If the title made you roll your eyes bear with me, I would have done the same a year ago.
I think it was a few minutes after dinner, when my older two kids were dancing and chanting, “What Does The Fox Say?” to the baby squealing with laughter in his high chair, that the fruit of my decision to have a third child twinkled like the bright joy issuing from the baby’s eyes.
This was not an isolated moment. I’ve felt this way frequently over the last few months.
As someone formerly overwhelmed with two kids, it’s a complete shocker that I’m enjoying having three. There were plenty of times when I was ready to throw in the towel convinced that God had erred when he created Mother (cue me waving my fist at Heaven shrieking, “You are so clearly a man!” to The Man, if you follow me.)
Having three kids is completely different. Here’s why: the older two who previously only had each other to pick on are now channeling their energy into showering their baby brother with love…and lyrics from silly You Tube videos as I mentioned above. Squabbling does still happen, by the way, I’m not saying having a baby is the magical cure to sibling rivalry. However, an infant in the house does help them fight less over petty stuff like toys since, you know, the baby is basically the ultimate toy now. Yes, we have to work on “sharing” the baby.
I wouldn’t have it any other way.
In short, I thought my heart grew with every kid, but my trajectory of growth is not nearly as steep or magnificent as my kids’ maturity into loving little people.
Their capacity to be caring individuals has absolutely exploded. And it is beautiful. Suddenly, they are good kids. Suddenly, I like them and motherhood more.
It might sound counterintuitive but for those couples struggling with two my advice is: have three.
You will grow but more importantly and astoundingly those same two kids you are currently struggling with will grow. You might just start enjoying them.
Parents with three or more, what has your experience been?