Sink or swim. Fight or flight. Man vs Wild. No, I am not referring to some documentary on the discovery channel, where survival is the common theme; I am describing my own situation that best captured life in those early days/weeks/months after the twins were born. The concept behind ‘survival of the fittest’ became of much personal interest to me during that crazy and hectic time. Agreeing with the idea that only those organisms best adapted to their particular conditions of their environment will succeed in the long run, I knew our livelihood depended on finding successful ways to adjust to the new conditions and challenges 3 kids (under the age of 3) brought upon this family (especially when it came to securing food). Thinking back to our early ancestors means of surviving and how the men did the hunting to provide for their clan, I first let Rob (the man of this clan) have a stab at being the source of our sustenance. But when he would return with his idea of a bountiful “kill” comprised of a month’s supply of unshelled peanuts and shiner bock, I knew that I would need to be the one foraging for our food. And that was scary!! The familiar task of shopping at a store with just one kid became a daunting one, now that three little ones would be part of my expedition for groceries. I was going into uncharted waters, but I knew our survival depended on it and I was determined to figure out a way (or die trying…)
It turns out, it was not as frightful as I thought it would be!! It just required a bit more time and a little getting used to maneuvering two different wheeled-devices around the store. This is how shopping used to look.
Dee and Gracie would remain in their infant carriers and I would push them with my right arm. Halle would get the front seat of a grocery cart that I would drag along behind me. Fortunately for me, D&G were so small that I could keep them in those carriers and shop this way for the first 15 months.
After those days, I would just throw all 3 in the shopping cart. And this is what our shopping trips look like today.
So I am pleased to say that going shopping has (**for about 99% of the time) been a positive experience and not something I have dreaded over the past 3 1/2 years. There are joys to be had (honest!) when it becomes the norm to shop with your little ones on a regular basis. I still love the looks and expressions we get from other shoppers. “God bless you” is a favorite of mine because I can reply with “Yes He has!!” Even though their words are in line with the other familiar “you have your hands full” comment, suggesting life must be super hard with multiple kids, I always want to try to turn it into one of praise for children. There is such a misconception existing today that children are a burden and keep mommy from having freedom in her life, I hope my response and attitude when shopping with my girls gives them something different to consider.
Oh and I don’t want to leave off the part of the ‘survival of the fittest’ principle that concludes when a species can adapt and survive, they can reproduce. It is fitting to include here because we are praying our numbers will increase, soon after we start the adoption process this summer! Just wait till folks see a really full cart!!
**explanation of those non-pleasant shopping excursions: There are those 1% of times where all kids are screaming in the cart as I push it around the store. When people look at me, I am so tempted to say “poor kids, their mom must have wandered off, I am trying to help them find her.” But those are few and far between, and we ALL learn (me included) how to behave better the next time.