Sometime over a year ago (before we were parents!) we were visiting some friends we knew from college. At the time our friend was about 8 weeks pregnant which she had just shared with us and had terrible morning sickness. She was laying on the couch fighting a bout of nausea while her other kid was running around giggling without his shirt on. Little J wanted to go outside but he was not allowed to go out until he put his shirt on, which he refused to do himself! Since our friend was sick on the couch, she asked us to help out a little by getting the kids shirt on so he could go outside to play.
So, my husband and I chased down the toddler, held him still and attempted to pull on his shirt. He screamed and wiggled and eventually escaped our grip and continued running around the kitchen. Our friend yelled from the couch “Just yank it on! You’re not going to hurt him!” We hesitated. Although he was screaming, running at full force and kicking just as hard we both were nervous that by pulling on his shirt over his head would somehow hurt him!
Maybe because it wasn’t our kid, or maybe because we were just so inexperienced, but he just seemed so breakable! In the moment, our friend told us “kids are tougher than you think!” but I remember being so worried that I was going to somehow do something to hurt him, just by pulling his shirt on over his head!
Fast forward to now… when we first had Carter he was so tiny and he seemed so fragile! I remember handling him sooooo carefully, worrying that I was going to poke his “soft spot” on his head or break his finger or some other body part. That is, under he grabbed my hair for the first time and I realized how strong that little guy actually is! When he grabs a hold of something it’s a real grab, not some wimpy little baby hold like you might think.
I wonder if other people feel this way? When you have to twist your baby’s arm around to get it into the sleeve hole or bend his leg to put it into the pants of a sleep & play. Or when he grabs something he shouldn’t and you have to pry those little fingers off. These things used to scare me so much, but as time goes on I realize that he might just be a little less “breakable” than I thought, as my friend told us her baby was! I am still nervous about “breaking” him, though not as much as I used to be!
What about you? Do your or did you ever have moments of thinking you were going to “break” your baby?