“The first child will always resent the second.” This was one of those great truths that I thought was written in stone, along with “The first child is always a difficult one” and “The first few months of a baby’s life are something to be endured rather than enjoyed.” I have found all of these things to be false, at least when it comes to my kids. Xavier (the first child) has been a pretty easy going kid so far, I absolutely loved the newborn stage of his life, sleep deprivation and all, and I’ve been soaking up these first few weeks with Quinn. And luckily, the dreaded jealousy that Xavier would show when Quinn came along never materialized. I snuck into his room and showered his sleeping self with kisses the night I went into labor with Quinn, worried that he would hate me forever when his father and I returned to the house with another baby. I held my breath when he came to visit in the hospital and during those first few days. And, most of all, I tried to show him how much I loved him at the same time I showed my excitement for this new addition to the family. We talked about all of the things he could help with and all of the modeling he could do for his baby brother.
To my surprise and relief, Xavier has embraced his new little brother with gusto. In fact, we sometimes have trouble explaining to him that Quinn can’t go everywhere with him. He loves showering his brother with hugs and kisses and looks admiringly at him, squealing with delight when the baby looks at him (“Eyes open!”). He is less bothered by his brother’s crying than his Mommy and Daddy, stating simply “Baby’s making noises” when Quinn is wailing at the top of his lungs. He can sleep through said wailing as if it were a lullaby.
So I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised when Jer picked up Xavier from a couple of nights with Grandma and Pop Pop while Mommy, Daddy, and Quinn attended a wedding in New Jersey, and nothing consoled him (not kisses from Mommy, hugs from Daddy, or even his coveted strawberries for dinner) but the chance to visit with his little brother, shower him with kisses, rock him in his seat, and, most importantly, snuggle up with him in a big chair and read him books.
I’ll endure his cold shoulder any day for the chance to see him glowing as he wraps his arm around his little brother.