I write this letter to future you. By the time you’re old enough to understand, you probably won’t even remember much of what life is like right this moment. You probably won’t remember the wonderful chaos of being a toddler and having a baby brother at the same time. You probably won’t remember the hard weeks (and months) of learning to share our attention and our affection. But I always will. Although these days are sometimes hard and long, I love watching you love your brother. You see Caroline, since before you were born, we prayed for you. We prayed that you would love people and be kind and be helpful. It wasn’t until your brother was born that I saw those prayers answered.
When we found out you were going to be a big sister, we were thrilled, but my heart ached a bit. I felt that I didn’t get enough time with you as our one and only. I felt that I would miss out on all of your toddler milestones when I would have a newborn to take care of again. I was worried you were going to be too little to understand when I couldn’t hold you because I had to feed the baby or didn’t want to play because I was exhausted. I was worried you weren’t ready to be a big sister to a new baby because you were still a baby yourself. I was anxious you would feel less loved if you weren’t the only child anymore.
Now that your brother is 6 months old, it’s hard to remember life without him. It’s hard to remember what is it was like before you were a big sister. Something that worried me so much has now become our normal. You are a big sister, and a great one! You are more helpful and loving that I ever imagined. I’m cherishing the small victories, like when you share a toy (even if it’s just for a few seconds!), when you help me by fetching a diaper, and when you comfort him when he’s crying.
Watching you grow from my only baby to big sister has been bittersweet. As I see you love your brother, my heart hurts at how quickly you’re growing up and how I can’t make it stop. But I know that if and when we are blessed with another little one, we’ll get to see all of this again, amplified—the kindness and the tantrums. You might not always remember these days and how you cried, “Hold you, hold you” over and over again when I couldn’t, and you might not ever remember how tired I was during this time. You might not remember when it was just you, your dad, and me, but I hope you’ll always be close to your brother because of that. You might not be the one getting the most attention right now, but you’ll always be the one that made me a mom, and I’ll always love you uniquely because of that.