I think at this point it is fair to conclude that B is not a textbook baby. Pretty much since birth he has not followed a single thing I’ve read and has even been more likely to do the opposite. Now as a toddler, he continues the pattern. All the things they say will work do not. (This was just supposed to be an intro but I couldn’t stop typing so I turned it into a bulleted list and I had to stop myself from making it even longer.)
-I give him choices (to give him a sense of control in an unpredictable world! yet still have him choose something acceptable to me!) and he sees right through it. His typical response is, “I don’t like any of your choices! I don’t want to choose one of those.” Then he repeats that he wants to do something that is not on the list.
-People say the trick to getting toddlers to eat is to let them help with the food prep. Again, no dice. He will almost always eat some ingredients along the way but will never ever touch the finished product if he knows what went into it. You have a much better shot with a finished mystery meal.
-Transitions are hard for every toddler so I try the things that are recommended. We talk about the next thing we are doing and then do a lot of countdowns and 5 minute warnings, 3 minute warnings, etc. before transitions. He calmly repeats back every time, “After Mommy’s timer goes off in x minutes, we will pack up our trucks and leave the park and go to the grocery store where I can pick out a bagel!” Other mothers stare in awe at my perfect child as his calm acceptance continues throughout the countdown. Then the timer goes off and he loses his sh*t completely. He screams, he bargains, he kicks, the works. So basically all of that helps him zero but at least the other mothers feel a lot better about their kids in the end.
-We FaceTime with Daddy as often as possible while he’s traveling so it feels like he’s still in our lives and we know he misses us etc. This makes B focus on all of the things Daddy is doing (watching soccer games!) or who he is seeing (co-workers or other family who happen to live where he is traveling to) instead of being home playing with B and it makes him upset and jealous. He would prefer to think that Daddy is in some isolated prison cell the whole time and then comes home to do acceptable things like play with B.
-Traveling and having visitors constantly has made him worse, not better, at handling those events and change in general.
The list goes on and it looks like that would’ve been a better blog post topic as I could ramble for an hour.
He never had day night confusion. He always knew he wanted to be awake all day. And even at 3 days old he wouldn’t fall asleep in the car.
Anyways, now that we are approaching welcoming a new special snowflake into the world I am left wondering what this one will be like? Despite being B’s closest blood relative on the planet everyone assures me they will be really different, and the most different this one could possibly be is if he were “normal”. I am almost panicked at the thought that this boy might be a textbook baby! What will I do!? That will be so foreign to me and I already got rid of all of our
stupid, useless books! At least I can Google those 5 things (S’s?) from Happiest Baby On the Block and maybe they won’t actually make this baby scream louder as if fighting for his life to escape the swaddle and turn himself right side up? (<- based on B’s reaction the whole Harvey Karp method gave him the sensation of drowning.)
Turns out you don’t need a book to tell you how to be adorable.
So far there is at least some evidence that baby #2 will be more by the book than his big brother (low bar). People say that fetuses are typically the most active at the end of the day when you are lying in bed and sleep when you are moving around a lot. B was never active at bedtime or overnight (really, he had no day night confusion at all!) but always freaked out right when I finished a run when they said he should’ve been passed out from all the movement (explains why he was also a stroller and car seat screamer). This one totally follows that though! He is active in the evenings and sleeps during and after a work out! Supposedly pre-natal massages are supposed to relax babies along with moms. Of course B would have a dance party the whole time and sort of ruin the moment. This one though? He chills out.
I’m not counting on anything but it’s entertaining to think that all my experience might be worthless because this one is so “normal”.
32/33 weeks. With B I had trouble gaining weight, and gained at all the “wrong” times and not at the “right” ones. This time feels totally foreign and weird to me as I’m doing nothing differently (well except not running which prob matters a lot) yet my body is behaving as if it actually read all the What to Expect books.