I was just saying to Andy, sometimes having another kid feels like Groundhog Day; it only dawns on you slowly that you're going through the exact same ordeals as you did before [e.g., kid fighting her naps like crazy; or waking herself up half a dozen times in the night when she rolls over onto her stomach. Seriously? I'd blogged and lived it, and I swear, we didn't have these kinds of problems with the first kid. But of course, we did.]
Then sometimes, with a little looking and a little context, it's obvious that K2 is different in significant ways from her older sister. Like in her temperament and how she reacts to the world around her. Since I'm about to quote some stuff from Dr. T. Berry Brazelton's book Touchpoints, I'll go out on a limb and say that in fact, every kid might be slightly different in her own way.
Brazelton refers to Stella Chess and Alexander Thomas's nine elements to observe when assessing a kid's temperament:
Chess and Thomas wrote a book in 1987 called Know Your Baby. I've never heard of it, but when we watched these various aspects of K2's behavior and temperament, it was easy to identify differences with the kid at the same 6-7 month timeframe [p. 102]:
1) Activity levelK2 turns out to be far mellower and happier generally; she'll cry or complain only when she really means it, or when she obviously needs something; the first kid had a phase where she just cried and cried.
4) Approach - Withdrawal - How does she handle new and stressful situations?
6) Adaptability - How does she deal with transitions?
7) Regularity - How predictable is she in sleep, bowel habits, and rhythms during the day?
8) Sensory Threshold - Is she hyper- or hyposensitive to stimuli around her? Is she easily overstimulated?
9) Mood - Is she basically positive or negative in her reactions?
Also, K2's more sensitive to sounds and changes in her environment than the kid was; she startles more easily and needs more coaxing and sheltering when she gets in new surroundings. [Example: she hadn't been to our regular sushi restaurant in a couple of months, and when we went back, it was like she was there for the first time, just totally distracted by everything--and then she was overwhelmed by the half dozen waitresses who accosted her, and then streamed by our table the whole meal to play. She totally freaked out, and for a while we worried that even 5:30 wasn't safe for dinner anymore.]
So anyway, someone else's kid's therapy, but the point is, once again, I'm finding a pattern:
1) kid freaks out
2) we get stressed
3) wife reads Brazelton, figures it out
4) wife tells me to read it
5) we talk about actually reading ahead for a change
6) wife probably does.