A few weeks ago I was at a public event at the local high school when I heard a two women talking a little too loud about what they think about people that ONLY have 1 or 2 kids. Their conversation went like this:
Woman 1: ” It drives me crazy when I see women who have like 1 or 2 kids and they are stressed out and think that it is so hard, or I’m so tired and I’m over here like, I have 4 kids, that is double the amount of your kids! Get it together, your life isn’t nearly as hard as mine!”
Woman 2: ” Right? I know, me too! How about those women who have 1 or 2 kids and buy a mini van?! Like seriously how much space do your two kids need? A whole freaking mini van?”
Woman 1: “My kids are teenagers now and that is way harder than when they were little!”
Woman 2: “I know and mine are so close in age that I never had a rest when they were littler, they are 8, 9, and 10 now and I’m still not sleeping through the night, so those people with 1 or 2 kids have had more sleep than me in the last few years! They need to stop complaining….”
They continued on and off for about 3 minutes and I finally had to move so I wouldn’t hear it.
I WISH I could go back to that day because I SHOULD HAVE said something to those two women. I should have weighed in on their conversation. You know what I would have told them? Do you know what this Mom of 4 thinks about you Moms that have 1 or 2 kids?
I SALUTE YOU! I think you are amazing! Being a Mom is HARD WORK! Well worth it, but hard, I remember those days….
A note to you Moms of 1 child!
I remember those days when I had 1 child. It was my first time being a mother and not only was I terrified because I had NO idea what I was doing, but these trained nurses were actually telling me it was time to go home. I used every last minute that my insurance would cover at the hospital. If it wouldn’t have been for my husband wheeling me out of there in a wheel chair, I may have not been able to move. My body had literally been cut into pieces, going to the bathroom was painful like I’d never experience before. I was supposed to be walking and sitting normally (but was still swollen from 2.5 hours of pushing), and feeding a 1 day old with my pain infused chest that was cracked and bleeding. I cried. My baby cried. I cried more. My Mom came and it wasn’t as intimidating, then my mom left. I cried again. I was hardly sleeping. I had just given up my career to become a full time Mom and I missed seeing adults. I turned the TV on all day long just to have adult voices in the house so I wouldn’t get lonely. IT. IS. HARD! Chasing your 1 year old through the halls at church trying to keep her quiet….oh man, I remember those days! Have you been there? You’ve done this before, do you remember how hard it was? Are you here right now? If you are, HANG ON! This Mom of 4 salutes you. First time parenting is so tough. You can do this! Trust your instincts, call your friends or turn on the TV for adult voices when you get lonely. You hang on, because what happened to my 1st child is going to happen to yours too. They are gonna grow up. When she started to grow up, we eased into a pattern, diagnosed the reason for all of her screaming (acid reflux), fixed the acid reflux, and now she is a grown up 9 year old who is a Greek mythology master, loves to hunt, fish, read books, help take care of her siblings, and is better at math than I am!
A note to you Moms of 2 children!
Having 2 kids isn’t harder but it is a different kind of hard. On one hand you have some experience from the first child, you know what to expect at labor and delivery and how your body will handle it all, but now you have a new set of challenges that you are facing. Will child #1 be able to remember to be “soft” with the baby or quiet while it’s nap time 16 hours out of the 24 hour day? Will you be able to find balance to make sure the older one doesn’t feel over thrown? Now you don’t only have the toddler you are chasing down the halls at church but you also have the baby your are toting along too which only adds to the “excitement”. You are out numbered during the day and the daily shower may become an every other day thing or if you shower before 2 pm it some kind of a record. You’ve got a needy infant and an opinionated older child whose routine totally just changed and IT. IS. HARD! Have you been here? Are you here right now? If you are, HANG ON! This Mom of 4 salutes you. I remember these days so well. They were hard. You hang on because what happened to my 2nd child is going to happen to yours too. They are gonna grow up! She went from a jaundice ridden tiny 5 lb baby to a beautiful 7 year old girl who is a creative artist, loves to play the piano, a fashionista, who knows more details about animals and space than I do!
A note to you Moms of 3 children!
Having 3 kids isn’t harder but it IS a different kind of hard for the simple fact that you have 2 hands and 3 kids. oh man, I remember my first shopping trip with all 3 kids. I won’t give all the details but it ended up with clean up in aisle 3, 5, and the egg section. It was a LONG time before I did that again! I’m pretty sure Moms should come with 4 to 8 hands. 😉 Suddenly you have a 1st child who thinks they are big enough to help but end up making messes every time they try….(hence the clean up in 3 different sections of the store)….You’ve got to try to feed the older 2 and the younger one all while trying to stay up on the housework and the laundry (OH THE LAUNDRY is never ending!!) Outings may feel impossible. You’ve got to squeeze all three car seats into the backseat of your vehicle and scrape your hand on the car seat base every time you are helping child #2 buckle. Or maybe your child draws all over your new couch with a gold Sharpie? I remember these days. IT. IS. HARD! Have you been here? Are you here right now? If you are. HANG ON! This Mom of 4 salutes you! You hang on because what happened to my 3rd child is going to happen to yours too. They are gonna grow up! My opinionated little 7 lb baby who refused to take a bottle or a pacifier and sucked her thumb until she was four has grown up into the happiest 5 year old with a contagious smile and a desire to be helpful to everyone. She laughs at everything and loves to help me bake goodies or make dinner.
A note to you Moms that have a couple of kids and a mini van!
Go YOU! Mini vans are awesome! So convenient and easy and those automatic opening doors….they are the best! So drive on Momma and drive proud! I LOVE my mini van!
A note to anyone who ever contemplates saying the phrase”How about those women who have 1 or 2 kids and buy a mini van?! Like seriously how much space to your two kids need? A whole freaking mini van?”
Seriously? You have NO idea what that family has been through. Perhaps they plan on having more kids and it was the right time for them to change vehicles. Maybe they HAD planned on having more kids and miscarried, had a still born, or they passed away shortly after birth. There is so much hurt that can be stirred up from a silly comment like the one you are about to make about people having mini vans without having a ton of children. Maybe they do car pool and need the extra seats. Maybe they pick up the neighbor kids for school since their vehicle is broken. Maybe they know how awesomely convenient mini vans are and wanted one as soon as possible. My words to you….Don’t Hate. Okay?
Finally a note to those 2 women who I should have smacked when I had the chance. Stop judging, comparing, and belittling! I’m sure your 4 children are hard. Each stage in parenting is a different kind of hard, so please don’t belittle anyone who isn’t “as far” into the parenting experience department. Maybe they will get there, maybe they won’t, but they are hanging on. They are doing their best and before we all know it, your children, my children, and those children will be grown up having kids of their own. You wouldn’t want someone to say anything like this about your grown child, so don’t you say it either!
Moms, no matter what stage you are at, I SALUTE YOU! Love Cj