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Preparing Your Child For A Sibling With Denise Peyre

By | 2022-09-01T16:07:12-07:00 September 6th, 2022|

WAF 6 | Preparing Your Child

 

In this episode, Karen talks with Denise Peyre about practical ways to navigate parenthood when preparing your child for a sibling. This transition could be overwhelming for the family, but with the right tools and tips, we can undoubtedly guide ourselves into this life-changing moment. There are a lot of good ways that can help ease that transition. Tune in to hear recommendations to foster deep connection and bring light to our homes.

Listen to the podcast here


 

Preparing Your Child For A Sibling With Denise Peyre

Many families are growing in our community. In this episode, we are going to be talking about how to help navigate the transition from an only child to a big sibling for your oldest. Denise Peyre, The Family Room’s yoga and second-time Parent & Me educator, is here to share her own experiences and insights from leading many Second Time Parent & Me groups. Welcome, Denise.

Thank you for having me. I’m excited to do this.

This is a good topic. Before we start, I wanted to share a conversation I had with Denise about coming on the show on this topic to give everyone a little background. It went something like this, “Denise, how do you feel about coming on the show and talking about how to prepare your child for a baby sibling?” Her response, “I would love that,” or something similar showing enthusiasm and excitement for the topic, then she says, “Do you want me to wear my yoga woo-woo hat or my Second Time Parent & Me educator hat?” I was thrown off. I was like, “Your Second Time Parent & Me hat,” but I’m totally here for your yoga and woo-woo hat.” I don’t know exactly what we’re going to get, but I’m super excited about it.

It’s interesting because I can’t wear one hat without the other in our classes. A lot of second-time parents who’ve been in my Second Time Parent & Me classes know and will agree that I often say, “I’m putting on my yoga hat because it totally applies.” We probably will at some point, but yes, I’ll be wearing both hats.

It’s nice that you can bring that practice into your classes. It’s one more lovely thing about you that you offer our parents.

It can’t be helped.

I heard the comparison telling your child you love them so much. That is why you wanted another. It is like your spouse coming home and saying the same thing, “I love you so much. That’s why I want another.” It would be terrible if your spouse came home and said that to you. It’s like a life-changing hard thing for kids to grasp. I almost feel like we need to shift it. Instead of preparing your kid for this transition, how do you help ease the transition? You can’t really prepare.

A lot of them are babies themselves. They probably have still developing language and social skills. To think that we can prepare them for this huge event that we don’t know what life’s going to be like when the baby comes is slightly unrealistic, but there are ways that you can help ease that transition. That’s the baseline of which where we should start this conversation.

Second-time parents have the benefit of maybe not so long ago or a few years. It depends on how long you’re waiting between kids, but to remember what it’s like to become a parent for the first time. That’s a big transition for a lot of us. For some of us, it’s way bumpier than others, but even for those who it goes smoothly, it can still be a challenging transition in a period of our life.

To remember that for our little ones who don’t have as much experience with transitions, in general, is important during this time. I used to say this to my son all the time, “You made me a mama, but I’ve never been a mom of two before, so I’m still practicing too and still learning all the time.” It’s important to tell our kids that depending on their age and how much they can grasp, “We’re all in this together right now.”

I remember before the twins came I don’t know if it was morning, we are having this period where we are never just going to be the three of us again. We wanted to hold onto that for a little bit before they came. I can’t imagine. If I was having those conflicted feelings, I wanted them more than anything in the whole world, but also being like, “I can’t believe that we’ll never be this little three-person unit again.” It was something I was processing.

What’s important is what works for your family. There are lots of other reasons that people have large gaps between kids and sometimes it's none of anybody else's business. Click To Tweet

As parents, depending on our rhythm, resources, and all these factors, we continue to have those feelings. I said this to my friend. my daughter Lily was sleeping, and she was taking an extra long nap, which was amazing. I got everything I needed to do then. My son asked me, “Can we make slime?” We haven’t sat and made slime. I have a great recipe for an extra firm slime so it does not get stuck on the carpet.

What’s your secret?

