Guess what – Teacher and I are grandparents! Are you surprised? So were we last spring when Princess gave us the news that a baby was on the way.
Over the past months we’ve grown more and more excited about welcoming a new baby into our family. After much anticipation she finally arrived around Christmas time! She’s just a little peanut – 5 lbs, 7 oz and 19″ long at birth. Obviously she’s absolutely beautiful (How could she be otherwise with such a gorgeous mommy and grandma?) with lots of soft, dark hair and big dark eyes. She’s got her father’s round face and Princess’s dimpled chin – an irresistible combination!
Princess had lots of support throughout her pregnancy. Once family and friends got over their initial surprise they were quick to offer lots of hugs, unconditional love, and excitement about the upcoming baby. Things were the same when it came to labor and delivery. In addition to the attentive nurses, Princess had Cowboy, Cowboy’s mom and me there to support and help her.
Although I’ve gone through labor and delivery as the mommy before, I’ve never seen it from the other side. Attending Peanut’s birth was awesome… incredible… miraculous… every adjective you’ve ever heard describing the miracle of birth, and then some. Princess was so strong and did an amazing job, but it was very hard for me to see her in pain. As her mommy I wanted to make it all better! If there had been a way for me to take her place I would have in a heartbeat.
Things have obviously been different around here since Princess and Peanut came home from the hospital. Princess is a wonderful mommy but she sometimes still needs her own mommy – especially around 4am when she’s been awake for hours with a fussy Peanut. I don’t mind taking a shift with Peanut in the middle of the night so Princess can sleep for a couple of hours in a row. I remember how desperate for sleep a new mama can be: One night shortly after Jo-Bear was born I was awakened yet AGAIN by his cries. Wearily I got him started nursing yet AGAIN on nipples that were sore from his constant attachment. I sat crying in the dark, “I’ll never sleeeeeep aaaagaaaaaiiiinnnn…” Now that I’m past that mind-numbing stage of mommy-hood I’m glad I’m able to help Princess. This is what Peanut looks like at 4am. Such a wide-awake baby! I don’t look nearly that good at that hour of the morning.
Cowboy is a very enthusiastic dad. In the hospital he did most, if not all, of the care-taking for Peanut. He changed all her diapers, brought her to Princess to nurse, held her so Princess could nap, and shooed away guests when mama and baby were sleeping. He wants to spend as much time with Peanut and Princess as he can so whenever he can he comes over to our house after school to spend time with them before he has to go to work. Almost every weekend he takes Princess and Peanut to his house to spend a day with his extended family. Cowboy is such a proud daddy!
Stepping into the role of Grandma has been more difficult for me than I anticipated. My mom makes it look easy, but I’m not used to being “second string.” I’m used to being The Mommy; the main caregiver, the main decision-maker, the one baby is most attached to. At first it was hard to step aside and let Cowboy and Princess make decisions about Peanut – especially since they’re so young – but I’m getting better little by little. As Peanut gets older and we all adjust to having her in our lives I’m sure it will be even easier. Teacher and Dr. Phil have helped too. From Teacher I’ve adopted the mantra “She’s not my baby” which I repeat in my head whenever I’m tempted to butt in. Dr. Phil’s line “You don’t get a vote” was shared with me by my friend Cindy – whose a big Dr. Phil fan. I”m not fond of that line because I think I should always get a vote, no matter what, but I know he is right.
But being the grandma has its advantages too. I thought I was a pretty relaxed mommy, but I’m even more relaxed as a grandma. The people who say that grandchildren are better than children because you can spoil them then send them home were right; even though Peanut lives with us the relationship is different. I may play back-up for Princess and be Peanut’s caregiver when Princess is in school, but when push comes to shove Peanut is Princess’s responsibility.
Another advantage is that there’s another cloth-diapered bottom in the house! Little Guy has asked to sit on the potty a couple of times and even though he didn’t do anything besides grunt a couple of times I can see the end of cloth diapers approaching in the distance. I was so sad thinking about the end of my cloth diapering days. But now I can look forward to Little Guy potty-learning because I have Peanut to make cute diapers for! Speaking of which, here are some extra small Zany Zebra diapers and covers I made for Peanut. Angel Face helped choose the colors, aren’t they great?!
So join us in welcoming Peanut into our family – I’m sure you’ll be seeing a lot of her as she grows up!