I have entered a new territory - life with three (three and under, might I add). And evidently, I look as crazy as I'm feeling right now. We are beyond outnumbered, and have surpassed the average 2.3 children. And now people stare at us like we are the Duggars. Or maybe they were just staring at my childrens' heads, peeking out from the food that they were buried under, since the carts just aren't big enough.
I'm having to re-learn motherhood and life and everything, it seems. And it's been a challenge so far. I underestimated how "new" this would feel- like being an overwhelmed first-time mom all over again. I know that we are in an adjustment period, and I know things will get better (they have to, right?!) but right now, it's hard.
Three little people with three different sleep schedules makes for one tired mama. An almost-four-year-old with night terrors, a two-year-old who can't sleep without mama for more than 45 minutes at a time, both of whom still have the occasional night-time potty accident, and fight bedtime like there is no tomorrow, plus a newborn baby who needs diaper changes and feedings during the middle of the night...it leads to:
Three cups of coffee a day. Minimum. And by a cup, at least one of those is a venti. And headaches. Lots of headaches.
Three hungry bellies, one of which is always demanding food or water or milk. And I forget to eat amongst the shuffle, and then I wonder why I'm shaking and sweaty at noon and I force myself to sit down and eat.
Having a newborn baby is just like having a newborn baby. Eleanor is generally content as long as she is fed and diapered, and held when she is awake. Luckily, she sleeps quite a lot. Sometimes she sleeps at night. Sometimes she doesn't. And sure, I'm tired, as I mentioned above. What mom to a newborn isn't. But add taking care of a newborn baby while trying to keep up with my
When we were trying to get pregnant, I remember running into a friend of mine at the Farmer's Market who had recently had her third child. I excitedly asked her what it was like having three, to which she cautiously whispered, "Stick with two!!!" Now, I am on the other side of that question. Several innocent and well-intentioned friends have asked me, "So, what's life like with three?" Depending on how much coffee I've had, I have either stared blankly at them or respond, "Ask me again in a couple months."
Although I speak of the challenges, transitions, and craziness of life with three these first few weeks, the little victories that I achieve each day are incredibly rewarding and empowering. Our first trip to the grocery store, our first trip to the park, our first trip to Target, actually finding time to sweep the floors, while exhausting and challenging also remind me that I CAN do this. The love that is showered on Eleanor by her proud big brothers absolutely melts my heart every day- it reminds me that our love is multiplied, not divided. And I love having a cuddly newborn so much. I am even more intent with this fleeting newborn phase on cherishing every moment. Could I put her in the crib when she sleeps? Sure, but why would I want to?! It just goes so fast. (I find a little comfort in that too when I'm having an especially challenging moment.)
And so it goes- we are surviving the ups and downs. And I'm trying to enjoy the wild ride. And the love x 3.
One of the challenges of 3 little ones - family photos. Hopefully we will get one one of these days. In the mean time, I'm just having to laugh at our attempts.