It’s only clear glue. Don’t use white glue. It’s a certain amount of borax. You can google it, “Extra firm slime.”

Be careful with the borax. That hurt Audrey’s fingers once.

I always wear gloves when I use that borax. We were sitting and doing the slime, and it felt like the before time. My daughter is several months old. We have some practice with balls constantly up in the air. I feel like I’m constantly juggling, and it’s part of the game with two young kids, but it was nice. We continue to have those moments no matter how old our kids get that when we have this one-on-one time with either of our children, it’s like, “It’s a nice sweet treat.”

Do you want to share a little bit about how the transition went for your family?

My son, Luca, was my only child until he was four, which is a little bit older than a lot of families who transition. We decided personally to wait because my husband has a funky work schedule and I’m alone in the evenings. Anyone who knows about bedtime, bath time, and dinner routine can attest to the fact that being alone for that can be challenging for 1, let alone for 2. I said, “We can not have a second child until things run a little bit more smoothly during that time.”

I’m saying that not to justify my choice, but to say before we move on that it doesn’t matter what your choice is for waiting or not waiting. What’s important is that it works for your family. There are lots of other reasons that people have large gaps between kids, and sometimes it’s none of anybody else’s business. That’s cool too. I had this interaction at the park the day where I was chatting with a mom, which I tend to do. I’m chatty. I’m like, “You’re a mom? Cool. Let’s talk. Let me tell you what’s going on.”

When I asked, “How old are your kids?” She told me they were sixteen months apart. I was like, “That’s such a small gap. My brother and I were fourteen months apart. I can’t imagine how hard that is.” She asked how far my kids were. I told her, and she told me, “What a terrible thing to do to a child to give them that large of an age gap.” I’m like, “Okay. Bye.” I was shocked. I surround myself with the inclusivity, empathy, and loving nature of all the families at The Family Room. I’m used to that being the norm, but I was like, “What?”

You forgot. It’s like a war zone out there on the playground.

That was hard to hear. I was like, “People have opinions about this, and that’s not right.”

WAF 6 | Preparing Your Child

Preparing Your Child: It depends on how long you’re waiting between kids, but to remember what it’s like to become a parent for the first time. That’s a big transition for a lot of us and for some of us, it’s way bumpier than others.

 

It’s insane. It’s simply not true. There is no magic formula.

You can do all the planning in the world without guaranteeing what your family is going to look like. You can try whatever it is that you’re going to try. At the end of the day, there’s no guaranteeing that your kids are going to be BFF and that some big age gap is going to mean that they are not closed. Do what works best for your families.

You never know what’s happening. There could be a loss or a million things. I got divorced and later remarried. There’s a six-and-a-half-year age gap between Audrey and the twins. There are some benefits. There’s this notion that we control more than we can like, “If we do it like this, if we do it two years apart, this and that, and it all be fine.” Sometimes there are things that are out of our control. My oldest sister is nine years older than me. There’s a big age gap, and we were super close. You just don’t know. It depends. There are so many other factors to consider. I’m sorry she said that to you.

That felt like, “Ew,” but I was glad that it happened because it was a wake-up call to like, “We need to get the word out there a little bit more.” There are many factors. We have a four-year age gap. This goes into some of the things I’m going to talk about and some of the things that you can do to start preparing your older child for the idea of pregnancy. If you know that you want to have another baby and you’re planning for it, one of the things that we did that was helpful in starting to foster a positive sibling relationship, even before he met the baby, was to talk about the idea of him being a big brother.

I will never forget this one time. He was like 2.5 or 3. Maybe it was like somebody in his life, they had just become a big brother or something like that, which is a great opportunity to use. If there’s a family that has had a sibling birth or one of their friends has had a sibling birth, that’s a great jumping-off point to start the conversation of saying, “Do you think that you would want to be a big brother or big sister? What do you think that would look like for you? Do you think that that would be a fun thing?” I remember having this conversation with my son for the first time saying, “Do you think you would want to be a big brother someday?” He was like, “Okay.” I remember he was sitting at the table eating his snack, and then 30 or 40 seconds later, he was like, “I don’t think so.”

