Slowly, painfully slow sometimes, as a family we end up in a new phase: no more babies in our house! Only very little howling in which we do not know what to do. No more mess with my own hormones. No longer in the middle of the night from my bed for a food and no longer just being busy with the 'change-feeding-sleeping' ritual. And I love it!
Babies: not fun!
We have three children and that gives the impression that we love babies very much. But no, I have to confess something: I do not like the first year with a baby at all! What a care a search. I am really happy and relieved when those little ones can finally do something themselves. That may sound horribly unkind, but that is how I experienced it three times, that first year really feels like abandonment. Of course that does not mean that I left my children in their first year and that I did not love them and enjoyed them. What that certainly was. But I counted the days to every subsequent phase.
The baby phase
'After the first 6 weeks it will be easier', was the first milestone. And then: '3 months is really such a border, then it improves enormously'. Then to hear: 'From 6 months it will be a lot more fun and easier'. And we (man is not such a baby fan) but dream about many further phases: all children walking on our hand, moments that they can enter the playground themselves, that they all go to school, watch a movie together on the couch.
Wonderful dance: A new phase!
Anyway, we survived! We survived three whole baby years! As far as I am concerned we can now hang the flag for three whole years! Especially after a third child who had hidden reflux, I now know for sure that there will not be a little one. And sometimes I can really enjoy that thought. When I see other mothers walking with a pram containing a baby of a few weeks (-to a few months), I make a joyful dance inside: never again! Hoera!
To discover the world
With our youngest offspring we have now ended up in the toddler phase. Not even the easiest phase (which phase?), Because this son discovers things that his brother and sister never knew: from the kitchen cabinets to the stairs and the throwing around of food and drinks. But it is precisely from that urge to discover the world that I enjoy every day. If he sees that his brother and sister are climbing up a slide, he must also try that. And if there is playing with sidewalk or LEGO by the others, that is also what he wants to do.
Walk and talk
He has been able to walk for a week or six, and that's what he does all day as a busy owner. By trial and error, as it should be. I once read an investigation about it. That was about the survival mechanisms of children. This research showed that children generally learn to walk first before they learn to speak well. This would be because you must first be able to flee before it becomes useful to be able to communicate properly. I found that interesting.
So now I have watched our son to see how that works. I noticed that, before he could walk really well, he regularly said a few words, but there were only a few of them. But since he has the taste of walking well, he is also no longer stopping by saying words. I find that fascinating! His latest acquisitions are 'doeg' and 'hello'. He prefers to say those words with something that looks like a telephone on his ear and then he walks through the room (who does he have that?)
I know that this is the case with all children, but with our 'not-more-baby' I find all this 'ordinary', very special. Maybe because the first year with him was so difficult. But maybe also because we are not going to experience this phase anymore ...