My eldest babies are well and truly not babies any more. Aaron turned 15, his baby sister Holly is 12 and Jamie 11.
Chloe (4 months) has a different dad to my older three, and to have another baby after so long, was a real biggie! My partner didn't have any children of his own and really wanted a son or daughter.
Paul gets on really well with my children, not stepping in as a father figure as the children live with their dad 50% of the time (shared custody) but as their friend and mate... so not the same bond as with your own child.
We discussed it, but no one really knows what the birth of another child into a family, any family, will do, how it will affect everyone. So it happened after six months of not thinking about it, we were expecting a bundle! I was scared and sooo excited! Scared of how it would affect everyone, how would Paul be with my other kids when his own arrived? If my older body would cope with another pregnancy? ha ha! The realism of knowing no more shopping trips, no more running around because of the kids' social lives (although that still happened!) and how would the kids feel about having a pregnant mum? Stopping work, stopping just doing whatever I wanted when ever I wanted...oh my God, what had I got myself into?
As time drew nearer, and I slowly got bigger, things didn't change too much, but we had to rearrange the household to create room for another member in the family. This caused some grunts from the teenager about having to share a room again with younger Pokemon-mad brother! What would his friends think? Come to think of it, we don't see many of his friends here now. But all in all not too bad.
We opted on a home birth as my labours have always been straightforward, and we wanted a water birth, so home was our better option. I was concerned about doing housework straight after baby was born though. I dragged the new dad along to antenatal classes to learn all the bits and bobs, and me as well...so much had changed after 11 years. Finally the day arrived, I sent the children off to school one morning and baby Chloe was there to greet them on there return home. She was 9lb 2 and she was beautiful.
Big brother came in and picked her up and had a smile from ear to ear. He took photos with the digital camera and sent them off to all his friends via e-mail. The younger two were as pleased as punch!
Now Chole has been in our lives for fourmonths and things are sort of settling down into a routine. I sit back and think about how she has affected us all. Yes, I am housebound and get bored and a little frustrated with all the house work, missing out on the kids sports and school events etc, but having Chloe around has also brought us all a little closer together too.
Everyone loves playing with baby and are all keen to entertain her while I do jobs. Its been great for the older children to have a baby round and see its up and downs (might put them off for a few years :) ) to be able to see her grow , always asking questions about themselves at her age. The relationship hasn't changed between my partner and my children, sometimes little reminder to my daughter who the parents are. Dad can be over protective of his little girl but I'm sure that will change as he gets used to her being around. I wouldn't change it for the world, to think I have had the chance to have another child again, tooth fairies and Santa Claus can be revisited, little toes and fingers kissed and tickled. Chloe is a very lucky little girl to have a family who think she's the bees' knees and who love her to bits...So I recommend it to those thinking about it, its wonderful!