I am currently seven weeks in to parenting three. I forgot so much about babies in the two year gap between G and Baby J.
It could have been self preservation-no wants to remember the deliciousness of functioning on 40 minutes sleep a night.
There have been moments though where I have laughed to myself so it can’t all be bad and it isn’t.
There is no point sugar coating it, if you’ve had one baby, you know what it’s like and I honestly think the jump from one child to two was worse than two to three.
Here are 20 things I forgot about having a newborn (when you have other children).
1. Not only do you cut your meals into bite-sized pieces to aid eating with a baby on one arm, you have to reconsider what you eat. I learnt the hard way when we had fajitas. Oh yes. You try wrapping up fajita mix and salad with one hand. Not easy.
2. You need bibs for the baby when they are feeding but also big adult-sized bibs to cover the baby when you are eating fajitas (see above) when said sauce stains a white sleep suit. Oops.
3. Forget it taking three hours to leave the house. You and yourself scouring your freezer for old slices of bread that may be lurking down there and seriously considering whether powdered formula or breast milk is suitable for cereal because you have to seriously think if it is worth leaving the house for supplies. Three children and a supermarket? I’ll take that coffee black thanks.
4. Your car becomes a child transporter. There is a car seat on every available inch of seat. You can’t fit shopping in the car with the beautiful, double-to-single pram but, you’re not likely to go shopping again so who cares?
5. If the baby wakes up after 4am for a feed, you will be up for the day ( I wrote this at 5.30am after being up since 3am). As soon as you get him back to sleep, the other two will be up.
6. You grow Houdini hands. Somehow you can open yoghurts with your chin and fasten shoes with your toes. I always knew our monkey ancestors were good for something.
7. All the children will want a cuddle from mummy at the same time and do you know what? You manage to wrestle them all onto your knee-not because you have to but because everyone loves a group hug.
8. You buy a new nail varnish but while your six year old has been prancing around in it for three weeks, you are yet to sit down long enough to apply it.
9. If someone asks you the date of birth of one child, you have to really think about the answer and you recoil in horror at your own age when you see it on a prescription. How did that happen?
10. If you have more than one child in nappies, you can guarantee they will synchronise their toilet habits. Yes. Tandem poos are character building. Deal with it. You do have the greatest choice to make though. Who needs changing first? I usually choose the baby unless the toddler is threatening a poonami.
11. You wonder how long you will get away with wearing maternity clothes and rather than be ashamed of the fact, you hug the leggings which now come up to your chin.
12. Sleep becomes a bargaining tool. I made meals for a week. Surely that deserves a napette?
13. You also consider sleep to be more important than gifts. For my birthday, can I just go to bed for three, uninterrupted hours? Only six months to wait.
14. Think your standards slip after one child? You want to see them after three. Ironing is a thing of the past right? You only clear the car out when there is a strange smell coming from the back seat (usually a piece of mouldy fruit discarded after school).
15. Any kind of leaving the house involves a military operation. In fact, I intend to add planning and time management to my CV.
16. Babies go through more changes of clothes in a day than a cat walk model. Your washing machine will be on all the time and you will run to of places to dry it all.
17. You feel excited if you get yourself and the children all dressed (including face washing and teeth cleaning) for the school run.
18. Your most used word is gentle. Who knew a toddler could be so strong? While G’s love of his brother is lovely to watch, I have to take either G or the baby with me wherever I go as he had tried to get in the crib and cuddle the baby more than once.
19. You have tried to be organised and kept a record of everyone who has sent a gift but, while you have taken the photo ready to adorn the thank you card, you haven’t actually had them printed yet. They are on the way, I promise.
20. You use the ‘I’ve just had a baby’ excuse on a daily basis. I’m not sure how long I will get away with it but I am carrying on as long as I can.
I have been blessed with three lovely children and I wouldn’t change it for the world. Life was never dull at the farm anyway but with three little ones, I don’t think it will ever be dull again.