Sure sure, you’ve heard the story before. With your first child you panic about every sniffle, sterilize the air and everything in it, sleep with one eye open, blah blah blah. Like me, my motherhood adventure has bucked tradition. I’ve basically been a new mama three, count them, three times. Mostly because so much time has passed between the births of each of my children, things became a bit hazy in between. True story. Baby number one was born when I was twenty years old. I didn’t have clue one about being a mother, but by gum I gladly became one. So as you can imagine, projectile cookie tossing and accidental penny swallowing – - don’t ask – - freaked me the heck out. The good news is she and I both survived and we’re doing just fine.
Fast forward to age thirty-four. THIS time I was in on the plan, and baby number two was born shortly after I passed the bar exam. (The legal one, not the cocktail one.) Darn it if she wasn’t diagnosed with a heart murmur at her one week checkup, so my husband and I didn’t sleep much for the first 7 months of her life, fearing that she would take her last breath in the middle of the night. We were very blessed though, she was able to have the murmur repaired through catheterization instead of open heart surgery. But boy, that sweet baby had to endure 3 more surgeries for various nonsense: a hernia, and two rounds of tubes and tonsillectomies. (Son of a b – adenoids can grow back!
Round three came about as quite a shock, seven and a half years later. I swear, by that time I had figured out with some certainty where babies come from, but my job was super busy and I failed to notice the absence of a certain monthly visitor two months in a row. We were thrilled to welcome our son last November.
I know what you’re thinking, surely I had to remember the ins and outs of new motherhood by the third time, but a lot has changed between 1991 and now. With my first, the bedtime rule was put the baby on her tummy. Now it’s the opposite. I formula fed her too, because I honestly didn’t know any better. It was the 90’s people, I was wearing flannel and watching 90210 religiously. Babies two and three were breastfed.
Baby gear and feeding has changed a ton too. I’m pretty sure the first car seat I purchased was fashioned with paper clips and duct tape compared to the swanky model our son now occupies. He also gets only organic food and natural, preservative-free everything. Don’t fret, our middle daughter got the good stuff too, although she certainly won’t turn down a Happy Meal if given the chance.
So that’s a quick rundown on my story of new motherhood times three. I started over and then over again. And you know what? I wouldn’t trade my three “new” experiences for anything.