I made some progress on one of my October goals yesterday and packed away my little girl’s 3 month clothes. At 8 months she has finally made the transition to size 2 diapers and size 3-6 month clothes. Truth be told, she could still totally squeeze into 3 mo. outfits but she’s getting a little long for them and we have new clothes just waiting to be worn in the next sizes.I always get emotional when transitioning my kids’ clothing sizes. It’s an indisputable proof that they are growing. And this hit me extra because, since my daughter has been so tiny this whole year, I have maybe let it pass me by that while she may not be growing physically as fast as my son, she has still been “growing up” oh so fast. I feel like I blinked and now she’s so much closer to 1 than she is to being a newborn.
Shortly before my daughter was born, I posted about how I worried she’d suffer from Second Child Syndrome. I worried she’d have less milestones documented. I knew that one on one time would be hard to come by with my sweet but nonstop toddler. I feared I wouldn’t get to savor the newborn time the way I did with my first.
And in some ways, I was right. There is much less quiet this time around and a lot more feeding on the run as I try to keep my firstborn safe while he explores the world. But in other ways, my daughter has gotten a pretty good deal being the second kid. I find myself paying attention and savoring things in a way I didn’t with my first. I’m not sure I knew how to with my first. With my son, I was back to work tutoring and casting a show within three months. It took a bit longer to get back to tutoring after my daughter due to our nursing struggles and her small weight gains, and I still haven’t done any full length shows and don’t plan to until she is at least 1. My son used to nap snuggled against me all the time when he was a baby and I started going stir crazy, desperate to be doing something productive. My daughter is a much lighter sleeper and in the rare times I get a “snuggle nap” I try to capture the moment and then drop my phone and just breathe it all in and enjoy the time together.
I cherish my son and noticed so much about him, but I don’t remember taking time to savor the details of things the way I do this second time around. The way her eyelashes have grown, how her grip changes as her little hand goes from baby towards toddler. I even enjoyed the “newborn cry” while it lasted this time around.
I have missed a lot in the last year and a half between my pregnancy and this first year of my daughter’s life. I’ve missed shows I really wanted to see, work opportunities, social events… but I haven’t missed some of the details that I think I did with my son when he was this age. And the REALLY beautiful thing is that savoring this baby time with my daughter has taught me how to savor and cherish this preschool time with my son. Even though some days are full of testing boundaries and broken things and temper tantrums, there are also little details I’m so glad I get to see. The new vocabulary, the imagination, the struggle to learn something new and the delight of when that is accomplished, and of course the snuggles. (Bonus: my son’s snuggles now come with the adorable phrase “I love you so much mama.”)