Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Solo days

 A couple of days a week, Rich has been helping a friend of hers finish up some late-season landscaping work with her company. I'll admit, at first, this panicked me. It meant I would be on my own with the three youngest girls all day while he was away, and I didn't feel ready. I couldn't begin to imagine how I would do it: Summer nursed for about 20-30 minutes at a time every 2-3 hours, and that required me to sit still and focus on her. That makes it difficult to parent Hailey and Robin, who require constant behaviour correction, direct interaction, and facilitated play when they get a little bored. They would get bored because, of course, leaving the house as a foursome seemed insurmountable.

This was it: the hard stuff. The part I'd been dreading when I learned I was pregnant with Summer, and thought ahead to having three girls under two years of age in my care. I couldn't do it. I dug my toes into the sand and got stubborn for a bit. Stubborn and mad that this was my truth. I blamed Rich, (after all this baby was his fault, of course), and then anything else I could think of before I ran out of targets and turned inward.

I'd have to do this. I needed to figure this out. I could do this. So, like any other time in my life when things seemed nearly impossible, I jumped in and learned to swim really fast.

Hailey and Robin help take care of Summer, in their own way.
And you know what? It hasn't been half bad. There have been times when a fly on the wall would have been smart to fly right out of the house rather than witness the chaotic scene in front of it, but for the most part, we've kept things pretty calm. We've found a little rhythm, made sure to keep each other fed when we start feeling cranky, and returned to cuddles when things break down. I still get a little knot in my stomach when Rich heads out the door, but Hailey, Robin and Summer have been forgiving of my steep learning curve. 

Sweet curls
We've even been able to get out of the house. And what a sight we are! I wear Summer in her carrier while pushing Hailey and Robin in the double stroller for morning walks around our neighbourhood and trips to the park. I've had to watch the girls put rocks down their diapers while I sat nursing Summer on a park bench, but it didn't kill them. We've piled into the van for trips across town to visit friends, and sometimes to run errands. The girls (and I) don't really like doing errands because everyone gets cranky and cries, so we try to avoid this.

We don't actually feed Summer with a sippy cup of homo milk, don't worry.

Somewhere in our days together, we have all grown closer. I've learned so much about my girls from watching them closely in the quiet and in the noisy craziness. I know which books they like, how each likes to be held, and what lunches get thrown on the floor. I go to bed at night pretty exhausted, but happy to have the chance to be with my favourite little ladies.
Nigel, cat in residence


  1. Always something to relate to, smile about and miss you more for. Hugs to you all, Rebecca.

  2. you are so awesome and amazing. What beautiful girls you have and what a wonderful mama they have. Keep it up... LOVE YOU!


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