I never thought in a million years I would be a mother of triplets, but here I am. Two girls and one boy entered my life all at the same time. Well, within a minute of each other but you get it. So how did I get here?
From the Beginning
No I didn’t do IVF but I did have to resort to fertility shots to help me become pregnant. A very common question I get which BTW, some may find that question very intrusive! If you don’t know the person, just say congratulations and move on. It’s no one’s business how it happened. Although some people do find the questions rude, I, on the other hand am pretty open about it and don’t mind speaking about my journey. I administered one month of injections that was unsuccessful. The second month worked, and boy did it work! Just imagine, my husband and I are sitting in the office getting our first ultrasound. Immediately you can see two tiny babies on the screen. Twins! Ok, we can handle that!! We were aware that twins were a possibility when dealing with fertility drugs. So the tech is finishing up and says “let’s take one more look around…oh, wait, here is baby number 3!” WHAT! BABY 3? STOP, GET OUT, DO NOT COUNT ANYMORE BABIES! Those were my thoughts exactly! Both my husband and I left the office wide eyed, ghost white, and scared out of our minds. We have never had one baby much less 3!!
So how do you prepare for 3 babies? Prayer, lots of prayers! I work in the medical field, I knew the risks of a multiple pregnancy. I knew these babies could come early and have many complications. But my faith in God was bigger than my fear. I couldn’t waste time worrying about the whatifs. I had 3 babies in my belly and I had to get ready for them.
We did what any couple expecting a baby would do, just times 3 of course. We started buying diapers, got 3 cribs, baby monitors, fixed up a nursery for 3 babies. I did the best I could not really knowing what I was doing. I just had the idea of “it will work out”. And it did and it has – they were born June 10 at 29 weeks. The girls were in NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) for 2 months and my little boy for 4 months. They are healthy and happy and amaze me every day! To learn more about our NICU experience, click here.
So how is it going from zero kids to 3 in just a few short minutes? Crazy, chaotic, and exhausting. I love my kids but man, 3 at once is nothing short of a circus in my house. The baby stage believe it or not, was a breeze for us. All was good until we hit 3 – enter tantrums and whining! Oh, the whining! But, we don’t know any different. Every new mother has their challenges, mine just happen to come in 3’s. But as all moms do, we figure it out. I may not have the same advice or experiences as other moms but I’m still a mom that is just trying to live and learn.
The Good in Three
There are many reasons I believe having 3 at once is cool and works for me. However, there are some reasons that make me sad and sometimes wish I was able to experience what having one would be like. So let’s start with the good!
- One and done – one pregnancy that is! I was blessed with a mix of two girls and a boy! My husband was truly expecting for us to have 3 girls (just his luck) but God had other plans and gave us a precious boy as well. So I don’t have to try again for that missing gender a family sometimes want.
- The newborn stage was not as challenging for us as one would think. I mean there were challenges, but sleeping was not one of them. I have heard the horror stories of being up all night walking the floors with a newborn, or taking a car ride at 3AM trying to get the baby to sleep. I didn’t have any of that. I do think the reason for this was because of their NICU stay. The NICU was able to put them on a schedule – we knew when to feed them, when they would sleep, the NICU got us prepared for them coming home. Not that I would ever want any baby to be in the NICU, but for us – it gave us time to get ready and learn how to manage 3. (I mean I have to look for the positive in this!)
- All potty trained at once! YES- I have managed to train all 3 at the same time with the help of our amazing daycare. Talk about a nice income pick up when I stopped buying diapers!! And I will never have to buy another diaper again! No 5 and 6 years of having kids in diapers for me!!
- They will always have a friend – they entertain each other most days when not fighting! They will know how to share and play with others because they don’t have a choice. I love watching them interact and love each other. The best is when they take care of one another – when one is sick, the other two jump in wanting to take his temperature, bring him blankets, kiss his head. The daycare also tells me stories where they will take up for one another if another child is being mean to one. They will have a bond like no other!
