Friday, May 09, 2008

we're possessed

The only time that I ever lose my patience with our children, is when I have something to do and they are interfering with my completion of that task.

For instance.

I need to fold the laundry. I fold it and put it in the basket, they take it out and scatter it around the house. I need to clean up the floor because contractors are coming any moment, to rip out and replace some of our hardwood. They are two steps behind me making twice as large of a mess as what I just cleaned up. I need to make a phone call. They run around screaming like banshees at the top of their lungs. I need to sit down and pay the bills. On the rare occasion I don't pay online, I reach for my checkbook and it has been hijacked and decorated with PWINCESS stickers. I want to go to sleep. They don't. I need to go from Point A to Point B. They take off their shoes, often times - all of their clothes - and run in the opposite direction.

They pick up and chew used gum from the sidewalk, lick the receiver on a public pay phone and cause sheer chaos at every turn. Just because.

When they were infants, it was definitely easier. I could secure them behind a gate and there they would stay while I did what I needed to do.

Today, when I was cleaning up from lunch and I thought the kids were napping, I looked outside to see Elizabeth sitting naked in the sandbox playing with random parts of Charlie's new BBQ that have not yet been assembled because my husband is incapacitated.

Then there's Carolyn and her refusal to poop in the potty. She's not constipated. She is perfectly able to go, she just won't until she is in a diaper. A diaper that she must wear at night because otherwise she will wet the bed that she shares with her sister. The one time I tried to use a waterproof pad at night, she wound up sleeping on top of the blankets and drenching her quilt and down comforter. This is quite unlike William, who also wasn't constipated, but declared an all-out poop strike and wouldn't go at all and would stress and strain and grunt and groan just to keep it in.

Good times, people.

Good times.

I'll never forget my mother telling me, when the triplets were babies, that I always need to be kind to them. That sounded simple enough when I was looking at my helpless premature infants. Of course I would always be kind to them, why would I not?!

Now I know.

I am trying to get something, anything done, and they make the completion of even the simplest task infinitely more difficult. I'll tell them "Children! Children!! I want to spend every waking moment focused on you and only you. But I must have a few moments to myself so that I can complete this one thing. I must prepare food for us to eat or we will all perish. Believe me, if we would all thrive eating Doritos, meal time would never be an issue, again!!"

So I lose my patience on a colossal scale, because when I turned around to take out ingredients from the refrigerator, someone knocked the baby down and he hit his head on the floor. And somebody else is bending the curtain rod because they are using our drapes to swing like Tarzan. And somebody else just pulled an entire dozen of eggs off the counter and they splattered all over the floor. And that empty paper towel roll that I had moments earlier, lovingly handed to them to use as a telescope is now something that I snatch back and smack them over the heads with.

Oh, they try to run. But their little legs are not NEARLY as fast as mine.

As I'm doing this, I'm beating myself up for being a terrible mother, yet find myself unable to get a grip. Then, there is the verbal barrage that is now being directed at my invalid husband who gives me a look that says "You might be overreacting just a bit" and although I know I am overreacting, I am tired because I haven't had more than four hours of sleep in at least a year and I am frustrated that he tried to lift a five-burner grill ALL BY HIMSELF on to our wagon for transport to the back yard, while I was at the park with his spawn children.

He knows not to do this kind of lifting on his own, because he has a bad back. But does he ever listen?? The correct answer is NO, instead of waiting for me to come home and help, he tried to do it all by himself so he could surprise me with a nice dinner.

I'm absolutely certain he told me that so I wouldn’t kill him on the spot.

Add to that, we have our neighborhood yard sale tomorrow morning and although this was something Charlie was excited to handle, it’s now something I must handle. And at this point, watching the kids while also trying to manage a yard sale sounds more painful than trying to run two-miles in under 30 minutes.

All of these topics, and then some, come in to our conversation.

The $350.00 glasses that he lost at the swimming pool, the bunny that Elizabeth lost at the museum, the giraffe that Carolyn lost at the park, the one shoe that William lost when he kicked it out of the back of the car before I closed the sliding door - from the front.

The mind that I have lost, long ago.

I was talking with a co-worker about this absolutely insane period of my life and why it is that things seem so chaotic. Then it dawned on me.

I told her "You know what I need?"

She nodded her head and said "A nanny."

And I said, "No. An exorcist."


  1. those are the kind of rants that are suppose to make you feel better. i hope you do! :)

  2. This all sounds totally normal to me. I proclaim you not possessed! I thought everyone's days went like this. Are you saying it's not normal? Hee hee.

