Wednesday, June 01, 2005

The Case for One?

Phantom has posted about Baby Blue's sleep issues, and in the course of doing so revealed that LG was fairly easy to "sleep train."

I had no advice on the Baby Blue issue because we were so lucky with AB with respect to sleep. We always put him down for the night in his crib, and he started sleeping through the night when he was 3 months old. Moreover, he was always good about taking naps, and sleeping frequently throughout the day. This is a kid who likes his sleep--definitely my boy (according to my parents, I never fought about bedtime; I was always quite willing and happy to call it a night).

In fact, AB's been easy with respect to lots of things.* He latched on well right off the bat, but I didn't feel like he was nursing all the time. He switched from a bottle to a sippy cup with ease. Right now he's fairly adept at using a regular cup (I say "fairly adept"--we do have spills if I'm not watching him, and sometimes even when I am watching him). He is a wonderful eater: he loves his veggies, fruits, meats, cheeses, grains. Personality-wise, he's no more shy than a typical toddler: he takes a little while to warm up to new people but does eventually, and he flat-out adores his extended family. And as for intellect, I couldn't ask for a brighter kid.

All of which have made me and Not So Angry Husband ask, "Well, he's so easy, why don't we have another?"** And a big part of me does want to have another kid. But there's a gut feeling telling me that it's all a trick. That it's all a careful ruse. That God has blessed us with our easy little AB in order to dupe us into having a second child who will, inevitably, be the spawn of Satan: colicky 24-7, willful to the point of driving us insane, etc., etc.

It doesn't help that a lot of my friends are first-borns who tell horror stories about the second children, their immediate younger siblings, growing up. So that's a huge reason that I like reading Phantom's cute stories about Baby Blue, and Scrivener's cute stories about Chloe, and Mieke's cute stories about Gabo, among others. They remind me of the wonderful reasons to have a second child.

*Raising AB has been difficult with respect to some things, of course. Some big things. Like his health. I'm still hoping those problems will fade as the years go by.

**Asking less as we deal with the early onset of the "terrible twos," which started rearing up at around 18 months. He's certainly quicker to whine or fuss, and we have to remind him to use his words and to look us in the eye. But, knock on wood, no major tantrums yet. Of course, just by typing this, I have guaranteed that he will freak the hell out on Saturday when we meet Liz (MysteryMommy) and Muffin Man for a morning at the animal park.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The ironic twists, present and future ...

Even though we've had a boy who sleeps very well, we still can't sleep through the night because of our aging dog, who goes to the bathroom in the middle of the night whether we let her out or not. (Nothing like VH1 Classic at 2:30 a.m. while I'm curled up in my bathrobe next to the cold basement door.)

Next time around, we won't have the dog. But then this one won't sleep through the night until age 4.


8:54 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger Piece of Work said...

Wow, you're son sounds just like my firstborn (now 27 months). Although I will say he got a lot more difficult once he was mobile and into things, and now that we are in the terrible twos, I definitely wouldn't call him easy anymore.
His sister, on the other hand. OY. She is 11 months now, and is just barely sleeping thru the night. We did everything the same with her as her brother and still he slept thru at 10 weeks, her at 11 months. Go figure.
However, it is so so so adorable to see them together! I love watching them play and listening to them together. And although my daughter was not an easy infant, she is in fact a pretty easy baby. Once she turned 4 months or so she got a lot easier (except for the sleeping).
Anyway, I say go for number 2. You won't regret it! (Except in the first few hellish weeks . . .)

I like your blog, I'll come back later when I take a longer look around!

9:15 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger Phantom Scribbler said...

LOL, Not-So-Angry-Husband.

I think the two of you are in good shape if you should ever decide to have a second kid. Because the real trap is in expecting that the second child will be just like the first (like when I expected that Baby Blue would be just as easy to sleep-train as her older brother had been). You guys have already figured out that life doesn't work like that. So you are waaaaaay ahead of the game.