He needed to stick with it for a minute. That was eye-opening. I was like, “We’re just going to have an only child. That’s what it looks like in our family. That’s okay.” He was little and having to process something like that was a big thing to ask. We kept reapproaching the idea. Stories that have sibling relationships can be a great way to introduce it. Daniel Tiger, the little sister, there’s like a whole thing about that. Reintroducing this theme can be helpful to soften the older child up to the idea of being a big sibling.

Get them excited about it.

When I did become pregnant, we talked a lot to the baby, which is also a great way to humanize the baby. I tell my yoga class this all the time when we go through guided meditations of trying to imagine what your baby is doing, “Where is your baby right now? Depending on how big or small they are in your body, what position are they in? Are they making faces? Are they sucking on their hands? What do they look like? Do they have eyebrows?” All of these things, because we track our baby’s growth on these apps that are like, “Your baby is as big as pineapple or a bok choy.”

It doesn’t look like an eggplant.

It can be hard to imagine your baby as a real human. To humanize this baby inside of you to your older child can be helpful in starting to foster this real relationship.

I saw a Track Your Baby, but it wasn’t by fruit and vegetables. It was by desserts like donuts, croissants, and cakes.

To humanize the baby inside of you to your older child can be really helpful in starting to foster a real relationship. Click To Tweet

I feel like I have a way better connection to that. That is a great way to also help bridge the gap with the thinking of your older child because you’re like, “Look at this peach. This is how big your sister is inside my belly right now.” Hold it up to your belly and show them. That is a great way to gauge it, but I love the dessert idea.

Before the baby is born, talk to the baby. We used to talk to the baby every night at bedtime. I would have my son sing the good night song to her, let her know that, “Big brother is here.” He would tell her all the time, “This is me, Luca. I’m your big brother.” We used to talk about the fact that when she comes out, she’s going to recognize your voice. I used to tell him all the time, “Look how tall you are. You’re right up next to my belly. She hears your voice from those.”

They used to have this connection before they came out. It’s helpful. When she did arrive, he did sing the night song to her all the time, let her know, and used the same vocabulary and verbiage that he did when I was pregnant. I hear some advice for introducing the baby initially after the birth. If you’re having maybe a home birth, that your child is present there for the birth, then that’s a whole other thing that honestly, I can’t even speak on because I don’t have that experience. I haven’t spoken to any moms that have at length, but that would be an interesting thing to dive into because the older child is there from the beginning, which is cool.

The introduction can be something that you plan for. There are some books that recommend that when the baby is introduced to the child for the first time, to not have the baby in the arms of the mom or, if possible, either parent to have them in the arms of someone else or in the bassinet. We didn’t do that. I had the baby in my arms, and it was fine. There is some advice that says to have a gift ready for a gift exchange “from the baby.” I heard that beforehand. I know my son. He’s an analytical kid. He deconstructs things quite a bit and has since he was a little guy. I knew that wouldn’t work for him. He would then ask questions and be like, “She was inside your belly.”

“How did the baby get to Target?”

“The baby doesn’t have a job.” He would sit off me that way. I knew that wasn’t going to work for us. That might work for other people. I know plenty of people that worked for them.

We got gifts. I don’t know if we said they were from the twins, but we got her a necklace and a shirt that said, “Big sister to twins,” on Etsy. Etsy has so much cute stuff for that thing.

If you don’t find it, you can request it.

That shirt Coco was wearing was “Audrey, the big sister to twins” because we pass down all the clothes. It’s fresh in my mind because Coco was wearing it. I was trying to make it like a celebration, too. Whether it affected her transition or not, I don’t know, but the shirt’s cute.

There is something to say about that. The excitement is there and it can be enough, but also maybe asking visitors because we all know as second time and subsequent parents that the baby stuff can be overwhelming. There are only so many onesies that you can have before you have to give away half of them that still have tags on them. One of the things that you can do is ask for visitors. I want visitors to come, help me, too, and maybe bring a meal. When visitors come, have them bring something for the family, but something for the big sibling, too. It might be more helpful and more appreciated than something for the baby.

