It really does get easier. {The holiday version}

One of the most frequently asked questions from parents of newborn multiples is, “When does it get easier?  It DOES get easier, right?”  The answers from experienced parents vary from, “When they start sleeping through the night,” to “It doesn’t get easier – the hard stuff just changes.”

For some reason, I always seem to reflect upon the changes that have occurred with my girls during the holiday season.  I have an easy benchmark with our annual family Christmas party.  My husband’s family is quite large by today’s standards.  He has twelve siblings and twenty-some nieces and nephews, most of whom are over the age of eighteen.  Because there are so many people, a hall is usually rented and the party takes place just before or just after Christmas day. 

My girls were eight months old for their first Christmas.  They could sit up and play independently but were not yet crawling.  We brought one Pack-n-play with us as I was not about to place them on the floor (of questionable cleaniness) of the function room where the party was taking place.  My mom offered to come and assist which was a tremendous help as we would have one adult for each baby.

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We weren’t able to socialize much and eating was, well, you know how that goes when caring for multiple babies, but we survived.  The girls were still taking three naps a day at that age and one of their naps fell right in the middle of the time we would be at the party.  With three adults, we had the luxury of holding them for a short nap – something that normally does not take place when you have three infants.

The girls were twenty months old for their second Christmas, which made it a bit easier but also more difficult.  They were mobile and still at the age where they put objects in their mouths and got into things they shouldn’t.

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My mom, again, offered to join us to help watch the girls.  It was a bit crazy as they spent most of the time running around.  They still needed to be watched very closely and I felt as if I spend my entire time there counting, “One, two, three,” to ensure that no one went missing.  After finding a few small objects on the floor, I also spent some time scouring the place for choking hazards and setting up a make-shift baby gate around the trash cans.

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The Christmas party this year was much more enjoyable.  The girls at two years and eight months old are much easier to care for and we have even reached the point where either my husband or I can easily care for all three. 

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The girls are more into having fun and playing versus getting into things they shouldn’t.  There wasn’t much space at the hall this year so they didn’t have room to run around, which was fine by me.  We were all able to sit and eat as a family and socialize with other family members instead of chasing around three toddlers.

What is your view on “Does it get easier?”  Are you still waiting for it to get easier or have you noticed a difference?

Sarah is the mother to two and a half year old identical triplet girls – Allie, Anna and Emily – who were born at 35 weeks and 6 days.   You can read more about her crazy life raising triplets at The Great Umbrella Heist.

6 thoughts on “It really does get easier. {The holiday version}

  1. I agree, I think annual/milestone events like that are a great way to realize how different things have become. This year, for Christmas, my 2 1/2 year olds disappeared for 45 minutes with the “big kids” and I couldn’t have been happier. What a difference!

    I do think that things get a lot easier as they get older. I mean, parenting is never “easy,” and there’s always something hard about each age. But you get a lot more flexibility as they get older, which makes things feel a whole lot easier.

  2. I’m in that camp that they get easier. Mine are now 4, 3, & 3. We leave the house now with out a diaper bag. I tell the kids where we are going and how long to expect to be in the car … and THEY bring things to play with in the car.

    They are even starting to understand that when they are tired they need to rest and when I say I need five minutes of quiet time, I almost always get it now.

    I do think that those of us with multiples had a much more difficult time when they were little … but I think a lot of things will be easier for us as they get older … at least I keep telling myself that :)
    .-= M´s last blog ..Balance and the "Slow Family" Wannabe =-.

  3. This was our first Christmas with the girls. We spent a lot of time making sure they weren’t eating wrapping paper or pulling ornaments off the tree or helping themselves to candy. We also had two teething babies over the holidays. We had to pack a lot of baby stuff for the trip to our parents. Next year we’re planning to stay home, which should make it much easier to maintain routines.

  4. Okay, you’re giving me hope. Several times during our holiday travels and get-togethers this year, I kept thinking about how much harder it would be next year. Here’s to hoping it will get easier….eventually. :)
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Swingin’ =-.

  5. Oh, it totally gets easier! And yes, I too have been thinking about this a lot during the holidays — they are good markers for how things are going and easy to remember year to year.

    My girls are 3.5 and 19 months (twins), and this holiday season has been SO much better than last year. For me, once they were able to be a bit more flexible with sleep, and were able to happily play/hang out with other family members instead of needing to be held or fed by ME, things got so much more fun and manageable.

    And while my girls are still not the best nighttime sleepers, we are getting a lot more sleep than we did during the first year and a half, and that makes EVERYTHING better! I have the energy to handle their energy, which is huge.

    We’ve had a happy, fun, and fairly stress free holiday season this year, hooray! There is hope, I promise!
    .-= Kristin Hutchinson´s last blog ..Crafty Christmas Project: Handmade Wooden People =-.

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