Sometimes, since having my second daughter, I wonder about some things. Y'see, my eldest daughter has inherited a whoooole lot of my problems. She has my sleep problems, she has skin problems (eczema, extreme dry skin, still gets cradle cap-- if it lasts much longer it's just going to be seborrheic dermatitis, like mine, has a skin reaction to ZINC, which means we can't put diaper cream or some kinds of sunscreen on her, etc.), and she seems to have my sensory processing and integration issues as well (not bad enough to require OT, but bad enough to need accommodation now and then.) She has the IBS bowel patterns that I, too, have exhibited since I was an infant. These things were all, looking back, apparent from day 1.
My second daughter has none of these. None. El zippo. She has yet to react to anything on her skin, including all the weird stuff her big sister puts on her, despite being fairer in coloration than her sister (for the most part) and can use regular baby shampoo instead of her dad's dandruff shampoo. She poops on schedule. She plays happily with age-appropriate toys instead of going into a screaming fit of avoidance or exhibiting extreme caution like her sister did at this age, and seems to relish patterns and textures like a normal 5-month-old. Most of all, you put her down in her crib and she lays her head down, sticks her thumb in her mouth, and goes to sleep. Egad! How do she and her father do it?
Of course, I love both my kids to death, and I love them equally, if sometimes in different ways. But I do worry about the teenage years with the first because she is so much like me. Not to borrow trouble, of course, I don't obsess about it. But the thought comes up occasionally.
As I'm thinking about all these things, I begin to wonder. Are they all related somehow? What about my other problems, such as the joint and ligament stuff that also runs in my family in one form or another? Will she have them as she gets older? These things all run in my family, are we exhibiting some strange syndrome that will someday be named after us? If I have one child with these problems and one without, do each of my kids have a 50% chance of getting my problems, or is it somewhat less? Will they all go together in each child affected? (No, we're not done, we've both always known we are going to have a lot of kids-- at least 6 or 7, maybe more.) Or will they be a la carte? (I suppose that would put my syndrome worry to rest, no pun intended.)
I know I shouldn't worry and just deal with it as it comes. "Sufficient unto the day is the trouble thereof." But sometimes, these patterns scare me. I don't regret bringing children into this world; I survived my childhood, and my family situation was a lot worse than theirs is ever going to be (can we say 20-year custody battle? Parents screaming threats in public? Emotional manipulation?) But I just feel bad that my daughter has to go through these problems that I've had to go through, and some of which I'm still going through. *sigh*
Being a mommy is hard.