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Dec 5 2012

How My Toddler’s Adjusting to Life With Two

By at 9:55 am

My toddler is slowly but surely adjusting to his new baby brother. I try hard to foresee battles before they ensue and we’re slowly getting back to our old dynamic. I’m getting used to taking two kids everywhere and I’ve realized that a fully capable toddler and I did just “run in” to stores where as a toddler, newborn and I take HOURS to simply leave the house in one piece. There is no “running in.”

At our baby’s 1 month visit, my toddler also had his 30 month appointment. My husband was with me and it was easier to just do both at the same time. Our toddler loved all of the attention he got and admittedly two minutes of the appointment was spent examining the baby and 45 minutes was spent discussing Big Brother’s adjustment.

Big Brother doesn’t need to be checked for another six months, but he tagged along when I took the baby for his 2 month visit. As soon as we walked into the exam room my toddler declared, “I pick that I will go first and baby Gillen will go second.” Little did he know, this appointment was only for Gillen and no matter how many times I told him, he insisted on getting all of the attention (thankfully, baby doesn’t know or care yet).

I allowed a medical student to come in first and she clearly didn’t have children because the look on her face told me she was horrified by my toddler’s behavior. He was throwing a fit–screaming and taking his pants off, telling her his leg was injured and he needed a doctor to fix it (ahem, smart kid). (Also? WHERE DID HE LEARN THESE SHENANIGANS!?) For the record there was NOTHING wrong with his leg–but if she had any experience with kids she would have just thrown a band-aid on it and declared, “all better”–instead she tried to legitimately examine his perfectly fine leg ignoring my insistence that he was fine (she probably wanted to check for child abuse since he was offering up SUCH DRAMATICS).

When our pediatrician came in he demanded her immediate attention. She obviously knows a thing or two about 2-year-olds who are having a hard time adjusting to a new brother so she humored him by looking in his ears with the magic light, made him a puppet with a tongue depressor, and let him tell her all about his baby brother.

The baby again was checked out in minutes. He’s sleeping, eating, and growing. He was declared happy, healthy, and ready for his first round of vaccines. My husband usually meets me at the doctor for shot appointments because I am a total wimp when people stab needles in my babies (seriously, I cry. And then when I get home and see the band-aids on their chubby thighs, I cry again). But I was a brave Mama and held him through all three shots, my mind mostly preoccupied with my toddler.

Of note, before the appointment I had a discussion with Big Brother that the baby had to get some “owies.” I didn’t want him to be upset seeing the needles or hearing Gil scream. So when my toddler started getting hysterical when the nurse came in with the shots I thought he was genuinely upset for his brother’s well being.

Nope. Couldn’t have been more wrong.

He stood on a stool right next to me and sobbed “But I WANT AN OWIE TOOOOOOOO!”

And there you have it folks, the extent to which a toddler will go to pull attention away from his baby brother. He stands on a stool begging for needles at a doctor’s appointment that isn’t even his.

Needless to say, he didn’t get one. But he did get to choose a sucker. You know, for being such a good patient.


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