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A new stage: Being a BIG Brother!!!
So this post is about how our family prepared for baby, mainly in regards to our 2 1/2 year old. How do you explain to a toddler or a preschooler, that their little egocentric world is about to change!!!
These are just a few ways we help make the transition a little easier for our little guy to understand.
-I took our son to every doctors appointment, if my hubby couldn't make it I would strap our son in a stroller and load him up with snacks but regardless he was a part of the whole process. He saw the ultra sounds, heard the heart beat and of course was happy to get a special stickers from the nice girls in the office each visit.
-We checked out books from the library about babies and books about being a big brother. We brought out his baby dolls and baby stroller (I would encourage all boys to have baby dolls even if they aren't going to be a big brother)
-Even though space in our small place is limited we put out all of the new babies 'stationary' objects very early on, the swing, bounce seat, crib ect. The thing is, if your 2 or 3 what do you do on a swing? You push it as high as it will go! So the idea is to put everything out for the child to explore and learn the appropriate way to use it all before baby arrives. Our son enjoyed putting his doll in the swing, and car seat and then soon enough he didn't think twice about them and that was the point.
-When it got closer to my due date we took our son to the hospital I was delivering at and participated in their "Tike Hike" many hospitals have something along the lines of this. When we arrived the nurses gave our son a sticker that said "I'm a super sibling" they put a hospital band on him just like the one his mommy, daddy and sister will wear in the hospital. Then a nice lady came around with knitted hats so our son could pick out a hat for his new sister. We then toured the baby area of the hospital, they showed him a room and the nursery, then the group went into a room that had snacks and a short video played about how to handle a baby. After the video each child got a baby doll to learn how to hold their new baby. It was very cute.
After our little bundle arrived, he came to visit us in the hospital and his new sister had a present for him. I of course wanted to be a sap and get him some sort of book about him and his sister or a doctors kit and a baby doll but my hubby jumped in and insisted we get him a big buzz light-year toy...his favorite character of the moment....it was absolutely the BEST choice....he loved it and was so excited and thanked his new sister. He was happy to take his new Buzz to grandma's house until we could all go home together.
The BEST advice I got from someone in regards to having a second child was this, "your going to have to tell your older child to 'wait' a lot, and your older child can start to feel resentful towards the new baby. So when you are helping your older child or playing with them tell the 'baby' they need to wait" The baby obviously wont know the difference but it will help your older child feel that their is an equal balance.
****So i'm sure there are a few of you thinking....umm okay crazy lady, your a bit over the top, but I have a disclaimer lol. I have been a preschool teacher for 6 years and I have seen so many children regress or act out in different ways when a new sibling comes along so I probably was on my mind a bit more than others but I just really wanted it to be as smooth of a transition for my little man as possible!
So our daughter is 3 weeks old and we have had our amazing moments and our....."hmmmm" moments but we are a very happy little family! So any experienced mommies out there, I welcome any advice!