A lot of times, the baby gets so much attention, like when you go out in public, “Look at the beautiful baby,” then the older is just standing there. I know a lot of times whenever that would happen, I would try to redirect like, “I have three beautiful children,” to always make her feel included because she is.

WAF 6 | Preparing Your Child

Preparing Your Child: It’s not guaranteed that your kids are going to be BFF. There’s no guaranteeing that some big age gap is going to mean that they are not close so do what works best for your families. It depends. There’s so many other factors to consider.

 

I waited it out to see how it would go but my son jumped into the big brother role quickly, easily, and with a lot of pride. We went with it. Any time that would happen for us, I found the most helpful thing to do to include him as the big brother. That goes into another conversation about labeling, roles, and things. For us, that was the most helpful in creating harmony in our household. He loved it. He wanted all the big brother shirts. He would constantly talk, “This is my little sister. This is my baby.”

What about time afterward? “Who needs me most right now?” is what I always used to think. Everyone needs me, but who needs me most? With a baby, their needs are obvious because they’re screaming, hungry, or something like that. There may be some toddler regression, but thinking through that time, how do you still spend time with the oldest? What do you recommend?

There are a couple of different ways that you can approach it. It’s like anything in parenting. You throw all the noodles at the wall and see what sticks. When I was talking to my pediatrician about this, I asked her because I’m information driven. I wanted to know like, “What are the books? What do I need to read? What do I need to listen to in order to get ready for this?” She was like, “I’m not going to tell you books to read because it depends on your style of parenting. One book for sibling stuff might be different from the other because the parenting style is different.”

In my case, because there’s a dad or whoever the partner is, is that it’s the dad or partner’s time to shine. Making sure that there has been some transition beforehand is important. When I say transition, I mean into the routine. In my case, my husband was only there twice a week for bedtime while I was pregnant because the other five nights, he worked. In those two nights, you can be sure he did bath and bed so that when the baby came, it wasn’t like he does a huge shift for my son. Making sure that your partner is on board for the transition and practicing that is helpful and vital.

It’s not because of the baby necessarily. We’ve been doing this. It’s like, “The baby’s here. Mom’s gone. Dad has been putting me to bed for a while now.” That’s good advice.

If you can’t do it every night like in my household, do what you can. That’s the name of the game. She said, which I’ve referred to as the Magic Ten, “Twice a day, spend fifteen minutes alone without a device. Leave your phone at home, wherever you have to put it. Shut it off in a child-led activity. Don’t make any suggestions about what to do unless it’s necessary.”

If your kid wants to go hunt for worms, then you make it a point that after you do what you need to do, if you’re the one solely feeding the baby, you feed the baby, and you make sure everyone’s set up for success, then you go out for fifteen minutes and you hunt for worms. You don’t look at your phone once and you let your child have this supported experience with you that feels like old times.

She said to me, “If you can’t do 15 twice a day, do 10 twice a day. If you can do 10 twice a day, do 10 once a day.” Do what you can. I’ve heard this referred to as the Magic Ten, in which the idea is that if we fill the cup of our older children, then they won’t be looking for that connection in other ways that might acquire some negative attention-seeking behavior.

Being intentional about making sure that you have some one-on-one connected time together.

Eventually, you’re going to be alone with both kids at some point. That can be the most challenging part. We think about the transition being challenging, but to me, it’s when things go “back to normal.” When the partner is back to work from leave, and you are the sole caretaker for however long, unless you have childcare full-time or a nanny right away, it can be challenging to get everyone’s needs met. Feeding time can be a particular time. If you are nursing or bottle feeding, it doesn’t matter. You have to sit down with a newborn. That takes quite some time. Oftentimes, that’s a time when your older child knows, “You’re parked and vulnerable. I’m going to come and get you both.” That’s what it feels like often.

It’s like when the mom gets on the phone, the whole house is quiet. There are 1 million memes about that.

A child doesn't want toys, they just want you. Being a parent is all about multitasking. Click To Tweet

During feeding time, something that you can do and prepare beforehand is to create a feeding time box of toys. Those are super special things that only during feeding time your kid can play with, and it’s stuff that they are dying to play with. You want to make sure that they’re exciting. Sometimes for feeding time, your child doesn’t want toys. They just want you.

