The Center of the Universe

Violet won’t be an only child much longer. In fact… really soon, I think. I’ve been trying not to do the guilt thing about what this huge upheaval will feel like to her. We’ve done everything conceivable to prepare her for it. But, come on, like anyone is really prepared for a new kid. Still, I’ve always loved having a little brother, and I’m sure she will too… most of the time.

Maybe I’m a little melodramatic. The first time I came home from summer camp, I cried for two days. It’s not that I wasn’t happy to be home, it’s just that I knew that I’d never have a first camp experience again. So I needed a little mourning time. And I think I feel the same way about the end of our little 3 person family.


So to freeze this phase in our lives, here’s what Violet is doing these days. She talks and sings non-stop. Recently I asked her if she would like such-and-such. She said, “No I would NOT.” Whoa… when did she learn that? She’s also got “Yes, I am”, “Yes, I do” and their negatives down. Pronouns are increasingly easy for her, so it annoys me to no end that I still sometimes refer to myself in the third person. She’s usually a whiz with her pleases, thank-yous and your-welcomes, which makes me unreasonably happy. The blends are still difficult, so snail is “nail” and clip is “cip”. It’s unfortunate that “tr” is usually replaced by “f” and “st” is replaced by “d” because she often loudly discusses trucks and sticks in public. Oh, and she has a baby lisp, which sometimes makes her sound like Vizzini from The Princess Bride. “Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line!”

She still falls back on whining a bit too much, especially when tired, hungry or frustrated. We’re working on it. She’s has recently ratcheted up the tantrum scream a notch. But it’s so obviously just a show most of the time, I almost want to laugh. Time-outs have worked pretty well; she actually seems to need the 2-minute breather. Then she puts all her dolls (and sometimes daddy) into time out, afterwards carefully explaining why, making them apologize and giving them a hug. All of this is done in a high-pitched “mothering” voice, while the toys respond in various accents.

After the past six months of huge jumps in oral language, she is suddenly interested in signing again. She loves watching sign language videos and seems completely amused by the whole idea. She’s also keenly aware of the hand motions that go along with kids’ songs… and rhymes in general. The other day she sighed happily, “I LOVE nursery rhymes.” Of course, right now she changes the ends of most lyrics to “pee” and then rhymes it with “pee”, laughing hysterically. Toilet humor is clearly a big hit.

As far as actually using the potty… no real interest yet. That’s something we’ll worry about after the shock of “the invader” wears off. And we’ll save the “big girl bed” transition for later too. One thing I’ve learned is that when Violet is ready for something, she’s ready, and not a moment earlier. Must choose battles carefully.

And there are a million other things, which I say I’m going to document daily. But I just can’t. I’ll just mention that yesterday Violet lifted my shirt stared straight into my popped-out belly button and said, “Baby brother, come out soon? Play?”

8 responses to “The Center of the Universe”

  1. Leah

    oh my god, the last line made me cry. she will be happy with a baby brother ( i have been most of the time) and it will give you a break (in about three years) they can play togther. enjoy your last few days of a three person family!!!!

  2. Auntie Grams

    Cheris, Violet will love having a baby brother. It took my grandson Hudson awhile to get used to his sister Sailor. I remember driving back to McCall from the Boise hospital with them and every time Sailor’s little arm would touch his, he would move it away. It was hilarious. He did NOT want this little thing coming home with Mom and Dad. Now they fight, scream, cry, run, swim, and laugh together all day! It’s a beautiful for a grandma to see.

    Love you tons,

    Aunti Grams

  3. Auntie Grams

    I meant it’s a beautiful THING for a grandma…………It’s a 4/20 thing. LOL

  4. melanie

    I hear you’re in labor! awright!
    I have similar reservations about expanding the party from three to four over here. You’ll have to tell me how it is once you’ve got your bearings.

    Thinking of you today!

  5. Kate G.

    Lovely. Violet will enjoy reading this when she’s older and sappier, like us mama’s……

    From the Mama’s lists, sounds like Violets wish for baby brother to come play is coming true today. Kate

  6. Kristen

    I struggle with same guilt…and have since learning of the pregnancy. I think I’ve finally realized (8 weeks to go!) that I won’t love Drew any less; and I’m in fact adding to his life. We joke that it’s baby # 2 who’ll have it rough because Drew is so incredible. Much to live up to. But I say the more the merrier. I can’t wait to hear all about your new joy and the new love you share in a family of four. Yippee!

  7. shannon

    Just madly refreshing hoping for sweet baby boy pics! And also, did I win the admiration of my peers through the guess the delivery date contest? Sweet!

    Good labor vibey things coming atcha from all the Mama Mafia!

  8. Ba (Beth to others)

    Cheris, although little brother is here now and not quite ready to play, you are right. Your family has changed. Good for you for giving yourself some time to recognize, appreciate, and mourn what will no longer be.

    One reason my kids are 4 1/2 year apart was that in spite of the fact that I knew I wanted another kid, I really was not ready to have to share my time another baby. The relationship with the first one is indeed very unique, but you will find that your relationship with little Graham will be just as precious and unique, as mine is with my #2 (although none the less because he is 2nd) Aaron.

    I have always been the youngest so have no appreciation of having to share as I was the great interloper in my household and my sister’s loved having a little sis to show the world to. But I do know how much my own #1 Sarah loved having a baby brother, and how much he LOVED having a big-sis to be his guide. I think in general kids adjust as long as they know they are loved, listened too, that there is food in the house for them, and a warm and cozy bed to sleep in.

    Language wise, looks like Violet is are target! I for one still have not figured out how to replace “f” with “tr”!!

    Happy life!

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