It’s unbelievable how incredibly fast 12 weeks of maternity leave goes by. Multiply that speed x10 for each subsequent child that is born afterwards. By the time it’s your third, you already know the routine. If you are breastfeeding, you’ve become the most prolific yet efficient pumper with your freezer stash of liquid gold set for the next 3 months, with bottles and cases of Nutramigen at the ready. Prepared ziplock dinners and Instapot recipes are stacked up high in the freezer. You’ve got extra underwear for anticipated potty training regression, extra pull-ups for anticipated sleep regression. You’re even planning on dropping the big kids off earlier to account for the extra clinginess when you drop them off at school.
But let’s be real. Life with a new baby sibling is completely unpredictable and often times chaotic. And by baby number 3, the kids outnumber the grownups and boy do the kids know it. You’ve officially become an ergobaby wearing human jungle gym. A look that Dad also seems to sport well.
Ultimately you know everything will work out, but it doesn’t matter. None of those preparations will ever lessen the feeling of scarcity when leaving your babies to go back to work. So cherish the tantrums and the crazy moments. Embrace the clinginess of your older children. Hang on to every “just one more” your children ask for. Once you get your sleep back, I promise you’ll be looking back at this time with loving fondness.
Just one more walk. The sun is setting and it’s starting get chilly.
Just one more game of hide and seek. I love the way your face lights up with excitement even when you find me in the same hiding spot every time.
Just one more time on the swing. It’s not fair big sister got to go on it twice!
Just one more stop. If we don’t stop at the grocery store there won’t be any milk in your cereal tomorrow
Just one more apple. Mine dropped on the floor when big sister was pushing me!
Just one more aisle. Our ice cream stash is running low
Just one more bite. Isn’t cauliflower your favorite?
Just one more bite. Those veggies won’t eat themselves!
Just one more bite. I promise you can have ice cream afterwards!
Just one more towel. I don’t think I have enough
Just one more “Ahh”. No cavities on my watch!
Just one more kiss good night before I leave for my shift.
Are you or someone you know going on maternity/paternity leave soon? What preparations are you making to to help your transition back to your work run more smoothly? Let’s talk, I’d love to hear about it!
P.S. This family’s Slice of Life Album is still a favorite bedtime book for the children!