Why Having More Kids Might Make Your Life Easier
What if I told you that having four kids was easier than having one?
What if I told you that having four kids was actually easier than having “just” two?
What if I even told you that having four kids was even easier than having three?
Would you think I was insane? Run away from me? Close out of this article and laugh hysterically at me behind your glass of wine?
OK, so those are all valid reactions and maybe in some ways the right reactions. But in other ways, I can promise you, with absolute certainty, that having more kids will make your life easier. I know, I know, I might sound like a crazy person, but hear me out.
I can honestly tell you that, for me, having four kids has been easier than having one. I don't mean that having four is logistically easier, like in getting out of the house. (Although, in a lot of ways, I still take the same amount of time I did with “just” one kid because I packed up my entire house with her, and now I've let a lot of standards, such as “matching socks,” go in the name of sanity.
A lot of things are harder with more kids, like fitting in a restaurant booth or hearing my husband at the dinner table. That's not a joke — I really think we've lost a little bit of our hearing. (Or at least my husband claims to have lost his in direct relation to my talking, which, in case you're wondering, yes, I'm also suspicious of.)
But in other ways, having more kids has made my life a lot, lot easier, such as:
- My kids play so well together. Honestly, there are some times when all four of my kids will disappear in the toy room together to play and I will smile evilly to myself in the kitchen, where I will be drinking my eighth cup of coffee. With four, they have endless, built-in entertainment, and as a mom who prefers to let kids be kids and adults be adults, this works out quite well for me.
- My kids are always there for each other. They are the best of friends, and they are the worst of enemies, usually in the span of only a few minutes. But nonetheless, it gives me comfort to know that my kids have each other in this great big scary world.
- I have more help around the house now. As my kids are getting older, I am genuinely shocked by how suddenly helpful they've become. Like, I've spent so long constantly cleaning and never sitting down and always, always picking up after my kids that the day my 5-year-old actually wiped down the table without needing me to do it again after her, I almost passed out. Who knew kids could turn out to be so useful?
- Life seems easier now. Maybe it's because there are moments of such chaos that there is nothing else to do but laugh, but I genuinely enjoy my life now — with more kids — than I did with one or two. Life seems so full, and I also have actually learned the truth that they really do grow so quickly. Somehow, with additional kids, I've been able to see that so much more and have tried to enjoy the good parts while laughing at the hard parts.
And there is some scientific evidence to give us an idea of what the most stressful number of children is, which, apparently, is three kids. So in other words, you should totally not feel crazy if you can't imagine having more than that. But if you happen to go beyond that stressful number, maybe you will pleasantly surprised, too.
My point is not to say that there is ever a “magical” number when suddenly your family size will be perfect and your kids will get along in absolute harmony and the birds will be singing and your life will be so stress-free, but simply that if you feel called to have more kids, don't be afraid.
It really will be fine, and in some cases, better than you ever expected.
How many kids do you have?