This time feels pretty similar in many ways, a whole lot different in other ways. The biggest difference being that we are parents already. Even though I can not predict the kind of birth that is awaiting us, I know there will be physical pain involved in the process, I have learned to trust my body to bring this life safely out of the womb. However it will happen, love will heal the scars in a wink.
What I don't know yet and can't predict is how Manech will welcome his baby sibling because we have never transitioned to a new sibling situation before. I know there will be an outpouring amount of love in my heart, I know struggles will come and go, I don't know when, I don't know how they will come, I know we will navigate the unknown feelings all together and I am only hoping for Manech to never doubt of our love for him.
I have two sisters and did not grow up feeling close to them even though now we're all good. To the point that it was a healing relieve when I finally left home to attend a boarding school 250 miles away from home before turning 16. Many reasons to this, it would need a whole write up of its own. The point being that life is quite unpredictable. And I wouldn't blame it on my parents, wouldn't blame it on my sisters. Things happen. Shit happen. Perfect parenting does not exist (or I've missed the memo). The best I can do is learn from my childhood and try to bring whatever I feel like I've missed into my own children's life. And see what happens. While I'm okay with talking about the past, and I'll probably talk some more about it some days, the future is where I want to live (I heard someone say something similar and it sounded so right). Meaning acknowledge your past, move on.
So of course I am dreaming on raising my children in sibling-love with one another. There will be fights and arguments and cries and corruption's attempts and bandages and maybe blood even (!) but I am also dreaming of love and cuddles and laughters and complicity and trust and major pillow fights on our gigantic bed before collapsing for the night.
While I am not good at planning, I am totally reading Peaceful parents, Happy siblings and I am blown away at how point on it is. It feels like I was raised pretty much the opposite way around. And what is being said makes total sense to me for the most part. I know this will be by my bed side for some good amount of time in the future. It doesn't guarantee anything regarding the relationship our children will build throughout the years but it will be a great guide for us.
Also I do believe children need to be able to talk in a safe environment and need to know that they will be heard.
They need to trust you will say the truth. They need to know you will answer their questions the best you can. They need to feel the intention you put in your words when you talk to them. They need to know that you won't dismiss a tear as being fake. I believe all of these help build trust and confidence in my relationship with my child and if it works between me and my boy then I like to think that there are chances he will behave in a similar way with his sibling. We are here to guide them after all.
These past few months we have been talking about the new baby coming. It started slowly. Sometimes I could tell Manech was not interested in such talks and I never forced him into listening to me. Then he gradually started asking questions, grabbing a book on the subject to read with us, hugging my belly.. He came to the OB with me a couple of times. He was home with us when our midwife came by two weeks ago. He was very interested in looking at what she was doing when she checked whether or not I had started dilating. We didn't try to stop him. We took this opportunity to talk some more about what was going to happen and how it was going to happen. How I was going to push the baby out of my belly and into our lives. He helped me organize all of our clothes diapers, didn't resist the temptation to try a few on. He knows what the breast pump is here for and points at the small carseat saying 'for baby'. He knows we will all be sharing our bed with baby... In other words we try to include him as much as we can and as much as he wants to in our preparations. We talk about the baby with excitement and love. I'll even admit that I did go to the store yesterday and got him his very first baby doll. I haven't given it to him yet but I am thinking it will be fun for him being able to pretend to change diapers and feed a baby...
He has been the sweetest little human being for the past few month, we have been enjoying each and every moment spent all together. I can tell by the way he'll come and snuggle all against me at night, holding me tight against him that he knows his life is about to change and he is needing some comforting time which we are more than happy to give him.
Then one day very (very!) soon we will be a family of four and I know we will have to adjust one day at a time. Again, no anticipation, no expectation, no pressure. What will be, will be.