Nobody Told Me

We’re coming up on the 8 year anniversary of the “no… it looks like there are 3!” ultrasound. Ooooh, boy. How time flies!

That pregnancy, from about week 20 and on, was exhausting. A trip to the grocery store was tiring, by week 26 or so I was getting winded just from standing in church, and we won’t even get into the whole so-much-hip-pain-I-can’t-even-sleep-for-more-than-an-hour thing…. to put it mildly, I was tired.

Triplet newborns was sleep deprivation at it’s finest, but we kinda knew that was coming. When your husband starts putting stuffed basketballs into the bassinet, which is in the living room, in the middle of the night, you know you’re tired. Walking zombies is a pretty accurate description of the two of us those first 4 months!

Toddlers were physically exhausting when at the park, what with all the mulch-eating prevention I had to do, but when at home, confined to their Pit of Despair, it really wasn’t so tiring. Well, until potty training… then it was exhausting from the running someone to the toilet while trying to dodge the flying pee, and then the constant mopping of piddle.

Preschoolers were more emotionally exhausting, which can be almost as bad as physical exhaustion. The three year old meltdowns – holy moly! I’m so grateful Lily never hit the terrible 2’s or 3’s – it’s like she knew Nick and I had already paid our dues. We all know who our favorite is now. {wink}

You know what’s been shockingly exhausting though?

7 year olds.

Nobody told me 7 year olds were exhausting.

Why didn’t anyone tell me?!

In chatting with other moms of 7 year olds (or recent 7 year olds), I’ve learned mine are not some rare, exhausting phenomenon. No. The bulk of them are exhausting!

They seem to produce a rare mix of physical and mental exhaustion, which has led me to make this declaration – while not a walking zombie like the infant days, I might as well be, as 7 year olds have completely worn me out!

The constant wrestling and fighting is amazing. Wait. Did I say amazing? I meant annoying.

I’ve lost the mental capacity to remember what I walked 10 feet into the kitchen for.

I seem to have lost my “reasoning” and calming skills lately, and I blame that on the metal fatigue from having to reason & calm them down so stinking often.

Why is there so much emotion being thrown around at 7? I swear they cry more often now than they did at 3, which is hard to believe given the number of times we had to shrug at a passerby and say “It’s hard being 3“, as one of our angels writhed on the floor because we’d dared to ask them to put their coat on, or some other horrific injustice.

This fall, I was sitting in a Building Better Moms meeting, in horrified shock as I scanned the handout from our speaker, a children’s therapist.

Under the heading 1st grade, next to “emotions”

 tantrums return easily, overwhelmed, intense.


That meant we needed to stop telling them to act their age, cause apparently they are. However, it also meant I wasn’t a total screw up of a parent, if my 7 year olds were having emotional meltdowns over the silliest of things still. Most 7 year olds do! Whew!

It’s a good thing they say funny things, do sweet things occasionally, and that we’re halfway through the angst, I mean age, of 7, otherwise I might find myself frantically building a time machine to go back to the “easier” older baby stage.



P.S. Parents of future 7 year olds – you have been warned. Brace yourselves.

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  • […] other night, I posted the following picture on the post where I warned others about the exhaustion 7 year olds bring on (if you didn’t read it, you really […]ReplyCancel

  • Kelly

    Hi Helen,
    I followed your blog religiously when my triplet boys were infants and toddlers and somehow got out of the habit of reading about your experiences (you helped me immensely)! I returned today, with my 5 year olds actually playing together without crying for more than 2 minutes, only to hear that 7 is worse? Well crap, my husband and I were looking forward to 7 because we remember it to be a great year with our singleton oldest child. I’ll come back often, hoping to hear that maybe 8 is good?ReplyCancel

    • Ha! Maybe you’ll get lucky and your trio will be just as great at 7 as your singleton was! When they aren’t melting down over something, or wrestling for the 10th time that day, they’re quite enjoyable 😉ReplyCancel