Stuck in the Middle With You (and You)

I like to sit in the middle of the back seat so I don’t get car sick, I love the middle of each week because it’s my husband’s day off, and I have a soft spot for middle children. I was the first born but a few years later became the middle child when my younger brother was born and my older sister joined our family. My voyage to “middledom” wasn’t normal so I don’t feel qualified to issue a lot of complaints. It worked out pretty well for me.

Now I am the mother of three. I have a middle child…a real doozy of a middle child. Her name is Lily, like the flower. She always tell people that right off the bat. We found out about Lily not long after Riley celebrated her first birthday so our first two daughters are 21 months apart in age. When I was 41 weeks pregnant with Lily (yes, you read that right. She had zero interest in leaving my uterus) I was induced and we welcomed a sick, slightly blue baby into the world. I was scared to death and so was Stephen. Lily had pneumonia and the umbilical chord was wrapped around her neck. For sixteen hours I couldn’t touch her. Thankfully, her condition improved quickly and after five days in the hospital, we came home. We were lucky, very lucky. I remember saying to my mom, “If her entrance was this dramatic, I think we might be in trouble.”

Lily walked early, talked early, and lost teeth early. She seemed to be in a hurry to reach the “next” milestone. She adores her sisters and we can always count on her to keep things interesting around here. Lily understands things we think she couldn’t and talks about things she shouldn’t. For example, someone at school recently held up their middle finger and got into big trouble. Lily said, “Mom why is that bad?” Me, “Well, sometimes people will use that finger as a rude gesture.” The rest of the night Lily walked around using her middle finger to point things out and assured me that she was NEVER being rude. We had to have a bit more serious talk.

I think being the middle child is a challenge at times for Lily. She has an older, more dominant sister and a younger sister who requires more of my attention my right now. The benefit though is that she is great at entertaining herself and the little things in life bring her the most joy. One year for her birthday I told her to pick any restaurant for her celebration dinner. Her response: “Let’s all go to McDonald’s and eat inside!”  

 She doesn’t know that she has the “hard” position in terms of birth order. So do me a favor… please don’t tell her.

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