Having a 3rd child - How it changed the dynamics in our home
Are you wondering if having a 3rd child is the right decision for your family? A few important questions were raised when my husband and I started discussing the possibility of having another. Making a decision like this, is a life changer that requires a lot of consideration!
And we couldn't be happier we had our son Lucas ❤
Having a 3rd child was something my husband and I discussed a lot. I was 100% sure, but he on the other hand, was a little more reluctant. Raising the 2 eldest definitely had its challenges and I completely understood his fear of adding a 5th member to our family. I never thought I would have or want to have 3 kids. Motherhood sure has stuck on me. 😉
Vacations would now be more expensive and happen less frequently. We'd probably never be invited to go to our friends' houses for dinner again. How would we keep up with all of their extra-curricular activities? Would we be stretching ourselves out too thin, where we couldn't give each child the attention they deserved? Would we be willing to sacrifice a comfier retirement for the extra cost of raising another child?
Yes, these were some pretty major concerns & I completely agreed that life could/probably would get more complicated for us. There are so many highs and lows when you're a parent. Let's face it, parenting is the most complicated and challenging job you'll ever do. You're constantly learning and trying to figure out the best decisions to make (after all, these are the decisions that will affect your children for the rest of their lives... as if life wasn't complicated enough as it is with everything else going on). Trying to shape and mold these amazing little people and trying to solve all of their big conflicts is often overwhelming and rewarding all at the same time. It definitely makes you grow as a person!
I told my husband, having a 3rd child would be such a blessing for our family. We would have that much more love in our home. And a ton of fun during family get-togethers! In my family there's only myself and my brother who is 8 years older than me (so by no means are we a large family). But I have friends who come from large families and I think it's great! Our children could also use a change in dynamics from only being around each other all the time. At one point it felt like I was reffing fights almost every day. And separating the two happened more often than they would've liked. Not to say there won't be any fights or even possibly more disagreements, but at least there will be a variety of common interests between the 3 children to help break things up a bit.
Lucas is such a great baby, my husband is (so far) thrilled we decided to have another child. He is a true ray of sunshine. At only 8 months old he already has quite the personality... full of life... and full of smiles. And now, in turn, everyone else smiles more. There's nothing more infectious than a baby's smile. Watching the children care for him is priceless! Our daughter has this amazing motherly instinct and cares for him as if he were her own - 'Thanks for the live doll, mom & dad'. They're both early risers and every morning when she wakes up, she finds her little baby brother so that she can snuggle & play with him. And the feeling is mutual; he always greets her with a huge smile on his face. It's really beautiful to see. ❤
Our 4 year old son, on the other hand, took a bit of time to warm up to the idea of not being the baby anymore. It was hard for him to understand that this new family member was now getting most of our attention. I think he was expecting a 'real' brother to play and wrestle with, not this tiny, fragile, completely dependent ball of mush. We had to explain to him that his baby brother needed more help and it wouldn't mean that he would get less attention or love from us. And to also let him know that he gets to enjoy the best of both worlds now; being the younger brother and the big brother. He also liked the idea that he would now have someone looking up to him that he could help show the ropes. He's now come around full swing and embraces being a big brother. So far so great!
I think that Lucas being such a happy baby has a lot to do with the people around him that love & adore him so much (who wouldn't love being smiled at by so many people all the time) and that I tried to have a happy pregnancy. As much as it was really difficult at times, because we all know pregnancy really messes with your hormones and patience is something that is definitely hard to come by during this time; I really pushed myself to stay positive and stay calm. I am a true believer that this has a direct impact on your babies disposition later. All 3 of our children have beautiful personalities and are positive, happy, little thinkers.
What's so great about having a 3rd child for me personally - By the third time around you're now a pro. You know what to expect and how to handle any situation with ease. You know what you need (and probably have) and don't need. Cooking dinner for one more person, no problem, I always cook for an army anyways. And you can really appreciate little moments spent with your new baby because you now know, how quickly they can pass. You'll WANT to slow down to really embrace your time together. I've also noticed that I've become much more forgiving and patient with our other two because I'm reminded that they are still young and sweet, even though they try to act old and mature.
Even though our lives get pretty hectic at times, the pros really outweigh the cons. We do love our chaotic little home! You HAVE to if you're going to have a big family because there's going to be a lot of conflicts too. Try not to break up every fight. Let your kids figure out some of their battles on their own. Have patience! TRY not to yell (you get more bees with honey... trust me). And for your own sanity get into a routine that works for your family and stick to it. i.e. If you find that your kids aren't helping out around the house as much as they should be, implement a chores board. It saved us from a lot of headaches of constantly nagging the kids and as a bonus it turned into a contest to see who could get the most stars. I'll be doing a post soon about a great chores board system that we use which has worked wonders to get our kids more involved with helping out.
Things you can do to help promote good sleep habits during pregnancy
During pregnancy I read the 'What to Expect When Expecting' guide book and found it to be very helpful. Our kids had terrific sleep habits when they were babies and they all slept through the night within the first 2 months after birth. Sleep for EVERYONE is super important during this time! I don't think it's just lucky, I honestly believe it had something to do with the guidelines I followed. I read that if you load up on your Omega 3's during your 3rd trimester it helps promote healthy sleep habits for baby later. Not only that, it's also great for baby's brain development!
Here's an article I recently came across on DHA Omega 3's that's an interesting read if you're an expecting or nursing mother - http://www.dhaomega3.org/Life-Stages/Pregnancy
If you're curious as to what foods contain Omega 3's, here's a helpful chart from Dietitians of Canada - http://www.dietitians.ca/Downloads/Factsheets/Food-Sources-of-Omega-3-Fats.aspx
Other names we liked - Jacob, Nathan, Cole, Colton, Logan
Thanks for stopping by!