Friday, July 22, 2011

And then there were 3...

In the beginning, anyone who has children was a first time parent.  Even Michelle Duggar had only one child at some point.  I really believe it's all relative.  This post is based on my experience having more than one child. 
When you have your first child, you are usually almost annoyingly more than well prepared.  The nursery is fully decorated with a bedding set (even though you discover that you can only use about 20% of the set, so the bumper and comforter that you just HAD to have collect dust).  You have every accessory with all the bells and whistles, clothes are already washed and put away neatly, and you have enough diapers for about 3 to 6 months.  The first night home from the hospital, you think, "what the hell do we do now?" You are exhausted when the baby hardly sleeps that night, although I am sure that they were wonderful in the hospital (news flash- MOST babies are good in the hospital...they are just as traumatized as you are by the birth experience).  However, you can squeeze in a nap or 2 during the day.  Most likely, you are inundated with visitors who bring gifts, cook you meals, and offer babysitting services. You carry a diaper bag stocked with every and anything that  is useless the baby might need...because I am sure you will need about 3 changes of clothes, 5 toys, 2 teething rings, a dozen diapers, diaper rash ointment, Tylenol, teething gel, wipes, and hand sanitizer for that 2 hour visit with a friend. 
And speaking of leaving the house with your first can generally still look acceptable.  You can put on some makeup and you have the time to do your hair so it looks at least like you at least took a comb to it.
With each passing day, you learn more and more and become more confident. 
Then, things start to go so smoothly that some people decide to have another child.  This could be relatively soon...or it might even be years after the first.  Whatever the case may be, along comes another baby.
You quickly realize that this is a whole different ball game...
You are pretty much already prepared for the second baby.  After all, you have the crib and many people just keep the nursery as is and put the new baby in there.  At first, you are lucky to get a few hours of sleep at night, and then napping the next day while the baby sleeps...that is almost comical rare.  It really doesn't happen too often. Why?  Oh, that's have another little person to think about this time.  You are not only making bottles and changing diapers, you are cooking lunch and potty training, or maybe still changing a second set of diapers.  It's double duty and double the insanity fun.
The baby might get a few new gifts, but most likely, it is hand me down city.  Especially if you have children that are the same sex (I have 3 girls, I am quite familiar with that).  You and your spouse are usually the ones that handle getting odds and ends that are needed with baby baby shower this time:(
You will still have visitors, but maybe not as many and I can tell you now...the babysitting offers will dwindle.
Then, after much practice and experience, you learn to handle 2 children quite nicely.  It is man on man defense, one child for each parent.  You get into a routine and all is well.
It is at some point after this that some people decide to take the plunge and have yet another baby.  Hey, what's the difference? You already have 2... 3 can't be that bad.  And to be honest, I mostly agree.
And then there are 3...
However, things with the 3rd are even more different.  It is definitely hand me downs for this little one (especially in my case with the 3rd girl).  They might get a few new things, mainly because the others have been discarded due to wear and tear. 
I can also tell you that with three, the babysitting offers are most likely a thing of the past few and far between.  And instead of the well stocked diaper bag that you carried with the first one, you might throw a few diapers and wipes in your purse this time.  You can now effectively make a bottle and feed the baby, while talking on the phone and making a grilled cheese.  Napping while the baby naps is just not going to happen not always an option.  And you generally look disheveled on an almost daily basis (unless you have to go out, and then maybe you can get 15 minutes to apply makeup and put your hair in a pony tail attempt to style your hair).   
There is definitely a progression from being a new parent to having 2 or more children...and it changes you as a person and your outlook on life.  Each child is unique and amazing.  And with each baby I have had, the day that they were born was a complete miracle.  Although you get more accustomed to having a baby and what it entails, in my opinion, it never gets old and you are always learning something new!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Even though I am horrible at responding to comments, I read every one (even the spam comments trying to sell me cheap Christian Louboutins). Leave a nice comment and I will buy you a drink...someday.