New family addition carries reminder
As if life couldn't get any busier or more interesting for us, our daughter and her husband added a new baby to the fold last week! I realized that I worried about the workload our daughter carried, as well as managing her pregnancy, an almost 2-year-old son, and of course, her own health. And this is not to mention the health of the baby she was carrying. Let me tell you, the birth relieved more stress and worry than I knew I had.
We received a call about 12:30 a.m. one morning two weeks ago to tell us they were on their way to the hospital. I got up and kept our daughter, her husband, their son at home with his other grandma and their new baby in mind, waiting for a phone call to tell us all was well. Everything went smoothly and a beautiful baby girl was born in the next day. She is healthy, sweet and loved by all. The questions we asked ourselves were would we love her like we do her older brother? Will there be enough time and energy to help meet all the needs of this growing family in an era of dual-income families? How will my husband's and my roles change as their family grows through new and different stages?
These questions, as well as all the other busyness in our own lives, circulate in our minds as we calculate what this means for us. And actually, it all became so simple and understandable when we were invited to their house for dinner on the weekend, a couple of days after they arrived home. They said please come and be with us. Be proud of us and encourage us. Love us and surround us with the love and affection you feel for each other and help us understand what a family is made of and how to express that to our children.
So as we add one more member to our growing family, we see that it is not the "stuff" we bring to their house, although that is fun and appreciated. It's not the gift cards and dinner certificates, although those are essential and welcomed on a busy night. What is truly at the core of family is just sitting and holding a new baby and playing Legos with her brother on the floor beside her.
Figuring out our new role will be about how to support them and just be ourselves. As we do so, we will convey to them how to be a family, how to invite and include everyone to feel welcomed and to remember to enjoy every moment with their beautiful family.
Soucheray is a Woodbury resident and a licensed family therapist