Once Upon a Time…
Once upon a time, there was a young mother with only one little girl and who thought she knew it all. The baby was nice and quiet. An early walker. A late sleeper. Perfect in the car or store. On a natural schedule from the day she was born. Cute as a button. Content to sit at hery feet or nap peacefully while she went about her day. She’d say “Being a SAHM mom is a breeze! I don’t know what the big deal is!”
Then there were three. They slept through the night early. Her ‘baby’ alarm only went back about a half an hour each morning. And it’s cute, compact cars and fitting into the ‘family’ buggies at the store. The woman still had left-overs from one box of mac-n-cheese. It’s compliments raining down about how she had the perfect family: A boy and two girls to spoil rotten. It’s squeezing into the booths at restaurants. It’s an exotic and uber-cool new double stroller. She’d sit down, happily tired, at 10pm and think to herself, “This is so easy! If only I could sleep a little later!”
Then there were five.
I don’t know why it happened then. Maybe it’s because she used all the booster seats in restaurants. Maybe it’s because a seven passenger van was suddenly too small to be comfortable. Maybe it’s because it took two buggies just to carry the children through the store.
Turn around, and there’s six. And it’s three double strollers on trips to the zoo. It’s a child up at 4am who wakes everyone else up. It’s the ‘party’ tables in the restaurants. It’s a whole row in church.
Then came the turning point where the woman, dead on her feet at 4 in the afternoon, with dishes and laundry piled up, toys all through the house, dogs and children running full speed, phone ringing off the hook, and in desperate need of a shower and thinks ‘Oh, my God. How can I handle this?’ How will I make it through this day, much less the next 18 years?”
Then, with another boo-boo to kiss, supper to cook, and children to bathe, she gets up with a sigh and muddles on.
Then, it’s cuddles and kisses from the six cutest little people in the entire world. It’s hilarious offhand observations coming from six little mouths. It’s twelve little hands stirring cupcake batter and six little faces smeared with icing. It’s sitting back and watching with pride times six as they conquer the next letter, the next word, the next book, the next dance, the next tackle, the next step in becoming who they were meant to be.
And she sits down, dead on her feet at noon, and thinks to herself, “Oh, my God. I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”