To my littlest,

The truth is, you don’t get the attention your big brother did.

He got us 24/7, at his beck and call. He was constantly showered with love and affection. He was the center of our world.

We loved him so much we thought, let’s do it again! And we are so happy we did.

But it’s different with you. Because there isn’t enough of us to go around like we had with just one.

The truth is, he still gets more attention than you do sometimes. He’s louder, a bit crazier, and quite frankly, more of a flight risk.

If you think my mama-heart doesn’t notice this, my sweet baby, I promise you it does.

Guilt hits me in the gut when I’m spending time attending to your brother’s needs and see you sitting on the ground, quietly playing with a toy. I wonder if you notice he gets more of my time.

I feel sadness when I see how your little body is growing, yet I don’t feel like I’ve been able to soak it in like I did with him. There has been so much less me and you time.

Because it’s not just me and you.
It never will be just me and you.

There is a strange amount of guilt and heartache that comes along with that. I find myself praying that it won’t affect you.

But . . . 

Then I see your big brother making you giggle. I see him giving you hugs and kisses. I hear him calling your name to come play. I notice how he doesn’t like it when you cry.

That’s the thing.

You don’t get all my attention.

But you do get him.

You get a big sibling.
That’s something he didn’t have when he was a baby.

Even though I wish I had more time with you, I’d never change the role your big bro is playing in helping mold you into the person you will become.

Because the truth is, he is exceptional at his role.

And I think there is something a big sibling can give you that a parent can’t.

Someone who understands the growing pains that a parent might forget.

Someone who has energy like you do.

Someone who watches over you and sticks up for you wherever you go.

A best friend for life.

I might get sad that my attention has to be so scattered, but your big brother . . . 

He makes up for it.

That’s the special thing about the second born.

You don’t just have two people loving you and watching out for you.

You have three.

This post originally appeared on The Unraveling by Kelli Bachara

 

You may also like:

When I Gave You a Sibling, You Gained a Best Friend

To My Oldest Child: Thank You For Being a Helper

Kelli Bachara

Kelli Bachara is a wife and mom to two sweet kiddos. She is a mental health therapist, writer, and podcaster. Kelli loves her Goldendoodle, coffee, and this beautiful thing called life. You can find her at www.kellibachara.com.