose Coraline and ran with it. For the longest time Reid insisted the baby's name was "Nell Bell." No matter how we tried, we couldn't help him understand why that was a bad idea. After hearing Nell say "baby Coh-a-whine" a couple times he caught on and has decided that is suitable (even though we explained she'd likely be Nara or Coraline a long time ago).

Nell's really digging the idea of being a big sister. She loves to change her baby's diaper and is always mindful of baby _ _ _ _'s needs when we watch him every Thursday. She loves to hug and kiss him.

I remember feeling a little .... sad ... when it was time for Nell to come along. Thankfully an empty-nested mother put my feelings into words at our ward Christmas party that year. She said "I remember being so sad when child #2 came because it wouldn't be just me and child #1 anymore. How silly was that? But at the time it was a real feeling of concern I had." I knew she was purposefully explaining that those feelings go away and eventually seem silly, but it's totally okay to have them.

To be honest, I feel the same way with #3. It's strange to describe. There is obviously lots of excitement and I'd never take this pregnancy back. We want a third child (maybe even a fourth), but as things get closer there is this realization that it will never be just Reid, Nell, and me again. They have such a sweet bond. They played together so well today. It started in the kitchen, as they set up a restaurant and both waited on one another in the sweetest little way. Then it morphed into giggles and wild wrestles on the front room floor. Obviously #3 will add to the sweet moments, but her presence will be an unfamiliar change.

I guess I'm just writing this to let other mom's know that it's okay to be a little saddened by the end of one phase, even while feeling elated by the beginning of a new one.

I remember reading once that it's okay to be disappointed by the gender of a baby. That was such a revelation to me. I'd had friends express disappointment and I thought that was crazy. But the article helped me realize that acknowledging such disappointments is healthy.

There are also great articles and blogs out there that highlight how important it is to just be excited about a baby. Period. Not a "healthy baby." But simply a baby. Because healthy or not, as a parent, you are going to love and accept that new little spirit. I back that thought up 100%, but having spoken with parents who were surprised by an unhealthy child, I also think it is important to acknowledge grief.

A friend once told Ben you have to go through two grieving processes when your child is diagnosed with a disorder that greatly affects their life. First, you have to grieve the loss of the healthy child you envisioned, then you have to grieve the diagnoses of the child you have. That made a lot of sense to me. And I know that friend loves his clinically diagnosed child to the moon and back. He's beyond grateful for his son, and now recognizes why his son has the disability he does. PS The two friends referred to in this post are husband and wife, coincidentally enough.

I guess I could sum up my overall thoughts with the Daniel Tiger motto. It's okay to have feelings. And we need to stop telling parents how they should feel. It's okay to be sad you have another little boy when you were hoping for a girl. It's okay to be sad your relationship with #1 changes when #2 arrives. It's okay to grieve a permanent diagnosis you didn't see coming. None of those feelings make the love you have for your child any less strong.

So yeah, all that ^^^ to say I'm going to miss my time with just Reid and Nell. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So Coraline it is!!! Cute... What if she's a little Leah Rose when you first lay eyes on her?

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