postpartum round three

***post written a few days ago***

Today’s postpartum post brought to you by a Hanes white v-neck, pair of black Old Navy leggings, pearl earrings, pink lipstick, a rockin’ top knot, and an aloha-print ring sling holding close the third sister.


The third time is so different. Baby-wise, this girl is a dream. Our first two were… a bit higher on the maintenance scale. We braced ourselves for the same, but instead were given the sweetest, most content baby on the planet. Probably not, but we’re claiming it for the Groves 5. Today marks week 4, and aside from her head cold that keeps her in my arms through the night, Melia girl is easy peasy. Granted… I’m much more relaxed as a mom, and don’t count it as difficult to have a baby who loves being cuddled. The sling is my friend, and after being held a bit, Melia is usually fine to sleep on her own.

The rub, in this third season called ‘postpartum,’ is loving on my older two VERY active and still very young, little girls. Third baby transition has been easier in some ways because the older two play well together, but now that the help is gone and JD is in the busiest season EVER, I find myself in a juggling act between three beauties who desperately need my attention. In some ways I love it. I’ve been promoted to mama of 3 and with that spiffy new title, I feel like I can conquer the world. As mama of one and then two, I was often terrified to go on solo outings with the littles. Yesterday? I took all three to a craft store with small aisles, picked up fancy fabrics for photo shoots, changed a blowout and cleaned up pee all over the van. Never even blinking. My friends, that’s progress. In October I’m piling the three sisters and myself for an airplane ride to Cali to welcome my new little nephew into the world. I think I might be turning into a masochist…

BUT.

There’s always a BUT, isn’t there?

I’m rapidly realizing I’m not enough. Yesterday I yelled at my girls. I hate that. The older two suddenly need tons of discipline and it takes all of me to put the baby down and tend to their needs. I need a break more often than I’d like to admit, but I’m terrible at asking for help. Many offers have come, and at some point I’ll figure out how to take people up on it, but this little pride demon lurks within and shoos help away before I even ask.

I can do it all by myself.

I’m 4 weeks postpartum, I should be all ready to go now.

The reality is, life is much more manageable if I do ask for help.

In fact, the only way I’m writing this now is because I punched that little pride demon in the face and asked a high school student to watch the older sisters for a couple hours. Just making arrangements for a couple hours away was enough to make me clean our house, make lunches, read stories, and take the girls shopping (I’m flying solo today – JD is gone all day and well into the middle of the night for a football game).

I know a routine is coming. Next week El starts preschool (*sniff*) three times a week for three hours each day. JD’s schedule will even out. My body will work its way back to normal. I’ll probably at some point cook a meal. Hormones will regulate so that life won’t always look so HUGE.

Postpartum is always a bit tricky. With each baby has come a settling down of sorts. Life continues, but just a bit differently.

My friend Jess says the third baby grounds you a bit.

I see her point.

Fellow Young Life leaders pop in to visit and share stories about all their time with students and I LOVE it, but there’s a teeny piece of me that mourns the loss of availability to teenagers. With the third baby, there’s no more question of where my focus lies. While we’re elbows deep in youth ministry, the reality is, I’m no longer a full-time youth leader. I still go to Young Life club and youth group, because it’s something that JD and I get to do together, but it’s different now. I am thankful that God has given me the opportunity to have relationships with other leaders, but I can’t just pick up and have coffee with a student like I used to.

Life is louder, but it’s also more quiet.

Today I read this, by Oswald Chambers:

Be rightly related to God, find your joy there, and out of you will flow rivers of living water… Stop being self-conscious, stop being a sanctified prig [oh Oswald], and live the life hid with Christ.

My life with Christ has never been more “hid” than it is now.

I’m not teaching twice a week, meeting with students regularly, involved in 5,000 ministries… I’m just… quiet.

My life hid with Christ revolves around daily asking for new mercies and grace to nurture, shepherd, protect, love, and discipline the little babes He’s given me. And you know, make lunch and fold laundry. Being rightly related to God is mostly lived out in front of thee babes and a handsome man. There’s no faking or putting on a show. It’s probably the most real I’ve ever been.

Grace isn’t a concept or a nice idea, it’s a necessity.

It used to mess with my identity, this new life. {Sometimes it still does, but I usually remedy it with the blog or photography}. Now that I have three?

I’m all in.

And that’s just fine with me. Even if I AM covered in baby poo, forget the middle girl’s shoes at the outlets, and get called the crazy lady with all the kids

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3 thoughts on “postpartum round three

  1. Congrats – she’s beautiful! And you’re right… God is covering us in grace, even when we’re covered in poo! You may feel hidden from God right now, but He will always see you. My prayer when my little ones were LITTLE was for Him to hold on to me extra tight (because my hands were so full!) Love your mommy heart. Many blessings to you. πŸ™‚

  2. Three so close together defnitely has it’s unique challenges and unsurpassed rewards. I’m here for you if you need me…and you know I know a bit about what you’re going through. πŸ™‚
    ~Jocelyn

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