‘Are you out of your minds?’
Expecting the fourth is met with disbelief says Dave Lawlor
There's a look you get and a tone you hear when you tell people that you and your wife are expecting your fourth child. The listener's eyes widen and, even though they congratulate you and say all the right things, that tone creeps in -- the one that says 'are you out of your mind!'
We've already surrendered ourselves to the household madness of scattered toys, screams of laughter and tears (that's just the parents) and the general bedlam that three young children bring, so adding another into that chaotic mix is a little daunting.
Aside from the health of the baby and its mum, the things that exercise my mind about the new arrival are issues of logistics. Suddenly the house that fits us all so nicely will start to pinch a bit; bedrooms will need to be re-thought and the car that got us from A to B will need to go, replaced by that seven-seater.
Is four going to be the magic number? Well, three has been pretty damn good -- two girls and a boy who have played hard and fought harder.
There are times, though, when you say a silent prayer for some silence and a chance to actually think, but there are other times -- most often, actually -- when you wouldn't change it for the world.
I think four will bring some more challenges, but I just know that there'll be plenty of smiles, too.