It is the week before Christmas and everyone in this house is getting very excited. It’s the first year that all four can enjoy and absorb all the festivities and build up. They don’t quite understand Christmas ‘day’ but for them it’s a month long celebration of lights, songs, parties, Santa etc… This frenzy of excitement has meant our daily routine has gone slightly. Daytime snoozes were never great in my house and this time of year isn’t helping.
My girls share a room and as a result nap time tends to become a bit of a party. The sound of singing and chats streams down the stairs while they’re supposed to be having ‘quiet time’. I am not giving up though – they’re only 2 years old so still need sleep and some days it happens.
Anyway, at the moment there’s too many distractions. As a result they are tired by the end of the day and devilment kicks in. Of course, by now I should know this and should learn! Seems I forget easily these days. So on Monday, for our afternoon activity, I thought a trip to our local shopping center to get shoes for everyone would be a great idea. Under normal circumstances, when everyone’s slept well and it’s not Christmas shopping madness, this could work. However, that’s not how it played out….. the girls saw this as a great opportunity to play chase and show mummy how fast they can run through crowds. While opening the car door in the very busy car park one of my girls bolted just as a car was headed our direction. Obviously the chances of this happening with one of the four is high but I never believed it could happen. My minder was with me and we were both on high alert but even with that she ran. All it takes is one split second and your life could change forever. In this case my daughter lives to tell the tale but how easily it could have gone so so differently.
After the initial shock we all got, it was absolutely gratitude that I felt. Here we are another year is closing and I am blessed with four perfect, healthy children. Each is full of their personality, creativity and curiosity.
I thought I’d end this post with a picture of all of us meeting Santa. I love this picture. It’s not perfect and certainly doesn’t paint everyone in a great light but it does show all of us in our individual glory.
Time really does fly by when you have a house full of little ones. Seems every week it’s Friday by the time I realise another week has gone by. We have had loads of adventures and everyone is getting really big now. My little boy is not so little anymore and is now a whopping three years old! How did that happen!
So he’s Mr Cool these days and FULL of personality. He knows how to voice his opinion and is a determined man. In love with football and all sports involving a ball – as someone who knows very little about most of these sports, he is becoming my teacher.
My three little ladies have found their voices also and all with very different personalities. It makes for a great house. Triplets are fascinating to watch. They have an incredible connection with each other. My two identical girls have their own language and speak to each other in this foreign tongue. It’s like baby talk but has purpose and meaning to them. I have no real clue of what they are saying to each other but occasionally I get the idea. They are also learning to talk and I know it’s only a matter of time before their special language disappears. I remember when Red was a baby learning to talk, he had all sorts of words for things. Water was this garbled word that had no association with the word water but we all knew what he meant and this was the way with many things, demands, until slowly they disappeared and English became his language. There’s something very special about this time, when they are absorbing so much. Their minds are incredible, little sponges soaking up the world around them.
Life balance is something I’m very conscious of at the moment. I know when I don’t get any break from the day to day, I start to struggle and everything gets really hard. A simple park excursion feels like a mountain climb. However, once I plan out a couple ‘me time’ activities my energy returns.
We go through tough sleeping patterns all the time and this can be incredibly tough on my body. Waking two to three times a night is really hard. This is usually associated with teeth or illness. I think most parents know this part of parenting is not the most fun. But it doesn’t take much for recovery. Amazing when I think back to how I experienced tiredness pre babies! But one night of sleep and all of sudden those sleepless nights are forgotten.
I now have a totally new perspective on holiday season and see it all in a new light. I also have a new appreciation for January – who would have thought that a month that sees such depression numbers rocket could give me such joy! But Christmas this year was unique and certainly not comparable to my normal flurry of joy. I normally have my house decorated to an inch of its life, have cranberry sauce bubbling on the stove, bows and wrapping paper everywhere, the biggest Christmas tree I can find and to do lists galore. This year I had triplets.
