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June 24, 2008

7 Years Ago

7 years ago right now, I was getting my first real view of my firstborns.  From the wee morning hour when they were born, I only had a quick glimpse of them before they whisked them away.  I had a Polaroid of each of them that kept my attention for many hours (of which I am still grateful to the nurses who were thoughtful enough to do that - thank you again), but I needed to see my babies in person.  The delay was my slow recovery from the combo spinal/epidural of my emergency c-section.  When I was finally able to sit in a wheelchair and touch them for the first time, my first thought was very simple: they were perfect.  It's very difficult to carry triplets and after all of the scares of premature birth, there they were....33 weeks and 2 days, all 3lbs5oz, 3lbs8oz and 4lbs6oz worth of them.  It was finally real.  The long, long road it took to reach that point was over.  Everything was going to be ok.

My second thought was amazement that all of that 'baby' was inside of me.  No wonder I felt so miserable.  They were beautiful, perfect, and our children.  I was instantly smitten.  There was never any time required for me to bond.  My heart was immediately taken to an alternate place where it can simultaneously burst with love, happiness, hurt, worry and fear...just to name a few.  I thought I understood emotion up until 7 years ago, but those 2 minutes that it took to pull 3 babies out of my womb redefined my emotions forever.

At their younger birthdays, it was more a reflection of how easier some things became.  It's not hard to remember the difference between leaving the house with three breastmilk-drinking babies versus three somewhat self-sufficient kids.  I used to always reply to the questions of how we are doing with "some things get easier, some get harder."  Every year I understand the implications of that statement with more magnitude.  The new catchphrase seems to be this: "small kids, small problems.  Bigger kids, bigger problems."

Now they are 7.  It's literally shocking that 7 years have gone by already.  They are now really their own little people dealing with their own problems.  They have to fend off peer pressure, competition and all the fun and yuck that comes with growing up.  I hope and pray that we make the right decisions to give them the best opportunity to thrive in this world; one where we are just like every other previous generation and think the world is going to hell.  I want to equip them all with the personality traits that will help them succeed in life.  And after 7 years, one thing is very clear: being a parent is harder than you'd ever believe.  It comes with more joy and heartbreak than I ever thought I could feel (but yes, it is still always worth it).

7 years under the belt, and I've learned a lot.  A lot about myself, my husband, my family, the world.  Life is one big continuous journey - the more you learn, the more you realize how much you don't know.  Parenthood fits right in there with one big exclamation mark.

Happy 7th Birthday, my sweethearts.  I hope the first 7 years of your life have been good ones.  I know you have made my last 7 years worth every minute.  For as long as I live, I will never forget or underappreciate the miracle that 7 years ago brought to my life.

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June 17, 2008

Random Grocery Shopping Thought

So I was making a list of things I need for the trio's birthday party, and the majority of things will be purchased from the store that gets the majority of my grocery budget anyway: Sam's.  As I looked at my list, I realized that I had automatically grouped the items I need in the order that I will encounter them along my route through the aisles.

Is it sad that I know the exact location of all the items by heart, and I don't even work there?

Or is it more sad that I wrote out my list in this order?


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June 13, 2008

Personality Flaws

So I'll admit to you, Internet, I have a pretty significant personality flaw.

I like happy people.

I like to see people happy, I like to try and make them happy, and in fact, just pure happiness can bring me out of any bad mood.  Something as easy as a 2 year old shaking their booty just to get a laugh out of anyone watching...or a bubble that lands smack on someone's head but doesn't pop...or even an out of place fart!  Just something unplanned, something that exibits that special "I'm really laughing" laugh. 

Or to be an adult for a moment, cooking something for friends/family and watching them truly enjoy what they are eating.  After all, good eating should be an art - something to enjoy - not just something to do.  Yep, when I win the lotto (ha ha), I won't hire a chef, I will become one.  There is real satisfaction for me to take the time to make something healthy and yummy that also tastes good...and ultimately, makes people happy.

Unfortunately, such a "happy" thought comes with many consequences.  Everyone is unique, and quite honestly, it's goddamn hard to make anyone happy!  I've learned to deal with most of this the best I could over the years, as well as trying to use this 'flaw' to my advantage.  That comes with a lot of internal discipline: best said very hard, and at times, impossible.  It's especially difficult now that I am a parent.  You cannot possibly be a good parent while also keeping your children with a constant smile on their faces.  With that, I'm fine.  I am actually pretty good about drawing the line and plenty stubborn enough to stick with my guns.  I know the importance of saying what you mean and mean what you say.  But DAMN if that doesn't tear me up sometimes.

