Now that we are a solid nine (!) weeks into being a family of four I thought I'd do a little reflecting on how well we are all adjusting - primarily Marcus, as everyone seems to ask how the big brother is doing.
When Julia arrived Marcus came up to the hospital and was naturally very intrigued with her. He wanted to hold his baby sister, give her lots of hugs, and lots of kisses. He was very good about being gentle with her, and my heart burst into a million tiny pieces when I saw both my babies together.
The first two weeks home with Julia are kind of blurry, but Marcus seemed to transition with much more ease than I anticipated. We also had grandparents around during those weeks to shower everyone with lots of love and attention.
It wasn't until after the grandparents had packed their bags that I noticed Marcus struggled a bit with no longer being the only child. You see, the first week Julia was home (and the grandparents were around) Marcus started preschool. That first week he had no problems saying good-bye to me at drop off. But, the second week (when the grandparents had all gone home) there was lots of clinging to my leg, crying and begging me not to go. And my heart fell to my stomach each and every time.
Marcus wasn't getting as much attention as when grandmas and grandpas were around, and I knew that was the problem behind our issue. Thanks to a day date of bowling with just Marcus and Mommy I think that helped ease my little man's mind that I wasn't going anywhere. Luckily, preschool drop offs are now no big deal (for either of us).
There have been occasional, epic outbursts and tantrums that I've never dealt with before. Think: Marcus throwing his entire body onto the grocery store floor and screaming and crying, all the while I'm desperately pleading for him to stop, get up, and keep it moving. I'm not sure if that meltdown was totally a transition issue, or in part to the monster 'threenager' coming through. I'm going to guess a good combination of both.
Only a handful of times (so far) has Marcus displayed being jealous of the attention given to Julia. And it's primarily with Scott. If I had to guess, it's because Marcus is with me most of the time, and sees me with Julia so often. With Scott working their time together is less, and seeing Scott dedicate time to Julia has occasionally brought about spells of jealousy. Thankfully, those moments have been few and far between.
As far as Marcus interacting with Julia, I am so blown away with his gentle nature and loving ways. My sweet little boy is always, always, always asking to hug "his baby," and kiss "his baby," and hold "his baby." I am amazed at his gentle little soul, and I hope and pray that never changes as they grow older.
Marcus is truly the best big brother, and I hope one day Julia notices how much he dotes on her and loves on her. It's something magical to see, and Julia is one lucky little lady.
As for Scott and me, we're doing the whole parents-of-two one day at a time. It seems that's the only way it can be done. Most days I survive on winging it and prayer. Lots and lots and lots of prayer. My patience is tested daily (hourly? minute by minute?). And, many nights I lie in bed with tears streaming down my cheeks, thanking the Lord for my abundant blessings. I also pray for more patience, better parenting abilities, and sleep, always more sleep.
Only nine weeks into this gig and it's been a pretty awesome, crazy, ride. But, it's been oh so worth all the adjustments and transitions. Our family wasn't complete until Julia arrived, and we're all in this together.
So, to sum it up - just how are we all adjusting and transitioning? I'd have to say pretty darn well. Not every day is easy - nor did I expect it to be - but every day is full of laughter and lots of love. And, if that's the side effect of adding another little miracle to our family I'll take that all day, every day.