They say two’s a company but three’s a crowd. We are a family of 5, three kids aged between 1 and 10 and I tell you, in the year and the coming 2 more, it will be crazy.
By crazy I mean crazy wild, crazy happy, and crazy beautiful. This was not exactly the case when we had 2 kids a couple of years back and I’ll tell you why:
- Dad and Mom = 2 kids. One parent looks after each child. Bonus if ther’s a yaya in tow which makes it easier and more convenient for the parents. Three kids? Forget it. One child usually looks after himself. That one could alternately be the first or the middle child, depending on age and maturity. Being a worry wart, I get anxious by the mere thought of losing my child in the crowd because I was not holding his hand the whole time.
- Enough alone time with each kid. Splitting up your time or day between two kids is a no-brainer. How much time in a day do you get? Right, more than enough to spend with each one, even if you’re a working parent. With three, it gets a little too tight especially if one’s an infant or toddler who would be needing a lot of your attention. This being said, how much extra time do you still have for your spouse?
- Sufficient quality time with your spouse. Number one rule to a happy marriage is to spend time with your spouse regardless if you’re just squeezing him in to a tight schedule or going out on regular dates. With two kids who have grown to the age of 5 or older, weekly date nights are doable. Put in the equation a third one, a toddler for that matter, then timing and meticulous caregiving arrangements come into play.
- Availability of willing caregivers. One caregiver is okay to attend to two kids max, but add another one and she goes packing. Unfortunately, maintaining more than one caregiver is not easy on the pocket!
- Age-appropriate activities are easier to arrange. There are a lot of activities out there for kids to enjoy. And with the rise of social media advertising, it’s easier to schedule weekend affairs way ahead of time. All you need to do is pick the ones appropriate for your children’s ages. A 4-year age gap is challenging but workable. But activities for a 10-year old, 6-year old, and 1-year old are limited or none at all. The mall is the safest place to go to for diversity but who wants mall all the time? It’s actually not the best place for when you want your children to go out and discover what they really want.
There may be more issues apart from these, but for me, it stops here. Beyond the challenges are the joys of having a third child. A third child teaches the older siblings responsibility. A third child somehow balances the chaos. A third child gives siblings options for when the other is not available. A third child gives us another reason to work harder and be better. And the list goes on.
I would like to believe mine is a crazy beautiful bunch more than anything. There may be wild, rowdy days full of screaming, crying, and ranting but there are other days full of kissing, hugging, and laughing so hard it hurts. They being little is just a phase, and while this may not be the most glamorous phase of motherhood, I would not trade it for anything in the world.
I’m looking forward to the grown-up days though.😉