- They will all be out of daycare at the same time! Again, another big raise once they start school! Daycare is sooo expensive, especially for 3. But, that money will probably just need to be put back for college – so where there is light in all finishing daycare at once, it reminds me they will all start college at once!!! Ugh!
The Other Side
I have always been pretty positive throughout this journey but I am not going to say I didn’t have moments that were hard for me. Moments where I cried and wondered why I couldn’t just have a normal pregnancy and do things like others with one child. Before I say any of this- I know there are families that yearn, long, and pray for any amount of children God may bless them with. I know I am extremely blessed and I would not change anything – I love my trio, I love being a triplet mom. But I cannot deny that I have my moments where this triplet thing is tough and it is important to acknowledge that motherhood is hard, period!!
Below are some of those moments:
- I mentioned being pregnant only once as a positive but it is also sad in a way. We could have another baby but I just don’t think I would be able to handle 4 kids under age 4 – I know myself, I would need to be heavily medicated! And what if we had multiples again – yikes!! I am sad that I will not be able to have another baby in my house. I will be an empty nester all at once and sooner than others! They grow up so fast – I blinked and I no longer have babies. Kind of sad at times.
- Not a normal pregnancy – I was on bedrest for 5 weeks in the hospital – not fun! I didn’t get to do all the prepping and “nesting” new moms usually get to do. And maternity leave – what a joke. I’ll save that rant for another post, but basically I had to figure out how to be on bedrest, deal with kids in the NICU, and still have time for when they came home! Luckily I work for a great company that allowed me to work a couple of hours a day while on bedrest. I did make the hard decision to go back to work 2 weeks after delivering, after a C-section! My kids were in NICU and not coming home anytime soon. The hospital was not far from where I worked so I was still able to visit during lunch and after work. Again, my great company allowed me to do this. The girls came home first after 2 months, so I started my “maternity leave” then but unfortunately by the time my son came home, I was out of time. So I did not get to stay home with him.
- Breastfeeding – WHAT? How do you breastfeed 3!! Well, it can be done, I just couldn’t do it. I pumped while they were in the NICU. They create a schedule for you once they are able to actually nurse. Goes a little like this– nurse one, the other two get bottles, offer bottle after nursing the one to make sure they did actually eat, and then pump after nursing. Um – these kids are eating every 2-3 hours, when shall I sleep?? I tried, I really did – but once back at work, pumping became harder and harder – I wasn’t producing enough anyway for all three so after 6 months – we went straight formula. But I made it 6 months!!
- Having 3 babies/toddlers at once can be isolating. It is hard to find others that will truly help. Oh yes, they will say, there will be plenty of hands to help. But that usually turns into me chasing them around while everyone else stands around visiting and just smiling at the chaos that is my life! Going anywhere takes strategic planning – can I go with all 3 by myself? Will a triplet stroller fit? I want to do all the things with my kids but there are some events I just don’t think I can manage with 3 by myself so we miss out. I know the kids will not notice, but I do. And then there are silly little things like newborn pictures. Mine were in NICU so I didn’t get to do the adorable birth announcements I often get in the mail. Seems silly I know, but just one of the things that I feel like I missed out on.
- One on one time – it’s hard to be able to spend quality time with just one when you have 3 – and this goes for anyone with multiple kids any age. But at least with having one at a time, you do get some individual time during that newborn stage. I will not know what it is like having one baby to devote all my time to, to snuggle when I want, to just pick up and go places. I was having to feed, burp, change, rock one and then move on to the other. It was hard to just sit back and enjoy.
So that about sums it up – what it is like to go from zero to three kids and the ins and outs of being a mom of multiples! I just try to survive everyday probably like most other moms. Some days I get it right, other days I don’t. Some days are better than others. My life is way more exciting and exhausting now than I ever could have imagined. But I am thankful, I love my kids, I love my life, and what would I be without a bunch of MOMsense to keep me on my toes??