As you can tell, 3 kids has been a big adjustment for me. Two seemed so manageable, I figured 3 wouldn't be that hard, but oh, was I wrong. Rich and I are now outnumbered. And the 2 older ones are in the stage where they need lots of training. I guess it didn't help that Josiah had reflux and was very fussy for the first couple months. He didn't like to be put down ever. He is just now starting to feel better, and so he's happy sitting in a bouncy seat for a while. He is also starting to sleep through the night now. But even with that help, it's still hard to meet all their needs. Anna Ruth is a talker, and craves interaction. She wants to help, but many times it's more work to let her help. James is all boy, and I can't take my eyes off him for long. The other day he opened the front door and was out in the street watching the garbage truck before I even realized what was going on. He also likes to get a rise out of Anna Ruth by taking her toys or messing up something she set up. Anna Ruth is a drama queen and reacts loudly to James' pestering. Josiah just wants to be looked at and talked to while he is awake. (which I would love to do, if I didn't have a thousand other things on my plate!) Since he spits up all the time, he also makes a huge amount of laundry for being so small! So 3 kids has been pretty overwhelming, and I don't know how I would survive without parents helping out. I have a brand new appreciation for my mom who had her first 3 closer together than I had mine. Every day is an adventure and a chance to be more sanctified. But sometimes it's discouraging as I see I am not nearly as patient as I thought I was, not as self-sacrificing as I need to be, and not a good manager of my time. Having children sure does bring out the worst in me. I know it is God's way of showing me who I really am in order to bring about change in me. Maybe by the end of this, I will look a little more like Christ. If that's the case, it is so worth it.
Don't get me wrong; I love my kids. I love hearing their little voices say "I love you Mommy" and feel their sweet kisses on my lips. I love seeing them do the happy dance when I tell them they can have dessert. I love hearing their squeals of laughter when they get tickled. I love hearing Anna Ruth talk about her understanding of a Bible story and hear both of their prayer requests during family worship. I love watching them dance in the living room with Daddy after dinner. I love seeing Josiah's huge smiles and first little laughs when I kiss his neck. They are all precious gifts from God. I love them so much, it's hard to believe that my Heavenly Father loves me even more than that. It gives me hope because I know he will keep forgiving me and working everything together for my good.
So, if you have 2 kids, and you're wondering whether you should have another, I would say definitely have 3! :)