Our “Only Child” Days Are Numbered

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Oh, how I’m going to miss this kid.

Right now, she’s the only child. In about 8 weeks (give or take), that will no longer be. She will soon become a big sister. Mia, as an only child, is the kid I’ll miss once her little sibling joins our family. I’ll have to say goodbye to our mother/daughter only outings. She’ll have to forever share her dad’s and my attention with another.

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As the days draw nearer to when we’ll meet our new baby, I can’t help but to feel that this new transition is bittersweet. Of course, I’m elated over the idea of being a family of 4 and of Mia taking on the role of “Big Sister.” But at the same time, I know that everything is going to change.

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I know that at first, the life that has become pretty routine and under control for us…will get hectic again. I won’t be as available for Mia as I am now, which does make me a little sad. I love being able to hug her, hold her, kiss her, squeeze her, build blocks with her, read to her, snuggle with her on the couch, watch her ride her bike outside, create an art project with her and so forth, at a moment’s notice if we’d like.

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With the baby coming, some major adjustments will have to be made. Mia’s going to have to be more quiet around the house, more patient with her requests, more mindful of her actions, more self-sufficient, more understanding, more helpful around the house and more gentle with Mommy’s post-baby body. That’s a pretty extensive list for an almost three year old to grasp and in such a quick amount of time. This poor kid’s world is about to be turned upside down. “Big Sister” isn’t a role that she asked for or chose. It’s one that her dad and I chose for her but it’s also one that we feel she is ready for and even needs. I just hope that all of the things that I’ve been loving about her lately won’t disappear with all of this change.

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She’s such a good kid, so well behaved (for the most part, she is still under 3), so smart and quick-learning and she’s happy. But, she thrives on interaction with us and with other kids. Especially now that she’s been in preschool since last summer, she’s been even more social. She plays well independently, but we can just tell that a sibling for her to play and engage with is something that will absolutely enhance her childhood. I mean, who doesn’t want another kid around the house to love, to laugh with (or laugh at), to tease, to play with, to tickle, to snuggle with, to read to, to play hid-and-seek with, to play board games with, to play make-believe with, to play dress up with, to fight with, to boss around, to wrestle with, to build blocks with, to play tricks on, to play catch with, to protect, to tell secrets to, to misbehave with and to talk about Daddy and me behind our backs with. Best of all, she’ll have this sibling in her life for forever. Of course, we can’t guarantee that they’ll end up having a close relationship in their adulthood, but we can only do our best to raise them with that goal in mind and to hope for the best. I see this new baby as being the best gift that Daddy Dom and I can ever give to Mia, although one day she may argue that a fancy car, an expensive wedding or a house would be the best gift of all.

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Since this new reality that Mia will no longer be my one and only has been weighing heavier on me with each passing day, I’ve been making it a point to go on more outings together, just her and I. I’m trying to savor our close relationship as it is, for as long as we have it left. I’ve temporarily cut out 2 days from her preschool week, giving us more time together. We’ve gone to the park, the zoo, the library and for walks in our new found time.

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On this particular day (indicated by the photos), we went on a “garden adventure” to Descanso Gardens, one of our favorite places. It’s got ponds, koi, lilies, waterfalls, turtles, ducks, flowers, plants, trees, fountains and trails. What’s not to love, especially on a beautiful, 76 degree day in February? Mia particularly enjoys being the leader of the pack, guiding us through different paths. Because I’m 7 months pregnant, she had to move a little slower than usual and had to wait for me to catch up to her at times, which she did beautifully and patiently.

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I do hope that after the baby comes, after the crazy first few weeks that we’ll all face, that I/we will still be able to make some one-on-one time that’s just for Mia. I don’t ever want her to feel forgotten, neglected or ignored. I want her to always feel special and loved and important. There will be many things she’ll have to learn to share with her new sibling, but one thing she won’t ever have to share is the first 3 years of her life when she had Mommy and Daddy all to herself.

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Comments

  1. I love our time with Mia, and I too have been thinking these thoughts of her not being the only child. I’m sad and excited for her. I have mixed emotions about this but know after a few short months two kids will be as great as one kid and just the same as being with kids once was. I love our little growing family. Thank you for all your wonderful love and hard work mamma!

  2. Beautiful! I go through similar thoughts when I think about the possibility of having a second. When the time comes, it’ll be great but I love my time with Lucy right now. These pictures are absolute perfection. I love it all.

    • Thanks so much, Courteney, for a lovely comment :) And yeah it’s tough, such a bittersweet transition for sure. Makes you really treasure and savor the time you have now with just one.

  3. This post is so wonderful and it’s great that these things are on your mind. I always wonder and wonder and wonder if I want Lyla to remind an only child or not. I think that the pros and cons of only an old child vs. having siblings is completely 50/50. It’s really about what makes YOU happy, and if having more than one child makes you happy, then you’ll be a happier mom aka the best mom you can be. It’s so nice you’re giving her so much attention before the baby comes, I’m certain she’ll remember it and appreciate it :)

    • I completely agree with you. Not everyone is meant to have multiple kids. Not that I know from first hand experience yet, but I think it’s common sense that another kid will totally change the family’s dynamic and only the parent/s know whether or not that is best for them.

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