Eight Things to Do When You are Done Having Babies

8
READING TIME: 6 min.

8 things to do when you are done having babiesIt’s official. You’re done! Maybe you took action, or he did. But, the option is off of the table.

No. More. Babies.

One day, not so long ago, I looked through tear-filled eyes at the empty high chair resting in the corner of our kitchen and wondered, “Will I ever be okay with just having big kids?”

Sadness dripped down my face. (I told the kids it was the onions.)

But today as I buckled a child (my fourth) into a five-point-harness car seat for the nineteen-millionth time, my thoughts turned joyful. In just two weeks he’ll be old enough to self-buckle into a booster!

This momma is almost baby-free.

Though life on the other side of babies has its challenges, it also teems with possibility. To prepare you, heres a list of what youll (likely) do when you are done having babies:

1. Start Selling Things

At first it will be hard to part with her crib bedding (you searched for months to find the perfect set) or his infant swing (it played the sweetest version of Twinkle, Twinkle). But, once the cash starts coming in you’ll be ready to move on. I sold much of our baby gear on Facebook exchange/trade sites in my town and gave the rest to friends in a “de-clutter the house” frenzy. 

Don’t go too crazy though! Remember it’s not a bad idea to hold on to that stroller until your youngest is four (a trip to the zoo without a stroller is tough—you’d have to carry your bag–ouch) and some items, like receiving blankets, can be repurposed into rags for your kids to use when they help you clean! (And, by “help” I mean smear the mirror you just spent ten minutes cleaning, but whatever…)

Get the best price by including what original lists for! But don't sell that stroller too soon!
Get the cash flowing with easy selling sites!

2.  Sleep 

You will likely have an occasional wee hour waking for a few more years, but soon you’ll remember what it feels like to dream in the REM stage. Instead of semi-sleeping with one ear attached to the monitor, now you’ll be startled (Read: Scared to death) when you wake up to a child leaning over your face.

Note–I’ve heard this time of restful sleep must be savored as it ends abruptly once they become teenagers.

3. Talk More

Weary of lonely days at home with a baby that never says a word? Those are over.

Now you’ll answer everything from the mundane (“What day is it?”) to science phenomena you don’t fully understand (“Mom, why does it rain?”). You’ll talk through doors, while you are on the toilet, in the shower, driving, swimming, exercising, and even brushing your teeth. Some days, you’ll talk so much that your husband will be concerned as to why his formerly chatty wife has no interest in speaking to him.

4.  Listen More 

Interpreting cries is a tricky art. Listening after the baby stage can be just as tricky. Somedays it’s awesome to hear their personalities come through. Others: it’s mental anguish. Like today, when my five-year-old decided to count all 250 pages of a book, out-loud, just for me. No amount of affirmation of his counting skills could make it stop.

Sometimes you'll even get serenaded.
Sometimes you’ll even get serenaded.

You’ll listen to the explicit details of another kid’s punishment at recess or how to build a Minecraft skyscraper underground (so it’s safe from Creepers). You’ll hear every detail of the funny cartoon they watched at Nana’s and hear siblings argue over the finite rules of a game someone made-up. Ever considered becoming a trial attorney? Doesn’t matter. You’ll soon be one. You’ll depose witnesses daily, listening for clues as to who (really) “done it.”

5.  Book a Vacation 

I vacationed with babies. I’m not sure I liked it. The stress of getting a baby to stop screaming at 3am in a hotel room (where his toddler siblings were sleeping) shortened my lifespan. Then you pay big money to go to a theme park—only to realize after you get through the gate that your toddlers are terrified of Tigger and if you don’t make it back to that hotel by naptime, you will suffer all. evening. long.    

He freaked me out a bit too, honestly.
He freaked me out a bit too, honestly.

Post-baby days, vacations get fun. You still can’t fully relax at the pool (Mom=Lifegaurd) and you may still have to wipe extra bottoms, but when your children actually enjoy the time away and have fun with you, vacations get awesome.

Vacation with babies.
Vacation with babies: Not super fun.
Vacation with big kids: Fun!
Vacation with bigger kids: Fun!

