In the third week of June, we closed on a new house just a neighborhood over, had the interior painted, quickly moved in (credit to my husband here - the guy was a moving beast), got things unpacked to a liveable state, and then I had a baby.
She came on her due date, neatly preceded by my water breaking while working out on the elliptical. Active labor kicked in a few hours later, and so the story goes. Baby girl made her entrance into the world in a (thankfully) uneventful (but still horribly painful) manner.
It has only been a week so my thoughts on life with four children are still pretty uninformed, I know. I have no shame in saying that this pregnancy was far and away the worst of the four. The morning sickness was actually a bit milder, but the pregnancy as a whole was more exhausting, more cumbersome, more drawn out; there was no charm, no mystery, no ... dare I say ... excitement. It was a pure slog through physical discomfort. It was pure "keep your eyes on the prize. "
(By the way, I don't think feeling that way about pregnancy is prohibitive of wanting to be/get pregnant ... but that's another post.)
BUT, the first week home with this newborn has also been far and away the most peaceful, most calm, and most enjoyable. By this time we are confident and experienced parents, no longer overwhelmed by the unfamiliar and uncertain responsibilities of caring for a tiny human being. The awe and joy of the older children is beautiful. And the contrast between the newborn's simple state of existence and that of the older children reminds you how fleeting the infant phase is and how quickly they grow and the relationship changes into something more complex and challenging.
I remember feeling this way to some extent with my third, so I can only conclude that, if you have multiple children, the pregnancies may get worse but the pay-off is sweeter.
But ask me in a few months whether I care to test that theory further 😝.