{(young kids) + (sleep deprivation) + (long working hours) = (when exactly did we sign for this?!!)}

24 Oct

myself, a realistic impression, according to one of my kids!

I guess I’m bringing these memories back because my baby is now almost 2 years old… and the sleep deprivation days are becoming fewer and fewer… [at least, that’s the hope!]

There was a time I used to love Math

Nowadays, I’m not so sure…

I’m still trying to figure out the Mathematics of life with children!

[Backstory] Once upon a time,  there was a young girl who loved children, had a great time playing with other people’s kids, and believed she’d make a great mom, when the time came…

Well, this young girl got older, found her prince charming, and once again, they (so naïve!) thought:

“We’re gonna be parents! We’re gonna be the best ones! We’ll love and cherish children! Our kids will be the best behaved ones, always clean, always loving and respectful”

And then, the family started growing: first we were, as some friends (already with 3 children) used to call us: “a couple with a child”. We had it easy! Once kid #1 was sound asleep, mommy and daddy could enjoy some quality time (and even some wine!) at the end of a long day of work. So, here was the formula:

f = [(a loving husband) + (a loving wife) + (a brand new baby) = (a happy family!)]

Life and Math seemed so easy and manageagle: we were living overseas, had support and household help. We then decided to increase our legacy. Here came kid #2, and with it, a way more challenging routine, accompained by several sleepless nights…

We had no idea that with two kids, the chances of having one of them sick, at some point in time, are extremely high!

We, the “once before-pretty smart” parents, learnt that our “Math skills” weren’t gonna cut…

Take a look at the “new & improved” formula:

f = [(still loving, but very tired parents) + (demanding toddler) + (a brand new baby)

= (a still happy, but somewhat confused family!)]

We managed life. We found our niche, learnt from other couples new strategies and ground rules to apply to our own routine, began training the kids on life skills (sleeping, eating, drinking, bathroom needs).

Regarding our Math knowledge, we sort of came back from a lousy D to a pretty solid B

We were back, baby!! We knew how to survive with kids, lead an enjoyable life, took short trips with the whole family, went grocery shopping… We had it down! And the excess of confidence and maybe some extra  excitement about our new FS assignment, responded for kid #3…


And then, the third one came into our lives. 

We’re a family full of life and joy. Today, we don’t sleep as many hours as we used to, let’s see, six years ago, when we were sure to be the best “parents-to-be”.

Today we may not have the face-time with our spouse, the way we wanted, but if the kids are healthy, fed, dry, and the most important of all – sleeping – we, as parents, are pretty satisfied.

Our definition of happiness may have changed a bit, and we’re taking a day at a time. A sleepless night might be followed by a great day, who knows?

At least now we’ve got an idea on what’s in-store for us. We know kids give us a hard time when it comes to sleeping, eating, getting dressed, getting ready for school, and pretty much anything else.

But at least now, we know we need to be prepared. And we’re learning. Also, we decided to give up on our Math skills – raising kids has no formula.

Life with kids is just a massive equation, with tons of variables… We’d be silly trying to map it out. And the worst and maybe the funniest of all is that, at the moment, we’re graded by a team, whose combined age doesn’t even reach 13 years! 😮

In sum, I’m thankful to all the readers and parents out there, for the support during my parenting experience, and I guess, gotta thank my own children, for the ENDLESS INSPIRATION they provide to my blogging days! ♥

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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in children, FAMILY, humor, TCKs


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16 responses to “{(young kids) + (sleep deprivation) + (long working hours) = (when exactly did we sign for this?!!)}

  1. travelgardeneat

    October 23, 2012 at 12:54 am

    And with two teens now, the demands on time and energy are different but no less . . . and no less rewarding 🙂 Each stage has its charms, its stresses, its delights. You have a wonderful perspective on it. ~ Kat


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      October 23, 2012 at 8:34 am

      I gotta try to have a good take on it, right? No other alternatives… Thanks Kat, for stopping by and adding your impressions to my random thoughts… 😮 A mother will always be a mom…


  2. Fran Hart (@FGHart)

    August 6, 2011 at 11:09 am

    I meant to stop at 2 but ended up with 4. Last one just interrupted me to help with his college applications. Even now, impossible to plan my day with any expectation of following any formula BUT breaking with routine.


  3. M

    July 30, 2011 at 1:27 am

    Very interesting approach. I don’t have any kids yet (or a man to have kids with) but here’s hoping one day I can find the beauty in a wrecked routine.


  4. Tara R.

    July 29, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    I only have two kids, both practically adults, and we have given up on any semblance of routine… still.


    • 3rdcultchild

      July 29, 2011 at 8:52 pm

      You see? ! I still have a long way ahead of me!!!! Routine??? Only kidding!!! 😮


  5. Carrie

    July 29, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    exactly why I hesitate to bring a third child into the mix. 2 is crazy enough!


    • 3rdcultchild

      July 29, 2011 at 2:44 pm

      Carrie, so far, we’re finding a way to survive! 😮


  6. deanabo

    July 28, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    this is so true… I have 3 daughters so I understand!


    • 3rd culture children

      July 28, 2011 at 10:02 pm

      Hey there! Thanks for your comments – and the idea for this mini-post was just a challenge – to say it in less than 100 words… glad you agree with what I’ve been feeling… 😮


  7. Heather

    June 14, 2011 at 8:36 am

    Um, we are only a couple with a child and I have gray hairs, sleepless nights, etc! HA! Love the post!


  8. 3rdculturechildren

    June 2, 2011 at 11:13 pm

    Thanks, Melissa!! I thought I’d write down some of our thoughts… Pretty crazy having a full house… Man, I miss Maputo! We had it so easy, so fun… Kids are good, but they’re giving me tons of new gray hair! Hope Bolivia is treating you guys well… Miss you all. Kisses and hugs to your boys…


  9. Melissa van Herksen

    June 2, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    What a great post!!! I love your blog.



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