6.  Clean Out Your Closet 

While you may not want to get rid of all of your maternity clothes (my stretchy band shorts come in handy when I’ve overdosed on gelato), most will need to go. Stat. Give them to a friend who’s expecting or sell them at a local consignment shop or swap sale. Take the cash and go buy some cute new items that aren’t nursing, spit-up, or messy-toddler-fingers friendly. Buy some new jewelry too, it is now safe to wear dangling earrings and necklaces again.

7.  Spend More 

Get those cute accessories fast, because otherwise you won’t have the money. In fact, you may never have a full wallet again. You thought babies were expensive? Just wait until they need a “few” dollars for that t-shirt at school, a “few hundred” dollars for summer camp, or a “few thousand” towards their first car. Now, when you eat at a restaurant you have to actually order them a meal. (Those add up!) Sports teams? Music lessons? School fundraisers? Emergency room visits? Pad that wallet because the hits are coming. You thought that $40 baby play mat was expensive? Google “Lego Sets” and you’ll soon hear the cash drain from your bank account.

You thought teething was tough. Wait til you start paying for their trips to the dentist!
You thought teething was tough? Wait til you start paying for their trips to the dentist!
Think her costume's cute? It was $200. I don't spend $200 on my clothes. She wore it one time.
Think her costume’s cute? It was $200. I don’t spend $200 on my clothes. She wore it one time.

8.  Move 

Speaking of bank accounts, I hope it’s healthy because once you have big kids, you’ll likely want to move. Decades ago, people lived in much smaller spaces. (I know–I grew up sharing one bathroom with my entire family!) But now there’s one compelling reason why you may want to relocate when your children hit the school years: Bad Weather Days.

With a baby, the weather doesn’t affect your schedule that much. But with older children, you need a place for them to go to give you that quiet time (see numbers three and four above). You need them to run around in some other space of the house chasing each other with Nerf swords instead of circling your kitchen island while you make dinner and explain Pinterest to your mother over the phone. You also need designated spaces for their big kid shoes and coats, books and backpacks, light sabers and Legos. Especially the Legos.

Lego Chaos
So. Many. Legos.

If you are still in the trenches of the baby days, I hope you’ll commit this list to memory. Or, if that’s too much, just relax and enjoy them knowing every stage of parenting has both joy and struggle. I’ll tell you from experience, though I loved having a house full of babies, this next stage of parenting isn’t half bad.

8 COMMENTS

  1. I’m not even close to this stage (have a 2 yo and 4 mo) but loved this article. I don’t want to rush this special time in my life but do look forward to them enjoying things like a Disney vacation. Thanks for describing the light at the end of the tunnel 🙂

    • Thanks, Rachel! 🙂 It sounds so trite to say (because when you are in those baby days they seem to last FORever!) but, I do feel like I blinked and, now, suddenly, we don’t have babies anymore! 🙂 The light is coming! haha!

  2. Well said Heather, all points are spot on from my experience. Just a heads up, puberty and teenagers are another kind of animal. If you ever need a heads up on that stage, just ask as I am learning daily! So happy to read you are doing what you love, congratulations!

    • Awww…thanks, Janette! I’m totally not ready for puberty!!! I’ll admit it. That’s probably a whole SERIES of blog posts! Have you seen Inside Out yet? Just watching it made me nervous about age 11!!

  3. Loved this! I have an almost 7 and almost 6 year old daughters. ….thought we were done, had no baby clothes or maternity clothes. I was wearing jewelry and putting money in savings. Then a year ago had my little man and will have another little man in October. After number 4, we will be done – husband’s orders + husband alteration to be performed. Lol.

    That being said, I feel like I did all these transitions only to go right back in head first. Loving every minute of it. Though this time there will be no returning to the workforce outside the home as my calling is to be home: child rearing and homeschooling.

    The past is just that and the future is exciting but living in the present is awesome!

  4. I’m going to be so sad when our sweet baby boy is no longer a baby but I love to watch all the kids grown into their own little people. Great blog, sweet friend!

  5. Yes! I feel like I’m living a little in both stages. The oldest is 8 & #5 is due in September – leaning in to buckle the 2 year old in his car seat is painful right now with my huge belly & I can’t seem to get a quiet moment between the oldest three!

    We also homeschool so the logistics of our fall school schedule isn’t clear right now with the baby being due. I love it, though!

  6. This makes me excited for this day! Mostly the sleeping…and the more self sufficient kiddos. A feeeeew more years to go. 🙂

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

16 − six =