From one to two to four.

Going from no kids to one kid was tough. I was pretty stressed out. I was pretty uptight. I hadn’t yet mastered the art of keeping up with the housework…like at all. My life revolved around me and sort of Phillip, but I don’t think we even really had the marriage thing down just real great at that time. That is not to say that I’m master of housework and all things marriage related at this time either, but we’ve come a long way. Jackson broke us in with his near constant nursing around the clock, crying every evening for what seemed like several months, and just generally turning our lives upside down. He wasn’t a bad baby, but he really wasn’t an easy one either. We went from being entertained by movies and television to being entertained by the cutest kid we’d ever laid eyes on.

But by the time Jackson was four, we had the one kid thing down as well as most people, I guess. When we got Mikey it wasn’t a huge shock to our system. I remember it taking me about 6 weeks or so before I really felt like I had a handle on having two kids. Mikey was a much easier baby than Jackson. Mikey slept about 10 or so hours straight through the night by the time he was about 6 weeks old. Mikey really didn’t get all that difficult until started walking…er…running…I mean sprinting everywhere he went. And he has stayed pretty challenging since.

Jackson – 8 and homeschooled, Mikey – 3 and fearless and unpredictable, Phillip – in the middle of a school year, Me – homeschooling Jackson and in the busiest season of my photography business…

And then came the girls in December 2010.

Almost overnight, these two kid parents became the parents of four kids. Three of which were under the age of four. And don’t forget that one of those kids was Mikey, who is like two kids all by himself. It was like boot camp. It was impossible. It was harder than I can even describe. When we got Brittany in December she was just a pretty typical 2 1/2 year old. And if you’ve ever been around a 2 1/2 year old for very long, then you’ll know that they are just kind of pains in the butts. And Jade was an 11 month old that seemed like about a 7 month old. Neither of them were very independent and to top it off, they were both in diapers.

And even though we became the parents of four kids almost overnight, we did not become four kid parents overnight. We were still 2 kid parents trying desperately to become four kid parents. You can’t parent four kids like you can two. And unlike when you give birth to a newborn and have some time to grow into your new parenting roles, we didn’t really have that. It was sink or swim. There were days when we swam and there were days when we sank.

Now, six months later, I think we have more swim days than sink days. I think I’m finally starting to feel like I have a handle on this. Things that seemed impossible in December now are really just not that big of a deal.

I’ve heard some parents say that going from 2 to 3 kids is the hardest transition. We wouldn’t know because we went from 2 to 4. And it has been nuts. Just completely nuts.

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