I remember when I had Ainsley. She was my second and tumbled out exactly 22 months after her big sister. I loved her dearly, but honestly most of my emotional energy was spent worrying about my first. How would she adjust? Would she feel left out? Would she feel discarded? Or feel bad that she didn’t have as much mommy time?
These are the worries of second-round moms.
I was the epitome of first time mom with Natalie. There was constant chatter as I explained to her every single thing about our day. She caught on to language so fast and I still credit it to the daily cooking shows I put on for her in our tiny townhouse kitchen. She’d sit in her bouncy seat watching with intrigue as I showed her the proper way to cut an onion or mince garlic. Seriously. This kid had the life.
Fast forward to number four. There are less worries, but I admit to wondering sometimes what it’s like to be the last in a larger family, where your mom is almost always distracted by something or someone and hardly has time to chop an onion let alone show you how.
And then I see this…
The bond between these two is amazing.
Natalie has started getting up with Piper and playing before school. At 12 months, this dark haired fourth child of mine may not get tons of books read to her from mom’s lap every day, but she’s getting enough love, that’s for sure.
She already knows how to hide in the curtains while her big sister looks for her. And bends down ever so far to look under chairs when she’s “it.”
She chases her brother and he wrestles her to the ground while she fusses and cries “uncle” in the only way she can. Yes, she experiences what it’s like to be the little sister of a boy.
So on the days when I’m feeling glum – like I’m not the same, awesome mom to the fourth that I was to the first, I remind myself that it takes a village to raise a child. Our village just happens to be built all under one roof.
I too share many of your concerns….being a further few years down the line from you – No 1 is 16 and No 4 7. The love they share is a joy to see. Their relationship has changed from No 1 rocking No 4 though rough and tumble to one of fun and laughter as No 4 is used as a weight by NO 1 and the giggles that ensure!!! No 4 may not have 1 to 1 from Mum but they sure have the love and guidance of older siblings!
Yes, indeed, Natasha.
Please don’t ever doubt your parenting skills…you are a wonderful mom!
Boy do I know how you feel, my oldest is almost 23!! and Sailor who slept in my bed yet again…had a death grip on my arm when hubby bent to give me a kiss goodbye(he does every single morning) I could not move to meet him in the middle. I say this because the last 4 I would trudge back into their room, cover them up, kiss their tiny faces, rub their back and trudge back to my room even if was 10 times. With this last one, I dont even notice when she climbs over the end of the sleigh bed and claims her large piece of bed LOL. And HA HA she may be the reason we do not have a 6th child…(JK)
YES!!! When our pastor mentioned that it “takes a village to raise a child” last Sunday it has popped in my head several times this week about how true it is. I had never thought about how the village maybe our older kids! Even though sometimes the big kids teach the babies “not very nice words” I always remember the love the babies have for the big kids and how much they have taught them and how much the babies love the big kids. I have often said that my big kids are very capable of taking care of the babies, sometimes better than us!
Hi Leighann….First may I say that your littlest is such a doll! I love these pictures of her!
Natalie is a good big sister! That is just as it should be! I am glad she is your helper.
I was 10 years old when my married sister had her first baby…and that’s when I started loving babies and children ….and I learned how to care for them by helping her. 13 months later my sister had another little girl and then she really need my help…and I loved every minute of it. By the time she had her third child, I had one of my own! And I knew all the basics of childcare from helping with my nieces all of those years. 🙂
I don’t know what it is like to have four kids…but when I was pregnant with my third, I remember feeling frazzled and worried because I only had two hands and I didn’t know if I could manage three little ones! But my oldest was 5 and the next one was 4 when the baby arrived…and they were good helpers for me…and I soon learned how to manage with three little ones.
I know it is nice when quality time is spent with the first child…and when more arrive it seems like there won’t be enough of you to spread your attention around…but it always seems to work out doesn’t it?!!! And as I said…the other children learn to be helpers…so it’s all good. 🙂
I did get to spend alone time with my third daughter when the older two were at school…and I did enjoy that.
I am glad that Ryan enjoys his baby sister…and she will learn to enjoy all of the rough and tumble that little boys offer. I had that with my brother who was 3 years younger than me. He always wanted to do boy stuff…and I always made him play house and school! Life is fun with a house filled with love isn’t it?
I think you are a good mom…and I applaud you Leighann.
Just wanted to say your a great mom ! I look up to you n Henry . I love you both n all your little hobbits!
Your little one is absolutely the most precious thing I’ve seen in ages! I love, love, love her pictures! I think you’re doing a great job parenting the littles!