I am a little surprised by the number of people who have seen me with my three children and said, “Oh boy, you’ve got your hands full, eh?” Okay, well sometimes they don’t say “eh” but it’s pretty much the same comment I hear whenever we venture out anywhere. It’s not like my kids run around yelling or screaming or are climbing the walls wherever we go, (though no doubt they would if I let them) so I’m not sure what the deal is. Maybe I look overwhelmed, though I don’t feel it, at least not most of the time. Though I’ve noticed sometimes Sofia will stare at me, then ask, “Are you okay?” and I’ll say, “Sure, why do you ask?” and then she just smiles. Maybe I’ve got that face that screams, Dear Lord, someone tie me up, put me on a cruise ship and set a course for the Caribbean before I completely freak out!
Yesterday I was getting the minivan serviced and brought the kids in and when I went to pay the cashier peered down over her big desk and said, “OH MY GOODNESS, you’ve got THREE!” as if that were the number of legs (not children) I had. I kind of smiled and maybe I looked a little puzzled and then she said, a little more calmly, “Well, that’s a nice little family, though.” What I should have said was, “OH, these are just my youngest three. We’ve got eight more but they’re in school right now. Or somewhere near there. It’s hard to keep track, you know.”
Anyway, it doesn’t bother me in the least and I think it’s funny that people think I’m sort of Wonder Mom or something because I’m managing life with three kids. Sure, it’s hard sometimes, and very busy. But it was just as hard when we had one (harder even, because I wasn’t getting any sleep at the time) or two. It’s all relative, I guess.
We stopped by the mall after the auto place and I saw lots of moms and dads and grandparents out with one or two children and then I spied a mom with two little kids, one holding to each of her hands and a baby hanging from a front pack. It was like walking toward a mirror (except we didn’t look anything alike) as I held David and Sofia’s hands while Isobel bounced in her Snugli. We paused for a second and smiled at each other, almost as if to say, “My, don’t you have your hands full!” Indeed, but pleasantly so.