What I Didn’t Expect For My Third Child

photo credit: Stefanie Cole Photography

I’m not going to lie. I was a little worried for my soon-to-be third child. Being pregnant the third time around was far from glamorous and relaxing. Not that it was the second time around, but this time, there was arguing and fighting. This time there was bickering, pushes, and shoves. Screams over who took the last pack of goldfish, who used the toilet first in the morning, who got more milk in their cup, and who sat in the front of the tub during bath time. This time around, I felt like a referee. And it was exhausting. 

And so I yelled more. I felt like all I did was raise my voice—redirecting, threatening, and giving warnings. At times I’d have to pull my second child off of my first. I felt bad for my baby inside. I felt like all it heard was mommy getting upset and it made me sad.

During the last trimester I thought about what it would look like for this new baby. I wondered how my kids, particularly my second child, would react to their new brother or sister. Although funny and oh so lovable, he was my wild, spirited child. He had a strong personality. He was used to getting my attention.

As a therapist by training, I knew how common it was for children to regress and act out when a new baby enters the picture. So I did what I could to prepare both children for the big arrival. I purchased an “I’m a Big Brother” book and another about mommy being pregnant. I got them involved. I got them excited about being Mommy’s special helpers.

And before I knew it the baby was here. Because time goes much quicker the third time around. And that moment came where they laid eyes on him in my hospital room. It was a moment where time seemed to stand still. And my heart just melted into a puddle right there in that hospital room. Because you see, it wasn’t just my baby, it was their baby too.

I could see their eyes light up. They were fascinated by his “teenyness.” His little hands and his button nose. They kissed his feet and gently placed their hands on his fuzzy head. They kissed him some more and glanced up at me with a proud smile on their face. This. This was it. This wasn’t what I expected. 

Photo Credit: Jennifer Lynn Photography

I had been worrying so much, expecting the worst, that I hadn’t thought about what could go right. Love. So much love. More love than my other two had. It wasn’t just Mommy and Daddy who gushed over him. No, this baby felt so much more.

Yes, it may be loud, messy and a bit chaotic in our home. Yes, this baby may get woken up from his brother rubbing his head or have cream cheese in his hair from him kissing him during breakfast. Yes, he may get bobbled around by his sister rocking him a little too enthusiastically. This baby may never know quiet (surely not in our house). But he sure does know love. Big kisses. Tight hugs. Little eyes watching him. Admiring him. Protecting him. This baby is loved fiercely. And it isn’t what I expected.

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Alisa Fulvio
Alisa is a psychotherapist, life coach and mom of three. Alisa is a native of Fairfield County and lives with her husband (a New York transplant), daughter (October 2012) and two sons (January 2015, June 2018). Following the birth of her second child, Alisa left her full-time job and pursued her dream of starting her own private practice by founding Balanced Being Counseling, LLC and Balanced Being Coaching, LLC (abalancedbeing.com) located in downtown Fairfield. Alisa specializes in working with young women and moms to decrease stress and manage feelings of anxiety and depression. She is trained in treating perinatal mood and anxiety disorders and is an active committee member of Postpartum Support International- CT Chapter serving as the Communications Chair. Alisa is the creator the Facebook Group, Balanced Mama, a non-judgmental space for moms to feel inspired, gain support and come together among the chaos. She is passionate about motherhood, supporting women, buffalo chicken and a good margarita.



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