It was nine months ago - almost to the day - that Bean fell asleep on his own for the first time in his life (no exaggeration).
Currently, he takes a nap each afternoon. And not only does he go to sleep on his own, but he refuses to let me snuggle him to sleep on the very rare occasion I am not needing to snuggle, walk, change, nurse, or otherwise entertain Squeak. At night, he sleeps either snuggling with The Beast or alone in the living room (the nighttime sleep arrangement and our current sleep schedules are a whole other post...).
Lately, I find myself missing snuggling my firstborn. Even though I have probably spent the equivalent of months of my life snuggling him (and often awake doing it in the middle of the night while he was restless!) and even though I am snuggling Squeak all night every night, I miss snuggling Bean.
Bean and I butt heads with our passionate and stubborn natures. It's a brilliant and beautiful thing to be so like your child that you can understand them and guide them and empathize with them in their toughest moments, and also difficult to deal with someone who is stubborn when you yourself need constant reminding to give. it. up. and let it go. And so I've been wanting to snuggle and reconnect in a peaceful way, even attempting one night to have The Beast put Squeak to bed while I snuggled Bean for the first part of the night. Both kids revolted!
Bean demands I snuggle him after we read a book at naptime. About 10 seconds later he says, completely matter-of-factly, "leave." I often have to leave anyway because Squeak is fussing or shrieking in delight (not conducive to Bean napping) or starting to destroy (or eat) something from the floor of Bean's room. But even when it's not necessary Bean tells me to leave. Rarely he will request that I come back after putting Squeak down (and, truth be told, I never do because I usually have stuff I need to get done while everyone is sleeping).
Today the stars seemed to align. Squeak was napping alone, I didn't have anything pressing to get done, and Bean was asleep. Or so I thought. I opened his door and he immediately poked his head out of his comforter cocoon and asked, "what?"
I told him, "I thought I'd snuggle you."
"No," he said firmly.
Ouch. So much for reconnecting in peace this afternoon!
We have a conversation often that always goes like this:
Me: "I love you, Baby Bean."
Bean: "I'm not a baby! I'm big now!"
Me: "It's true. You are not a baby. But you're my baby."
Bean: "Noooo! I'm not a baby!"
Me: "You will never be a baby again, but you will always be my baby."
Bean: ::blank stare::
I hope someday he will at least humor me. It looks like, in the long run, I am going to be the one pestering the other for snuggles! He will never be that demanding-of-snuggles baby again...but he will always be my baby who I need to snuggle!
Ah! How those tables do turn...