Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Does it get easier? Four aged four and under, an update

When Cora was born, Dylan was still four and I had six weeks of four children aged four and under.  I had two babies as Finn at 16 months old was still two months away from his first steps and it was logistically tricky as well as completely exhausting having two children up in the night. As the children have got a bit bigger I have had lots of comments about 'having my hands full' as well as questions about whether it is getting easier.

And the truth is that it is, and it isn't.  The baby stage will always be my favourite, I love having a newborn and I find there is something so comforting about knowing that they stay exactly where you put them.  When Cora was little she would nap most of the day and Finn was still having an afternoon sleep too.  They both sat happily in a pushchair or a sling when we were out and I had my hands free for the bigger boys.  

Of course it was tricky as newborns want to feed a lot and I was often pinned to the sofa whilst a baby, a toddler and a 4 year old wanted my attention and help.  I was juggling twice as many children as I had arms on very minimal sleep and I couldn't leave the house without taking a giant bag and a pushchair and a sling.  

Now the children are 6,5, 3 and 20 months and things have changed a lot.  There is only one that still wakes up in the night and I am trying to convince myself that we are on the verge of sleeping through.  They can all walk, they can all run and they can all play without needing me.  I spend more time sat on the sofa with a hot cup of tea than ever as they are old enough to entertain each other, to play independently and having four means there is always a playmate.  Even if they start to squabble, they can switch up and things remain calm.  

On the flip side, they can all walk and run, which means they often do so, in the opposite direction from one another.  They are not so content to stay in a pushchair, but the little two are not always very compliant when we are out and I am often seen herding them in the right direction.  Finn doesn't nap very often and Cora's are sporadic and unpredictable and instead of napping the pair of them can often be found causing mischief and plotting to take over the world.  

These four are noisier and messier than they were but we have settled in and adjusted to the new dynamics and worked out how to be a six.  It is easier, with the big two at school and the little two able to occupy themselves but it is definitely trickier at times too! 

Ask me again when I have four teenagers and I am sure I will long for the days of four little ones!

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