My sweet little baby boy is almost two, and it honestly feels like just the other day that he came screaming into this world, then I blinked, and here we are. Oh, this boy. This beautiful, big-brown-eyed, infectious giggle of a boy. He’s my tender-hearted warrior and I can’t wait to see who he becomes. Mark my words, he’s going to be amazing.
His birth was really special for me. I had tried for a natural birth with Sissy, but somewhere is my 24-hr labor I lost my mind. Drugs were the only solution. I don’t regret it, and she is no worse for the wear. But I wanted a different experience the second time around, and we opted for a birth center. His arrival just felt so much calmer (minus a few epic moments during transition), peaceful and intentional. I know a huge part of it was because I knew (at least somewhat) what to expect. But it was also telling of his nature. He is happy to go with the flow, take his time, and snuggle with Mommy.
I have SO many of these pics because this boy just loves to cuddle up. I can’t stop myself from these selfies because I don’t want to forget this time. My girl wasn’t big on snuggling until, well, actually, until he came along. 🙂 So I’ve just tried to soak up every minute of it. I love feeling his little warm body on my lap and smelling his hair. I still let him drink warm milk because I know it means I’ll have a few minutes of quiet and cuddles. It still feels like he’s my baby, despite his nearing birthday.
E2 also LOVES to laugh. He will be at the top of the slide by himself and I can hear him say, WEE, then giggle as he comes flying down. If you want to feel funny, he’s your man. He just likes to be happy. If someone else is laughing, he joins in. He absolutely adores his big sister, and goes out of his way to try and make her happy too. He will bring Sissy her shoes, or her water, or her lovey – and then it hurts his feelings if she doesn’t want it. I just can’t get enough of this bug. Oh, one more cute thing, and then I’ll move on. If he gets hurt (or Sissy hurts him), he will hold the offended body part and come looking for me, whimpering. It’s a soft cry, and he will do it until the moment I kiss/hold/acknowledge his hurt. Once I see it, he can move on. I love that – he just wants to be known.
But he’s also a wild child. As he runs into full-fledged toddlerhood, I see my baby disappearing before my eyes. He’s revealing a stubborn side, and learning quickly from Sissy how to drive Mama crazy. He loves to do everything by himself, and will point to places at the playground I can sit to give him space. If I try to “help” him on a scary part, he will get down and start over again. I will probably have a heart attack before he starts kindergarten. He also loves airplanes, like his Daddy, and getting dizzy. Recently, when we were at the park, Daddy K was spinning both kids like crazy in a tire swing. I literally had to look away because it made me queasy. E1 buried her face in Daddy’s shirt and said, “Too much!” Bug threw his little head back and laughed. We are in trouble.
All of that to say, my little Bug is the coolest almost-two-year-old I know. His brother is also almost two, and a part of my heart worries about how bringing a “twin” into our family will affect him. To be clear, when I use the word “worry,” I don’t mean it in a way that indicates we think we might be making a bad decision. We are absolutely convinced we are doing exactly what God wants us to, has called us to, and will see us through. But as I try to prepare my heart (and my childrens’) for this change, I think about my Bug often. There are a lot of ways that the adoption process feels like a pregnancy to me. This is one of them. I’m sure I’d be just as worried about my Bug if I was pregnant. Sissy has already adjusted once to getting a younger sibling. Will this still be hard for her? Of course. But she will still have her “place” as the older sister, and Mama’s girl. Today she told me that having two brothers would be difficult (what 3-yr-old says difficult?) because it would be a lot of stinky diapers. Truth.
Bug will not be the baby anymore, and he will have to share a lot of attention (from Mama, Daddy and Sissy) with someone else. And we will never know if something is happening because we added a third child to our family or if it’s specifically linked to adoption. Meaning, we will probably ask ourselves, “Would this exact same thing/emotion/issue have occurred had we delivered a little brother? Or is this because we chose adoption?” But there will never be a definite answer to that question. And truthfully it doesn’t matter. Because a son is a son. But I guess I want assurances that these feelings are totally natural no matter how your baby stops being the baby. 🙂
I remember when I was pregnant with E2, I told a friend I just honestly didn’t think I could love another baby the way I love her. And she just said, You will. Your love grows and stretches and somehow manages to change and stay the same all at the same time (paraphrasing, but that’s what I got from it). And when he was born I totally had these moments of guilt where I would just be soaking him in and Sissy would “catch” me loving him. I didn’t want her to feel replaced, and I hated that she might feel hurt. But we all adjusted. We all survived. We are all better with Bug in our lives.
I’m sure the same will happen with our Boo. I will feel guilty. I will feel enamored. I will feel torn. I don’t want my Bug to feel replaced. He is truly (and obviously) irreplaceable. I can’t stand to think of him hurting. But we will adjust, and we will survive. We will all be better with Boo in our lives. But my first little guy might still be drinking warm milk on my lap a year from now. Don’t judge. 🙂