I’ve mentioned before that the newborn phase has never been kind to Willy and I’s relationship and I think it’s fair to say that lack of sleep, in general, is never a recipe for a successful marriage. This third time around, however, we’ve changed our game plan and thus far, Sonny has afforded us the smoothest transition. Everyone says the jump from two children to three is the hardest and while I’m sure there are hard days ahead that are surely chuckling at us as we make such grossly ignorant statements so early on, thus far it’s been the perfect amount of team work combined with smooth sailing with, of course, the small doses of tears and tantrums that, in part, are to be expected. Just fewer than I anticipated, I guess.
So what’s changed, you may be wondering?
With both Hooper and Van, Willy and I shared nighttime duties. I found it hard to get any sort of solid sleep when around the baby because I was always on-edge and anxious over the thought of them waking up hungry, ready to feed. So after a feeding, I would go to bed and Willy would sleep on the sofa, with the baby, and wake me when it was time for the next feeding and then we’d switch. It was fair and afforded me at least a few hours of promising sleep but it also left both of us in that survival mode; depleted and rundown. And it opened the door to a lot of bickering that really had nothing to do with whatever subject matter was brought up in said bickerments, but instead in the fact we were plain tired; our reserves empty.
With Hooper and Van now older, it seems silly to have us share the newborn responsibilities. In hindsight, it was probably silly to share it even back then. What we’ve found is that the best way to divvy up responsibilities is to have one take the nighttime shift (me) while the other takes the supportive role. And when you have two already, it’s kinda a draw as to which one is easier. Thus far, these roles have worked in such a way that a transition we were both kinda dreading has actually become sorta – well – enjoyable. And I think that’s because we have a good balance.
I’m getting a few solid hours of sleep at night, in chunks of course, but there’s also no rush for me to start my day because Willy has been getting up with the boys, fixing them breakfast (never mind the fact it’s Eggo waffles most days… which I pick up off the floorboard of the car days later in their stale, hardened state), getting them ready for school, and dropping them off.
The days are slow and most days are spent checking off the bare necessities a family needs to accomplish to get to the next day, but happiness and joy have been encasing us. Alas, we have found a system that allows us to enjoy these fleeting days just in time for it to all change; because that’s how these early days go, isn’t it? In any event, trying our best to take it one day at a time and to welcome the changing tides. And feeling grateful for our current situation; having Willy around as often as I do is something I didn’t have with Hooper and Van.