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Motherhood

Posted on Aug 3, 2015 in Motherhood, The Fam

I guess it’s only fitting to have a motherhood post after the fatherhood, sisterhood and brotherhood ones.

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The thing is, motherhood for me is an ebb and flow between the sane and the insane.  Fortunately most of the time we’re in the sane zone.  I’m good, I’m good, I’m good, and then all of a sudden I freak out, and then I’m good again.  Last week I had my biggest melt down with three kiddos yet – mostly thanks to Breast Milk Jaundice, although I think Hormones and Hot Days were accomplices.

Readjusting to life with a newborn has brought out new feats in breastfeeding – in the past seven weeks I have nursed the babe while: eating, cooking, answering the door, picking up the older two from their class at church, in the back row of a memorial service, in the middle of Sprouts, and most notably while reclining in the chair getting my teeth cleaned at the dentist’s.

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I’ve hit new levels of darker circles, night sweats, and diminished cognitive functioning.

Everyone wants a piece of me…my attention, my help, and my body – be it for sustenance, soothing, snuggles or just leaning and dangling on (which is especially not my favorite with sticky sunscreen residue in nearly triple digit temps).  Time alone is like gold.

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The first few weeks surprised me with how smooth the transition felt.  As the newness faded and the sleep deprivation set in it’s been hard to keep it together throughout a whole day.  It feels like I’m constantly pulling teeth or herding cats with the older two – saying “no” a ton and probably leaving them feeling like they can’t do anything right.  I think they have taken more liberties to ignore me since at times I’m yammering out instructions from the armchair with the baby at the breast, they know they have some time before I will get up and enforce any requests. When we have ventured out it has been a really big ordeal, with lots of stress getting out the door and usually the feeling of a ticking time bomb when we’re out – knowing that at any minute I’ll need to pull the plug and escape back home to our control zone.  It’s just the reality of this phase for us.

A new attempt at positive discipline – – having Dylan work toward earning something he wants.IMG_1571

What business has the rainbow ladder at the kid’s park?  It’s my nemesis.  I don’t think even I can climb up and over it without getting confused and freaking out about being upside down.  My kids are attracted to it and time and again I find myself standing underneath with both arms raised and coaxing them off the thing.

IMG_1566This is how we roll when we’re actually trying to walk somewhere…double stroller with infant attachment, and when the boy gets tired of the bike it goes on top and he perches down front while I huff and puff all three.

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I’ve come up with a Theory of “One Less” which means if I can find a way to leave behind any one of the kids, I feel like I can do *almost* anything and go anywhere.  I used to be stressed out taking both Whitney and Dylan on errands…now it seems like a piece of cake.  And even more so, having one child or going somewhere alone {gasp!} would be a special treat.

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It sounds like I’m ungrateful? Whining? I really am just trying to be honest.  Motherhood has been and still remains the hardest and yet most rewarding experience I’ve encountered.  A friend I met this week said my blog makes it look easy…I don’t intend to leave out all the hard stuff, but I rarely take pictures in the chaos and I certainly aim for a positive bent as I think about my life.  The days are long (and the years are short, right?), but I treasure being home with my kids (even if I do get burned out).  Right now, I’m treasuring getting to be the most expert expert of our baby.  She and I share the 3am first smiles, I keep track of the poops, and can fairly easily guess reasons for any fussiness.  I’ve got a way of holding her that can predictably put her to sleep within minutes.  I’m still marveling at the miracle it is that she grew from my own body, that she’s here and a part of our family.  So little in life compares to some of these cherished moments with my kids – it makes up for so much of the day-to-day insanity.

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These last few non-selfie images were taken by my dear friend Naphy Squier (www.scatterjoyphotos.com) – thanks Naphy!

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