AB sounds like such a little sweetheart. And he's lucky to have parents who treasure him so.

I hope you and Liz have an awesome blogger playdate at the animal park!

9:19 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger Yankee T said...

You will, or you won't go for number 2, and whichever it is will be the right decision. My second child has been much more challenging than my first, but I figure it's just payback time. There are cases for both kinds of families...take your time and the answer will come to you! AB sounds wonderful.

10:27 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger jo(e) said...

My second child was my easiest. He is seventeen and still the easiest.

Number four is the child who did me in. If he had been the first, he would have been the last. He cried all the time, woke up EVERY HOUR. Thank goodness I was an experienced mother by the time I had him ... or I don't know what I would have done.

10:45 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger SuzanH said...

Hmm...G is an only child and in all likelihood will be an only child. We've debated adoption for a while, and that may be an option in a few years, but for now, it's just her.

It's not an easy decision to make, but I second YT, whatever decision you make will be the right one.

11:37 AM, June 02, 2005  
Blogger Scrivener said...

I cannot tell you how many people told me when we had Ella, and especially once we were expecting Chloe, "Oh our first was just great too, and then came that rat-bastard second child" or "oh, our first two were wonderful, darling girls who slept well and cried only a little, and then we. had. the. boy. dammit!" and so on.

For us, Chloe is certainly different than Ella, but not any more difficult really. It adds another layer of complexity to juggle them both, but really, it's a joy to have them. We've sorta talked about having a third--which would be financial suicide for the family, complete career suicide for me--and joked that what if this time we get a dud, but it's really not the way to make that decision. I don't think you can make any predictions -- it's all a crapshoot, every time. So like the others have said, you make the decision you're comfortable with, and it's always a good one.

1:51 PM, June 02, 2005  
Blogger liz said...

It looks like we're just having the one, what with Mr. Spock being TEN YEARS OLDER THAN ME and all.

Can't wait to see you and AB!

2:08 PM, June 02, 2005  
Blogger Angry Pregnant Lawyer said...

"Oh our first was just great too, and then came that rat-bastard second child"

OK, I just laughed so hard I totally peed.

Thanks for all the sage advice, people. I'm definitely a plan-ahead-but-roll-with-the-punches type of person. So I'm sure whatever we decide will work out OK, and we won't be able to imagine life the other way.

2:33 PM, June 02, 2005  
Anonymous Kristen said...

I always joke that if we'd had our second child first (easy, happy, wonderful baby), I'd have wanted six kids.

But we didn't. We had our willful, colicky, difficult child first. Our friends called her the "birth control baby" - one hour with her, and you wouldn't want kids. (Yes, she was that bad!) I couldn't go back to work. Four daycares refused to take her. (Yes, she was that bad.)

But, she has evoloved into the easiest five year old on the face of the planet.

And she simply adores her younger brother. Any apprehensions I felt about having another child flew right out the window when I saw her with him.

6:17 PM, June 02, 2005  
Blogger Mieke said...

As you know Gabo has been a totally different but equally wonderful baby. I didn't think I could have another easy baby. They are both just really easy going kids. Gabo was more intense the first three months because he couldn't be held by any one but me, but after that he has charmed the world. They call him Guy Smiley. As I wrote in the post you linked to (thanks for that) the BEST BEST BEST thing about having two children (after all their individual glories blah blah blah) is that they play together, and it starts early. They started playing together when Gabo was 8 months old and it has only increased since then. One of the reasons I think our Memorial Day was so much better this year than last was because we, parents, could relax. We could chill out and talk by the pool while the boys played together. Jonas was not CONSTANTLY demanding our attention. YEE HA!

Today Jonas kept telling our nanny how much he loves Gabo, he washed him in the bathtub, it's just FANTASTIC. Which is not to say, by the way, that, they are all peaches and roses, they fight, but quickly and infrequently.

10:13 PM, June 02, 2005  

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