I told our pediatrician today, "I'm a new mama all over again." She smiled and kindly said, "You know more than you think you do." Simultaneously, both are true.
I can't pretend that I know all the answers, but I know I have instincts. The more I think I know about something the less I really understand it. Keeping my beginner's mind open is the only way for me. Especially with a toddler and newborn.
The longer I am a parent, the more I trust my instincts and feel more confident, but I take every moment and day as new. There is no such thing as "always" with children. There is no "today will be like yesterday" or "this baby will be like the other". I've got to follow their lead and give into the flow of how things are, not how I want them to be. Of course, I have expectations and ideas but they have to go out the window if the moment calls for it. I'm consistent but flexible because I'd rather bend than break.
Z trusts that he can talk to me and tell me how he feels and what he wants. Bodhi is realizing that if he cries I will comfort him. No two feelings or cries are the same or require exactly the same response. Sometimes I have to read between the lines but I can when I pay attention.
I've got a newborn and a toddler and they grow and change every day. But we grow and change together. I promise to them that I will honor every request and cry as new and show them the love and respect they need. I'm their mama and they know they can trust me.