Becoming an older sibling can be such a change and this was something that I thought about whilst I was pregnant. There are several things I did (I hoped) to get my first born used to the idea of a little human coming into all our lives which I will discuss in this post.
When I first find out I was pregnant hubby and I didn’t tell anyone until a few days before the first scan. Some family members had it sussed but they never asked us until we announced it and that was when all the “I had a feeling,” “I wondered why you weren’t eating that,” remarks came out. For my daughter, who you may have noticed in my last post and on Instagram I call ‘Little One,’ we didn’t really tell her anything until it was becoming obvious to her and that was really when my bump became more visible. My hubby and I took Little One to our first scan but she was more taken by the fact that the lights went out in the room “It’s dark mamma” and that she had a snack of mini chocolate chip cookies. I recall going to my parents after that and when my mum showed her the scan picture she just didn’t know what it was and that was fine with hubby and I. Just a side note: Little One was about 21 months around the time of the first scan.
Weeks followed and naturally mamma’s belly was looking like a constant food belly and this is when Little One mentioned that “Mamma has a baby in her belly!” This is when I thought right prep’ time, ha.
Hubby and I spoke to Little One about all sorts of things related to baby coming. One hot topic of discussion was whether or not the baby would be a boy or girl. For both pregnancies I’ve never found out the gender. We also spoke about how baby unlike big sister won’t be able to feed themselves, walk, burp themselves, hold things themselves…you know where I’m going …this all I feel helped. Through questioning Little One, I was also able to understand a little on how she thought about certain things for example…sharing! Oh yes, that delightful word that every toddler just adores. That leads me on to the next thing on my list…
As we didn’t find out the gender for our first born a lot of her newborn clothes were gender neutral. This all proved really useful for baby number two and thankfully I kept and boxed everything. Going back to the whole sharing aspect, I showed Little One her newborn clothes and proposed what we did with them…you know making her think it was her idea, a little how we do with our partners, ha! She thankfully suggested that baby could wear them, hooray! Therefore we made a huge deal about sorting them, washing them and packing them…
Hospital bag preparation
Involving Little One packing babies clothes really made her happy. What jacket would baby wear? Should we pack some hats? It also gave me an opportunity to talk about the fact that I would be going to hospital when baby was ready to meet us and that she would do a sleepover at her grandparents (I had never had a night away from her before) so that also meant that we had to pack a sleepover bag for Little One too. This included a lunchbox with Littles Ones favourite breakfast and snacks.
Much advice surrounding this topic advises that you do your best to keep routine the same as possible. Hubby and I were keen to get Little One used to a ‘Grown up bed’ so purchased a single bed before baby arrived. I’ve read somewhere that it’s recommended you do something like that at least two months before baby arrives. The bed didn’t arrive as early as that for us but thankfully Little One didn’t mind that her cotbed was being upgraded.
There are many kiddie books out there about a new sibling arriving but the one that proved popular in our home was Topsy and Tim: The New baby by Jean and Gareth Adamson.
This is a colourful, well written book about Topsy and Tim’s friend expecting a sibling. It also looks at different aspects, from preparing the nursery to mummy breastfeeding the new baby. The book has an actual drawing of the new baby feeding from mummy, how great is that. I really recommend this book. I purchased my copy from Wordery online.
So you may be wondering why I’ve mentioned this. Well the YouTube aspect was a bit random. I can’t remember what I was looking up, baby wrap tutorials perhaps anyhoo I saw a video for ‘How to change a newborns nappy’ and I thought this would be great to show Little One as then she would understand how small baby will be and it could be something that could be referred to later on. We also watched ‘How to bath a newborn.’
My dad always reminded me that when Little One first meets baby neither hubby nor I should be holding baby. That is just what I did. I left baby in her cot and when Little One came in as soon as she heard baby stirring that’s when she realised that baby had arrived. Baby was so delighted to have a big sister in her life that she bought…
Whilst I was getting my hospital bag ready, I also purchased presents for Little One. I was keen to be organised about this as I wanted them ready, wrapped and in my husband’s car awaiting the big day. Amongst the presents Little One received one was a game, Shopping List by Orchard Toys. The reason I chose this was because I thought we could all play it whilst big sister visits and it meant all eyes weren’t on baby.
Reflecting back on all these things brings back some cute memories in my mind.
I appreciate that this may seem like quite a long read therefore, rest your eyes, post baby arriving will be in part two of ‘You’re going to be a big sister.’