I used to think that happy babies were nothing more than urban legend.
My first two kids weren’t colicky screamers, but they were somewhat high maintenence babies. They needed lots of jostling and rocking and soothing and bouncing and they didn’t fare well with traveling or change or transitions. I just thought that was how kids were and if any Pollyannas out there started gushing about their happy, easy babies I had to fight the urge to knee them in their groins (the Pollyannas’ groins, not their innocent, happy babies’ groins.)
But then Brinley came along and now I think I need to knee myself in the groin. She is just the sweetest, happiest little baby I have ever met. She rarely cries, she’s even-tempered and just so darn pleased to be here. After our first two girls were so demanding (well, they’re STILL demanding) I am so thankful for a jofyul, bubbling baby and I don’t take her personality for granted (nor do I think her sweet nature is a result of my superior parenting). If anything, it’s been very freeing to realize that we, as parents, get no say in the innate personalities of our children. Some kids are happy bundles of sweetness, some kids are kind of little jerks. It`s our job to mold and shape their personalities, but I know now that having a “hard” kid isn`t their parents’ fault.
Did you see distinct personality differences between your children? In the Nature vs. Nurture debate, which side do you see yourself identifying with more?