Two kids is great. Ok, so it is insane at times. But seriously the best thing I could have done for Leif is to give him a sibling.
I have seen Leif evolve in so many different ways in the last seven weeks. It started out as 100% jealousy and a complete lack of understanding of what happened to his former life. I would get tears in my eyes when he would scream, "no, that's my mommy!" when I would nurse Skadi. It tore me apart to have AB drag him off my lap screaming as he would jump on it an inch from Skadi's head.
About 75% of the jealousy has abated. It might decrease a little more over the years, but I think we are at a settling point in the pond. A tantrum will occur if I dare bring Skadi into our bedtime routine. His going to bed time is one on one time with AB or I, and that needs to not change for the time being.
What has replaced that 75% of jealousy is love in many forms. He is protective of his little sister - as shown by the growling that has ensued when strangers stop to admire her. Growling followed by "my sister" and then growling again until they leave. (It hasn't helped that AB edges him on in this behavior.) I only hope that his protective nature grows as she grows. Isn't that the dream for all little girls is to have at least one protective big brother?
Tenderness has also entered Leif's life. We were riding home from daycare tonight and Skadi was doing her usual fussing in the car. I turned up the music (hey, it used to work with Leif!). Leif on the other hand showed genuine concern.
"What's wrong boy?" (He still calls her "boy" regularly.)
"Where's your pacifier?"
"Mommy, where's Skadi's pacifier?"
"Anything I do make you happy?"
"Oh don't cry, it's ok!"
All things I heard from the backseat in the most tender little boy voice. Tears.
And his favorite book right now? Ok, second favorite behind "Sam I am I am" is "I'm a Big Brother". Of course you have to substitute his and Skadi's names in for the little boy and gender neutral baby.
When I had Leif I would cry at the thought of him growing up. I wanted him to stay tiny forever. I wanted to savor every minute. I still want to savor every minute with Skadi, but I look forward to watching her grow, I am not fearful of losing the little baby because I know that there are so many fun experiences just around the corner and that it only gets better and the love only grows stronger. Oh and maybe since I think I have a good shot at selling AB on having a third...