I was out recently with my one- and two-year-olds when another mom, upon seeing I was also pregnant with a third, commented that I was really in the thick of it. You can’t have three babies in three years without hearing your fair share of well-meaning comments. I laughed it off but she was right, I am in the thick of it . . . but I kind of like it here.

I’m in the thick of doctor appointments. Between the kids’ regularly scheduled appointments at their pediatrician, the last-minute sick visits, the follow-ups at their ENT, my prenatal doctor appointments and new baby’s ultrasounds, I’ve got one hell of a social calendar. Can’t wait until they’re in organized sports and after-school activities.

I’m in the thick of potty training and accidents. The two-year-old tells me when he’s peeing in his Pull-Up. We’re working on timing. The one year old pooped on the ground the other day and walked in it. She managed to do this on the hardwood though. Good girl.

I’m in the thick of toddler tantrums that come and go in the blink of an eye. It’s hard to handle the big emotions making their way through such little bodies. I’d like to thank Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood for jingles I can spit out on a moment’s notice: “If you feel so mad that you want to roar, take a deep breath, and count to four!”

I’m in the thick of making decisions. Sometimes trivial, sometimes life-changing. Never without a second guess.

I’m in the thick of exhaustion—physically, mentally, emotionally. There’s always something to clean up, remember, and care for.

I’m in the thick of constant touching. I can’t make it out of the house without snot, jelly, apple juice or sunscreen making its way onto my outfit. I’ve accepted this “lived-in” look.

I’m in the thick of having an audience. There’s no such thing as personal space as mom. It usually comes with commentary about body parts while you’re attempting to finally take a shower or use the bathroom.

I’m in the thick of my stint as a referee/negotiator/disciplinarian. Can you go play with your 17 other trucks so your sister can play with this one? I’ll turn on Paw Patrol if you eat one more chicken nugget. You will go to time out if you hit your sister with the golf club one more time.

I’m in the thick of compliments from the littlest of admirers. Why shouldn’t I believe that I’m the prettiest mama when my two-year-old tells me so? Is this what celebrities feel like?

I’m in the thick of big, fat, open mouth kisses. All day, every day. It’s a wonder I’m not sick more often than I am.

I’m in the thick of their snuggles and attention and love. They won’t always want to sit on my lap and read books. They won’t always want to lay on me and ask me to tickle them. They won’t always want me in their pillow forts. To be honest I don’t know what I’ll do when this has all “thinned out”, if that’s the right term. So, until then, I’ll gladly stay in the thick of it all as long as they’ll let me.

Stephanie Brophy

Stephanie is a wife and mom to two kiddos with a third on the way (3 under 3 club, here I come!) I'm an Associated Press Award winning former news reporter and met my husband when I interviewed him for a story. I have had the opportunity to meet the Pope and have even appeared as a contestant on Wheel of Fortune.