I could always see myself with two kids. And looking back at those days when it was just the four of us, taking care of two kids really was a piece of cake. No, a whole sheet cake.
Then we decided to have another.
People told me going from two kids to three kids would be easy. That you would just change your strategy from man-to-man defense to zone.
In hindsight, going from two kids to three kids kicked my trash. Being outnumbered is difficult, but in time found a groove that worked for us.
And because I’m a super organized awesome planner, I decided four kids under the age of seven would be a fantastic idea.
Again, there were those people that said: “Well if you can do three kids, you totally can do four kids, you won’t even notice the difference”.
Those people were wrong too. It’s not as easy breezy as it sounds. Four children is a lot of work.
The only person I’ve ever heard it said remotely accurately is my favorite comedian Jim Gaffigan. In my mind, Michael and I are best friends with Jim and his wife Jeannie. Yes, I refer to them as Jim and Jeannie, like they live down the street from us or something.
He has four kids (two girls, two boys) and summed it up perfectly:
“Want to know what it’s like to have four kids? Imagine you’re drowning, and then someone hands you a baby.”
Yup, pretty much nailed it on the head.
Most days I’m underwater. On the days I’m not gasping for air, I’m running a marathon in the middle of the desert without a water bottle.
I feel crazy. But not alone in my crazy. I have a fantastic partner, and while he’s a good 10 inches taller than me, he’s often drowning too. Everyday, when he walks through the front door after an exhausting day of work, I hand him a baby, toddler, or out of control preschooler.
My kids are lucky to have him, and so am I. He manages our bunch of chimps so much better than I’ll ever be able to.
Yesterday I took the girls shopping to pick out Father’s Day gifts. I told each of them they could pick out whatever they want, I and wasn’t going to help them or give them any suggestions. I wanted them to think about their dad, and pick out something that they thought he would like.
It was so cute to watch them shop, hearing them discuss Michael and deciding exactly what would make him smile.
Nola *almost* bought him a deluxe Littlest Pet Shop activity pack, and he narrowly escaped getting new set “princess” floor mats for his car from Piper.
But what they ended up deciding on is perfect. Each gift really tells a story about his relationship with each of them. We’re also making him some art for his new office space at work, and will be serving up breakfast in bed Sunday morning before we head to church.
Having a large family with four little kids is hard. So hard.
Raising them with Michael is the only way I would ever even consider attempting it.
(now hopefully he doesn’t read this blog post until after Sunday. The girls will kill me if I ruin their surprise…)
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