The biggest challenge for me at this phase of our new life together is mobility. I think the main thing I most envy about mothers of singletons is their ability to get up and go. "It is a pretty day; let's go to the zoo" or "Let's run to the store and pick up the ingredients so we can bake some cookies." At this point in our journey I cannot fathom getting everyone ready and loaded and unloaded and corralled and monitored in order to pick up a bag of chocolate chips and a box of butter.
I must admit that I am often envious when I see a mom with her baby in Target or the grocery store. I know that some women can just pack a diaper bag and go, but this will never be a reality in my life. Arranging for babysitters or orchestrating a logistical symphony are my two options if I want to go anywhere while H is unavailable.
Last Saturday H wanted us to go out to watch the local Mardi Gras parade. At first I scoffed, "Yeah, right." Then she mentioned it again. The day was a beautiful one, blue skies and sun with a slight breeze. She asked again. I acquiesced. We got everything together, loaded up, and went. [Sounds simple, but it took several hours.] Everything went well. This was our town's first Mardi Gras parade. Everyone did a great job; the floats were fun. There was food and a DJ playing music before and after the parade. The only one of us who went down to stand by the parade was H's Nannie. She stood down there with all the kids collecting beads and candy. She even got out in the street and stopped a float to get H a Mardi Gras cup. She is 89 years young. Mazie was upset for a little of the time, but overall it was a very good outing and the babies did just fine.
I must admit though, I cried once we agreed to go to the parade. I am a bit of a homebody. I like being at home, and I love being at home with my babies. I feel safe; we are comfortable; our days go by rather quickly. I don't really feel the need to go traipsing about with three five month olds. H feels differently. She feels we need to get out there, start practicing taking the babies out, getting them used to sights and sounds and people. And I know she is right. It is good for them to experience life outside our home. But it is hard for me to expose them to the world as I have been so comfortable keeping them protected in our little house on the pond.
I started out this post saying I wish I could take my babies out more easily and then I shifted and talked about how I love keeping them at home. I don't think the two thoughts are contradictory. I wish I could easily and comfortably and safely take the babies out sometimes. But, to do this, I must practice. It won't just happen without any preparation and rehearsal.