Will did not watch tv until he was two years old, and then it was limited to half an hour of Curious George a day. His first movie in the theater was when he was almost four; it was Toy Story 3.
Emma has probably been aware of the tv since birth (although it is not on very much at our house), and it was always tuned to something too old for her, like Sponge Bob. She rarely paid attention, but has recently been demanding to watch "her" show, usually Dora. We took her to her first movie on New Year's Day--Will's pick--the excruciating Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked. It would never have occurred to me to take Will to a movie at this age (she's two and five months) and it certainly wouldn't have been that movie. She of course loved it.
We did everything for Will when he was two and a half. We dressed him, brushed his teeth, put on his shoes, zipped his coat, etc. Emma has been doing all of these things extremely competently for months.
Despite being a great runner and in general pretty great athlete, Will could not figure out how to pedal a tricycle until he was three and a half. Emma figured it out in an afternoon about 3 months ago, right after she turned two.
I could go on and on with examples like this. I was really worried when I had a second child that I would not have the time or energy to spend with them like I had with Will. How was the kid ever going to learn anything? I had no idea how important the sibling relationship would be. Emma has learned so much from watching Will. A lot of it is basic copying, and a lot of it is competition. She loves him wholeheartedly and blindingly, and she wants to do everything that he does. So she watches him and sees that he can do things that she can't, and then she figures out how to do them. It is really amazing to watch. I have no doubt that she will learn to read at a much younger age then he will (he's so close right now).
They are two peas in a pod and I am very grateful. Although they both have good friends, I think they are their favorite playmates and companions. They have totally different personalities and temperaments (Will: agreeable, easygoing and sweet--Emma: mercurial, bossy and the life of the party), but seem to get along famously. We moved them into the same bedroom in August and it has cured their sleeping issues. I asked Will the other day if he still liked sharing a room with Emma and he told me that he loved it and never wanted to be alone. She gets out of her bed at some point every night and curls up right next to him to sleep.
I love the dynamic of our little family. So it was somewhat of a shock to find out that I was pregnant again. It may be hard to believe that two people in their late 30s and early 40s can have an unexpected pregnancy after 15 years together, but I am here to tell you that it can happen. I found out for sure on my birthday in September, and it has taken me pretty much until now to process it.
I am due in mid-May. While I still spend a fair amount of time worrying about how adding another child will affect our family and our children, I am less worried about it than I was before Emma was born. I'm sure it will work out in ways that I can't even imagine now. The kids are excited and we are getting there. How it will affect our finances and my new job prospects is an entirely different post and a real reason to worry. But for now, I am secure in the knowledge that this baby will have two wonderful siblings to learn from and play with and love, and that is something precious.