Brother and Sister

Dear Livia,

It took hours and hours of effort, but I finally got our pictures of Marshall in order and put them into a photo album. I also made an album for you, but there weren’t a lot of photos to go in it. That made me wonder, have we taken fewer pictures of you than we did of your brother?


Sorry, Sweetie, but that’s just the way it goes. We have less time for picture-taking now than we did then. You may as well get used to second-hand stuff, too. You’re sleeping in Marshall’s old cradle, riding in his old car seat, relaxing in his old bouncy seat. A lot of your washcloths, towels, blankets, and onesies were his. I hope you like trucks, blocks, and trains, because you’re going to get his old toys. Over the next couple of years, you’re also going to wear a lot of boyish pajamas. And boyish shoes. Just accept it now.

But don’t for a second believe that we love you any less, and never resent that he was first. If anything, you’ve gained by being second. Marshall taught me how to take care of a baby, so by the time you were born, I was prepared. I knew how to handle you. I wasn’t overwhelmed, freaking out, or run ragged. When you came home from the hospital, you were jaundiced and losing weight, just like Marshall had been, but this time I knew what to do. I started supplementing with formula right away. You never had to go hungry, and we never had to stay up all night with you screaming. I was able to enjoy you in a way I didn’t get to do with Marshall.

And you also have the love of a big brother, and you will learn a lot from him. I hope the two of you will always be close. You can be companions and protectors of one another, and have tons of fun together. Yeah. Don’t you know what they call it when brother and sister get along really well? Sibling revelry!



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