Yesterday I was watching my sons play with their cousins and it hit me just how far back I am returning with the coming of this new baby. At this age, both my sons fix their own rooms, shower, dress and feed themselves and are basically self reliant. I realise that in the next few months I will have once more resident in my house a small wee one who is totally dependent on me. A little one that I will have to train all over on how to eat, when to sleep, how to walk and talk and more importantly how to become a functional healthy contributing member of society.
My thoughts took me back to the years past when my two boys were babies and had to learn everything. The one incident that stood out in my mind was when they were learning to eat. “Keep your mouth shut while chewing” was the mantra then. I will not even go into details about the disaster the first time we went out for formal dinner and they had to use their forks and knives in public.
Suffice to say, I realised that my mother did me a great service in showing me the difference in holding a fork and holding a shovel; a difference that I have since discovered not everyone knows and that I made sure my own children did. Shortly after this, we dealt with the issue of brushing teeth, a practice that, sad to say, the boys are still to master. I don’t understand why it is so hard for them to see the value of brushing their teeth every day. I remember as a young girl there was a Colgate toothpaste advertisement that used that same slogan “brush your teeth with Colgate every day”. Recognising the impact of media on children, I wish that advertisement was still on.
With the coming of a new baby, part of me is scared while another part is super-excited; scared because I am not sure whether at my age I have the energy levels needed to deal with a toddler and excited because now I get to do it all over again. In a funny way I feel so much more prepared than I did with either TJ or Toriah. Being an older mom makes me calmer and more inclined to take things in stride.
Now I know that children have an amazing ability to balance precariously from the curtain box and not break all their bones, and that my seats can take a lot more pressure than I thought possible from the numerous amounts of summersaults they have had to endure over the last 10 plus years. I have also learnt that stains on the carpet are less important than a creative mind and that even if my carpets never get stained, they will still age and need to be thrown out. I have learnt not to care as much about keeping my boys’ clothes clean and new as keeping their minds clean and renewed.
As luck would have it, the scan revealed the entrance of yet another boy; yet more testosterone. In a weird sort of way I am relieved. At least I have a clue what I am getting myself into. This time round I have promised myself to take time to enjoy the process and not focus on getting through the milestones. I want to take time to enjoy holding a newborn without worrying that it will make him needy; playing peekaboo and all those other mind numbing games recognising that this could very well be the last time. More importantly, I am so looking forward to seeing my two older boys hold their little brother and help him walk the path that together we have trodden through the years. Honestly I just can’t wait!