Written October 22nd, 2010
Until this morning, I thought the hardest thing about having two little children was getting out the door.
We did that part (mostly) successfully, however, bundling up against the cold and putting Caitlyn in a sling and Mackenzie in a stroller. We walked the two miles to the hospital to fetch our car, crossed the railroad tracks and met Scott in the parking lot so he could swipe us out of the gate. I had forgotten my car keys (details, details) but I grabbed Scott’s set and we drove off to the park for playgroup, the 2nd best part of Mackenzie’s week.
Her first love is nursery at church but from Monday morning on, she asks about playgroup. By the time Friday rolls around and it’s time for the event, she’s bursting with anticipation.
So this morning we cruised to the park and arrived 10 minutes late, which is not bad these days. But Caitlyn was hungry and it was still cold out so I decided to feed her in the car.
I sat her up after she finished and she pulled a Mt. Vesuvius all over herself, all over me, and all over the car. We were just drenched in milk because she unloaded an entire feeding. She quickly transitioned to hungry and cold and miserable. As I am surveyed the damage and realized it was irrecoverable, Mackenzie was still waiting patiently in her car seat.
I turned around and tell my two year old, while I was mopping up the mess as best as I could, that we could not go to playgroup because her little sister just threw up all over. Mackenzie’s chin quivered and tears started to roll down her cheeks. I buckled Caitlyn in her car seat to the sound of heart-wrenching sobs.
This was no fit or tantrum, Mackenzie’s heart was truly sad at the news and I felt terrible for her. She missed out on something she loves because of her baby sister. For a firstborn child to suddenly have someone else sharing the spotlight and adding wrenches to the gears is tough.
We had a good cry together on the drive home about how we were “so close” to getting to go to playgroup.
Edited and published November, 2012:
That day was the first of many experiences where Mackenzie’s desires have been compromised or trumped entirely because she has a sibling. I can say now that these sacrifices have been so beneficial in honing her character. She has a sweet relationship with her little sister (and now, brother) and she’s learning how love and sacrifice go hand in hand.