When juggling four children military timing is key. Once you keep everything on a tight timeline, everyone is happy. Deviate from this and it can tumble into chaos quite easily. I knew the holidays was going to be a challenge. Creche was closing, my minder was going home to her family and my own family were skipping off to the sun. I had arranged a patchwork of help that was slightly fractured but very possible. Unfortunately, I didn’t factor in a sick baby in hospital.
Isn’t it always the case, one thing goes wrong then everything goes wrong! Its all a bit of a blur now but those two weeks were hell. Poor little Abigail was in hospital with a bad dose of RSV Bronchilitis. This has been a bad year for sick babies and Ireland’s wet, damp weather has not helped. All my girls have had RSV and unfortunately it won’t go until winter passes and they are a bit stronger. I have been in and out of doctors for weeks now and pretty much know all the signs. Three things to watch out for:
- How is their breathing? Are they panting? When you look at them – does it look like they are using their rib cage to breath?
- Are they feeding? Can they keep a feed down? If vomiting, they can get dehydrated pretty quickly.
- Do they have a temperature? When very small this can be quite serious and usually means they are trying to fight something.
So January is here and I have never jumped out of bed with such a spring in my step. 2016 is full of promise. The girls are just going to keep getting stronger and brighter every day (and maybe learn to sleep through the night!!!). My little boy is full of wonder and vigor for life. And I am reaching a very big milestone number this year- 40!! So yes it wasn’t the best Christmas in the traditional sense but wow – look where I am now. Mum of four great kids who keep me on my toes and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Roll on 2016!
This month is all about sleep and stretching the night sleep. The girls are doing fantastic so far and all the hard work is paying off. It definitely pays to keep day as day! In other words, our house is not a silent place during the day, the girls get play time on their mat, change of outfit and nap in their bouncers. I keep the cot for night sleep and have started diming lights from about 7.30pm to get the idea across that its sleep time. We have a feeding frenzy every evening which is exausting and they can be very cranky. However, once down, they get a dream feed at 11ish and sleep till 5.30/6am. In the longterm this will be well worth it……
Firstly, apologies for the lack of post in the last while. Its been a busy month!
Since I last wrote I have been away and experienced my first and last week in the sun with a ‘wobbler’ while being pregnant with triplets. I would advise all women in this circumstance – don’t do it!! As a dedicated sun worshiper it pained me to have cut the trip short and come home for sleep. I am still suffering from pregnancy insomnia and had to share a room with my son. This equalled disaster as neither of us go any sleep! So after getting to hysterical tiredness I decided the only thing for it was to head home and rest! Miraculously, as soon as we landed in Dublin both myself and my little boy slept soundly. Happy to be in our own beds, in our own rooms, peace and quiet resumed.
So back to normal. Being a single working mum has its definite downsides but being a heavily pregnant single working mum is just hard – plain and simple. I think I underestimated what other mums did. I have now conceded and decided the only thing for it is to get some extra help. The evenings are getting physically tough and I need someone to assist with carrying my son, getting him into the bath, fed and ready for bed. But I am generally a hands on mum so it pains me to have someone else do all these things and I hope it doesn’t effect the brilliant bond I have with my son.
Meanwhile, I can’t get over the love that gushes from me for my son. Wow how wonderful it is being a mother! He has advanced to the tantrum stage early (only just turned one!). I have done plenty of googling on the subject but I have come to the conclusion that – while yes ignoring is the best policy – time is the only true healer. He will just have to grow out of this one I think. I am trying not to laugh too much when he gets into one of these fits because I won’t let him ‘down’ on the main road but really they are funny how they try to push it as far as they can.
Getting so excited about the big arrival – only 15 weeks to go!!!!!!!
So this morning I woke early! Way before my beautiful boy, who has suddenly started sleeping through the night. It’s a corner I hope we’re permanently turning. Anyway, back to this morning. So I was lying there thinking how lovely it is to sleep a solid 8 hours and it dawned on me – how will I feed 3 babies on my own at night!!! So I started googling like mad. Still no solution but once I find one, I’ll let you know.
On another note, heard the triplets heartbeats this week. There is nothing more beautiful than that sound!