The Fears of a Fourth Time Mom

All my life I’ve heard people say that once you have three kids, any more beyond that isn’t a big deal. I mean, you’re already outnumbered so what’s one more, right? Yet here I am a couple weeks away from welcoming baby #4 and I have a feeling maybe everyone who ever said that was wrong. Like, waaaaaaay wrong.  I have to keep reminding myself that everyone said three kids was a game-changer too and while three kids isn’t easy, it’s not the worst either. So maybe it’ll be the same with four? Or maybe if I keep telling myself that then it’ll come true. That’s how the world works, right? Just tell me yes and we can move on.

So what am I afraid of? For starters, I have this fear of leaving baby4 in the car. I’m not sure when or why this fear started, but it’s there nonetheless.  

I’m afraid of straight up not being able to handle an infant, a toddler, a preschooler, and a kindergartner all at the same time. I about had a panic attack just now while typing all four of those kid-life stages out. I’ll probably yell at my kids too much and take out my stress on them. Then I’ll feel bad and wonder what in the world I’m doing being a mom because I’m obviously terrible at it. 

I’m afraid of this summer. ALL four kids ALL the time. The way I see it now we have two options: one, spend a lot of money on summer camps or two, spend a lot of money on wine because damn, I’m gonna need it. 

I’m always afraid of how another kiddo will affect my marriage. I go through this fear this after every kid, and rightfully so. Adding a baby to the mix throws everything off for at least a few months and it takes a while to find your groove again. Your family groove, your routine groove, your life groove, your dinnertime groove, and especially (dare I say it?!?) your bedroom groove.  And those are all grooves I love so being without them for a little while can be tough. 

But things are different in good ways this time around too, which is helping adjust to the “idea” of baby4.  I have amazing friends and an incredible support system.  And I don’t just have it, but I use it. Allowing yourself to accept the help offered by people who love you is difficult, wonderful, and for me right now a necessity. I am forever grateful for my tribe in that regard. I have a house that’s big enough for a family of 6 to live in without having to live on top of each other. It was stressful before we recently moved trying to figure out where the baby would even sleep or where his clothes would go. Our old house was becoming very small, very fast and the baby wasn’t even there yet. 

Lots of things we do, changes we’re making, and events in the future can be daunting and overwhelming if we let ourselves be overcome by the fear of it. Writing it out helps. Reminding myself of the things I have that will make my life easier helps. And remembering that as long as the baby has a car seat, clothes, and diapers to come home in, we’ll be ok to figure the rest of it out along the way 🙂

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