Thursday, July 28, 2011

Middle Child

Contrary to our expectations, Little Bear has been having a really difficult time adjusting to the new paradigm. We had kind of thought (hoped) that he would continue his independent means, living his life with his usual aplomb and utter lack of... or rather, his usual Little Bear-ness. Unfortunately, he's been having a hard time.

It's hard to kind of quantify exactly what he's feeling. He's used to having the full attention of his mother and usually his grandfather. The division of labor usually has The Boy with me or Grandma and Little Bear with Mum or Grandpa. Because the newborn is, well, a newborn, he is 95% Mum's responsibility. Little Bear is off-balance and unsure of how to handle himself. He's acting out: hitting for no reason, throwing things for non-playing reasons, pestering his brother more often.

To make matters a little more difficult, he spent the early part of the week sick with a high fever, which he has now passed around to various family members.

We have decided to respond by trying to make sure he has a lot more single attention than he was receiving earlier. He's normally a sweet, loving boy, and getting your brains scrambled by a fever and dealing with a new baby brother is enough to rock anyone's world.

The rest of us seem to be adjusting to the new baby fairly well. The Boy has been having a great time with his baby brother. He's been telling everyone about "Mum and the little bitty baby!", and he talks about the baby a lot. He loves playing with his brother and giving kisses. He sings songs to him, which is funny and cute!

The sleeping situation has been challenging, to say the least, but not for the reason one would suspect. The Baby has been sleeping like a newborn; he does wake up every couple of hours or so, but he usually feeds and goes right back to sleep. Last night, he was awake for a half hour or so at 4am, but he wasn't screaming or uncomfortable: just awake and in need of attention.

The most difficult part of the last week has been dealing with the other two boys, who have been sleeping poorly. Last night, The Boy was up at 12:15, 2:30, 5:30, and 6:00. Little Bear was up at 3:00, 5:50, and 6:10. The Baby was up at 1, 4-4:30, 6, and 7. The rest of the week has been similar. Considering that naps have been more difficult because of the third addition, it's been a hard week. I know it'll be better.

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