Monday, August 2, 2010

A Chance to be Brave

I'm reminded almost everyday of the things my daughter didn't get simply because she was the second child. I try not feel guilty about it, her experiences have not been wrong, or harmful, they were different. She is different. Our circumstances and life were/are different.

One of those areas she is lacking, is what my husband refers to as "being brave".

As a first child you have lots of opportunities to be brave. When mommy leaves the room, when your left alone with a babysitter, when daddy takes you out without mommy. As a second child there are fewer of those opportunities. When mommy leaves the room your brother is there to hand you the toy. When mommy leaves you with a sitter your brother says it's okay, she'll be back soon. You always have someone there to sing to you in the dark or hold your hand when you enter a new place. Someone to make you feel safe and comfortable when you need a little extra boost.

My son is good at being brave for himself and his sister.

Today she gets a chance to be brave herself. Today she is starting VBS. It's her first drop off class. She has been doing gymnastics for a year now and while mommy isn't in class with her anymore I walk her in, I sit right outside the window and she can see me, come to me if needed. Today she will be dropped off. Left with a teacher and hopefully will have a great time. Mommy will still be there, I'm working in the kitchen. Her brother will be there too in another group. It's being held at the school she will start at in the fall. It's a familiar place with some familiar faces, I'm hoping it will help her be brave.

I know she is ready for this, this next step of growing up. I just need to convince her that she is brave, she hasn't had much practice at it.


Alexandra said...

Oh, what can I say. The first thing I think of is the club of motherhood is fraught with guilt. I felt the same way when we went from one child to two. Then, with two to three, I think how he gets even less with me. But,then, I think... they get each other...

It balances out. But I hear what you're saying.

Unknown said...

Aww, good luck!! I understand how you feel- I'm not quite ready for my 18 month old to be brave as of yet, although I'm thinking that won't be much of an issue when the time comes with her personality! However, I understand completely, it's so different with the second child. Good luck today to both of you!

Kelly said...

Good luck. I know exactly what you mean about the 2nd child. Same here my younger one starts preschool this fall. I know she will have to be brave too.

Corinne Cunningham said...

It's so funny - Paige is way braver than Fynn :) I think with second children it can go either way, you know?
How exciting though! Hope she does wonderfully today!!

Jill said...

Whether it's about being brave or something else, it is amazing how much different the experience of being a second child is. I often think that about my two-year-old...he's never known life without his big brother. I wonder how that changes things for him. I was surprised when he recently said he was going to visit our relatives in the next state, "without you mom and without brother." I didn't know he could think about life without brother!

Missy@Wonder, Friend said...

Sweet post! My little guy is more adventurous and tougher than his older brother in some ways, but he is NOT brave when it comes to being left! On the first day of preschool, my oldest waved and said, "Bye, bye, Mommy!" But when I left my youngest at VBS this summer, it was waterworks all over the place.

It's so fun, though, to see how they differ - their own strengths and weaknesses. Such a gift to see them come into their own (even though some of those moments mean big fears, big tears).

Jamie said...

Good luck to her