I am not a girl who does things by halves. If I am going to do something, I am going to do it massive stylee. So when I wanted children I decided I was going to have lots of children. Initially I had imagined a small herd of children, possibly dressed in Von Trap style outfits, singing harmonies to my Julie Andrews.
One child later and I downgraded that plan to four. Four children, all well behaved, playing boardgames around a table while I bake bread and knit jumpers. Another child in and my husband and I had a rethink and decided that three would be our number. I was a little concerned that I would forever regret stopping at three, this was before number three was born mind.
Now three children in and I cannot possibly imagine how people accommodate more than three. I am seriously stretched. Children are hard work, and I am not the most patient girl at the best of times.
The other thing that challenges me, with three children, is making sure they all get enough time and attention to flourish. I try to make sure that I spend individual quality time with each one of them. In theory I would make an hour or two every couple of weeks, for each child, to give them my undivided attention. In practise life is hectic and I barely find time to do this for one child, let alone all three.
Recently I have taken my eldest to dinner and movie. It was wonderful, he blossomed with the attention and we had a wonderful bonding time together. Back home and my middle was jealose and vying for my attention the only way he knows how, by being incredibly irritating!
Pulling out all his best tricks like throwing himself, the other children and the furniture around. Then my absolute favourite, talking constantly about absolutely nothing!
I know why he was acting this way, he felt left out, he needed his special time. However life got in the way and it hasn’t been possible to take him out, a fact that I will rectify as soon as possible. It’s got to be said though that his attention seeking behaviour takes some patience to deal with. I’m equally sure that were this the other way around it would be my eldest driving me nuts.
It feels like each child wants all of me, more of me than it is possible to give. With three this is a challenge to say the least. Don’t misunderstand, I love my children they are the best thing I have ever done and fill me with a massive sense of fulfilment. I just want to make sure they never feel like there were too many of them, that they didn’t get what they needed from me.
So I ask you this, how do you manage? Whether you have one or twenty, how do you give them all everything they need?