10 Things I Should Have Never Said to My Husband After Our First Child


“Let’s have another!” There; end of story. Okay, so I’m kidding. But really, four kids later, I should have kept my mouth shut about once our first daughter was born. I was a new mom, my husband a new dad. We were young and we were in love and we were just so happy to have our first baby that I think we can both agree that we said a few things we’d like to forget, but let me start at the beginning. My husband and I are high school sweethearts – kind of. Does it count that I was his sweetheart when I was in high school but he was a freshman in college? Okay, either way; we began dating at the tender age of 18. A year-and-a-half later, we became engaged. Two years later, we married at 21 and 22. We were not ready for kids – and by we, I mean I didn’t want kids, like, ever (go ahead and read that with your best Taylor Swift, it’s cool). I was not a child person. I just was not.

Fast forward three years. My honey whisked me off to Hawaii for a week to celebrate my 24th birthday. While there, he proposed a toast to us. We’d been married three years. We were happy. We were living our dream. And he wanted me to start thinking about a family. He’d been watching other families with their kids in Hawaii and he wanted a family of his own. He’d always wanted to be a father and he thought I’d make an excellent mother (I’m definitely an okay mom, maybe even good some days). We clinked our glasses and I laughed and said no.

A month later, it was still all I could think about, and I decided that I was married to a man with so much patience, so much love and such a big heart that I couldn’t imagine him without kids. Even though I didn’t think I’d be very good at it – I’m a little selfish, after all – I decided to talk to my husband. A month later, I was pregnant.

Honestly, I’m a good mom. I love my kids like you wouldn’t believe (except you would believe it, because you probably have kids of your own about whom you feel the same). I’d do anything for them. I worry for and about them every second of every day, and I’ve never felt love like I do for these sweet babes. Next month will be 7 years since we entered the wonderful world of parenting, and we are four kids and a vasectomy into parenthood (What? Do you even have a clue how much my chances of having twins increases after having them once? No thanks!). We know so much more now than we did 7 years ago, and I’m here to tell you that there are a few things I probably shouldn’t have said after she was born.

I cannot believe I let you talk me into this!

To be fair, this was stated about 36 weeks into my pregnancy when I was well and truly over it. It was the end of June and I was done with a capital D. We live in Florida, it’s hot, I hated every moment of every day. The entire first 8 months was a dream; easy, simple, no sickness, nothing negative, but suddenly I was miserable. But if I thought I was miserable those last few weeks, it was nothing like the misery I felt the night I went into labor. It was the night I turned 39 weeks. I’d had no Braxton Hicks, nothing. Suddenly at 8:30, I had one small little contraction that didn’t even hurt a bit. At 9:40, I had another. I was finally feeling those Braxton Hicks, and that excited me. At 10:20, I had another. Still painless and very short; at 12:00, that all changed. Suddenly I had a very painful contraction and back labor began. I was in agony. At 12:05, I had another contraction. By 12:15 we were in the car, I was crying and I hated life. By 12:20, they were coming every 2 minutes on the dot. By 1 am, I was 7 centimeters dilated and being given my epidural. After that I felt like a champ, pushed a few times, and held our baby girl. But believe me when I tell you I screamed at my husband until that epidural needle came into the room and I begged them to just stick it in me. After that, I was nice again.

That wasn’t so bad!

This, clearly, came after the baby was born and epidural had not worn off yet. Honestly, once the epidural was in, I felt great and it wasn’t so bad. But I wish I’d never uttered these words to my husband after giving birth, because within an hour I was in so much pain and it hurt to move. I was slow for days, and paid meds were my best friend. I jinxed myself. I just know it.

I wish she would have come sooner!

Our oldest daughter arrived one week before her due date (she’s still impatient) and I wished and wished she’d have come sooner, even after she was born. I didn’t think anything of my wish until it came true with the twins 6 years later. I ate those words because an early baby is not good.

Go to bed, I’ve got this.

We stayed in the hospital one night – it’s not the Four Seasons, so it’s not my style. The baby slept all night that first night. The nurse yelled at me at 5 am when she noticed that there were no feedings on our chart since 10 the night before. But hey, she went to sleep, we went to sleep, no one woke up. If it was that big a deal, they should have put alarm clocks in the room or they should have come in to wake me themselves. Clearly, she was just jealous that my baby was already perfect and sleeping through the night.

So we get home that day and when it comes time to go to bed, I decide to nurse our daughter once more and encourage my love to go to bed. “Are you sure?” he asks me doubtfully. “Of course,” I say with a smile. After all, our perfect little blonde sleeps through the night, so I’ll just feed her and put her in her bassinet and call it a night. Because I’m the best mother that ever lived, ever.

Fast forward to 5 am as I’m loading her screaming behind into the car seat and driving on no sleep to Starbucks for a venti coffee just so that I can turn up the radio and drown out the sounds of her crying. Turns out, she wasn’t perfect. Turns out, she wasn’t getting enough breast milk and two nights later when our pediatrician told us she was down to 5 lbs., we supplemented with formula that night and she slept 7 hours. But guess what? He has woken up WITH me every single time a baby woke up for the rest of our infant baby lives – and he does that by choice (and because he wants to stay married).

I think one child is plenty.

On second thought, I probably should have said this one with a bit more force.

I think she loves me more.

She doesn’t.

You’re not eating for two anymore, honey; actually, you never were.

That wasn’t nice, but boy my husband got a little bit fat when I was pregnant. Here I was with my perfect beach ball belly and looking great while he was doing the eating for two; it was weird. But it happens every single time. It wasn’t nice, but we started working out together and he’s sexy again.

I gave birth so….diapers are yours.

Um….nevermind. That’s fair game, right?

You are officially on parenting duty when you get home.

I only have wish I hadn’t said this one, but still. To be fair, I work from home. What this means for me is that I’m on all the time. And when my husband gets home, he’s the main parent. But now most people assume I’m the laziest parent around. Of course, most people also assume working from home means lounging by the pool sipping mimosas and reading novels all day long, you know, because you’re in charge of your schedule so that translates into “Do nothing at all times” to them. I’m not a lazy parent by any means, but I’m happy to let my husband take the lead when he’s home. He gets 2 hours a day with the kids. That’s one diaper change for the twins, bath and bed time for all four. He’s not even home to help me get them ready for school, do homework or go to anything else. So, all is fair.

And one thing I’m glad I’ve been saying to him since our first was born: I’m glad you picked me to do this with.

It’s true; I’m so glad we get to do this together. There is no one else in the world with whom I’d rather suffer through the dregs and pitfalls of parenting experience this beautiful  journey.

Photo by Daniel Barker/U.S. Navy via Getty Images


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