When I was a little girl, I always imagined I would grow up to have two children. A boy and a girl (in that order). Several decades later, I realised that dream and was blessed with both a boy and a girl in the very order I had imagined and hoped for. First came my tiny little 5lb bundle of blue who seemed so fragile and delicate as he fought for those first breaths with the help of the resuss team that burst into the room upon his arrival. We thought we might have lost him for a few traumatic minutes but hearing his eventual cry was the most beautiful sound I had ever experienced. The love was instantaneous and the feeling of protectiveness was intense. Ten years on, the beautiful, deep thinking and bright strong boy he has become belies the dramatic entrance he made into the world. Two years and eight months later, the little girl I had dreamed of arrived. A bigger, stronger baby with rosebud lips and a natural, uncomplicated drug free delivery, made me feel more confident as a mother. Here they now were, the big brother to look after his little sister as she grew up and the little girl I could pass my female wisdom onto. What more could I ask for?
Despite the obvious joy I felt at having my little girl, crazy as it may sound, within only a very short space of time after my daughter’s arrival into the world, I began to feel a creeping sadness, that this would be my last baby. The feeling surprised me as I always believed two was my perfect number so I put it down to post pregnancy hormones and focussed instead on loving and raising the two children I had. However, as time passed, the feelings I had felt soon after my daughter’s birth continued to surface. Whenever I heard someone was pregnant I was naturally delighted for them but also felt some sadness for myself. With those feelings came the feeling of guilt. I felt guilty that I somehow didn’t feel complete despite having two gorgeous children, as if that wasn’t enough.
The subject of having a third child naturally got raised with my (then) husband on a number of occasions but was always dismissed as a crazy notion from both of us after ‘logical and sensible’ talks on all the reasons not to. All the usual arguments were there – ‘Three’s a crowd, too expensive, would need a bigger car, a bigger house, we have a boy and girl so why rock the boat? Much harder work, I’d have to delay building up my photography business, think of the cost of the holidays…’ and so it went on. There seemed no logical reason to even think of having another child. When I mentioned the idea to other people who were quite happy with their one or two children, more often than not, they looked at me like I had gone slightly mad!
So, with my sensible head on and a feeling of resignation, I cleared out all the baby toys and clothes, the little plastic bath and the bouncer and headed to the charity shop. The decision it seemed was made…
A year passed and my daughter was now a robust little toddler nearing 3 years old and my son had just started school. I made friends with some of the school mum’s and soon after one of my now close friends started dropping her daughter over for breakfast in the mornings on her way to work so I could take the children to school. I grew to love those mornings and watching the three children sat around the breakfast table interacting with each other made me realise that my desire to have that third baby was still very much there. This time things were different. We were in a better position financially, were in a position to move and my daughter was easier to look after and sleeping through the night. As my husband and I talked it through, we both found ourselves excited by the idea and so with both of us on board the decision to try for baby number three was finally made!
Only 10 months later after having that conversation, my beautiful little boy Jake was born. As a family, we were overjoyed! I felt complete and beyond blessed that Jake was with us.
Having a third child was a big and long thought out decision. It certainly wasn’t one that was rushed into. All of the reasons not to were there. The holidays were more expensive, we did have to get a bigger car and we did need to get a bigger house. Having a baby with a 3.5 year old and a 6 year old to also look after, was at times, beyond exhausting and sometimes lonely. I was back to sleepless nights and night time feeds. My business was put on the back burner. It felt like a constant juggling act and there was never time for rest. Yet despite all of this, I LOVE having three children and the relationship between all of them as they grow is a wonderful thing to see. Yes of course there are arguments and it’s hard work and sometimes they drive me crazy but the love I feel for them individually is immeasurable.
Jake is a gorgeous little boy in every respect. He is very cheeky, funny and full of life. He is very loving and adores his brother and sister. He tells people he is 10 years old even though he’s actually only 4. He is so inquisitive and asks a hundred questions a day! He loves being around people at all times. He likes to dress up regularly as his favourite superheroes and will gladly wear his costumes out in public at any given opportunity! He brings so much joy into all of our lives.
Having three children is all the craziness you would expect. If you were to listen to all the reasons not to have three, then you would never do it, because there are of course plenty of ‘sensible’ reasons why you shouldn’t. However, there are so many wonderful reasons why you should, if your heart is telling you that’s what you want.
Happy Mother’s Day!