Blog Takeover - The emotional transition...growing your family
The emotional transition...growing your family by Gem @gemoutnumbered
I’m a huge believer in supporting one another, in kindness, & in what a difference that can make especially when motherhood is one of the biggest life transitions a woman will ever go through. So when Sarah asked me to do a guest blog takeover I jumped at the chance. There are SO many things I could write about and share with you but one thing came to the forefront of my mind- 𝓽𝓱𝓮 𝓮𝓶𝓸𝓽𝓲𝓸𝓷𝓪𝓵 𝓽𝓻𝓪𝓷𝓼𝓲𝓽𝓲𝓸𝓷- 𝓰𝓻𝓸𝔀𝓲𝓷𝓰 𝔂𝓸𝓾𝓻 𝓯𝓪𝓶𝓲𝓵𝔂.
My first son was two when Louis arrived. Toby coped remarkably well with the transition which was just as well because Louis’ birth and fifth trimester was all sorts of tough. We got through it as a new family of four and found our new normal.
Four years later when we we found out we were expecting our third baby I was fully prepared for Louis to struggle. He was the baby in our family for so long and he had all of me most days. We had such a special bond and I worried about how adding a new baby to the family would affect that. People close to me reassured me that I had been through this before and that Louis would be ok just as Toby was. I so wanted to believe them.
Louis surprised us all when Kit arrived. Outwardly he was fine. Lots of kisses for his new baby brother and lots of interest. He kept telling everyone he loved his little brother and all seemed well.
But our bond was shaken. I didn’t realise it at the time, we were in our little bubble, the newborn fog ; but looking back he shut down a little. I was over doing the love and affection for him yet he was moving further and further away. One day I was feeding Kit on the sofa and I looked over at Louis to ask him to fetch me something and I could see tears in his eyes. He was sat there quietly sobbing, quietly struggling. He didn’t make a sound but his eyes filled with tears and it broke me. I put Kit down and I got on the floor where Louis was. I held him for what felt like hours, we both cried and hugged and didn’t say a word. Both vulnerable, both sad, both healing.
From that moment on I’ve been so much more aware that it’s ok to be vulnerable in front of your children. I was over doing the love and affection but from Louis’ perspective I was ‘fine’ that our bond had changed and Louis took that as me not caring. So by holding him, by acknowledging his very valid feelings, and my own, and by crying with him I was able to get on his page, to see things as he saw them and to be sad for what we had lost. Our bond is stronger now, by a million miles. And their bond is so special, it’s changing every day and growing, just as they are.
So if you’re feeling anxious about changing the dynamics of your family and the affect that it may have on your child just know that all of those feelings are valid, it’s ok for it to feel huge because it is. Take a breath. Look around you. Look how far you’ve come, look at the mother you already are. You’ve learnt so much already. Talk to your friends and the people who love you. You’re not alone. Your feelings are ALWAYS valid and I can promise you one thing, if you do decide to have more children, the love just multiplies. It’s joy, it’s bedlam, it’s love.