There’s a Newborn in the House: Five is CompanySeptember 3rd, 2012 | Posted by in Parenting
Life is full of surprises, and we were definitely surprised last November when we found out that I was pregnant. I knew from the very beginning that I’d be having a girl, and it scared me. I was used to boys. My first two children are boys and my Italian greyhound and two cats are male. I was the only girl in the house and loved owning that status, but I had a feeling deep down that by mid-summer I’d have competition company. An ultrasound confirmed my fear. In preparation, I slowly began taking in small doses of pink.
I went to the hospital for an induction on June 29, the hottest day on record in Nashville. Despite her tiny size of 4 pounds, 6 ounces, we were cleared to take our newest addition home with no extra hospital stay. Baby sister was an immediate hit with her brothers. They still constantly ask to hold her and she’s the first person they greet when they get home from school.
Having a baby in the house again has been amazing so far. I had forgotten how much joy newborns bring. From the baby rolls to the squeaks and coos, I am in love all over again. She has been such a dream so far that I even caught myself entertaining the idea of a fourth!—ok, only for a brief moment.
We are still in a relatively easy phase as it relates to our normal family activities. Since I usually wear the baby in a sling or Moby, we haven’t really had to change our strategy from “man-on-man” to “zone” quite yet. We also haven’t had to cut out scheduled activities such as birthday parties, soccer practices, or swimming lessons. With the first child–and to a great extent the second child– we were the ones who had to adapt. With number three it is quite clear that she will be the one doing the adapting. Before her first month, our new baby girl had been to three birthday parties and a wedding shower! So far she has shown that she’s flexible and doesn’t mind the interruptions. I hope she stays this easy-going for a long time.
Although it appears I’ve painted a perfect picture above, life with three kiddos has not been a stroll in the park. Due to her small size, Roxana required frequent feedings throughout the night. I had to coax her awake to keep her nursing. By the time we were done with one session, it was almost time to start the next. Adding to my exhaustion, my three-year-old (the newly appointed middle child) suddenly could not put on his own socks. This and other skills he had already mastered were suddenly forgotten. With tricks such as asking him to show his sister how to do things, he is slowly working his way back to being an almost four-year-old. My not quite six-year-old has also been a bit more difficult than usual, but I’m sure that some of it also has to do with my lack of sleep and reduced patience.
Despite the tears and overwhelming moments, the joys of a new baby have far outweighed the headaches. Because this is very likely our last child, I am soaking in every baby roll, baby squeak, and accidental smile. I am in no hurry at all for the next milestone; even if it means some nights with a crowd of five in my bed.
Do you have any tips or tricks for this new mother of three?