The Progression of parenthood: A behavioral observation


October 16, 2012 by rebeccaannemarshall

Today’s post was brought to you by the brilliant mind of my lovely sister, who gave me this idea as a topic. As you may already know, I am a mother of 3, as is my sister. We have noticed how similar we are in how our behaviors changed from child to child (with some varying differences) and I would like to think that we must not be the only parents of multiple children who are this way.

How you reacted to your child and the situations that every baby, toddler, and child, goes through is directly related to how many children you have. How those reactions change and differ throughout your career of child rearing, is what we are going to talk about. Baby number one to baby number 2, on to baby number 3 or 4… or 5, you get the idea.

I’ll run you through the steps.


In your pregnant months of baby number one you may find yourself noticing everything, questioning everything, maybe even googling everything. You have morning sickness, your back aches, your feet are swollen, you are fatigued, you are emotional, and “Don’t even touch my freaking boob’s thankyouverymuch”. You feel like you might be dying; besides Google told you that either you’re pregnant or you have cancer. You also are extremely careful, get lots of rest, attempt to eat healthy, and “Could you carry this jug of milk for me hunny? I can’t be doing any heavy lifting in this state *batseyes*”.

You have baby, she (or he but for this purpose we will use she) is the most precious thing you have ever set your eyes on. An angel, come to be your little piece of heaven. Baby cries you pick her up before a half a second passes.  As a toddler, she falls, she bonks her head, you run to her side, smother her with kisses, and cry alongside her. Now she is doing something wrong that could get her hurt, immediately you grab her and hug her and tell her “never ever do that again my little beauty”.

You walk on egg shells for your little precious. “You don’t want to nap? Oh, that’s ok my love you stay up for 87 hours in a row if that makes my little booby-rooby a happy bubby-wubby”. She lives her life in her little mommy bubble of cushiony softness like she is a fine piece of expensive porcelain.


Pregnancy is somewhat the same as the time last, except all those little things you now know are normal. Maybe you have a few extra symptoms that you didn’t have last time, so you still google away, but this time you know you don’t have cancer. You still try and eat healthy, as you should, but you are a lot less worried about what you eat as long as you are eating. Plus, already having a little one gives you less time to make your big healthy meals. Not to mention baby number one won’t eat it anyway, so daddy is just going to pick up Burger-king on the way home. You also find yourself getting a lot less rest and doing a lot more heavy lifting, you have baby number one to take care of and, well, you don’t feel you need to be miss mommy prissy pants this time. You’ve done this before, it’s not THAT bad.

You have baby, yet another little piece of heaven. Baby cries, it might take you a moment to get there, you are just trying to wipe up the poo smear off the bathroom wall from your potty-training-baby-number-one. She bonks her head you wait a moment to see if she will cry, because by now you have learned that sometimes your big-deal-making makes it a big deal to them as well. Then you proceed with your smothering kisses. Now she is doing something wrong, first you tell her to stop, then you tell her again, THEN you go to get her and tell her “that is a no-no, it could give you bad owies”.

The eggshells are still there, only this time only about a half a carton instead of the 10 cartons from before. Your mommy bubble still exists as well but you haven’t lined it with pillows this time.


Pregnancy is normal for you now. Not too much surprises you. No googling symptoms this time, you are an expert. Who cares about eating healthy, you’ll eat whatever your other kids don’t eat, right off their plate. Other times all you’ll really want is a big fat greasy Dairy queen burger, a side of x-large Reese’s pieces blizzard, and a mocha latte from Timmy’s with extra whipped cream and chocolate sauce. “Actually just put that topping in a cup on the side and give me a spoon, thanks”. And screw resting, you’ve got sh*t to do.

Baby comes, you practically have all of heaven down with you now. Baby cries, she doesn’t want to nap. She is going to nap weather she likes it or not, so you let her cry for a few minutes and she falls asleep. She is a toddler now, she slips and falls so you clap for her, cheer and yell “WOOHOO GOOD FALL!! A-PLUS!” (You still do the kissy thing because I think kisses are just programed into mom-brain). Now she is doing something she shouldn’t be; “HEY YOU GET DOWN RIGH…. oh, well I guess if she has a tumble she will learn not to do that anymore”.

You might have one eggs worth of shells still left on the floor but your kids are practically made of steel now. You have also run out of soap to make mommy-bubbles with, not to mention it would most likely just pop anyway, when she falls off the top of the couch, because she thinks she is a bird. Then you tell her she isn’t a bird but give her an A for the quality of the fall.

OK, I`ll stop there.

So there it is, from what my sister and I have observed. The progression of having children and the changes in behavioral habits broken down within that progression. From worry to brush-off. The one thing that has not and will never change is the little pieces of heaven, the kisses and the heart-melting ooey-gooey love and caring. I have no doubt my girls will grow up to be strong, tough, independent little people.

Caution Falling Children!

Now if you will excuse me, my 2 babiest angels are playing in the toilet and my oldest just tripped on a shoe chasing after the dog, and I’ve got to go give her a round of applause.

Until Saturday! TATA!

Becky A.M


2 thoughts on “The Progression of parenthood: A behavioral observation

  1. Deb Marshall says:

    Oh my word….where to begin. So funny, so true. And this part:

    You walk on egg shells for your little precious. “You don’t want to nap? Oh, that’s ok my love you stay up for 87 hours in a row if that makes my little booby-rooby a happy bubby-wubby”.


  2. Sarah M says:

    As I don’t have kids, this just made me think of how I was treated extra special compared to my brother. HA! 🙂

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