Thursday, September 20, 2012


When John was an only child, I would often, to my shock and awe, see babies zonked out in the unlikeliest of places- on their parent's shoulder at a loud party, in the swing at the park, on the floor of a raucous nursery.

John is a good sleeper, but after he emerged from his newborn stupor he wouldn't fall asleep out and about.  Never while being held. He rarely even fell asleep in the car unless it was close to his nap time.

Then it hit me. I was witnessing  another symptom of "subsequent syndrome." These children were "subsequents"- second, third, fourth children.

Subsequents don't get all their naps for one reason or another. They're on the go more and they have to deal with noisy siblings in the house when they do get to sleep. It's a trade off.  Firsts are well rested, subsequents less so, but they develop a valuable skill: they can sleep through the main act of a three-ring circus. Frankly, I wish I could do that.

Here's my favorite subsequent who missed her morning nap due to a melee of  marauding toddler boys ransacking our house this morning. Thankfully no one was injured.

Sleeping in the bouncer

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