So the first month of being a mum of 3 is behind us and let me tell you, it is not that easy!
I should have known but then again, it is not the first time I was surprised just how hard the first few weeks are!
When I was pregnant with my 1st baby I thought I knew it all. I was a nursery teacher, I worked as a nanny and I have ALWAYS loved babies so I was more then ready for my own one. Yet when he was born and the hospital let us take him home I was so scared! I was responsible for this little person, completely. He was depending on me for everything. 24/7. I remember being petrified, I remember poking him many times during the day (and night) to see if he is still breathing (and instantly regretting waking him up). I remember pacing the landing with him screaming his head off with wind and me singing (more to keep myself sane than for his benefit really :) ).
Second time round I thought we'd be fine as I have already done it once and I know what to expect so I was a pro right? Wrong again. I was scared again. I had the added stress of having had a C-section so trying to recover myself. I was also trying to be a mum to my then 5 year old son while catering to the needs of a tiny baby girl with reflux who thought the night time was a great time to hang out with me... To be honest I don't remember the first few weeks. They are all a bit blurry :)
But I found out what a great big brother my son is. He used to sing to his sister when she cried. He made up his own song. (Don't worry, I'm your big brother, I will protect you!) He was great and helpful. I also remember sobbing when breastfeeding was not going well and I ended up putting little lady on the bottle. I felt like I failed as mum.
Third time round I thought: Well, it can't be that hard. This baby will just have to slot in and I am sure it will all go well. Most people told me that the third baby tends to be a content one.
We had a great water birth so I thought, she will definitely be chilled.
Well one month in, I can safely say that all my customers who called me a 'Baby Whisperer' would get a good laugh watching me trying to settle my own baby :D She is not a very content one. Well, she is, when she is in a sling or on my chest or being fed... Otherwise she has a special button in her back which turns on the crying as soon as I lay her on her back anywhere :D
What surprised me the most were my older two though. As my husband works incredibly hard and is away most of the day I am juggling the 3 kids myself most of the time. My son and daughter are very independent, they get themselves dressed, they sort out their breakfast, they help me when I need to. But the other night, when I was going to pieces because little lady would not stop crying, the other two were arguing upstairs and I was so desperately tired...The older two heard me crying and both came rushing in. My daughter gave me a big hug and tissues to blow my nose, my son offered to help out with bath time, he held his baby sister. They both sang to her and just rallied in to help me. I felt SO proud at that moment. I know I am not perfect, I am sure I mess up so many things in bringing them up and I know there will be plenty of things they will resent me for. But at that very moment I was sure I must be doing something right! They are both so caring, so lovely and so helpful. I could not have loved them more in that very moment. They are both so patient and lovely with their baby sister. They put her dummy in and sing to her (nice and loud and I think she might hate Twinkle Twinkle Little Star when she is older :) ).
I have to say that I am in awe of mums of children with a very small age gap. My children being 10 and 5 helps so much, I have no idea how you do it mums of kiddies with small age gaps! Hats off.
This week, at one month and 2 days our baby girl has started to smile at us. This is a game changer. This is the point with your baby when they start to respond to you. When you know they are aware of who you are and their goofy little smile makes your heart melt. It even makes the getting up at 2 am and staying up till 4am bearable. So all the mums out there going through the first few weeks, believe me, it is scary, it is tough and it is most definitely worth it. When you feel like crying because you have not slept for weeks, because you have not had a chance to go to toilet or make yourself some food because you are feeding non stop...it is all worth it when you get that first gummy smile. So hang on in there. (Or sing to yourself, seems to help me to keep me sane :D )