Beatrice will be four months old next week, which quite frankly, is rather astounding. Our life seems to have always included the five of us. Except, in all reality, it hasn’t. What’s even harder to believe is the number five. I’ve only been a mother for five years. What did I do before this??? Who knows. Who cares. Now is now.
One thing I’ve found funny as a mom of three kids four (and a half) and under, is that my sense of capability swings wildly from “Oh yeah, I’ve got this!” to “Oh man, I’m drowwwwwning. Help. Me.” These sentiments also usually happen within minutes (seconds?) of each other. It’s a wild ride, if nothing else.
I read this blog post last week that really resonated with me. This momma was talking about how things are just bigger with a large family. The messes are bigger. You laugh louder at funnier things because there are more of you laughing. You fight harder. You love fiercer. This is not to say small families suck. It just means what I’ve already felt within these last four months; our life has taken on this BIGNESS in ways that are hard to explain outside of the crazy amounts of laundry, the crazy amounts of crying anytime we try to go anywhere, and the crazy amount of laughing at each other that we all do. The bigness, is real.
And I’m here, for all of it. At the center of our big, little world.
I didn’t set out to become a stay at home mom. And yet, here we are. While there were times that I was pretty bummed about it all, I’m not anymore. Would I work again? Absolutely. But am I happy here? Absolutely.
For now, I’m the ring leader of our circus. I’m the one everyone looks to, to keep the good ship Shipper afloat. I’m the one gathering everyone together to laugh over videos from our day, or packing them off for some “quality time with daddy.” I’m at the center of the storm, but also at the peak of the mountain when things get good. And honestly, they really are good most of the time (the times, not the children).
The other day I got to play in the mud with my boys. We splashed around in our rain boots and I oscillated between laughing at the mayhem and yelling “I said DON’T HIT YOUR BROTHER WITH A STICK!” I made lunch. I cleaned up the sand and the dirt the boys tracked in. I sat on the sofa and nursed Bea while the boys slept (and we fell asleep too). I made dinner for a special little momma, and showed my boys what it means to love on others. I let Mike hold me a few seconds longer and squeeze me just a tiny bit harder as we stood in the kitchen, with little eyes peeking at us from over the counter. I worried about what I would blog about. I did three loads of laundry (again, every day). I paid bills. I did yoga. I read two pages of a new book. I turned the music up loud and danced with the kids, and handed Theo my phone because he wanted to take a few videos of us. I texted my friends. I arranged a date for me and my hubby, and confirmed play date plans for the boys. I put “clean the bathroom” on my to do list, and then never did it. I sat on the sofa and watched New Girl until 2 AM.
My days are really full of things that are at once special and not special, all at the same time. They are full of kids, and messes, and laughter, and exhaustion, and drive, and passion.
We are now a family of five, and I’ve now been a mother for five years. And though the kids might be little, the details of our life, are not. Because even the smallest detail takes on big meaning as a part of us, a part of our life, and a part of our love. And our love is no small thing.