Being a parent is so all about multitasking. Can you feed while reading a book to your older child? There’s a saying in the fourth trimester, “Oftentimes, if nothing else works, water or outside.” That also works for our toddlers. How can we switch it up to either put them in water or get everyone outside? If you’re feeding, you can’t go outside unless you’re baby-wearing and nursing, which is a learned skill.

It took until my second to master that one. I couldn’t quite get it with my first, but with my second, it was good. Maybe you can find a stool. I had done this before where it’s like, “Things are a little wild. Let’s get into the bath.” Run a bath. Your older child is able to be in a bath unassisted with you sitting there next to them, then put them in the bath. Don’t say, “Go get in the bath.” If you can sit on a little stool or something, have them in the bath. That can be a game changer for their state of mind.

If they’re not old enough to be in the bath, then maybe have a special snack and put them in a high chair. You can sit on a kitchen stool and feed them. It’s eating time for everyone. Feeding time can be particularly challenging. A baby doll is a great way to integrate them into the process. You have your baby and they have their baby. I have amazing pictures of my son babywearing. He has this little baby, Owly. Baby Owly is 4 inches tall. She is adorable.

When I would sit down and nurse Lily, he would also sit down a nurse baby Owly. We would have a nursing session together. It was cute. You can get a bottle for the baby. Babywearing can be great for both parents and older siblings. You don’t have to buy anything special. We used a muslin swaddle blanket and did a makeshift babywearing thing for baby Owly.

When I would wear Lily around the house, he would wear baby Owly around the house. It was sweet. Mirroring those things, changing the diaper, and mirroring those activities with their own baby can also be a helpful way to integrate them through parallel play. The connection with that depending on how much your child is into it can be made a way when the baby is still in utero. You can have them bond with that baby. My son birthed baby Owly. I don’t know how many times. He made it into his belly several times.

He’s going to be a good partner and dad someday.

If you didn’t babywearing with your first or you had a hard time with it, I highly recommend trying to master that. This time around, it’s helpful to babywear. Figure out which type you like. Some people swear by the wrap. Some people swear by the sling. Don’t buy if you can borrow because they can be expensive. You’re going to want to figure out what works best for you and the rhythm of your household.

For me, it was the stretchy wrap. I liked that. I felt like my baby was more inclined to be chilled out for long periods of time. When it was the wrap, as opposed to a structured carrier, I never mastered the sling. It wasn’t for me. Some people love the sling. When they get to the sling, they’re like, “I’m not using anything else. Sling or nothing.” Figure out what works for you to borrow or buy used.

Don’t give up. If you use one thing and it doesn’t work, it doesn’t mean that babywearing is not for you. It means that you probably need to try some other ones on and see what’s a good fit for you and your baby. There are many good resources. BabywearingLA is amazing.

Locally, BabywearingLA is fantastic. If you’re not familiar with them, please figure them out on all the social media things. They have a great schedule. They have got a library of 30 plus carriers that you can try out before you buy them.

WAF 6 | Preparing Your Child

Preparing Your Child: The most helpful thing to do for your older child is to include him as the big brother. And that goes into another conversation about labeling and roles and things. That’s what was the most helpful to create harmony in our household.

 

Laura Brown is a babywearing goddess. I’m going to have her on at some point. She’s amazing.

My last tip might not sit right with some and that’s okay because it doesn’t have to. It is screen time. This is a time not to villainize it. I don’t mean to sit your child with a tub full of goldfish crackers for eight hours at a time. I do mean that it can be a useful tool when a thing like the box of toys, bath, or whatever special things are not cutting it and if screen time is something that’s going to allow your child to sit and give you a break because that important. You need a break. Don’t villainize it. It is time to utilize it as a tool.

It’s a phase. You have a newborn. Even later in life, when you have young children, you have to do what you can. I remember early on asking my pediatrician if she was anti-pacifier, then she said, “I’m pro-survival.” That stuck with me. I was tandem nursing them exclusively. They were little when they were born. Dr. Wang was like, “You’re good.”

