For almost three years now, the Oddnivore has been the sole governor of our life, our accompanying lifestyle. In less than eight short months from now, this will no longer be the case, and I will be the Oddnivore’s mother, but I will also be the mother of our newcomer. A newcomer who may have vastly different needs from the Oddnivore.
I have imagined what it will be like to sit around the table with the Oddnivore and his sibling and eat a meal. I have imagined this sibling digging into a sandwich made with ordinary wheat bread, slathered with ordinary egg-filled mayonnaise, topped with ordinary dairy-based slices of cheese. And the Oddnivore will dine on his crumbly tapioca bread, his veggie cheese, his vegan mayo.
But what weighs on my mind most is not that the Oddnivore will likely eat differently than his sibling. The Oddnivore has never had trouble with the idea of food that is his, of other food as “Mommy’s food” or “Daddy’s food.” And although he is curious about the items my husband and I consume, he embraces these parameters, restrictions. I think he even likes that he has foods that are just his. His (wheat-free) pretzels; his cookies. “Not yours, Mommy.” He delights in telling me this.
What perplexes me is that a sibling who can eat any food without concern will not only be unlike the Oddnivore, but like me. Like my husband. I fear the alienation that may come as the Oddnivore faces with the reality of having a sibling–someone in the same context as he is–be the same as his parents. And he will not be.
Of course, we will not intentionally change; our love and devotion for the Oddnivore will not flag. But I am anticipating this small betrayal, and I am unsure. Certainly, we are all thrilled–the Oddnivore has asked about the baby every day since we have known. As three, we savor our future as four. But as with any significant change, fears of loss accompanying the enchantments of gain.