A new life brings new lessons
May 2, 2007
With open arms, my family welcomed a new addition a little over one month ago. Maxwell Grant Roby arrived on March 27 at 8:16 in the morning. We didn’t know whether we were having a boy or a girl, and before the birth our doctor asked us the names we’d chosen for each. What a thrill to hear him announce, “It’s a Maxwell!” at the moment he was born.
Having a second child has helped me to relax more in the present moment. I remember being very concerned with doing everything the “right” way after our first beloved son, Samuel, was born. I spent countless hours pouring over books, reading and researching to find the optimal way to care for our new baby.
What I didn’t realize at the time is that there is no “right” way. Certainly, basic needs are provided for similarly. However, Max’s birth taught me that each baby arrives with their own unique set of requirements, and the only way to do it “right” is give yourselves time to get to know each other.
For example, from early on, Samuel enjoyed the routine of being fed, playing a bit, and having his diaper changed before settling into his crib for a nap. It was like clockwork. Max, however, would cry almost the instant we set him in his cradle. He had a much greater need to be held and snuggled.
My husband, Scott, will assure you that quality sleep is a top priority for me. After Sam’s arrival, I vaguely recall spending several months in a self-titled “sleep deprived walking coma” and was certain I’d never get a decent night’s rest again. So Max’s reluctance to drift off easily was cause for concern. This was nothing like what we had experienced or expected.
After a few restless nights, we gave ourselves permission to relax and guess what? We discovered what a joy it is to have a cuddly baby. And now that we are more in tune with his cues and giving him what he needs, Max is now much more agreeable to sleeping in his cradle.
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Now we’re working on establishing a routine that makes sense for him, instead of expecting Max to conform to what worked for his big brother. It’s been an important lesson, and one that will serve us well in the years to come.
Speaking of big brother, Samuel is fascinated by Max and is extremely interested in kissing, holding and looking at him. His first question each morning is “Where’s Maxwell?” and he loves to build houses and boats with his blocks to show his little brother. Most of the time Sam is very gentle (apart from the occasional bop on the head), and it’s obvious that he can’t wait to show Max all the ropes.
Having been raised the middle child of three girls, this is a whole new world for me. Now with two sons and a husband I’m completely outnumbered! But my boys bring me great delight, and each day offers new blessings and adventures. I know this journey will be over before I realize what has happened, and I want to savor every moment.
— Amy Roby can be reached by e-mail at RanchosRoundup@hotmail.com