October 5, 2012 by greenhouse04
What would I do if I were a “normal” parent with 9 months to prepare for a baby?
I would re-read some baby books on feeding, sleeping, and other practical how-to’s… rather than taking a crash refresher course in one afternoon while the baby in question is staring at me.
I would have a crib set up and ready for baby… rather than buying said crib with the baby in the shopping cart and setting it up while baby cries on the floor.
I would have clothes for the baby nicely washed and folded in baby’s drawers… rather than scrounging some clothes together from tubs in the shed while baby wears the clothes she came in.
I would have formula all ready for baby (or maybe my own milk)… rather then buying some ready-made formula real quick while shopping for aforementioned crib so the hungry baby in the shopping cart can drink it.
I would have diapers and bottles and spit-up rags and toys and all that is needed for baby ready and waiting… rather than trying to find them as needed while baby is ready and waiting.
I would prepare my mind for another addition to the family, so that by the time baby comes I’m eager to meet her. I would prepare my childrens’ minds for a new sibling. Instead, I find myself scarcely believing there’s actually another child in the house, while my children either ask “where did this baby come from and will she go back home?” or simply show their displeasure by pinching, pushing, and throwing fits.
Ah, the joys of a 24-hour “pregnancy,” one of the realities of being a foster parent instead of a “normal” one.
How would my experience be different if my new baby were a newborn instead of a 9-month-old?
First of all, I suppose I would’ve been the one to name her.
I would know by now (two weeks later) how much she had weighed at birth, how long she had been, and all the other interesting details.
My arms would be less achy because I’d only be carrying around maybe 8 pounds of baby instead of 18.
I would establish the routine that baby would become accustomed to instead of trying to learn the established expectations of a 9-month-old.
Once again, these are the realities of foster parenting. Not many people get to experience a 24-hour pregnancy and a 9-month-old newborn!