Monday, June 13, 2011

Confessions of a Mom with Three

For 9 months I was concerned with how the new baby would be and how it would affect our lives.  Would she be fussy?  Would she sleep well?  Would she be a baby with colic?  Would she take forever to nurse?  My worrying was for nothing because she doesn't cry much, she eats fast and she sleeps pretty well.  She is a wonderful baby.  She does however, have a very, very fond affection for sucking on my finger which can occupy my attention for hours each day.  All of my girls suck their thumbs and Ellie will too, but she is too young to get her thumb to her mouth just yet.  I know that this phase of her sucking my finger for hours each day will end soon enough, and I cherish the moments I get to sit and hold her.  

The problem arises in that I have two other children who also need my love and attention.  I wasn't fully aware that they were feeling neglected until very recently.  I actually though everything was going fine up until this past week.  They are typically pretty self sufficient and play together great. But for a week now the older two have been driving me CRAZY.  I have been feeling like they don't obey a word I say, they get into everything they shouldn't, and I am constantly correcting them, disciplining them, yelling at them, or frustrated with them, praying for forgiveness and patience, and then repeating the cycle all over again.  I could tell I was on edge because yesterday I ate 3 of those amazing, soft shortbread cookies with frosting and sprinkles that contain a whopping 180 calories each.  Yep I ate 540 calories worth of cookies yesterday and I am not typically one to resort to food when I am feeling stressed.

I don't know why I didn't see it sooner.  Hello?!  We have a new baby in the house AND we are moving in 6 days.  How did I not realize that this would cause the girls to act out and vie for my attention, even my negative attention?  

Now that I have come to my senses and realize the issue, I can better manage it by giving the girls plenty of positive reinforcement, letting them help with Ellie as much as possible and by giving them lots of one on one time when Ellie is sleeping.  And by praying for patience during the next couple of weeks as we move and the girls adjust to new surroundings.

Crazy or not I love my three girls and am so thankful for the blessing that each of them is.

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