When Ruth was five months old, we found out we were pregnant with Rose. When Rose was about seven months old, we found out we were pregnant with Wren! Having children this close together is not for the faint of heart, but it does come with some unexpected perks. For example,
1) None of your baby stuff is in storage. That’s right! No need to send your husband up to the attic for all that baby junk that has been up there for a few years and worry about cleaning off the mold, dust and spiders. It is all still out! In fact, there is still a baby in it. Don’t get too comfortable in that exersaucer, baby. I’m counting on you learning to walk in the next few months. And soothe a newborn.
2) It’s like you had twins the easy way. Once they reach a certain age, strangers will fawn over your “twins.” I personally think that the moms of multiples rock, and I love pretending like I’m part of that prestigious club. Then, I feel guilty about basking in the undeserved praise and admit they are a year apart.
3) You can still remember all the tricks you used with the other baby. Each baby is still completely different, but you have a few weapons in your arsenal to make things easier. Swaddling is like riding a bike, you still remember all the weird ways to hold a newborn to stop fussiness, and you can change a diaper in three seconds flat, on any surface, without any getting poop or pee outside the dirty diaper.
4) You don’t have to worry about Aunt Flo for years. Years! I must admit, I have not missed it.
5) You don’t have to worry about the older one adjusting to no longer being an only child. Having siblings is pretty much all my kids have ever known, so we have never had to deal with issues relating to the adjustment to the new baby. They are old pros at this baby thing too. Ruth and Rose are way better at getting Wren to laugh than I am, and they can pop that paci back in her mouth in record time (when they are not putting it in their own mouths).
This is only tangentially related, but I once saw an entire comments section of an article devoted to whether “Irish Twins” was a derogatory term or not. You know, because it is derived from the fact that those uncouth Irish Catholics were too barbaric to use birth control and thus tended to have children close together. (I hope you could feel the sarcasm dripping off that last sentence). I was aghast at the thread because it was the only time I have ever been offended that there was even a discussion about whether something was offensive or not. First of all, everyone should stop assuming that “birth control” is some fool proof way of controlling pregnancies. It’s not. Unless, of course, you include abortion in the birth control category. In that case, I guess that is why it is called “birth control” and not “pregnancy control.” Second of all, Catholics can use birth control. It’s called NFP, and it is just as effective as the chemicals. Third of all, what is so barbaric about being ok with having children close together? It is insulting that one would consider references to child spacing like mine insulting. (If that makes any sense).
I belong to the freakishly fertile category (we did not intend to have children close together), but now that my girls are here, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love watching them grow up together, being so close in age and so close in their relationships with each other. To all of you mamas of “Irish Twins” (say it loud, and say it proud, baby), what unexpected perks have I missed?