The Second Baby Strikes Back

The Blueberry is not even three weeks old, and yet I’m already stunned at how differently I’m experiencing her infancy.

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Vikings are tough.

Once last week, Blue slept in a sling against my body while I balanced on a swivel chair to change a light bulb. Remember that “I think I’m going to break the baby” feeling? Totally gone. 

I vaguely recall picking up the newborn Boobaby from her bassinet, not quite certain whether I mightn’t accidentally stick my thumb through her fontanel. 

Oh, and I remember taking upwards of ten minutes to diaper Boo, since I was waiting until her crooked monkey legs slowed their robotic kick-flex-kick pattern long enough for me to apply the tapes. I didn’t want to hold her down — how brutal! 

Changing Blueberry’s diaper takes me under a minute and resembles a rodeo event.

At our first meeting with Boobaby’s pediatrician, I had a typed list of questions, mostly stemming from Google searches I’d been doing on terms like “gigantism in babies.”

And at Blueberry’s appointment? My only question for the doctor was “Will it be an innie or an outie?”

Some things haven’t changed in three years, though. Whenever anything even moderately dangerous crops up nearby — someone is using scissors ten feet away, say, or opens the oven door in the next room — an involuntary protective urge still rises in my throat. I taste adrenaline and involuntarily picture myself casting both arms over the baby and shooting hateful looks at the scissors-wielding cookie-baking offender.

So I’ve gained self-confidence — to a fault, probably, I realized while deciding not to carry Blueberry while changing light bulbs any more. But my innate need to protect Blue from the rest of the world — that’s not as easily shed.