And every age is a challenge.  I wonder what if I only had one 7 year old?  Would there be the same energy and crazy-feeding-off-of-the-sibling action that we have?  Some days it's just clear - they just feed off of each other.  So why is that a bad thing?  They have a bond like we'll never understand.  That is a special thing for them.  Sometimes I think back to Star Trek and they are 1-of-3, 2-of-3, 3-of-3 for sure.  That does make me happy that they have each other that way.

But other days....wow.  It's hard.  Most of the times it's great, so I'm just going to talk about the hard today because it does exist.  Both Aaron and I work, we don't have family that can help nearby, and we have a lot on our plates.  We have a lot to face every single day.  There is no coasting.  We do the best we can all 24 hours of 365 or 366 days of the year.  And the thing about us both - one key reason why we'll be celebrating 12 years of wedding bliss soon - is because we can both be human.  We both try so hard to do the best we can and keep everyone happy, but it's a lot of work.


But I remain confident that it is all worth it.  And as ironically hard as it is to be happy, everyone should try that approach as often as you can.  It makes everything a bit easier.  Not saying any of it is easy, but hell, there have to be worse personality traits....

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June 10, 2008

Preparation for 2nd Grade

Today was the trio's last day of 1st grade.  I've already gotten the list of things to do over the summer in preparation for 2nd grade.  I will save my comments regarding this and my 1st grade experience for another blog entry.  For now, I will share something I found amusing (and if you aren't amused by this, then we just don't have the same sense of humor).  This is the list of words they are supposed to know to "start smart" according to the paper.  I would like to share this list, and I leave it in the EXACT order it is on this piece of paper.  At first glance, I thought maybe it was alphabetical, but no, that's not the case.  I think someone else had the same sense of humor and purposely put it in this order.  Otherwise...well, I just don't know, maybe I'm just nuts.  Ok, enough jabbering, here is the list:

been, before, better, call, cold, fall, kind, long, love, made, never, out, stop, show, today, warm, way, word, to

The more I read it, the funnier it gets.  Is it just me???  Tell me this isn't funny?  Or have I just lost it?  Has 1st grade really done this to me?  Never!  Out!  Stop!

Am I mature enough for 2nd grade?

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June 03, 2008

The Two Seasons

Around these parts, we like to say we have two seasons: winter, or construction.  This has never rang more true for me.  Currently my commute one way is 30 miles door to door (if I go straight to work - add in a few more if I have kids to drop off or pick up).  Those 30 miles include three tollways, as well as a zig-zag route just to get me on the first one.

28 of those miles are now under construction. 

This morning the newest portion of it was added, which was on a local road.  I can do those 30 miles in about 35 minutes when there is no traffic.  Unfortunately I do not work the graveyard shift, so my commute ONE WAY can be anywhere from 1 hour (on a very good day) to pushing the 2 hour mark.  With gas prices around $4.20 a gallon, I'm starting to feel the mental strain as well as the financial one.  So to try and see the humor of the situation, I've come up with this:

  • The term "rush hour" is such a gross misnomer, can't we come up with a more accurate term?  You wouldn't want to hear mine, as they couldn't be said without a bleep.
  • State Troopers have no business on the roads during peak commuting times.  All they do is cause yet another bottleneck or gaper's delay in the already annoying traffic taking place.  Write your tickets some other time, please.  Some of us are trying to get to work.
  • Speaking of gaper's delays, come on people.  Do you want people gawking at you?  Keep your eyes on the road and get your asses moving.  Those poor people in that accident do not want your stares or need your curiosity.  Show them some respect.
  • Traffic reports for my route are useless.  Every day they tell me that there are no delays, and everything is fine.  Or else they tell me the delay on my most problematic tollway begin 10 miles further than they actually do.  If they would just say the truth, "hey, if you have to go that way, it sucks!", I'd be less annoyed.  Quit giving me false hope!
  • Sign on a ramp from one highway to another, which is under construction: "Do Not Stop on Ramp."  I've had plenty of time to admire said sign.  I've thought about taking it off road so I do not violate that rule.  Hey, I'm a good citizen!
  • Another sign through a construction zone: "Avoid Unneccesary Lane Changes."  I suppose the thought process behind this one was to try and avoid those in a hurry from zig zagging through the stalled traffic, but you have to appreciate the humor.  Or maybe I think it's funny because I consider all of my lane changes to be necessary.
  • And my all time favorite: "Road Construction Ahead: Expect Delays."  Boy, thanks for the warning there, Sherlock.

To be fair, some of the construction is to widen these roads, so I'm hoping this is temporary pain and it will pay off.  However, I also didn't just fall off the truck yesterday so I'm just trying to be optimistic.  Other parts of the construction is...you gotta love the justice in this...to fix the pothole damage caused by the cold and snowy and LONG winter.

Yep, two seasons.

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