Monday, February 17, 2014

{Home Video}: "You're a horse not a dog"

This is one of my most favorite videos that I am sharing today.  I replay it often.  Well, I replay all of them quite regularly.  But, this one especially touches my Mama heart in certain ways, for specific reasons.  In this simple and fun video of us, as a family at home on a typical night, I am reminded of the kind of sister that Vienne was to Ivy.  When I had the two of them both safely in my arms, in my life, it was all normal to me…it was all that I knew.  Now that I see how young siblings often are with each other am I reminded of Vienne's extraordinary selfless-loving heart.  We all know that it is typically difficult for a firstborn child to acclimate to the addition of a second child, a new sibling.  It is normal and nothing is wrong with the reactions that occur.  They are used to being the only child, with Mom and Dad's attention solely on them for all this time.  Now this little Baby comes into the picture and steals all of that attention and care.  And, this Baby makes noise and messes and pulls hair, grabs shirts and toys, and slobbers on everything.  Who wouldn't be annoyed, right??


Vienne was NEVER once annoyed with her little sister.  She was up early in the wee hours with me as I labored and brought her sister in the world.  She was of the very select few to clap and laugh with joy when Ivy was brought up out of the water of the birthing tub.  She sat by my side during my first nursing feeds with Ivy.  She was the 3rd person to hold Ivy after Ivy was born.  And, she never left our side in our care for her little Sister.  I even remember that first time that Vienne got to hold Ivy…she was sitting in the rocking chair, in her blue jammies, and holding her brand new baby sister fresh from the womb, full of wonderment and awe.  The pictures we have are priceless.  And, among those precious photos is Ivy's first grab of Vienne's hair.  What is Vienne doing?  What was her reaction?  She smiled and leaned her head forward toward her sister, with the pull…she drew towards her baby sister, rather than yanking away.  Always.

And, that is also what you see in this video.  Mark is holding 4-5 month old Ivy who is riding on Vienne's back.  Vienne is playing "horsey" - one of her recent favorite imagination "roles" to play.  And, all through the "ride" Ivy is unintentionally yet instinctively grabbing Vienne's hair.  I have witnessed little siblings grabbing at older sibling's hair….and almost EVERY time there is an anger/annoyance reaction from the older sibling.  But, you see here how Vienne just went with it.  If you listen carefully, you will hear her pause and say "ow" very quietly….but that's it.  No whining, no anger, no "tattling".  By the end of the ride, you will see Mark pulling a handful of hair from Ivy's tight grasp.  Wow.

It's a simple video.  But I see so much of Vienne's character in it and it makes me well with tears just dwelling on it.  This is how she was ALWAYS.  When Ivy cried, Vienne never got annoyed that it was louder than her movie…or that it was annoying or whatever…she would run to Ivy's side and sing her a song (usually the ABCs).  She NEVER displayed behavioral challenges immediately following Ivy's birth.  She never balked when I had to leave her alone to put Ivy down for a nap or to nurse her.  Of course, I even look back on those first few months as a new mother to two (which is soo challenging to acclimate to!) and I often wonder if I could've done a better job of giving Vienne more attention.  I'm sure all new mothers to two children wonder this.  But I think back especially to how patient and seemingly  understanding Vienne was and I regret.  She deserved more from me….she was so sweet and compliant…but all I ever demanded was that she be even more quiet.  Foolish.

I have said it before.  Vienne is perfection in my eyes.  I want to be like her.

I am so so so far from it.

Here is Ivy's Big Sister playing horsey with her…..

(Oh and don't you love my commentary?!!  geesh, I am so snippy and bossy sometimes…."You're a horse, not a dog".  What???  Yeah, sometimes I hate listening to myself on these videos.  Oh well, just laugh at me!  But, Vienne is still so obedient…she stops bucking her head back when I remind her to watch her head…even if I am a ruiner of the fun!
But, on another note…..I am also reminded of how this was the first time we heard Ivy belly laugh like this!  She was SO IN LOVE with her Big Sister.  Her belly laughs in this video are THE BEST.  )

I miss the complete Family that I was once blessed with.  This dream-come-true that filled 8 short months of my life….8 months of two beautiful little girls, completing our family.