We have survived as a party of five for a total of seven weeks now, and I thought I would share some things that these seven weeks have taught me. How does life change when you go from four to five? Is it even really that different or is it just that now I am being forced to sit down when I feed the baby that I am seeing just how crazy this little house of ours really is.
So where do I begin? What do I need to prepare you for if you are thinking of going from four to five?
For us, I feel like there are so many little things that have changed, but at the same time, life with the two kids was pretty hectic, so maybe, like I say, it’s just that when I stop to feed the baby I see the crazy. Either way, I stopped and thought about it for long enough to write it down, and here it is, a tiny taster into how your household ups the ante when you go from two kids to three;
- At any point in time one or more people are usually screaming, yelling or crying. It is always loud, most of the noise is good, happy noise and sometimes it is just noise for the sake of noise, it is loud. Don’t worry, you get quiet when sleep starts.
- Sleep is sacred and coffee is liquid gold.
- If the children are awake it is messy. Almost instantaneously. There are toys and clothes everywhere, the term ‘organized chaos’ comes to mind, although I can’t help but think it is more chaos than it is organized.
- The washing never ends. Even if a load of washing looks small, baby’s clothes are also small so there will be 10,000 items hiding in there all folded up ready to surprise you.
- If you ever go somewhere with all three of them, people will comment, get ready for at least four people to tell you how busy you are, like you don’t already know.
- On the topic of leaving the house, when you do decide to go somewhere with all of them, getting all three of them into the car takes longer than most of the errands that you need to do, so be prepared for that.
- You are severely outnumbered. Some days you will really feel it, some days you won’t. No matter how hard you try you can’t be three places at once and it is hard, and it will at times exhaust you.
- Someone is always touching you.
- Someone is always following you.
- Privacy is long gone and you will get to the point where going to the toilet with the door closed with no little person coming to talk to you half way through is actually a weird thing.
- Feeding the baby is the perfect time for the older children to decide they are hungry, need a drink, do a poo, climb on the bench and get the permanent textas/scissors/knives/loaf of bread, pretty much anything that you don’t want them to do, when you are feeding that is the time for them to do it.
- Apparently a new baby is also the perfect time for the two-year old to decide they don’t want to wear a nappy anymore, like you don’t have enough to do you can add cleaning random puddles up to the list.
- On the nappy thing, there are so many of them and you are constantly running out of them, you think maybe it’s a good thing the middle child doesn’t want to wear them anymore, then you remember the hell that is toilet training and scrap that idea.
- Any rustling of any wrappers that come from the vicinity kitchen prompts the onslaught of little scavengers, like seagulls to a hot chip, they swarm. So practice your stealth opening of chocolate bars while you are pregnant and they are sleeping, unless of course, you want to share.
- Prepping dinner while at least one of them is sleeping is annoying but necessary. Although my kids did both tell me it was their ‘best dinner ever’ when I gave them baked beans on toast the other day so maybe just have a few cans of baked beans in the cupboard for those can’t be stuffed nights.
- Witching hour is contagious, it never just lasts an hour and it will always happen when you least need it to (generally dinner/bath/bedtime).
- Tired is your new normal, you look tired, you know you look tired, but you’re offended if anyone tells you you look tired because everyone knows that saying someone looks tired is just the polite way of telling them they look like shit, and let’s be honest no one ever wants to look like shit.
- There is a minus one rule, everything is easier minus one. Trips to the shops, the playground, tantrums. Knowing this rule gives you nothing really, just makes you realise it could be worse, you could be alone with all of them.
- It is EXTREMELY difficult to get a nice photo of all three of them together. Extremely difficult.
- And finally, all these things, this big boring list (if you made it this far) it’s all worth it. The mess, the noise, the exhaustion, yeah it will do your head in at times, but you wouldn’t have it any other way.
There is nothing like a new baby and what it does to a family. When you overhear your nearly four and two-year old telling their baby that they love her, or when they laugh as she cracks her first smile at them, it’s unlike anything else.
I won’t lie, it’s hard at times. It’s loud, it’s messy and it’s chaotic. And I’m sure, over time, there will be more lists, but I know I wouldn’t change any of it for the world.