Monday, September 13, 2010

Is this "normal"?

As we prepared for little Tula's arrival, we knew there would no longer just be 3 of us. Adding a baby to the mix was sure to make things more busy and crazy at times. Adding a baby to the mix was sure to make a mama and daddy tired. Adding a baby to the mix was sure to leave the big sister feeling left out when people pour over the new arrival. We knew that welcoming Tula would be welcoming a new normal and we were more than ready for that. Just look at the smiles on the faces of that proud mommy and daddy- we were ready for whatever, with a new baby in our arms!
It has been a priority to make sure Ivy feels and is certain that our love for her hasn't faded, but instead it has multiplied. We have included her in everything possible. She loves the job of helping change Tula's diaper, picking out her clothes, putting lotion on her skin, and even nursing her babies right along side Mommy and Tula. Ivy is a proud big sister and every now and then it seems like a dream for her. She will lay in her bed at night and say "I have a baby sister" or "Tula is MY sister" or "Me and Tula are sisters to each other."
Has the transition to big sister been easy?
For the most part, it really has been! But don't think it has been a breeze for Mommy and Daddy. Sometimes it would be easier to do things by ourselves or get some rest during a feeding rather than carrying on a conversation with a mini-mama. But we feel like we are sacrificing time to help Ivy adjust, and it is working. This is all part of the new normal!

Tula's arrival hasn't been all smiles. (Speaking of smiles... isn't Tula's sleeping smile so cute?? I love when babies do that!) Ivy has definitely had some tears (and so has this Mama). It has made me sad when I have had to discipline Ivy. I worry that she will think "My mommy is mean now that she has a new baby." But it is obvious, that she doesn't think that at all. She can go to time out, kick, scream, and cry and then two minutes later curl up right beside me. We are remaining consistent in our parenting and this makes Ivy feel safe. She knows we haven't changed, we still love her and want what is best for her. Just like always, we are trying to set Ivy up for success (not running errands close to nap, not tempting her with things she can't be a part of, etc) and we are choosing to give a consequence immediately if Ivy's behavior could effect the safety of herself or someone else. Being consistent was a big part of the old normal and it is even more important with the new normal.
All in all, we are adjusting to life as a family of 4 without delay. We are wondering if where we are is a new normal, or if we are still in the craziness of a new arrival. We have went to doctor's appointment after doctor's appointment. We have dealt with baby jaundice, a newborn clogged tear duct, a mommy's reaction to steri-strips, a toddler with a fever and the croop. It has been a little nonstop between us and the docs. We have filled out papers for maternity leave, insurance, and doctors offices. Thankfully, Greg has been off during this time and has been a great support system. We are hoping that as the appointments subside we will feel a little more normal.... or maybe this is just how it works when you have a family of 4? Only time will tell- I am just thankful for mid-day naps, coffee in the morning, a baby that is nursing successfully (praise Jesus), and a family to love!

9 comments:

  1. Welcome to the new normal! Girl I think that until they get a little older, this is the norm...at least it has been for us. However, I can tell you that your body starts to adjust and soon you can function on 4 hours of sleep because just when you get one down, the other is up! Just today I saw the "disappointment" in Rhett's eyes when people at school spoke to Sidney Shea and asked her questions and didn't speak to him. :( That breaks your momma heart! however, you find the one thing you know he wants to tell someone, you ask him to tell it and then, just like that the **TWINKLE** is back in his eyes. Hang in there...this life with 4 will feel normal pretty soon. Just wait until you have to take both of them out together by yourself....YIKES!:)

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  2. First of all--you and Greg are wonderful parents. You are consistent with your discipline, yet flexible when necessary, and there is no doubt that your children are loved. However, I have always said that having 2 kiddos is not just double the work but quadruple squared! Life gets crazy and fun all at the same time! Enjoy the sweet moments, take time every single day to count each blessing--it goes by so fast!

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  3. I am so so happy for you! I can't wait to be a family of 4 & I'm so happy to be able to follow your stories to see how it works out! You seem to be transitioning wonderfully! I'm so happy Tula is nursing well!! That's such a relief!!

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  4. So proud of you all! (Does that sound funny?) You all are facing these changes and new times with joy, consistancy, and teammwork. That's how to do it! That's not to say there won't be hard days, you've had those. but they just make you stronger on the other side. Enjoy your girls!

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  5. That is great! Normal for us tends to change often. What's normal today might not be normal tomorrow and that's okay. We just adjust and adapt - some days better than others! Enjoy the good days and try to remember them on the bad ones. I think it's great that Ivy is taking on the mini mom role and helping out so much. It sounds like your consistent parenting is working wonders!

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  6. Sarah she is beautiful! Do you think she looks a lot like Ivy?? I do, but then again I don't know Ivy that well! But I do remember holding her when she was TEENY TINY at Billie Jo's! So happy for you :) xoxo

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  7. It is normal! I remember what an adjustment it was when we first had Brayden, and I kept thinking how much easier it was going to be this time. But you just have to change your mindset on what is "easy" and we do now. :) Our normal is spending an evening together, tag teaming the kiddos and doing our best to keep everyone happy. I know it is going to go so fast, so we are choosing to enjoy every minute of it!

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  8. It sounds like you are doing great Sarah! It is a huge adjustment and life is definitely more hectic with two little ones that look to you for everything. Some days are crazy and others are perfect. I just try to find the blessing in each day no matter how normal it seems! :)

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  9. It sounds like you are doing wonderful! Ivy is doing so well because you are all fantastic parents. I will say going from 1 to 2 kids was the hardest transition for us. With 1, you still have a little free time and 1 is easy to take along places. Two kids changes that! 1-2 was harder than 2-3 for me. You will get used to your "new normal"!

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Thanks for your encouragement as I travel through this season of life called mommyhood!