Sunday, October 26, 2008

all in one piece.

lucky 7
we survived the long week and made it home all in one piece. only a few casualties: a few new bruises for owey (he refuses to go down the stairs on his belly and had more than one tumble), a new burn for me (trying to maneuver dinner out of the oven without burning the 3 little ones hanging off my legs) and new colds caught- some pretty good souvenirs that sort of sum up the week. we did also bring home some real souvenirs, the parents brought us back a bag full of fresh fortune cookies from china town, a big loaf of boudin sourdough bread (oh, how we miss boudin...), and a little chinese drum toy for owey. (they went to san francisco). isn't that sweet?
this past week has taught me many things, and while i'm sure you're all dying to hear the play by play of being a mother of 7.5 (3 of which are still in diapers, mind you) i will spare you all the details and sum it up with these little lists.
how i know i can never have 7 kids:
1. i coudn't sleep at night thinking of where everyone had to be at what time. that and the 3 that kept waking up crying.
2. i missed owey all week. don't get me wrong, he was right there with me all along, but i was just dying for some one on one time with him.
3. while generally i think i am usually a pretty intelligent person, with little sleep and so much going on around me at every given second, i am way too spacey to keep it all together for myself and 8 other people.
4. i'm not a huge fan of casseroles.
5. i hate being a nag. by the end of the day i felt so drained for the many "is your homework done?" s and "did you practice piano?"s and "is your bed made?"s and found myself just wanting to take a nap and let them do whatever the heck they wanted. of course i didn't do that, but if they were my kids, i just may have.
6. i used to think having twins would be fun. but after a week of 2 one year olds vying for my attention and being the best of friends one minute and the worst enemies the next, i changed my mind.
7. i like me time. there is never me time when you are a mom of 7. not even in the bathroom.
8. i am not a very good referee. and when you get that many kids under one roof or at one dinner table, there are bound to be some fights. i don't like being mean. i was always so glad when clint got home and could use his deep voice to strike fear into their little hearts... (not that clint even knows how to be mean - he just pretends when necessary.)
9. i need to shower. really. i do. twice in one week just doesn't cut it. and even then, there were screaming babies involved.
10. apparently i'm just too selfish.

that being said, would i do it again? absolutely. afterall, i do love a good challenge! and the experience, though difficult, was one i wouldn't trade. i have sooooo much respect for those of you who are super-moms and you certainly have a special place in heaven. most of my life i really wanted to be part of that club - now i am just pretty sure i don't have it in me.
i am grateful however for the many positive things that came out of this week:
1. i made dinner. every night. miracle of miracles. i don't really like to cook anyways, but cooking while pregnant is especially bad. in fact, i avoid it at all costs. now i know it is possible to do without getting sick or losing my appetite all together. i will try and be better.
2. i love my husband. clint had a very busy week but made every effort to be home in time for dinner and do homework after the kids had all gone to bed. i know he made sacrifices to help me keep my sanity and stayed up too late many nights to get it all done. not to mention the leaving at 6 am to make it to class on time. i also loooove how much the kids loved him. they thought he was just the coolest thing ever. he drew a few pictures for them and their jaws dropped. he entertained them with his calculator for hours. he brought them real italian coins. he helped with science projects, earned their respect, and made an impression in the short time he spent with him. in. love. all. over. again.
3. man oh man do i need to savor these last few months with just me and owey. obviously we are excited for #2, but it makes me sad to think of the time i won't be able to spend with him. i have resolved to be more tuned in and really make these moments count.
4. we came away with a new list of things we want to do when we have our house full (again, not as full as we used to think) and i feel like this experience has given me a rare opportunity to make adjustments and goals and plans now that will help in the future.
5. the week paid for our trip home for christmas. what a blessing.
6. it amazed me to compare the love i feel for my own flesh and blood in comparison to someone else's flesh and blood. of course we had fun and the kids are good kids and all, but my heart just melts when i see owen and it was a cool perspective to realize.
7. some kids are really funny. they say funny things, they do funny things, and we really tried to just laugh and have fun with it. we have some great inside jokes now.
8. as much as i have looked forward to the future - when our family is established and settled, i am just really grateful to be where we are right now- students with so much of life still ahead of us. we still have so much to look forward to and i really hope to find joy in the journey.

ok. this has already turned out to be waaaay longer than i intended. sorry. i just can't help myself.
and now that we are back, i may be in hibernation for a few days of recovery. (of course snuggling owey as much as he can handle.)


Madsen Family said...

Ah, Jess. How in tune we both are. Maybe it's b/c we have the same name. I used to want a big house full of kids, but like you, lots of things have changed my mind. The biggest obviously being I probably won't literally be ABLE to have a house full of kids, but I may be secretly glad this is the case b/c I cannot handle that kind of chaos. I told Josh once that I could be a REALLY good mom to three kids or an okay mom to more. I really admire the moms that can do it, though, and I admire you for even attempting it for one week PLUS you're pregnant and have one of your own! What a trooper (and I was glad to hear you got paid. I was thinking the toy drum was the only compensation and that's a far cry from ample payment in my book!). I know what you mean about "me time"--clearly, I love it since I am writing this mammoth comment. Also, I totally get what it is to have love for YOUR child. It's such a different love, though I think it might get me in trouble b/c I'm a bit blinded by how great I think Will is. Enjoy this last bit with Owey. He is sooo cute and it is only going to get crazier, I am sure. But fun,too. Okay, I'm done now. I hope you get to sleep lots and recover from your crazy week!

Me and My Boys said...

sounds like a crazy fun week. i will just say one thing, it is totally different when they are your own. But I totally agree One on one time with you children is the best. i couldn't be a sane mom without it. Good to have you back see you on wednesday.

Holly said...

That post made me a little scared for Thanksgiving at our place this year:o) We'll have 25 kids and 16 adults over for Thanksgiving, and an additional 16+ people over for a party that weekend for little Josiah's baby blessing:o) I will keep telling myself..."it will be great" and maybe I won't worry so much:o)
I know what you mean about wanting to snuggle up with your own little one. It's so wonderful especially when they are fully dependent on YOU! Love it!
Anyways, glad you survived, and that you've earned your trip home for the holiday! Truly a blessing!

brooke said...

You are SO brave! I totally balked at the idea of babysitting my nieces and nephews when I was pregnant (as in I yelled at Aaron, how dare they even IMPLY!) and I didn't even have another kid then! You are a saint, even if you did get paid. I hope that by trip "home" you mean here, I mean you couldn't mean anything else really so I just hope I get to see you!

I am with you on not being cut out to be a mom of many. I can barely cut it with one, well if you saw my living room right now you'd say I CAN'T cut it with one!

Emily said...

I can't believe how many YOUNG children you watched last week. Good for you, even with being preggers. I hope you're totally making up for it and taking it easy this week. Are you snowed in? j/k I definitly could not be a good mom to 6 kids. I think 3's my limit. I'm a great mom to 3, but anymore and I'm not so sure. Right now I need to be making cupcakes for Spencer's preschool, later I'm volunteering in Andrew's class, a playdate coming over this morning and another this afternoon, soccer practice, homework, Activity days, dinner and oh--take care of and bring along a baby to all this. I guess I should stop stalling and get busy with my day!