Thursday, July 12, 2012


I wrote this essay around Mother's Day.  Thought I would post it before this baby gets here.  Also, the broken sentences I write about are more complete.  This growing up thing is so bittersweet.  

"Are they ALL yours?"

"Triplets!  Better you than me!"

"You have TRIPLETS!  Oh, I would kill myself."

I've heard all these.  There is something about seeing my family of toddlers in a grocery store that has strangers stating odd and borderline insulting comments my way.  I'm sure this isn't their intention. Casually passing someone in the mustard aisle,  you don't have much to go on.  How can they know about the prayers, the pleading, the hope that there would actually be little ones in my cart someday? 

I'm sure they imagine a scenario where I am in my garage, bawling, trying to dial my husband through stinging tears of fatigue while a two-year old tantrum times three is happening in the upstairs play room.  Maybe they think about six curious hands getting into their own messy diapers and finger painting foul-smelling works of art on crib rails.  Or dinner time, where rice and vegetables are thrown on the floor with disgust and disdain by all three food critics.  

Because in truth, all these things have happened.  

But what I wish they would imagine is the joy.  The laughs.  The chubby hands and quick feet running armloads of last night's pajamas to the hamper with delight.  The broken sentences as they try to put their world together.  "Hold you mommy?"  Yes, I can hold you darling.  "Hand. Oww.  Kiss it."   A mother's kiss on a wounded pinky is like elixir for both souls. 

They should imagine an oversized chair, perfect for a mom with not enough lap space to go around.  Three little heads and bodies cuddled up to read their favorite book.  Again.  They should imagine the four of us playing a favorite game, Run.  The rules are simple, run around in a circle and laugh. When you're tired, stop and have a break of milk and orange crackers shaped like fish.  

Because these things happen too.  These are the moments that make the tantrums hazy and distant.  These are the moments that shine brighter than meltdowns, and weariness.  These are the moments that fill my battered void with a light and wholeness I've never known.  As their mom, I feel the weight and pressure of teaching these three little souls how to be good people.  Yet these little ones, not even able to talk in full sentences yet, teach me lessons of strength, courage, patience (oh the patience!) and love with a clarity and conviction I can only pray for.    

Motherhood is not easy.  There are times when I am brought to my knees, pressed down with feelings of inadequacy and doubt.  But there are times of sacred harmony, when I know, with the core of my being, that I was meant to nurture.  Meant to love.  Meant to be a mother.

The other day, a stranger stopped me, noticed my triplet toddlers, noticed my pregnant bump and said with a sincere smile,  "Oh, God bless you!"  

Yes. Yes he has.        


Chalyce said...

I love you Kara! Thanks so much for all of your thoughts and being such a great example!

Kristin Hackman said...

YES!!! Yes to all of it! I get so happy and feel like time stands still when a nice person (usually a grandma) comes and says, "Oh honey, you are so blessed."

Such a great image of what life is behind closed doors w/ many people that see the tribe in public are SO curious on our survival and SO nervous it is a disease that may rub off on them that they are forced to say dumb comments. And like you described, it really is pretty simple & it's just life! Thank you for the tears this morning - needed it!

PS, LOVING the info on hypnobirthing. I am big into breathing, meditation and visualization (which is why I had issues w/ the c-section too - just NOT what I pictured)- our mind is SO powerful. You are my hero & I love that you will get the birth story you deserve.

MrsD said...

Ok now that this beautiful post is public, let the birthing commence!!!!!

Tiffany said...

What a beautiful post! It really puts motherhood into perspective for me... It's a gift I wouldn't trade the world for! Thanks for sharing.

Galley's said...

Very well put! Kara your way with words never ceases to amaze me! I love it when your posts make me cry. Motherhood is our greatest joy. You are a great Mom- that is why you have been so blessed.

Carrie said...

what an excellent post! and even though this totally wasn't the point of it... i have to put in my request again for more "how i do it" posts. i would love to hear about a typical grocery shopping trip for you! i don't picture you at all as ever being in survival mode so it's actually kinda funny for me to hear about it when you mention it. glad to know you're human like the rest of us!

maxfamclan said...

Absolutely wonderful. You captured Motherhood in all it's glory and struggles.

Allysha said...

Your post reminded me of a favorite poem by my favorite poet, ws merwin

When the pain of the world finds words
they sound like joy
and often we follow them
with our feet of earth
and learn them by heart
but when the joy of the world finds words
they are painful
and often we turn away
with our hands of water.

We have a universal understand (and dislike) of the hard things. But you can't know the joy unless you've been there, can you.

You're awesome!

Unknown said...

What a wonderful post! I would say that 98-99% of the comments we hear are positive. Once in a great while, we have heard the 'better you than me' or 'I wouldn't want to be you.' I am thankful that we receive so many positive comments from people who know that our toddlers are blessings not burdens. Yes, there are tough days, like you described, but the toughest of days does not compare to the pain of infertility (and not knowing if we would ever have kids in our cart). Thank you for sharing this post on Multiples Monday on Capri + 3. Have a wonderful week.

: 0 ) Theresa

Jaclyn and Devan Swallom said...

Found your post through Capri + 3... I get the same questions with my twins and I usually have to try not to smack them upside the side. Your littles are beautiful and you are incredibly blessed. :)