Thursday, April 12, 2012

3, that's all folks

I'm struggling with the mixed emotions of having my last child.  Ashlynn is our third daughter and we've had three kids in mind since we started talking about having children.  So here we are.  The third one is almost 6 months old and it's hard to believe that 5 years ago it was just the two of us.  It's hard to digest that in such a short amount of time I've had three pregnancies, three births and three beautiful daughters.  I guess it's hard to digest that phase of motherhood being over for me.  It's easy to forget all the rough parts of pregnancy and birth when I'm snuggling Ashlynn in my arms and she's babbling at me with complete adoration in her eyes.  I don't want to be pregnant again and yet it's still difficult to let go of that idea.
Three kids is considered a large family these days.  We've had multiple people assume we have a large family for certain religious beliefs.  It makes Justin and I giggle because three kids isn't all that many.  For good reason we've decided that three is a good amount for our family.  Now that Ashlynn is with us I feel like our family is complete.

Mothering an infant with a toddler and little girl is hard work.  The hardest work I've ever done.  Maybe not as hard as it will be when they are all teenagers but for now I'm pretty wiped most days.  Justin and I love having three kids.  It feels right.  Work, but the good kind of work we get to do together.

Last week I pulled out all the baby clothes Ashlynn's outgrown.  All the newborn size as well as the 3months and 3-6 months size is too small for Ash now.  I've been thrilled at the idea that once she's outgrown something we can give it away.  Thrilled with the idea until I actually did it.  I put a huge box together of all the adorable tiny clothing and sent it two doors down to the American family that is having their first baby girl this summer.  It didn't hit me until the box had left my arms and I received a thank you text from the expectant mom that I was saying goodbye to the newborn stage.  Never again would I be filling the dresser with tiny little onesies and footie pajamas in expectation of a new baby arriving.  It was heartbreaking.  I'm shocked at the emotions I have about it.  Even as I write this my eyes are filling with tears thinking about being past the newborn stage of my third and last child.  Maybe I was thrilled with the theoretical idea of purging our storage of baby gear, toys and clothing.  In theory it was liberating.  In reality I'm sad.

Even more ridiculous is the fact that I'm still deep in the trenches of mothering my baby girl.  I am exhausted from lack of sleep, breastfeeding , battling night wakings and teething.  Even in the thick of it all I am having an emotional battle with it being the last time.  Lord help me when we get rid of the crib.  

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