I have never put too much confidence in birth order discussions. I find them fascinating to think about in theory, but I hate the idea of labeling my children in restrictive categories before they’ve even started school. I have enough trouble coming to hasty conclusions as far as my children are concerned.
I’ve heard about middle children getting lost between more articulate older siblings and more demanding infant siblings, but I’m still surprised at how easy it is to neglect developing a relationship with my middle child. I’m much more aware of my tendency than I used to be and now I’ve been trying to remedy it. I’m learning, though, that it’s hard work. Potty training has actually been a good opportunity to drop everything and focus on her. Chatting with her lengthens the time she’s happy to stay on the potty, so it’s been a good exercise for me.
Yesterday we were out on a hike, and Bethel and I lagged behind, making castles with sticks and rocks. This was far preferable than tripping over rocks into the mesquite and creosote. I can tell by my awkwardness that I need more practice playing like this.
Part of the problem is that when she is happy and busy, it’s a great time to get work done for me (or sit at the computer). Bottom line: I’m being selfish when I neglect her needs for my comfort. I see the need right now to deny myself and play with her. If I can get her talking now, then hopefully I can keep her talking as she grows up.