The first 12 months as a parent of Triplets were quite possibly the most difficult and at the same time the most rewarding 12 months of my life so far.
The first few weeks were spent as a “visitor” to the Special care unit, trying to come to terms with the responsibility of caring for 3 newborns whilst recovering from C-section surgery and also learning how to breastfeed and care for 3 newborns. Before the babies are released from the hospital you need to do what they call “rooming in” where you need to convince the nurses that you are capable of looking after 3 newborns. This was an interesting time as I wasn’t even sure myself.
Then comes the seemingly endless blur of nappies and feeds and crying and extreme sleep deprivation.
There were however, many moments of of happiness in the fog that helped us get through an incredibly trying time. The first hint of a smile on each tiny face, the endless cuddles, the sense of achievement at getting through each day and a few acts of kindness from friends and from strangers that really made a difference.
Here are 5 of those acts:
1. Shortly after we brought the babies home three of my workmates announced that they were coming to babysit for a couple of hours so that Alan and I could go out for lunch together. This was the first time that I was away from the babies after bringing them home from the hospital and I worried about them the whole time but it was so nice to get a break. Thank you Lynda, Trudi and Michelle, I am so lucky to have such wonderful friends.
2. When the babies were only 10 weeks old we braved a trip to a small cafe with my brother, sister-in-law and 6 week old nephew who had travelled up from Sydney to visit. That’s 4 adults and 4 newborns. While we were juggling bottles, nappy bags and babies a man came up to me and said “What you are doing is amazing, I want to pay for your drinks.” He put $20 on the table and walked away. I thanked him as he disappeared down the street, but to this day I have no idea who he was or what prompted his random act of kindness.
3. During my first couple of weeks at home with the babies I was lucky enough to be assigned 2 lovely volunteers from the Benevolent Society. They each visited me for a couple of hours once a week. They would chat, feed the babies, change nappies and generally help out. Just knowing that I would have some adult company and someone to offer cuddles to crying babies really made a difference and helped to keep me sane during those early days. Thank you Janice and Veronica, you are amazing.