I’m like, “Are you sure we shouldn’t come back?” She’s like, “I’ll see you in six weeks.” I’m like, “I’m pretty sure we should come back sooner.” She’s like, “No, you got it.” She had so much confidence. They were fine. She was 100% right. It’s nice when someone’s giving you that reinforcement. Pro-survival is what I needed to hear. I needed permission to get through this.

Here’s the thing about that, because sometimes in classes, we talk about the pacifier. What we see as crutches or things that we’re going to have to break away from later on is that you don’t know who your child is. I had all this stress with my first about the pacifier. I’m thinking, “I’m going to pay thousands of dollars for pediatric orthodontists because his teeth are going to be so messed up.”

It doesn’t matter. I had one who sucked her finger. One who did it. They’re twins. They’re both getting braces.

I had all this stress about it. When the time came and I was like, “This is going to be the time. I’m done with the pacifier.” We call it the choopie in my house. I went to him and I was like, “You’re a big kid now.” I don’t even remember how old he was. I made it like a milestone thing where I was like, “That’s what we do when we’re big kids. No more choopie.” He was like, “Okay.”

That means he was ready.

We didn’t have to worry about it. I know that it’s challenging for some kids, too, but you’re going to have those challenges with other things. Just because you don’t have the pacifier challenge doesn’t mean you don’t have other challenges. It’s like a jack-in-the-box. These challenges come up when they come up and you deal with them when they come up. To anticipate them is more stress than it’s worth.

I call it Whac-A-Mole, like the game you play on the boardwalk. You’re smacking down whatever issue.

It’s a huge transition for your family, an even bigger one in the mind of your small person. Try to hold off on other transitions. If you know that you are going to try to have a baby and you feel like your kid is ready for a big transition, such as potty training, getting rid of the pacifier, moving into a big kid bed, or whatever it is, try to make that transition six months before. You have to wait until at least six months after. You can’t do all of it at once.

Figure out what works best for you and the rhythm of your household. Click To Tweet

That also puts stress on you because if you’re like, “The baby’s coming soon. We got to finish potty training and that,” they can feel that stress. Sometimes it doesn’t matter. Wait another six months. It will be fine.

I’ve heard parents where they’re like, “I’m not ready for my older child to be out of diapers. I have another baby in diapers. I don’t want to have to deal with that transition right now,” but they’re ready. What are you going to do? Take your child’s lead. Try not to force anything within six months on either end of that big transition.

One more thing and this doesn’t have to do with siblings weirdly, is don’t forget your partner during this time. It’s easy to be with the new baby, the older sibling, and then your partner gets the shadow big time sometimes. Remind each other what the end game is because it’s easier to see the end game when you’ve done it before. You’re not like in the war zone of the newborn of what can feel like the worst of the newborn time? Discuss expectation.

It’s nice to see a special bonding time. It is their time to shine in that sense.

Before you had your first baby, maybe you did a baby moon. Do that again. You don’t have to include your older child. If they’re comfortable with grandma or another caregiver, do that. Take time to be alone with your partner again because it’s about to get a little bit crazy. That’s okay. You’ve lived through it before. Take any alone time to discuss how you would like to see your family grow, why you’re doing this, and all the beauty and joy amidst the chaos that’s going to come of this.

Remind yourselves and each other. I say this with so much confidence, my husband was the one who would constantly remind me, “This isn’t going to be forever. This time is going to pass. We’re going to get through this,” especially when I was the one super sleep deprived. I would be in tears some mornings because I’m like, “Night was unbearable. My body forgot what it feels like to be that sleep-deprived.” He would be like, “I know this is hard, but you’re doing an amazing job. We’re going to get through this. We got through this once and we’ll get through this again.” Remind your partner and yourself that your partner is there for you.

We covered a lot. It was a good conversation. You gave a lot of good tips and perspectives to parents who are about to go through this transition. We have a lot of them in our community. Babies are coming. Seconds are coming. It’s nice to see so many families returning and your Second Time Parent & Me groups are growing every month and with every new series.

