Everything is different. I mean, of course it is. But to have it formally confirmed is something of a strange slap in the face. I didn’t expect it to be exactly the same, but when things are so vastly different it does creep up on you like a little inch at a time, and then wham, you’re suddenly reminded that each human on the planet is their own identity, their own unique little kingdom.
Etta is of course wonderful. Alarmingly so. Connie and I talked before having a second child seriously about “How can you love a second kid as much as your first?”. How is there is enough space in your heart to make that possible? The answer is it just is. My heart just got larger and more space was created, and the love doubled. Actually, I might feel it stronger than ever before, because all of a sudden there are interactions between these two little children that I created and I am responsible for. They share moments, create memories, and laugh and play already, and it’s only been a month.
Everything is different though, so where Joni slept strongly from a few weeks old, Etta struggles to get down for any length of time. She finds her most comfortable position on my chest, nearly flat, as I sit up watching movies. Connie goes to bed and I give her a few hours extra sleep while I watch movies I’ve missed. You know what was good? Louis Theroux’s Scientology Movie. My week movie buddy sleeps soundly though even the most raucous of laughter, squirming only when she is getting more comfortable. That might sound like a chore, but I love snuggles and these are precious ones. Onces that won’t last, and I’m so happy to have them back again.
Joni didn’t do this – she didn’t really like being held, presumably down to her terrible excema. She was a solo sleeper, preferring to be rocked to sleep and then left to sleep on her own. Etta is the exact opposite. Same with movement – Joni didn’t enjoy being on her stomach at first, which we put down to the huge lymph nodes in her neck that were inflamed for literally two years, only recently having gone down. These were inflamed due to her reaction to the excema, and tilting her head up probably hurt. Etta can spend twenty minutes on her belly, and only a few days ago manage to turn over for the first time.
The challenges of having two are large and constantly new to us. That’s going to take a long time to get right and sorted. It doesn’t help that we lost one of the cars, which is a whole other story for another time. But after a few months of very little to write about, the year will end strong. Because, despite everything being different, everything is also the same, isn’t it?