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Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Interacting With Other Kids

Josie - age 16 months
When Josie was about 10 months, until she was about 17 months, we attended play group regularly.  Josie really seemed to enjoy it, she didn't really "play" with other kids, but that was normal for her age.  She enjoyed being around them, watching them, and occasionally joining in.

When I was near the end of my pregnancy with Sofia we stopped going, I was trying to avoid unnecessary germs and the such.  Soon after the baby was born we attempted to resume.

It was like I was dealing with a completely different child.  She had basically no interest in the other children, refused to sit for snack, through tantrums over nothing, and was just generally hard to deal with.  I couldn't handle it, especially with the new baby in tow.  The other mom's were understanding, but I was still embarrassed.

With the baby, Josie essentially ignored her.  The first time Josie saw Sofia, it was like she didn't even see her!  A few days later, Sofia was granted a few curious looks, sometimes Josie would be interested in us changing her diaper, and that was it.  Josie basically pretended she didn't exist.  The only time that I could be sure Josie knew about her was when I was nursing - Josie would get up beside me and kick me!  Not the baby, but me.

For months it was pretty much status quo.  There wasn't really any jealousy (other than when I was nursing) but there wasn't any interaction for the most part.  Josie went about her day ignoring the baby, and by that time, pretty well ignoring me.

Today, she is once again like a completely different kid!  Not only does she acknowledge Sofia, she tries to play with her, brings her things, sticks her soother in her mouth, shares her food, and accepts her!  The first time I witnessed Josie actually playing with Sofia, I felt a weight lifted from my shoulders.  All of my hard work is paying off, Josie initiated interaction!!

She is also starting to play more with her cousins!

We still have days where she has no interest in playing with anybody, and just wants to be alone (with her ducks.)  That is okay.  

The change came about slowly, but to me it felt like it happened all at once.  I am so proud of Josie, and of Sofia!

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