I have a lot of friends embarking into parenthood for the first time right now. I also have a lot of friends jumping into multiple children territory. I get a lot of comments like "how do you do it with 3 kids so close in age?" and "how do you stay home with them all the time?" and "is it hard?" "I bet it's so fun having them so close together".
If you have ever read this blog at all, you likely know my answer to any of those questions. But just for fun, I'm gonna throw out some answers because I currently find myself able to type without Hattie pressing keys asking to watch 'BUPPIES'. That's toddler for Bubble Guppies, if you were wondering.
I will start by saying that my motherhood vibes do not typically dwell in Rainbowland. It's not all finger painting and handcrafted snacks. I don't always have my junk together. Coincidentally, I'm writing this beside a folded stack of laundry that I have yet to disperse of in 2 days… I don't say all of that to be like 'we're all drowning in the hot-mess sea!' 'survival mode for all!'. Because there are some moms that feel most like themselves when their homes are neat and tidy, and I don't think that makes them off-putting or judgmental. I feel like we feel like we can only accept people into our tribes if they're just like us, and the handle life like we do. And that isn't right. But we can save that conversation for another post, k?
Having 3 kids close in age is awesome and hard. It's constantly breaking up fights, and then witnessing the sweetest hugs given for no reason. It's not being able to hold everyone's hand or kiss every boo-boo. It's praying that you somehow didn't screw them up by getting knocked up so soon into their childhood. But it's also being so thankful they'll never remember life without each other. It's being proud that you survived the hard part, and happy they can keep each other company.
The question that I get most often, and never really know how to answer, is do I like staying home with my kids..? I went back to school and work when Emma was probably 5 months old. I worked part time until she was 18 months and I got put on bed rest while pregnant with Wyatt. Since then I've been a 'stay at home mom'. This wasn't because I believe it's the most effective way to mother. It wasn't because my husband always wanted a stay at home wife. It wasn't because this was a dream of mine. And for some people it is. DO YOU. I started staying home with our kids because I needed to. I didn't have a job where I would make enough to cover child care. I don't have a degree (GASP). When we got pregnant with Hattie, we were actually making plans for me to find something full time and put the kids in childcare. But that made zero sense once we knew we were having our third. So I settled in to mom life. And you can read my posts over the past couple of years of my emotional ride through all dat.
I love being able to be the one who gets to be with my kids all day. As hard as it is sometimes, I'm glad I'm the one who disciplines them and plays with them. But that's all we've ever really known, so I can form too huge of an opinion. I hate when people act like staying home with your kids is the hardest job in the world because I firmly disagree. It is hard. But it's hard emotionally. There's a difference.
But the weirdest part of parenting? It's the crazy. Kids make you CRAZY. I should probably have some kind of certificate or something. There's a lot happening around here each day with hormones and feelings and fairness and ninja-ing out of naps. Some days I tell Blake "I CANNOT WAIT TIL BED TIME" and he's informed me on how awful that comes across, so feel free to spare me ;)
You wanna know what happens when I get them all to bed though? I sit there and drool over their freaking pictures! "Babe look at this snap today when Wyatt did this… Here look at them playing in the tub… This is when we were planting…. " like a durn psycho!
It is seriously the strangest thing they do to me. No wonder people laugh so hard when I say I want one more. I'm a wreck when it comes to these 3. They can make me want to hide in the pantry and eat mini reester bunnies, then make me want to kiss their faces right off. So odd. But I love it. And you, pregnant with your first kid- or maybe even your second? You will love it too. You will obsess over it from work (if that's what works for your family) or from your porch chair while you watch them soak each other with the water hose. You will definitely obsess over your tiny person that can also make you feel a type of crazy no one else ever has.
So hide yourself a snack for when you feel it bubbling up, and sneak it before you snap. Because being able to enjoy motherhood is so worth it. I'm praying for you, mamas and mamas-to-be. And you best believe I mean that with every fiber of my being. Parenting is weird, we gotta stick together!
All pictures were done by Jenn Johnson . Also check her out on instagram @jennjohnson0305