The last thing most toddlers want is a new sibling to share the spotlight with. Those last days and moments leading up to the birth of a second child can be incredibly bittersweet for families as they help the firstborn prepare for the new arrival. (I know those were very, very hard days for our family. Oof.)
And that transition from only child to big sibling is rarely documented in photos.
So I can't help but feel a little weepy about a recent viral photograph of one mom hugging her firstborn tight just before giving birth to her second. The picture is both gorgeous and heartbreaking. One look and it's clear that life is about to change for this mother and daughter forever. (Keep the tissues coming, please.)
The image was shot by birth photographer Laura Paulescu of Portland-based Crowned Photography, who shared the picture on her Facebook page.
So what can we do to make the transition easier for kids who are suddenly going to have share Mom with a sticky, squalling, smelly infant? Love, love and more love. And hugs. There are never enough hugs, right? (Yes, another tissue, please. Thank you.)
As for us, eventually we convinced our toddler to stop bending her newborn sister's fingers backward when we weren't looking.
I wish I had a beautiful photograph like this, though, to show her now at 16. What a lucky big sister the little girl in this photo is, to have proof that she was never far from her mom's thoughts — and her mom's arms.