It is a special vibe with 2nd-time parents, like with 1st-time parents. I always start the session by saying, “We’re going to talk about your baby, but we’re also going to talk a lot about your older child because you can’t help it. It’s where you are.”

Every new phase is new for you. They are like, “We did teething. We need to talk about that.”

I remember one time, we spent all the time talking about the older child. In the last five minutes, I was like, “You might notice that. You might not.” We all laugh because it’s like, “We’ve done this before.” It is good to have reminders because sometimes, that first year is a haze for a lot of parents. It was for me my first time around.

Every baby is different. You may have tuned out to that part the first time you went through Parent & Me. The second time, because you’re like, “This doesn’t apply to my baby, but this time it may.” You never know.

WAF 6 | Preparing Your Child

Preparing Your Child: Screen time is a useful tool. When the special things are not cutting it and if screen time is something that’s going to allow your child to sit and give you a break, because that’s just as important, then do it. You need a break. Don’t villainize it right now because you can utilize it as a tool.

 

I want to leave you with one idea, which you have already like spelled out for the community. I’m going to put on my yoga woo-woo hat real quick. There’s this wonderful concept in the world of yoga and it’s called Abhyasa and Vairagya. In Sanskrit, Abhyasa means, efforts work, and persistence to put in the blood, sweat, and tears. Vairagya means without color. We translate that as detachment. The idea is that we move through life with this idea of we work, we do everything we can, we stay in the mindset that this is what we want to manifest, and then, whatever happens, we let go.

That second part is the harder part by far. I was introduced to this concept before kids. It was all about the physical work that we put in. In class, getting to a certain pose and where my teacher is saying, “We’re going for the handstand.” It’s not about the handstand. We let go, but it could not be a more appropriate time of life, more than parenthood because we do all of this work.

I think about my first child. He was breached and I ended up having a C-section. I was going to have this like YouTube home birth with an amazing soundtrack. I was going to have that moment and it didn’t happen that way. I did everything. I must have spent thousands of dollars trying to get him to turn, doing acupuncture, chiropractic, moxibustion, being upside down, and all these things.

Did you get frozen peas?

I did that. I tried to do light and nothing worked. I did all the effort, the work, and all the stuff that I wanted to do. Letting go was by far the hardest part. We practice letting go. We do all the things to set up for good sleep success. At the end of the day, you might have a baby that sleeps longer or shorter stretches. At the end of the day, you have to let go and say, “This time is fleeting. We’re going to get through it.”

Thank you for sharing. We’ve been ending all our shows with me asking our guests. Although we don’t like people to google, we are still going to talk about it. What did you google and what did you learn? I don’t know if you have anything off the top of your mind but share with us.

This is silly because I’m in the world of reminding other parents, “Your child is going to progress at their own rate.” I hear this all the time, “If you put popcorn in a popcorn maker, one kernel is going to pop first and one is going to pop less, but it doesn’t matter because they all become popcorn.” I’m not equating our babies to popcorn, but I remind myself that we’re all on different tracks. My daughter who is a wonderful, beautiful, bright little baby is not talking yet. She doesn’t have any words. I googled like, “What happens if my baby isn’t talking?” which is silly. She’s going to talk. It’s going to be fine.

She’s signing quite a bit, so I know that she’s open to communication. She is not ready. All the sounds are there. I was like, “Listen to your own advice,” and stuff like that. You want to talk to the doctor and make sure that everything is moving forward if there needs to be early intervention for things, and you want to, but I found myself going down that Google spiral the other day and sour myself. It’s okay. We all do it.

I appreciate you sharing that because we give lots of advice here, but it’s hard for even the people who are giving the advice. It’s vulnerable that you shared that because we are parents, too. We tell people, “Don’t compare your babies and all of the things you said are true.” It’s still hard not to worry because we just want them to be okay. That’s universal. Thank you so much. I had a good time. I love talking to you. I’m thankful to have you on our team. We’ll bring you back. We’ve got lots more to talk about.

Thank you for creating this space for the community and babies. We need it so more out there in the world, and you are a pioneer in that way. You should be proud of yourself.

I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. Take care. Have a good one.

You, too.

 

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