I decided to write this post since a number of my friends are having their second baby, and have asked me what I did to “prepare” Hudson for his little sister’s arrival. Many people don’t do anything different or ‘prep’ their other kids before welcoming a sibling, and that is totally fine. However, I was terrified of Hudson feeling neglected or jealous once he became a big brother, so I did a number of things to try and make the transition a little bit easier. I think because I grew up as an only child the idea of having a new sibling brought into the home was totally foreign to me. (maybe I was a bit scared for both of us!)
When I (finally) became pregnant with Mila, Hudson was almost 5 years old. So he had a pretty good run on his own. However, he had been asking for a baby brother or sister for awhile, so I knew he would be be happy… at least at first.
When we told him I was pregnant we gave him a little book called, “I’m a Big Brother.” I took a picture of him holding the book and that is how I made my social media pregnancy ‘announcement.’ He would ask to read it almost every night and I thought it was a good book since it talked about the baby needing lots of attention… and the benefits of being older. (“Babies can’t have pizza and ice cream, but I can!”)
|He looks so little here!!|
About two months before my due date, I took Hudson to build-a-bear and asked him to make one for his baby sister. I knew going into the store that I was only going to get the gift for the baby… NOTHING for him. I wanted to prep him for the fact that not everything would be his anymore. Once we got there he starting asking for every single bear. But I would just say, “Sorry bud, we are here to get a gift for your sister so she can remember how excited you were to meet her.” Finally, he selected a Hello Kitty bear and went through the process of cleaning it, talking to the little heart that they stuff inside and creating the birth certificate. In the end, he was a little bummed that he didn’t get a toy, but he was excited to have a gift for his sister that he selected all by himself.
|Doing his best “Hello Kitty” wink!|
Donnie’s mom watched Hudson while we were in the hospital, so when she brought him later that afternoon, Mila was sleeping. This allowed my husband and I to focus on Hudson and ask him all the fun things he did at his sleepover at Grandma & Papa’s. He was excited to see us, but quickly turned his attention to his sister. He was a bit pensive at first, but was super excited when I asked him if he wanted to hold her.
|First picture together!! Mila was just a few hours old!|
I also brought to the hospital a small gift for him that was from his sister. It was a toy I knew he had been wanting and it had a lot of little pieces and busy things for him to do… to keep him from getting bored while he was at the hospital. (since… let’s face it… the sister thing got old in about 5 minutes) I told him that I went shopping and told his sister to “Kick twice,” when we walked by something he would like. He was so surprised that she knew exactly what he had been asking for.
When guests came to visit, I discreetly asked them to acknowledge Husdon first before going right to the baby. So when people arrived, they would all ask him a few questions… how is school or how does he like being a big brother.. stuff like that. He would chat it up for a bit and go off to play, then we would all gush over the baby.
|He was a great big brother from the start!|
Most of these things I did to ease my OWN fears of how he would feel about having a little sister, after being our old child for 5 years. I will say, it was a very easy transition… I have never seen any major signs of jealousy from him towards his sister. And he still likes to remind her how he made her that Hello Kitty doll.
|My two cuties!!|