With my belly finally showing, I remember talking to a much younger Liana so that she could understand a little bit more what was happening. I told her that mommy had a special gift in her tummy, that inside, her baby brother was getting ready to come out and play with her. She looked at me with her bright eyes flashing, a huge smile, and simply said, “baby!” At least she got the gist of it, and I took that as a sign that she’d be ok.
My mommy friends and I have talked about this, and I know that some don’t have the same experience preparing and introducing the idea of a sibling to your child. Here’s a list of techniques that I, together with other moms, used to help ease and prepare ate/kuya for the coming of his/her sibling.
1. Involve your child as much as possible.
Nicole Hernandez shares that she prepared Alonzo by letting him practice to care for a baby. “We used a stuffed monkey, haha! We practiced how to change nappies and bottle feed. It made the transition easier, and when Luis came, these things we practiced were not new to him anymore and he didn’t feel left out.”
2. Prepare a gift to be given by the newborn sibling the day you give birth.
I actually gave birth a few days earlier than I expected, so I had to pack all our bags while I was contracting (please do not follow me!) but I had Liana’s gift ready months before. I gave her a Doc McStuffins costume because she loves Doc so much and she loves playing doctor. I also said that the gift was given by Juano and that he needs his ate to take care of him always. She wore it as soon as Juano was brought to our hospital room!
3. Ease it in by introducing it through fun and informative ways.
“I showed Fin lots of picture books with babies to get him excited,” Cat Juan Ledesma shares.
While it’s always an exciting time to have a newborn on the way, we moms can never forget about our other kids. Whether it’s practicing how to take care of a baby or giving a gift, the one thing we’ll always have to do is remind our children that regardless of the new baby, we will always love them.