In 2011, when I was at the ENT with my first born, I received the devastating news. She was going to have to get tubes. I was scared. I was nervous. I was anxious for her. I left the appointment and raced to the car. I couldn’t call my husband fast enough to share the terrible news. He was just as nervous as I was. When the day for the procedure came, I was a giant ball of nerves. I was a wreck. I could barely say my name at check in, my hands were shaking, and I couldn’t believe how long it was until my baby was back in my arms. I was in tears as she was in tears coming off of the anesthesia. It was a long day for both of us.
Fast forward to 2016 at the ENT with baby number two. In the same office with the same physician, I heard the same words. However my reaction was a bit, let’s say err, different. This time when I heard those words with my second child, I did a small victory dance inside. No tears, no trembling lip, just excitement followed by inquiring on how soon we could schedule that. I have been there, done that. And, I knew that she really needed this routine procedure. I knew that she will be a different kid when it is done and that I was excited about.
It is funny that by my reaction to that one sentence, you can distinguish the birth order of my kids. It is like living the LUVs commercial where they show the birth order of the kids and the mechanic holding the baby.
It is true that you should never judge a parent before you are a parent. The way that I am as a parent is not exactly the way I thought I would be. I am absolutely doing things that I said I would never do.
However, I think the rule should also apply to parents of one child. You should never judge a parent of multiple children until you have multiple yourself. Because I know for sure in my house my parenting style has changed. Let’s be honest, a few house rules have also changed.
With a few years of parenting under my belt and a child who is nothing like the first, it is like parenting in an entirely new way. No judgment on the parents who have three and four kids. I only have my two and I know I have had to eat crow a time or two.
I thought I would be the same parent to kiddo number two but I am not. I would have never thought that this would have been me, but it really is so true. It is not something that I was even aware of; it just happened. With number two I am a different mom. It is not to say better or worse. I think the experience from baby number one mixed with the different personality of baby number two yielded a different result.