Sibs and Such


First, a word of thanks for all the lovely comments on Scarlett’s birth story.  I’m more touched than I can say by all the kind words and well wishes.  Thank you!

In a comment, Stacey asked -

How is Kevin doing?  I noticed his body posture was rather aloof, so I hope that was either his standard teenaged boy pose, or that he’s coming around.

The truth is, Kevin has been pretty standoffish about the baby ever since he found out I was pregnant.  It has been disheartening, because this is the first of my pregnancies that he’s reacted that way.  I think there are a lot of factors coming into play with him, though.  First of all, his age – he’s 15.  ‘Nuff said.  But seriously, I think this time around he was just old enough to have a full realization of exactly how Mom got into that condition, and to be completely horrified by it.

Secondly, I know he was worried throughout my pregnancy.  He remembers – probably more clearly than any of the other kids, although they all remember, too – very clearly what happened after Finn was born.  It’s not the Down syndrome – it’s not Down syndrome that has caused any of us a bunch of worry over this baby – it’s just the knowledge of all the things that can go wrong with any baby.  It’s the possibility of health issues, of surgery and hospitalization.  And I know that Kevin has spent a fair amount of time thinking back on Finn’s hospitalization immediately after birth, and worrying about what could happen with this new baby.

Lastly, there’s the vast age difference between him and this newest sibling.  I finally dragged this out of him just in the last couple of weeks, that he’s been feeling ambivalent because it seems to him unlikely that he’ll ever know her well since he’s so much older and very well might fly the coop when she’s still pretty young.  I told him that it’s up to him to make the effort to have a relationship with her, and that it can be anything he wants it to be.  Honestly, it touches me that he even thinks about stuff like this.

All that said, he is coming around.  Despite his posture in the post-birth pics (which I have to chalk up to the fact that he’s 15 and there’s his mom sitting in a pool half naked, for god’s sake – probably gave the poor boy nightmares), he kind of digs Scarlett.  And last night, I was in the bathroom and I could hear her crying on my bed, and when I came out, this is what I found:

He dotes on all his younger siblings – no doubt he’ll dote on this one, too.

As for Joey, he’s quite smitten with her:

Ever since he was a two-year old tyke and became a big brother for the first time to the twins, he’s been enamored with the new babies that come into our family.  I remember way back then, forever telling him, “Joey, get off the baby,” because he just wants to love on them so much.  It’s no different with Scarlett; even though Joey will be 10 soon, I often find him on our bed snuggled up to her.

The girls, too, are completely taken with her:

They’re completely fascinated with everything about her, and I suspect they’re just biding their time till she gets just a little bigger so they can claim her as one of their tribe.

Ahhh, Finn.  Finn was pretty standoffish for the first day or so (for anyone wondering, by the way, he was there with all the other kids pre- and post-birth; he was just way more interested in all of Sue’s equipment than he was in the baby, so he didn’t make it into any of the pics).  “What the heck is that thing that squirms and makes so much noise?” he seemed to be thinking.  “Is it safe?”  When he finally decided to venture near her, he, of course, patted her on the head just a wee bit too enthusiastically and made her cry, which didn’t seal the bond between them right off.  Now, a couple of days later, he loves to come and kiss her on the head when I’m nursing her, and he already says an approximation of her name (sounds something like “Garlic”).  He can often be found gazing at her -

He is, however, feeling displaced, I think.  Although he’s not taking it out on the baby (so far), he is suddenly having EPIC tantrums where he will lie on the floor and yell and cry and wail, “MAAAAAMAAAAAA!  MAAAAAMAAAAA!” over and over.  I’m making every effort to make sure he knows he hasn’t lost his place with me, but I think it’s just going to take time for him (and all of us) to adjust.

This is quite a juggling act!

As for Miss Scarlett, she’s a peach.

I can’t get over how pretty she is!  Okay, I know I’m biased.

When she was first born, we couldn’t figure out who the heck she looked like.  Now that she’s not all swollen and waterlogged, though, I think she favors both Annabelle and Lilah.  And her hair!  It’s the most beautiful golden color – none of the other kids were born with hair quite this color.

She has quite a temper and is happy mostly when she’s nursing and/or swaddled tight.

So that’s how all the kids are doing four days into this adventure.  I’ll write about how this old postpartum mom is doing sometime in the near future.

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13 Comments on “Sibs and Such”

  1. Meriah Nichols
    June 27, 2012 at 10:31 pm #

    That’s wonderful that she has so many siblings!
    And I love the photos

  2. Maranda
    June 28, 2012 at 1:53 pm #

    What a beautiful baby and I can’t imagine 7 children. I have 2 and there are days, I feel like I am spinning. As far as Kevin is concerned, my husband is one of five and he feels there are two separate families among himself and his siblings. He has (3) older brothers, when he was born they where (17, 15, 14). He is much closer to the two younger brothers and looks at his oldest brother more of a father figure then anything. His oldest brother was well into adult hood and had a family of his own by the time Mike hit the teenage years. It will be something Kevin will have to work at but, I have a feeling that the girls will welcome her into the Tribe and never leave her side. I have two girls and I have to say there is something about Sisters that makes me Glow..

