Q. My husband's single sister is crazy about our 13-month-old son. She acts like his second mother. I'm afraid that he'll love her as much as me. Is this feeling normal?
A. I, too, once questioned whether I ruled supreme in my baby's heart. My mom could get my son to sleep, burp, even poop on command. At the same time, she made me feel weaker. It was like she came over with kryptonite in her purse. But while I was struggling to keep up ("Must? make? son? happy. Grandma?too?powerful?"), I ignored the cues affirming my status as number one. When my son toddled away from a chair and was stranded, he looked for me. When he bumped his nose, I was the only one who could stop the tears. Sadly, I didn't revel in my powers, because I was too busy stewing over the fact that I couldn't make junior eat his peas while my mom had him asking for more.
Now I'm grateful that my son loves my mom. The more caring adults there are around him, the better. Also, I've realized that my mom's supernatural abilities came with experience, and in time I shall inherit them (God help my future daughters-in-law).
So the bottom line is this: No one replaces The Mommy. I don't care if your sister-in-law can make your son smile just by walking into the room. She still can't touch you. No matter what, your baby knows the difference between Alpha Mommy and "Auntie Mommy."