During the boy’s bath, he said to me, “Dad, I wish I was already a big brother.” And I said, Yeah, me, too. And the boy said, “When do you think my baby sister or baby brother is coming home?” And I said, I dunno, we’ll see. And the boy said, “I hope my baby sister or baby brother comes before I go to college!” And I said, Oh dear lord, me, too!
It dawned on me that I was about the boy’s age when my younger brother was born. After spending the first seven or so years of my life as the baby of the family, I was suddenly no longer the youngest when my brother was born. In retrospect, that change in birth order probably had a much bigger impact on my life than I realized back then.
I remember thinking at the time that I couldn’t really be a “baby” anymore, that I had to “grow up.” And then I spent the rest of my childhood trying to grow up as quickly as possible and move on with my life.
I hope the boy doesn’t feel the same way as I did. I hope he realizes that even when his baby sister or baby brother arrives, he’ll always be my baby, no matter what.
I sometimes hear parents say that they can’t wait until their kids can do more things (i.e., wishing they’d grow up and become more independent) but at the same time these parents complain about their kids growing up too quickly (i.e., they’re not “baby cute” anymore). These parents are morons, no offense. Kids grow up way too quickly as it is and wanting them to rush through childhood is a terrible mistake, IMHO.
At age seven, my kid already so desperately wants to be an adult. But I’m fighting tooth and nail to make sure that he takes his time and enjoys being a kid for as long as he can because childhood doesn’t ever last long enough.