Change is in the air.
There’s an autumn chill in the breeze. Hedgerows are heavy with haws and sloes and I’m desperate to get out there to fullfil some primordial hunter gatherer urges and stockpile provisions for the lean months to come.
I love Autumn. Although I still feel a little deprived of sunshine (what on earth happened to August?), I can’t help but look forward to the colder months. Bracing walks along windswept beaches, or days collecting colourful leaves and acorns followed by hot chocolate and log fires; there’s a lot to recommend this time of year.
And of course there’s the ‘C’ word. Sssssh, don’t speak its name! I’ve heard it mentioned recently – eek! I used to hate the big ‘C’, but suddenly, now that I have kids I’m super exited, and can’t wait to make it special for the boys.
I’ve always felt a real sense of anticipation in Autumn. A sense of new beginnings, that stems, I’m sure, from my schooldays when September meant new uniform, new pencil case and most importantly of all new teachers!
This year I’m justified in my school-like anticipation, as, if you saw my pictures last weeks, little DW started playschool.
I must confess I felt quite weepy. Not just because I was going to miss him, but because his starting school symbolises yet another step he is taking to be less dependent on me; like weaning, walking and starting nursery.
But while I went home to mourn, he was, sociable little being that he is, having the time of his life, and the lovely leaders had trouble prising him out of the classroom when the time came.
Anybody else have little ones starting school? How did you feel? And how did it go?
We’ve had a lovely summer full of bubbles, butterflies and trains.
And more trains.
And a few more trains for good measure.
But with the seasons and our lives changing, I though this would be a good time to take stock of our situation, and consider the things that have changed and the surprises they have bought since I became the mum of two boys in May.
1. Worry turns to guilt – When DW was born the overwhelming emotion I experienced was worry. Am I doing things right? Is this normal? How do I do this, that and the other?
This time round I’m astounded by the guilt I feel. Guilty if I give DW attention, guilty if I give NW attention. Guilty that I’m co-sleeping with NW but didn’t with DW. Guilty that I may be putting NW at greater risk than DW for co-sleeping with him. Guilty for wanting time alone with NW and guilty for wanting time alone with DW, guilty for sticking CBeebies on while I feed NW and even guilty for bringing them into a world where I know they will experience pain. Guil, guilt, guilt! I just hope it passes.
2. DW has grown up! – OK, so not properly, but from the day NW was born, DW started taking on more and more responsibility. Fetching nappies,getting the phone and picking things up for me, I find myself asking him to do more and more, and sometime have to remind myself that he is only two! Its clear that he is on the road to being and independent little man capable of making his own decisions and asserting his personality.
3. Every child is different – I know everybody says this, but I hadn’t expected it to be so true. DW and NW are completely different babies. DW was what people might call an easy baby. He hardly ever cried, has only vomited about 3 times in his entire life and slept through from about 8 weeks (I know miracle child!). I thought this parenting thing was a walk in the park.
But NW on the other hand seems to have spent his first three months screaming in agony, vomits at least 3 times a day, and sleeps for stretches of about 30 mins at a time.
Nevertheless, I wouldn’t change a thing about either of them, they are both my very special, lovely little boys.
4. What worked once may well not work again. This goes with the above really, but I do find that different things useful this time round. With DW, I couldn’t have lived without his vibrating chair, Ergo and if all else failed in the quest to settle him, a trip in the car, NW doesn’t like any of the above, and my stretchy wrap, which I found difficult and faffy first time round is a god send as are muslin squares and bibs which I just didn’t see the need for with DW.
5. We can love more than we think we can – I was really worried when I was pregnant with NW that I just couldn’t love another child as much as I love DW. But, somehow, your capacity to love just grows.
As an only child myself, I was worried about how they would feel about each other too. But DW’s affection for his little bro was palpable from the off, and nothing settles my little screamer like some attention from his big bro. Sometimes just watching them together makes me want to cry with love, and I hope that is a feeling that will stay with me for the rest of my life.
Anyway, there are some other major changes going on in our lives, but I can’t reveal all yet. They’ve kept me busy though, and I hope I can bring you another update sooner than the last.
Until then, I hope all your little cherubs are happy and full of hugs.