..also know as the Bean is entirely done with her potty training and is out of her night diapers too.
No accidents, nothing yet, touch wood. Of course as is usual with second babies, it’s been a month or two but I haven’t had a chance to post about it. And as is usual with second babies – she’s also a lot faster than the first was! I had written this very post about a year or so ago about the Brat and was so upset at being upset over his new found bladder control!
On the other hand, it’s not like stopping time or progress would make me any happier. If she didn’t get bladder control we’d soon be talking to her ped about it. If she didn’t talk we’d go for speech therapy. When our kids don’t develop at the rate they’re supposed to, we panic. We see doctors. So why was I being so foolish….?
I was tidying up her wardrobe getting it winter ready when the half used pack of diapers stared me in the face cheekily. Almost taunting me with its uselessness. I took it out of the cupboard and sat down to think of who I could pass them on to. Nobody. Most of our friends’ kids are the Bean’s age or a little younger, but all much bigger built. And as I sat there holding them I felt my chest tighten. (PS: The irony of it is that she still sticks to her baby term for it – diapies!)
I guess its just the finality of it all. My babies are hardly babies if they have bladder control, are they? And this was my second baby. My last chance to indulge myself. I now watch with something close to envy as other women have their first baby. Knowing that right now they are awaiting their baby’s first step and first word while mine are chattering away, running around and growing up too fast. I know I’ve had my chance, but I’ve also had this time to realise that I am the best mother to new babies. There are women who prefer babies who do more than poop and sleep, or those who like their kids during the teen years, but I’m not one of those. I have endless patience with babies at the infant stage, I love their little soft bodies curling into me at night and I can watch them wobble on unsteady legs for hours.
So when the 2 year old Bean asserts herself and tells me that she will NOT wear what I picked for her, or the Brat turns away from me, hurt, saying he doesn’t love me, I miss the uncomplicated love of a newborn. The not having to deal with personality clashes (yes, they start this early!) and being able to catch a warm wiggly body and squeeze it without it wriggling to get out of your arms to make a getaway.
Aneela visited with us for a few days and it’s a little cliched, but hell, I’ll say it anyway because its true. We might as well have always been friends. From sitting around on the floor drinking chai while babies crawled around us, to randomly picking up babies and burping them even though they’re not your own… we had a lovely time.
It also brought home a fact that someone else made a long time ago. Once you’ve had one kid you can have a few more and it doesn’t matter. Your systems are in place, so to speak. Aneela went for a bath and the OA and I lay in bed chatting, our kids running around the room, while Arhaan lay peacefully once across the OA’s chest and burped, another time rocked to sleep in my arms. Fortunately my kids fell in love with him (it helps that he is such a fall-in-lovable baby!) and wanted to do things for him all the time. The Bean was careless around him, almost falling on him, leaving me with my heart in my mouth (What? He’s someone else’s baby, for chrissake!) but she wasn’t in the least bit jealous – bringing him all her favourite toys and piling them up on top of him. The Brat kept wanting to clean his face, feed him dinner and then howled at night that ‘our’ baby was going to sleep in the guest room with Aneela Maashi and not in the nursery with them. Of course most praiseworthy was Aneela. New mom and yet she was completely cool about spit up, about my kids almost smothering hers and generally playing with him with unwashed hands etc. I was horrified and totally impressed – she’s going to be one of those entirely cool moms.
When they left for Dhaka my babies were totally bereft and the Brat had a meltdown as he accused me of sending ‘his’ baby away. I realised how simple it would be to just get another one into our home. It’s not easy eating a meal with a baby in your arms (of course they always wake up at your meal time and cry!) but it’s not hard either. It’s just so much a part of our lives now.
I have to say I had terrible uterus contractions after she left and I glared balefully at my two big babies. Because of course it’s all their fault that they’ve grown up. I don’t see why the Bean couldn’t have stayed in night diapers a while more … it’s not like we’re running out of them.The OA on the other hand is keeping a firm eye on the birth control because I am deemed untrustworthy.
Okay jokes aside, I KNOW we don’t need a third and I wouldn’t ever do something so stupid deliberately… but just for the fun of it I try to talk the OA into it – ‘Three sounds so cool na?” He refuses to be drawn into this and without even looking up, says ‘Two sounds cooler’. I snuggle up to him and try again “Don’t you miss the sound of baby footsteps?’.. He grimaces “Like I miss being hung and quartered” And then he melts and grins. I know he loves kids as much as I do, but neither of us have it in us to go through this ever again… and yet.. what if?
I suddenly missed my brother and sister in law. The next lot of babies I have any sort of right to, will be theirs (whenever they plan some!) and the thought of them growing up somewhere else just bothers. Someone else knowing what makes them smile makes me grit my teeth. Someone else knowing what they like to eat is unacceptable. Someone else being their favourite aunt and uncle – is … is… blasphemous.
I know I whine about this all the time, but watching my kids with Arhaan made me realise how important it is for kids to grow up with lots of family in the house. With cousins. Learning to share and care and be gentle. I leave you with pictures of them with Arhaan . And oh – don’t mind me. I’ll just be sitting in a corner mourning my last little birdie growing up too soon.
On the other hand, I do take comfort from the fact that this picture looks just so complete…