Friday, February 24, 2012

Oh, boy. The differences between my boys.

I know that I'm not supposed to compare my kids. But let me just be a bad mom for a little bit, ok? I promise that I love both of my boys. Not for one minute would I want Russell to be more like Caleb. I love that he is himself. It's more fun to get to know him that way.

But they are SO DIFFERENT! I feel like I'm a first-time mom all over again! Only last time I felt that I was better informed (there is no better place to learn things than the NICU). Now I have a "normal" kid. It's more weird that I thought it would be! And much harder!

He gets hungry. He cries. He demands to be held, pretty much constantly. He poops a million times a day. He doesn't want to sleep unless I'm holding him. He doesn't want to cuddle. Seriously. He wants to be held constantly, but never cuddling. I feel like my little baby is growing up too fast! I had at least five months with Caleb before he was at the stage that Russell is at right now!

I specifically remember a time when Caleb was small where I was sitting on the floor, watching him play (aka, kick his legs), where I thought, "I could handle three babies just like him!" I can remember one time, ONE, where he was cranky and I didn't know why. He did everything that I wanted him to do (sleep) and nothing that I didn't want him to do (cry). Except eat. I wanted him to eat and he didn't.

At times I wonder if I can handle one of Russell.

Everyone always says, "the Lord won't give you more than you can handle." But my friend shared a very helpful piece of knowledge with me recently. The Lord will give you more than you can handle, but not more than you can handle with help. And he will give you help.

I now know that I gave myself WAY too much credit for his goodness. Caleb was Caleb, and I did a good job not messing everything up, but that's all I can take credit for. I can do everything the same this time around, and Russell will still be Russell. Particular tastes is a good way to put it. He wants to face away from whoever is holding him. He will cry every time I talk to him, and smile every time Auntie Jenna talks to him. Seriously. He wants to eat when he wants to eat, no matter the time of day. During the day, he will only sleep in his swing. At night he will only fall asleep if nursing. Right now, in my sleep deprived state, I've gotta do what I've gotta do and put him to sleep in whatever way it works. I'd like to keep from developing bad habits, like depending on the swing, but right now I don't have much of a choice. Some day we'll be able to do some "training." For now I'll have to settle for 3-4.5 hours of sleep at a time.

But! He will take a bottle from anyone, whether it be formula or expressed milk. That's pretty awesome. My life would be a whole lot harder at times if he wasn't that way.

And he's pretty dang cute. When he smiles, I just melt!

Even though my boys are so different in their personalities, they sure look alike! This was Caleb at about 2 months adjusted age (5 months actual).

This was Russell a few days ago, at 2 months, in the same outfit. He started out happy, but then when I looked at him for more than a few seconds without picking him up, he wasn't very happy. You can hear a little bit of how he coos while he's starting to cry. It's kinda cute. :)


Megan said...

Hang in there. I thought Addie was SO much harder in the beginning to but she has gotten a lot easier in the last few weeks. I am all about not creating bad habits I will have to break later too but I did what I had to do to make it work and now that she has settled down we are breaking them much easier than I had anticipated. You can do it Anna! Also it is crazy how much your boys look like one another, both adorable.

Katrina said...

It is so interesting how each kid is really so different, isn't it?

i didn't have drastic differences, like being in the NICU for months, or anything, BUT my kids are so different as well. Kamryn has always been very cautious and observant. As a baby, she ate when I needed her to, slept when I needed her to, ate in any position, loved to cuddle and sleep by me, etc.

Kyler was a different story. He has been our "normal child". He never liked to cuddle. :( Hated anything but being held and being on the floor (no swing, bouncer, carrier, etc.) He had good eating habits but within a couple months decided he didn't like the pacifier anymore and would just scream and scream and scream. He didn't nap very well and has always been a lighter sleeper than Kamryn.

I think maybe Heavenly Father knew that we needed an "easier" child at first...ease us into the parenting...and then said, "Ok! You're up to the task!" :) And really, we have been. And we have needed more of His help to guide us with Kyler.

(Interesting thing now though is that now that they are growing up...Kamryn is MUCH more dramatic and difficult and despite Kyler's ears and his stripping problem, he is MUCH easier than Kamryn is some ways! :) So...Russell may not always be harder!:) )