  3. Addie
    June 28, 2012 at 2:24 pm #

    She is really beautiful!

  4. Holly F.
    June 28, 2012 at 6:23 pm #

    Giggled a bit, but mostly just said “Awwwww” as I read and looked at the pictures. ;) (I have a feeling Kevin really heard your statement to him [about the relationship being up to him] and will build a close relationship with her.)

  5. jen
    June 28, 2012 at 11:31 pm #

    Scarlett is beautiful, bias or no bias. Congratulations. :)
    You know, there are lots of different kinds of family relationships. They don’t have to fit in a mold. I’m a cousin who’s more like a cross between an aunt and a big sister. There’s nothing wrong with being a big brother who’s kind of like an uncle. The big brother will be adored, no doubt. They’ll work something out between them, and whatever it is, it will work for them.

  6. Asha
    June 29, 2012 at 2:58 am #

    She really is a pretty newborn. She looks like a doll! More pics!!!
    As for Kevin- yeah, he probably didn’t want to peek to close into the birthpool… that’s all. My oldest is like a father figure to my two youngest kids , as was my oldest brother when I was growing up. Now that we are all adults, the role has changed.

  7. Janet
    June 29, 2012 at 3:31 am #

    Shucks but this is giving me major baby fever!! :-))) She is beeaauutifulll, no you are not biased I can say with all honesty she really is perfect! I’m about to turn 40 and as a friend pointed out the other day, I could still squeeze a few more out. ;-) Well done once again to all of you!

  8. Darla
    June 29, 2012 at 6:23 am #

    Scarlett! I do declare, you are just a perfect Little Miss! What an angelic baby girl, I can’t believe her precious golden hair! I think she looks like you, Lisa!

    I was laughing like crazy about “Garlic”. lol Finn is just like any other previously youngest child being forced to abdicate the throne.

    I guess I’m thinking about Kevin…

    My biggest (little) girl Adrina is turning 31 this year. Ash just turned 3. (First grade math says: 28 years apart!) True, I was barely out of grade school when I had her, but that’s not the point. The point is: She is still a part of my younger children’s lives. She talks to them by phone, visits from Miami, makes them things etc… It’s not the *same* relationship she had with her brothers, but she is like a mentor they all look up to and every bit a “big sister”

    My older sons who are 27 and 24 live just around the corner and come over daily to entertain the younger crew. It helps that my son Gabe likes to walk on his hands like a gorilla and is quite a cut up and my son Brian likes to build things like bikes, cotton candy machines, etc etc…so they find ways to connect.

    My 18 year old daughter Alison is a musician and I love watching the younger children ( 12, 9, 6 and 3) crowd around her as soon as she starts playing a random instrument. She still pretends like she collects Littlest Pet Shop etc so they still have a kid bond. lol

    It’s *different* but definitely very nice to have a big family all spread apart in age.

    Best Wishes Lisa!

    • Lisa
      June 29, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

      I don’t know if you noticed, Darla, but I pretty much got that 45-minute labor you wished me!

      • Darla
        June 29, 2012 at 6:19 pm #

        ^_^ I noticed! It seemed fast and intense like the labor I had with Alexi. ( Oh my goodness and with a nuchal arm!) Did it seem easier over all than other labors? I forgot to wish you a pain free labor. I need to get my fairy stuff together and be a better wisher. (((Hugs)))

      • Lisa
        June 29, 2012 at 6:51 pm #

        Hmmm . . . easier? I don’t know I’d say that. I felt so overwhelmed so quickly, it was like I never had a chance to get on top of it, if that makes sense. Michael says that from his perspective, it seemed like the easiest (and quietest!) of my natural births. I don’t know – when you’re in the midst of it, it’s impossible to look at it objectively.

  9. Rebekka K. Steg
    July 5, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

    Wow, I’ve never seen so much hair on a blonde baby (for some reason, from what I’ve seen, blondes are usually almost bald (at birth and in the first few months) and it’s the dark-haired ones that have lots of hair – or at least that’s how it has been in my family).

    • Lisa
      July 5, 2012 at 4:19 pm #

      Rebekka, I thought the same thing! I was a blondie, and born bald, and my oldest son, also fair haired and light-eyed was born bald. My 5 middle kids all have brown hair and brown eyes and were all born with hair. then my youngest son came along and was born with a full head of platinum blond hair! And now Scarlett, with her golden hair. Genetics is a funny thing, huh?

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