I was by myself Sunday with the kids. There are things I know to do…like always make sure no one needs to go to the bathroom before we get in the car. It doesn’t matter if it is only a 5 minute trip – always do the bathroom stop. I forgot. We had a 15 minute drive home from a church we were visiting (Chris was speaking on foster care). About 2.5 minutes into the drive, someone had to go to the bathroom.
There was no way we were going to make it home. Ugh. I tell myself, “I can do hard things,” many times a day. However, having to stop with 5 kids for a bathroom break…it nearly does me in.
So, I did what any reasonably sane mom would do…we stopped at Krispy Kreme. Bathrooms and lunch in one stop.
I sat at a table eating my sugar goodness and looked over at my crew watching the donuts being made. I surprised myself – out at a ‘restaurant’ (can I it that?) by myself with all 5…and I wasn’t stressed out.
I remembered when I had two kids and the LAST thing I would do was willingly go anywhere public with lines by myself. Then I had three kids and two wasn’t so bad. Then 4 kids. Then 5 kids. I’ve been out and about a lot lately with my crew. It is easier because they are getting older. Honestly, the hardest part now is dealing with the comments, points and stares when I’m alone with all five. I’m partially looking forward to when the boys pass me in height and I can wear a ball cap and pretend we are all just a group of friends. Not really. Well, kind of.
The whole point of this post is as I sat watching them, I thought of a blog post my friend Kimber shared on facebook. It is a letter written to moms of one or two children from a mom of five. It was written in 2007. It is so, so good. I kept nodding my head as I read her words.
Here is an excerpt:
“So, mamas of one or two littles afoot, when you ask me, “How do you do it?” I know what you’re asking. And I know what you’re feeling and what’s behind your eyes, and I walked in your shoes, and you are doing the hard, hard stuff of motherhood.
It is not easier because you “only” have one child or two children.
But as you find your way, and the more you let God be your strength and realize that you cannot in the many ways you think you can, it gets easier.
And it gets so, so good.”
I hear the “How do you do it?” and “I only have one and I’m overwhelmed…..” all the time – like every time I go anywhere with my five kids. And I get asked it a lot on this ole’ blog. Having one or two kids is not easier simply because there are less of them. If you are a mom with a couple little ones and are feeling a bit weary and wondering how some moms with more kids do it, I encourage you to read Sarah’s whole post. It’s good.
One day my kids will be driving and I’ll wait until we are five minutes down the road and tell them I need to go to the bathroom. One day.