January 21, 2011 § 1 Comment
People often ask me “Is having four kids hard?” or “I don’t know how you do it with four”, to which my usual response is, “it’s way easier than two actually”. No question, it is crazy busy, but it is easier because I know so much better how to look after a young child than I ever did with my first two. In addition, the kids help each other! When I had my second, I was plagued with guilt and anxiety about not being able to be and do everything for my first born. He would cry on my lap that he “wanted me” while I was breastfeeding my second, or ask me to play when I was busy changing a diaper or making baby food. It was a time where I had a dreadful case of the “Just gottas”: I just gotta change this diaper and then I can….I just gotta have a quick shower and then I can….I just gotta put your sister down for a nap and then I can…I just gotta get supper going and then I can…. You know what I mean right? When I had my third and fourth however, Thing 1, 2, and 3 would engage each other while I enjoyed a quiet breastfeeding moment or managed to secure a hot cup of coffee (as opposed to the usual luke-warm, microwaved- three- times- cause- I- keep- forgetting- about- it coffee).
As I watch my fourth child round her 17th month, I realize that it is so much easier for her as well! She doesn’t have two inexperienced parents watching her every move and over-analyzing her every behaviour. She is free to explore more than any of her siblings, and certainly takes full advantage of that! My first born never had the opportunity to pick up last night’s brownie crumbs off the floor and enjoy them as an early morning snack. My second born would never have had the occasion to climb up on a stool to reach her own freshly baked muffin (for the third time in 30 minutes). Even my third born would not have been shown the “love” of three siblings all trying to give hugs to him at the same time, ultimately knocking him to the ground in a competition to see who he loves more. Nope, my fourth born enjoys luxuries and liberties that none of her siblings (or her parents) would ever have imagined.
Life at four is great…”just gotta” love it!