My buddy and me...

May 30, 2013

Chris and I were having a conversation via gchat (because that is how we have most of our "serious" conversations these days...yep marriage at its finest) and he was expressing how he is having a hard time with Scarlett's lack of affection toward him.  And it is true, she needs me.  She needs me to fix her boo-boo's, she needs me to put her to bed, she needs me to make her dinner, she needs me to read her books, she needs me to hold her tight.  99% of the time she asks for me.

I realized the truth in his statement, and thought of a couple of things.  1) I am her comfort.  I rocked her to bed every night.  She was my baby and I had nothing but time to sit and watch her grow.  2) I fed her.  I was her only source of nutrition for the first 6 months of her life.  We bonded more in the wee hours of her first six months than I will with her for the rest of her life.  3) I spend two full days more with her than Chris does.  Quality time is her love language.  4) I am unfortunately more lax in my parenting than Chris.

On these last two points Chris and I decided something must be done.  We have to create space for the two of them to "bond" on the same level that Scarlett and I naturally do.  Daddy/daughter dates and late night story telling in a homemade fort is a must this summer.  But, with all that said the two of them have a bond that I never will.  He can make her laugh.  Like deep belly laughs.  When Scarlett is a hormonal teen and she no longer needs me to rub her back to fall asleep, she will still need her dad to tell her a joke or teach her to drive.   Two areas that I fear I am and will be no good.  Right now I have Scarlett, she is a mini me.  We can cuddle and love all day long and her "pretty please with a cherry on top" will always get her an extra jelly bean after dinner.  But my mini me also knows how to push my buttons, and I fear that a "hug it out" session just wont work with a troubled teen, but a dad who actually knows how to listen and give legitimate advice will always come in handy.  For now I will try to meet Chris in our parenting strategies, knowing fair well that his strategy is the one that will get us through the next 15 years alive.  

My relationship with Dominic is the complete opposite. Where Scarlett is my shadow, Dominic is my sidekick.  He is relaxed ALL of the time.  The ONLY time you will hear him cry is if he has tipped over and hit his head on the floor unexpectedly or he is hungry.  He puts himself to sleep.  He is self sufficient and can lay or sit surrounded by toys for a good hour before getting antsy. Getting him to smile is easy but getting him to laugh takes work.

Sadly, I have yet to create the same bond with Dominic that I had with Scarlett from day one. Those midnight hours that I would look down sweetly at Scarlett, spending an extra hour with her laying on my chest, are unfortunately lost with Dominic.  I am too tired to sit for a hour in the middle of the night, soaking in the smell of newborn baby and warm milk.  But there is a bond with Dominic that is different.  Dominic is just Dominic.  He is not complicated or needy.  He just is.  He makes me smile just by being him. He is my little boy, my sweet even tempered little boy.  Every day I am thankful for his calm demeanor and the light that he adds to this family.  I am truly blessed by him and thank God daily for my little buddy. 

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