That is probably the comment I get the most. “You’ve really got your hands full.”
The second most common comment I get is, “I don’t know how you do it”.
Do what exactly? They never specify, and I’m not clever enough to have answers on the fly.
How do I keep a clean house, get a full night sleep, keep from loosing my temper at least once a day….okay okay maybe more than that??? Truth is I don’t! Plain and simple. I cannot make it through a day without Gods Grace and leaning on him for help… But you know what, neither can you, right?
So I guess I’ll give you a little background info before I get to “How I Do It”.
I DO NOT like Hormonal birth control!!! I do not like anything about it. I have taken several kinds and I can ramble on and on about why, and how it effected me and the reasons I chose to give it up all together. If you want I can do a blog on that another time. Thomas and I both come from large families so it seems almost natural to have many children, although there was more space in between our siblings and ourselves than we have between our kids. Our first 3 boys were back to back. I was nursing them and having no one to really glean advice from I was having to learn on my own about breastfeeding and the link between that and fertility. All I’m gonna say right now is If your baby starts sleeping 4-6 hours straight at night or longer and your not preventing pregnancy than expect a positive pregnancy test in a few months. The first 3 slept in the “nursery” from the first day home from the hospital and I slept in my room. I swear I made 100 trips t their room some nights but they started sleeping through the night by about 4 months old which was exciting but it came with a cost…My precious milk supply, which in turn, I became pregnant again. I played that game 3 times on a row before exhaustion crept in and then I pleaded with the Lord for a break. I had also tried Mirena at that point and had I in all of a month before going to having taken out because my body was going all wacko. But Gods grace was sufficient and he game me a break. But My hormones were messed up and I attribute that to the Mirena. So at just 9 weeks pregnant we lost our 4th little baby. I had a sweet friend from church take me out to a fancy lunch and take me for a massage and proceeded to tell me about progesterone and gave me a book to read. After just 3 months of using the progesterone cream I became pregnant with our sweet rainbow baby and only girl (so far). Then I decided to keep her close and found out about co sleeping with a sidecar crib. we did that and it was wonderful not running down the hall to a screaming baby 100 times a night because at first whimper I could pull her close and nurse her while we were both still half asleep. But we went on a trip and I wasn’t able to co sleep so she used a pack n play and was so exhausted from the trips activities she started sleeping through the night on that trip and guess what??? Yep you guessed it pregnant again!!! So going into #5 I was determined to learn everything I could about natural child spacing and bought this book,
I seriously believe every young lady should read this before getting married. Most of us are not taught in depth about how our body works. Anyways, I’m 10 months into nursing #5 and we are going strong! I did just have my first cycle but my hormones are crazy right now but as long as I’m nursing it’ll probably be a little wonky.
Anyways, sorry for the storybook lol but that is how I got in this “position”.
Lets just get the Big Bad Cons outta the way:
- The noise… There…is…always…noise!!!
- They are so needy! Someone is always wanting something.
- They fight like cats and dogs sometimes.
- Your constantly dealing with bodily secretions. Poop, pee, spit up, blood, snot, slobber, and sometimes you cant even identify it.
- Training and discipline are a constant thing and the second you give them slack oh they’ll take it and then some. When someone tells me the kids are so well behaved (usually on Sunday) I like to say, “well it took me all week t get them this way”, and it really does. If you want you kids to sit and listen at church, they need to sit and listen at home, that’s what family devotions can help with. AND don’t wait till there 2, even babies can “begin” to practice sitting quietly….some are easier to train than others.
- They will copy each other and sometimes its just to get a reaction from you!
But Sometimes Life is Good, Pro’s:
- The baby stage is all fresh in your mind.
- You probably haven’t completely pack all the baby things and put them in the attic yet…less work right LOL.
- The kids will have playmates and best friends, and they wont remember life without them.
- They will copy each other…yes even the good stuff!
- You can create a bathing, diapering, and dressing assembly line!
- It keeps them from growing up to fast. I see the older boys playing with the babies and it makes me happy that they are content with that, although they can get caught up in wanting to do older kid stuff from time to time it tends to be fleeting.
- When they are old enough you will have a lot of help with house and yard work.
- They can play sports together…on the same team.
What I have learned:
- Create an eating and sleeping schedule/routine that works for your family (including snacks and naps) and stick to it as much as possible while you have babies and toddlers n the house. They will pick up on the consistency and have less tantrums that way.
- Use the H.A.L.T method to deal with whiney grumpy little ones. H: hungry A:angry L: lonely T: tired. And I guarantee most of the time it will be one of these.
- Set up and afternoon nap/quiet time. You’ll be surprised what an hour of quiet will do for everyone.
- Set up barricades lol. Don’t be afraid to block off rooms and dedicate a certain area for your children to be in during certain times of the day. Especially if you have an active preschooler, toddler, and a nursing baby.
- GET OUTSIDE DAILY if possible!!! Your little ones have energy to burn and they will burn it in your house or out, you decide! Plus you all need the fresh air and vitamin D.
- Teach weaned toddlers to sleep in there own bed!
- It’s ok to put one in the baby swing, one in the pack and play and one in front of a decent cartoon with a snack long enough to take a shower…If they start to cry its not the end of the world! Seriously!
- Its totally ok to vent to a wonderful friend.
- Its totally ok to go outside on the porch and cry and pray and take a breath before going in for another round.
- Its IS NOT okay to nag your hubby. He seriously has not clue what your dealing with and you cannot make him understand. Just tell him point blank; I need a break, I had a rough day, I just nursed the baby and I will be back in 2 hours! If your in over your head, tell him what you need him to do, BUT realize that he may have things he is overwhelmed with as well so be sensitive.
Most of all I’d say, accept that this is the stage of life that your in. Embrace it! Make the most of every day. Find a balance between Work and fun, seriousness and silliness, discipline and tickle fights, spankings and hugs. Just Love your babies and your hubby and yourself. Don’t forget to pray and read or listen to the bible with the kids all piled on your lap.
His Grace is Sufficient!!!