I've been thinking a lot lately about Blueberry's arrival and what having another child will mean for our family.
I'm not worried about the "technicalities" of it; as in breastfeeding while playing with a toddler, going to the grocery store with 2 children in the cart, having time for both kids ect. With my previous experience as a nanny, and with the babysitting I regularly do for friends, I'm just already partly used to it. It's not really twice as hard..maybe just 1/2 as hard over again? (and now that I've said that I will have a VERY VERY hard time with 2 kids). Honestly, though, people do it all the time and Zeke is a fairly chill child. Other than his anxiety in social situations he's VERY independent for his age and we've been working on a lot of "big brother" skills like waiting a few minutes when he wants something, giving gentle touches, retrieving his own snacks and water from his spot in the kitchen, and throwing away diapers for mommy. I just honestly feel that, as far as 1 year old's go, he's fairly ready for a sibling.
So far, he LOVES babies. He loves them in real life and likes to pet their teeny little faces and give them kisses and he gets very very concerned when they cry and wants the baby to be picked up RIGHT AWAY. He gets sooo stressed when we see a baby crying and no one holding it. He's also starting to love pretend baby dolls (which we sadly don't own any of). He wraps them in blankets and brings them to me and tries to stuff them up my shirt so I can feed them. Yeah, you know that I've surrounded myself in a certain birth culture when my toddler has no understanding that babies drink bottles. Babies go in mommies shirt, duh.
I might go out and buy him a little baby doll, honestly, just so we can keep up a conversation about them and their requirements. I have a few New Baby books that have been gifted to me but honestly they don't really make sense for our family since they always display the more traditional baby crying in a crib and drinking from a bottle scene (not one often seen in this house), not to mention those books always show bigger babies that are crawling and eating. By the time Blueberry is that age I doubt Zeke will remember a time when she wasnt around. Honestly how much long term memory can he have? Plus I really don't know how much Zeke gains from a book at this point. Pretend play is a lot more his level.
Anyways, though...I was saying we aren't worried about technicalities.
The thing that's been on my mind this week is the relationship between Zeke and I and how that will change. We're such partners and suddenly we're going to constitute a team. Don't get me wrong, I don't mean to minimize the part that Josh plays in the family but Josh goes to work, he's in and out of plans and events...Zeke is with me ALL THE TIME. We're always together, every part of my day involves and revolves around him. We have a certain dynamic to our relationship, an understanding of each others habits and quirks, a...melody to our relationship... how will that develop and change when there are suddenly 3 of us?
It's funny but when Zeke was coming, I never had these thoughts, which now seem, looking back, like they would have been completely natural. Almost to the point that it seems unnatural to NOT have had them. I never wondered how adding a baby would affect Josh and I's relationship. Maybe because we had a good 2+ years of marriage to cement that relationship, or because having a baby took us long enough that by the time we were sucessfully pregnant the idea wasnt new, or because we both wanted a baby so bad.
I do wonder about Zeke and I's partnership, though. It's part worry and part excitement and part curiousity and is best described I guess as anxiousness. The feeling of the night before your first day at school where you dont know what to expect and you're afraid it will be bad but mostly you already know it will be great.
I feel like I have a grip on the relationship between Blueberry and I, I imagine it as a copy of Zeke and I's relationship all over again, even though I know that wont be true I still cant help but imagine her as him. I have an understanding of the ways that Josh and I's love will grow with yet another child. But I have no basis of comparison for what it will mean to have an oldest son. Bringing another baby into the family will completely change not only his role in the family, from baby to brother but mine as his mommy to BOTH of their mommy...and I'm (nervously) looking forward to watching us both adjust to that.