This is intended to be humorous and isn’t a dig at anyone, regardless of how many children they have or want to have. My youngest child is now 3 1/2, is registered for preschool this fall and well on his way to using the potty. I’m a little conflicted about him not being a baby anymore and that he will be my last. However at this point my memory isn’t clouded by Momnesia, which was the cause of babies #2 and 3 (and beyond for some people). Momnesia? Let me explain.
I have heard the term momnesia used interchangeably with “baby brain” but I think it’s something very different. Momnesia is either the complete wiping from your memory of difficult moments and stages or remembering only the good parts/downplaying the difficult ones. Occasionally extreme cases of baby fever and/or baby rabies result in new humans in the absence of Momnesia. Note: if you had super easy pregnancies, smooth births, babies who slept though the night and toddlers who have never had a tantrum, the door’s over there. 😉
Examples of Momnesia:
Memory: I miss that pregnant belly and those little kicks.
Reality: I can’t sleep, I can’t get up, I waddle when I walk, I’m exhausted, I have heartburn and I think there’s an alien in my uterus trying to get out through my bellybutton.
Memory: I rocked baby #2s birth. I’ll get through this labor no problem.
Reality: First contraction hits. “Oh sh!t. I forgot about this.”
Memory: Sleep deprivation wasn’t that bad.
Reality: You just tried to put your kid’s backpack on the dog and sent your 1st grader into the backyard to relieve himself.
Memory: Oh those moments spent cuddling a newborn were so nice.
Reality: You have been holding your baby for the past 3 months. You’re not sure what color these yoga pants used to be and there might be a bird’s nest in your hair.
Memory: Getting up a few times a night isn’t so bad.
Reality: Your 3 year old starts waking up multiple times a night and the memories come flooding back of when he slept for 13 minutes at a time. From 2:03-2:16 PM. Every other Tuesday. You excuse yourself to remove your ovaries with a melon baller.
Memory: Going places with a newborn isn’t so bad. I can just wear him.
Reality: The toddler claims his legs don’t work and you need to carry him too. The tantrum in the middle of Target wakes the baby up and he joins the chorus of wails. You can’t remember why you came to Target.
Memory: Getting one more child in and out of a car seat isn’t so bad.
Reality: You have to allow an extra 10 minutes on each end of every trip to deal with children who become noodles when it’s time to buckle up.
Memory: Breastfeeding my second was a snap. I must really know what I’m doing now.
Reality: That was just nature’s way of tricking you into a third baby. Better call the lactation consultant now.
Memory: It’s not that hard to keep up with the chores. What difference does one more baby make?
Reality: Your older kids seek and destroy while you’re busy nursing the baby. Cleaning something up without being bothered? Be suspicious. They’re probably just out of sight destroying something else. Oh and that sweet baby? Will turn into a tornado when he’s three. 😉
Memory: Aww newborns smell so good.
Reality: Not when they’re the spit-up-on-everything-within-a-10-foot-radius type.
Memory: Potty training was no big deal. I just followed their lead and encouraged them.
Our oldest child is 10 and our youngest is 3 so we’ve been in the baby/toddler stage for a decade. We’re at that age/stage where if we didn’t have another baby soon, we’re most certainly done. After my first and second children were born, the Momnesia was strong. At this point the only way we’d have another baby would be an accident and I don’t mean the “oops we made a baby” type of accident. I mean the “oops we have memory loss” type.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my children dearly and I’m so grateful for each one, but it isn’t easy. You won’t hear any “enjoy these moments” comments from me when you’re hanging on to your sanity with buttered fingers. So, if I see you in public with your little ones, don’t be surprised if I give you a knowing smile and offer to help you load your groceries.
One thing I’m very curious about: is there such a thing as Grandmanesia? Do we eventually forget how hard it was in order to trick our offspring into giving us Grandchildren? Hee hee.