The Dynamics of Three
When I was pregnant with my third child, I called my mother to give her the good news. Her response, as is often the case, was unexpected. "You're making a huge mistake," she said, "three is terrible. You should wait a few years and have another two. Odd numbers are no good. Two pairs will be much more manageable than three."
As the mother of three daughters, she was speaking from significant experience. My middle sister and I fought constantly, vying for the attention of our baby sister. And when by some miracle we ignored each other, the younger two fought over toys. The only constant was that someone was always left out.
I was thrilled about my pregnancy and thoroughly annoyed by her poorly timed advice. But even if I hadn't been pregnant, I still wouldn't have wanted to hear it. The thought alone of taking a break and then doing it all over again a second time was enough to make me break out in hives. I also rationalized that things would be different for me because I had children of different genders.
I wanted my third child, and I wanted him or her to be two or three years apart from my second child. Then I wanted to be done with diapers, sleep training, teething and baby food and on to certainly easier parenting duties.
Continued on the next page
Well I got my third child when I wanted her. A little girl to round out my family of girl, boy, girl. And now my baby is three. I am done with diapers, sleep training, teething and baby food. And, as is often the case, I'm beginning to think my mother may have been right.