My first daughter was such an easy baby. Not all the time, and maybe my 10 year old rose colored glasses are blocking some of the difficulties we had. I do remember that when she'd get up in the middle of the night, she'd be up for 2-3 hours, but, she'd also sleep for 4-6 hours at a stretch. Bug would happily sit for hours to listen to me or hubby read books to her. She loved to be rocked and sung to sleep.
My second daughter has been more difficult. She had severe reflux, a challenge in and of itself that makes you as a parent feel completely inadequate. I can count on less than two hands the amount of times she's slept for more than 3 hours at a time. It does not get easier as time goes on. I feel as though I've completely lost a whole portion of my usable memory to chronic sleep deprivation. I will give her kudos though. She's up, fed and/or cuddled and then down usually with in half an hour. I'm so glad she's not up for hours on end in the middle of the night. She also has no patience for sitting and listening to a book being read or being sung too and rocked.
Baby Pie has completely rocked my world. Or should I say that God, through Baby Pie, has completely rocked my world. I keep thinking that I should be looking for the lessons in my second act of motherhood. I think I could look harder and interpret those lessons if I wasn't quite so chroncially sleep deprived.
Two of the lessons that come to me off the top of my head are Patience and Forgiveness.
I have had to learn to be patient with a baby that has her definate ideas of how things should be, even as a newborn. I've had to learn to be patient with my husband as he has to find time to take care of himself, even though I really would just like him to come home from work and be my manservant and competely take care of the girls. I've had to learn to be patient with my 10 year old daughter, Bug, as she is learning to give up only childness and become a big sister.
I have had to learn to forgive and accept forgiveness. I keep forgiving God for giving Baby Pie to us. I know that doesn't sound quite right. I was mad at God for giving us this blessing for a good portion of my pregnancy with her. I had wanted a second child, when Bug was younger, but by the time she was in first grade and many doctors told us that we weren't going to be able to have any more children, I accepted that we'd have an only child. I prayed and prayed and prayed for another child. Eventually I accepted God's lack of a "yes" (another child) as a "no". I never even considered that it could be a "not yet". I have learned to forgive my hubby for being himself and doing what needs to be done, even though I don't see it that way right away. I've learned to forgive Bug for the mean comments about her feelings for Baby Pie that pop out of her mouth. She may mean them in the moment, but not in her heart of hearts. I have learned to forgive myself for all the little ways I feel I let my family down. I have learned to forgive myself for not being the perfect mother and wife.
So, okay, I said two lessons, but I've added a third. I got on a roll, so here it is.
I have learned acceptance. I now accept that I cannot control which direction my life goes, no matter how well I plan it out. I have accepted help that I never though I would need and didn't know that I wanted. I have learned to accept that good enough is just that. I have learned to accept that my way, even though it's my preference, is not the only way things can be done. I have learned to accept that I won't have regular "me time" for several more years.
Prayers for you my readers, that you may find patience, forgiveness and acceptance in your walk with the Lord.