So, I’ve FINALLY gotten my act together and start my own blog. It’s about time, since I seem to have lots to say lately. I guess it was only fitting to start with the one topic that gets the most attention.
“I don’t know how you do it.”
This is the single most popular comment I have heard from hubby, family, friends, even strangers on the street or supermarket in regards to taking care of my three boys. I decided to talk about this popular comment and offer my two cents on it. So, I dug deep and really started to think about this question/comment.
Well, my answer is, “What’s the alternative?”
I guess the best place to start is from the beginning. How did this all come about in the first place? It started in July 2006, when hubby left to work out West in Fort MacMurray, Alberta, to make more money for our family. Elijah was 9 months, we just bought our car and hubby was going to be gone for about 2 months. To be honest, I was a nervous wreck. Here we were, a new family, getting our bearings and now I was going to be left alone with this little person. “What if he cries? What do I do if he gets hurt? How do I handle this kid?” Oh, you wouldn’t believe the crazy thoughts that went through my head.
The first time I had to go shopping with Elijah was scary at the time, but now, very laughable. It was July 5, 2006, and up until that moment, I hadn’t even put him in the car – hubby took care of that. As I loaded him into the car and heard the seat click into place, I did the happy dance in my head. “Whew, got through that one.” Then I had to drive into town with him – another accomplishment. Then came the big test – getting him out of the car and into the shopping cart. Wow, that was so simple. By the time I got my shopping done, I was in and out of town in about 45 minutes. I even got gas with ease. That first day alone with Elijah was the toughest and most rewarding for me. I thought to myself, “I could do this.” And I did it every day until hubby came home for Elijah’s 1st birthday.
We all established a system of sorts and we had a good groove going. Each time I had errands to run, my trips with Elijah became more routine and we had a great flow going. Then we got pregnant with Justus. As the delivery grew nearer, I thought, “Dang, we had a good routine going, and now I’m going to have a newborn and a toddler…how the heck am I gonna handle THIS?!?!?!?” Well, the first time I had to venture into town with both of them, it went well and every time after that got better and a little easier. I thought to myself that it wasn’t so bad and they’re really well behaved boys. They’re working with me. Yay!!!
Then we were pregnant with Isaac. To be honest, while I was in the hospital, as I stared at him one night, I almost had a panic attack. I mean, a serious, full-on, palms sweating, dry throat, about to throw up panic attack. Two babies were okay, but now I’ve got a newborn, an 18 month old and a 4 year old. What the heck have I gotten myself into? Hubby left after Isaac was 10 days old and for 3 weeks I had live in help with one of our cousins (thanks so much, Arlene – you were such a big help.) I did have a lot of help in the beginning from family and friends who offered to do my shopping and get any necessary items I needed. I literally didn’t have to leave my house for about a month and a half.
And then the big day came – New Year’s Eve 2009. I had to venture into town with all 3 boys. The Christmas holiday was winding down, and nothing was open all weekend until the 31st and it was also a big No Tax, Boxing Day sale. Talk about entering the belly of the beast. Loading them into the car required a specific system – Isaac is always first because he’s in the middle. Then Justus, then Elijah. Loading them into the cart is a little backward – Justus, Isaac and Elijah on foot. That afternoon in the supermarket was a madhouse. Trying to turn the cart and get it down the aisles was a chore in and of itself. Add to the fact that Elijah was now on foot and you can imagine what that’s like. All the while, I kept hearing comments, including, “Such beautiful boys” and “Boy you’ve got your hands full.” And just like all the other times I had to venture into town, nothing bad happened.
So, here we are, 8 months after that event, and I’ve established a routine with the boys. Traveling is sometimes a challenge, but we mange. Getting them fed, bathed and in bed works most days, other days require some tweaking. But for me, I make it work because they are my boys. In all honesty, it’s not like I didn’t know what I was getting into. The stork didn’t drop them from the sky one day. We knew we wanted a family and what it entailed. Each new life brought on new challenges, but I’ve been able to handle them and it works for us.
While I appreciate all the accolades and praises, I am really not doing anything different than what any of you as parents are doing. I’m doing what’s best for my family to make sure my boys to give them a strong sense of family, care for others, respect themselves and others and which I hope they will take with them as they grow up to become successful men.
So, there you have it. Hopefully you’ve gotten a glimpse of “how I do it.”
Until next time, be well.