I don’t remember my first-born eating processed sugar with any regularity until after her first birthday.
My second-born has already sampled ice cream, cookies and cake. At 8 months old.
My first-born has a beautiful shadow-box with special memorabilia proudly displayed.
My second-born has the items I’d like to put in a shadow-box thrown in a drawer somewhere.
My first-born wore clean pajamas to bed every single night.
My second-born wears whatever he wore that day to bed. And then probably the next day too.
We severely limited screen-time for our first-born throughout her first year.
My second-born already has a preference for Barney and use to scream when we turned it off.
My firstborn RARELY cried for longer than a few seconds, because we were right there to help her.
My second-born is crying right now.
My firstborn took a bath every night as a part of her “bedtime routine”.
My second-born takes a bath once a week…maybe. And has no idea what a bedtime routine is.
I couldn’t leave my firstborn without feeling guilty and emotion for several months.
I left my second-born within a month.
When my firstborn hurt herself, it was a BIG TO DO. Band-aids, lots of kisses, etc.
Most of the time we have no idea where my second-born’s bruises and scrapes have come from.
We would never have dreamed of leaving our firstborn child unattended in a different room.
Now we regularly sprinkle snacks on the floor for our second-born to eat so we can use the bathroom alone – for the love!
An older woman once told me all these things would happen with the second-born, but of course only unengaged parents do these things…right? I mean, both children should have the exact ams number of photos, experiences, clothes, money spent on them, etc. Second child problems are inevitable.
NONE of this means I love my second-born any less. No way. I’m just learning more about this parenting gig as I go. I’m learning that while a lot of what I did with my first child was rooted in love, it was also rooted in the need to protect her from everything possible. It’s so true that first children are how we become “broken in” to parenting, so to speak. We learn where boundaries are by stumbling over them, we begin to grasp what to and what not to do and when the second baby shows up we not only have less availability, but more awareness of their true needs vs. our preferences formed from fear of failure.
I’m #theimperfectmom and perfectly proud of that fact!
Would you be willing to join the movement and admit that you’re an imperfect mom too? Read more about my friend’s mission to normalize imperfection here. Use the hashtag #theimperfectmom to join in on the fun!