Come along for the ride!!

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Normal service is resumed

Yes, apologies for my last couple of posts. This is supposed to be a blog about my experience of being a Dad but reading back, I see my self indulgence and self pity spilling over into my blog! Probably not what you come here to read right? Right.

Ok, where was I?

As I have explained in the past, our experience of our second child is vastly different from our first. That may sound blindingly obvious to many of you but give me a minute to explain.

With Poops (for explanation on pet names see previous posts) M and I did everything together.
I mean, everything. We changed his nappy together, bathed him together, fed him together, dressed him togeth ......... well, you get the idea.

With our second that has been virtually impossible. M and I have gone slightly different ways. Take into consideration that M breastfed Missy - something I would have found very difficult to do myself!! - she naturally spent more time with her than I did - I stayed with Poops.

Unfortunately, things kind of stayed that way - M with Missy and me with Poops. I said to M a little while ago though, that I should try and get A ready for bed, give her her bottle etc at least a couple of times a week. This we did although it's sometimes easy to forget and I realise we haven't spent that special time together for a while.

Last night was one of those special times. I got her changed, fresh nappy and all the glamour that goes with babies, then settled down to give her her bottle. She likes to pull her hair with one hand but last night I held her hand, gently and she forgot all about her hair. She just gripped my finger, not tightly, just holding on and lifted her other hand up to gently touch my face. She drank most of her milk and then, just as she was getting to the end, I pulled a face at her. As she was tired I only really expected her to look away (as she sometimes does) but she had a fit of the giggles! She was chuckling away for about 5 minutes with the teat of the bottle still in her mouth, before she laughed so hard that she spluttered on the milk and meal time was over.

I then stood up, put her against my chest, high up near my shoulder to giver her a pat and she lay there, limp, one arm lovingly holding on to my shoulder like we were dancing together and the other draped over my other shoulder and hanging down my back a little. After her milk she usually motions towards her cot straight away but this was totally different. We stayed like that for maybe 3 or 4 minutes before she lifted her head, gave her usual little squeak and pointed at her cot. I put her down, patted her and that was the last we heard from her - she must have gone straight to sleep.

Missy is just over a year now and so, slowly, things are becoming more "together" again. Meal times, dressing is chaotic but we do do that together and so on. J is very good with her although they both get a little jealous when we're doing things together. One-on-one time with each of them is something I imagine most families have to rota into their week.

I wonder what effect that has on children? I wonder how the arrival of another baby in a family affects the first born? And what about the second born? The fact that only one parent gets to spend the majority of time with them when their sibling had two? Any thoughts?

Sadly, this argument is proved out in the pictures and video that we have of them both. We have hours of video of J and only a trickle of Missy (this is something I intend to rectify over the coming months btw).

Thankfully though, love for your children isn't measured in how much video footage you have of them.

As long as they grow up realising that, I should be in the clear.


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