Friday, November 4, 2011

First Date

When Lily was born, she made us three, and we had loads and loads of events, outings, and adventures that were just Lily, Mommy, & Daddy.  Then when Addie was born, we all made a real effort (grandparents included) to make sure that while I was home with her new baby, Lily was out getting to do something cool.  We had family time, and we also nurtured special time with Lily, even occasionally planning times for her to spend with only her parents, just us 3. Then finally Addie was old enough for us to put the girls in tap class together, swim lessons together, and more importantly for us to all go out and do fun things as a family.  Addie and Lily made Four, remember?  The two of them were a unit of two, and I will always look at how they were before Bryson, as a pair, sweeter sisters than anything I could have imagined.  

As we pondered whether or not to have a third, I often thought about how having another baby would change that.  All of our kids would likely be less of a single unit, but of course, that was no reason not to add to our family.  

After Bryson came, we have had many times, when we go to events without him.  Just the girls and us, like the old days.  We also have taken turns going to things one on one.  Lawrence takes the girls skiing or running, individually, he coached Lily's tball team and took her ice skating.   I take them shopping or to lunch or on coffee shop dates one on one (man, my things sound lame comparatively, what's new? But now wonder he is the fun one!)  

Sometime around mid June, when the new Cinetopia was being built at the bottom of our hill, we decided we wanted to take Addie on a movie date alone, since Lily doesn't really like feature length films.  Cars 2 was out in 3D and we offered to have Lily come, but she declined.  Julia agreed to work late and be with Bryson and Lily, so I took off work early and we went to a movie with Addie.  

Addie was so excited she could barely stand it.  When we pulled up, parked and started walking toward the theatre, she took both her mom's hand, and her dad's hand.  She didn't try to swing, just walked boldly and proudly up the stairs marching forward to the show.  She was SO cute.  We got some popcorn and water and found our seats.  Since it was like 3pm it was just us + a few others at the movie, and Addie was wide eyed.  Since she is so small, her 3D glasses didn't fit so great but that didn't really bother her, she was WAY too busy eating the entire bag of popcorn to notice much.  

She loved the movie, things that I knew would have scared or stressed out her older sister, flew right over her head.  She stood up and danced a little during one part.  Every time I thought we were done with the popcorn, I put it down, and her little greasy hand started pawing around in my lap looking for it, not taking her goggled eyes off the big screen.  After the movie, I tried on her glasses to see how they felt with these foamy things on the ears to make them fit better.  I couldn't see through them! They were SO covered with little buttery finger prints.  

We took a few pictures on my phone on the way out.  Lawr wouldn't let me ask a stranger to get a picture of the three of us, on a Thursday afternoon in a movie theater.  Party pooper.  :(

It was on the way home that we realized it was our first date with Addie.  She is a different kid when she is not under the umbrella of being a pair with her big sis.  She is smart and funny and quirky.  In all different ways than Lily is.  

Sometimes it makes me feel bad to look at all that hasn't been done with Addie and Bryson that we did with Lily, but I try to remember the gift of siblinghood that they do have, that they have always had.  Lily gave them the gift of parents who were stressed out about things that didn't matter.  The gift of parents who would use hand-me-downs.  :)  And she really is such a great big sister, we gave them all that.  

In any case, relationships in a family are a lot of work, and it's fun to see the dynamics that build.  Addie and Bryson, beat each other up, and love each other most.  They are together all day while Lily is at school.  Lily and Addie share a room, and they have a lot of together time, they are still a pair.  They often sneak off to another room where they can do things and not worry about Bryson the destroyer getting their stuff.  Lily is SO good with Bryson, just this morning she came in and woke me up to see if she could get him up because he was singing, and she wanted to go be with him.  She asked me if she could get his morning milk first.  She did and I got another 10 minutes of sleep.  Oh, where was I?  (I tend to get off track when it comes to droning on about more sleep for myself.)  She is a great care taker, and really helps everyone out when it comes to being the oldest sister.  

When I want to beat myself up about not giving each kid more chances to be the only child with their mom and dad, I know we do our best.  It is hard enough for Lawrence and I to get time alone, much less time alone together with each kid.  We both have our individual time with each of them, and we also have a great family dynamic.  And it's nice to remember that, be thankful for it, and occasionally get a date night, whether it's with one kid or without one.

Dates with Mommy and Daddy are special.  Even for Mommy and Daddy.  

1 comment:

  1. Yep! And if they were each only children there would also be things to regret. You know, the whole sibling connectiont thingy. They wouldn't have that. Later on, when you can't be there for them, when they're adults, they'll have each other!