    Does the YMCA have a summer class? I'm putting all four of mine in an arts and craft/game/song class. It's two hours/two days a week. I plan on falling down and crying and sobbing to get them all in. Whatever it takes, cuz Sept is REALLY FAR AWAY. KWIM?

  3. Am I the only one laughing hysterically at this post?

    YOU crack me up!

  4. Like I told you last week... You WILL miss these times! C'mon September....

  5. Lorie, I can pretty much guarantee you that, no, I will NOT miss these times.

    Sure, I might look back on some of the chaos with a fondness, and think "Wow, I survived that..." But I would never want to come back and revisit the scene that was has been playing out at our house for the past few weeks.

    Never. Ever. Ever. NEVER.

    If I have a time machine at some point in the future, I would rather set the dial back to me recovering from a c-section than to pop in on the mayhem that was our house this afternoon. Made all the worse by the fact that I HAD NO CHOCOLATE.

  6. I only have one three year old and I completely hear you on the exorcist thing. ;-) When Joey is driving me up the wall I often wonder how you do it and stay sane and so cheerful!

    As for the not pooping in the potty thing, I feel you pain on that one as well. It took alot of fighting with J before he would do it and then when I had kind of given up and resigned myself to buying more nappies, he suddenly starting doing it of his own accord. I now have heaps that I bought on special as I decided to stock up. THankfully he still needs them at night but at this rate I will still have some left when he has kids!! LOL!

  7. This is what I can tell you: age 3 was the hardest for me. My twins were pretty much like you described. But as the inched near 4, things improved. When they finally turned 4 things were MUCH better. So just "survive" this trying time and know that easier times are ahead!

    Also, here's a thought about potty training: Perhaps just STOP trying to get her to poop altogether? Sometimes, the more we try to control our children the more they resist. What started as a potty issue is transforms into a battle of the wills. Ulimately, SHE and only she is in charge of her bodily functions, no matter what you do...

    I'm only mentioning this b/c I was very much like you when my girls were that age. For me, learning to give up control was HUGE in making our household happy.

    I don't mean to assume that my issues are your issues- I could be way off base, and if so I'm sorry! But, as I said, I see alot of myself in how you describe your life with your multiples.

    Hang in there!

  8. Exorcism or maybe just a mommy only vacation...

  9. Once again I am left speechless. The pooping thing almost like just being stubborn. She knows how much YOU want to poop on the potty, so she rebels. I hope your weekend is better and Charlie is back on his feet soon.

  10. Maybe it's time for Charlie to give Carolyn the "poop talk" that he gave William?

    Your blog keeps me smiling for hours! I absolutely love reading it.

    Happy Mother's Day!

  11. {{Hugs}} from one mom to another. Hang in there.

  12. I bet you can find one on craigslist. They have everything there. lol

  13. Jen,

    Long time lurker here. I admire you so much. I've wanted to respond so many times, but you have it together so much more than I do. These crazy days posts always make me wonder how could you not want them in preschool EVERYDAY?!

    Happy Mother's Day to one of the best out there!


  14. Karen in Buffalo5/11/08, 7:29 AM

    Just wanted to wish you a wonderful, and hopefully relaxing, Mother's Day!

  15. Happy Mother's Day Jen. You are a great Mom!

  16. I was told at a PND course I went to to always try and be 'bigger, wiser, stronger, and kind'.

    It gets harder to do as they get older that's for sure.

    And what IS IT with licking things!!!!!

  17. OMG - I am sorry you have been possessed ... I cannot whinge or complain again.I can relate though (I say it in a whisper in case they hear me)
    My twins only do half the collateral damage of your trio - chaos and mayhem beyond measure but it sounds normal to me ... my DH has a bad back and his lifts stuff too - GRRR and then goes to the Chiropractor and then to bed.

    My Little Drummer boys

  18. Kind is extremely difficult. That's all I have to say.

    And if only the children weren't possessed, we wouldn't have to get that way. :)

  19. I had my 9 the easy way, one at a time.

    I know with my oldest 8, the more I tried to make them use the potty, the more they would refuse. Maybe stop the pressure for a while? My 3 1/2 yr old trained herself right before halloween last year. The rule in my house is that only big kids whi use the potty get to go trick or treating. The older kids were talking about Halloweeen and candy and she wanted to go. I reminded her that only big kids who wear underwear and use the potty can go. Her response? "I can use the potty". She's been using it with very few accidents since then.