Today we had a big day in a big way. Well, for us at least. To celebrate our seven month milestone, I took the babies to the big city By Myself. This is my first time taking them any where alone. We went to the drug store and the grocery store. Yes, we do have a drug store (singular) and a grocery store (ahem, yes, only one) in our little town. But, Mazie was out of her special formula and I wanted to go to one of those grocery markets to get a few things we can't get here (filet mignon, apricots, avocado, kale, and wine). (Makes you glad you live where you do, huh?)
The day was gorgeous. Only blue skies. Everything went according to plan. It felt good getting out of the house and handling the babies on my own. They were well-behaved. I had to feed them as soon as we arrived. Then we loaded up. I put the girls in the double Jeep umbrella stroller and Elliott in the Baby Bjorn. I liked the ease of movement with this arrangement. I just can't imagine handling a triplet stroller in public spaces. It took a little finagling to get the double stroller into the bathroom. If I had had them in a triplet stroller I would have had to ask someone to watch the babies while I went into the bathroom. The babies enjoyed the new sights. Elliott and Lucia were very comfortable. Mazie took about fifteen minutes to settle in. She cried in the drug store and then while we were in the bathroom at the grocery store. But then she settled down and enjoyed the rest of her time.
I am one who Really does not like attention drawn to me. This is a tough character trait for a parent of triplets to have. We did get a lot of attention. Most of it was very nice. People were sweet and excited by the sight of three babies. A lot of people say things like "You've got your hands full" or "Wow, three of them." Some people say things like, "You have three blessings" or call the babies angels or miracles. Parents of multiples always say hello. One guy about my age in scrubs bee-lined over to us and asked me how we were sleeping after he told me about his twins and two singletons. On another day when we were out, a woman who was about 70 years old told me her mother was a triplet. I found her very interesting to talk to. I enjoy talking with people as long as they have boundaries.
The first time we took the baby to the pediatrician's office one of the office employees asked us very personal questions about how I got pregnant. Normally I don't mind sharing with people, but we had just met her and within twenty seconds she is asking very personal questions. She was also the reason we got the "Please wash your hands before touching mine" signs that we hang on their infant carriers. She was rubbing all over the babies.
The only thing that didn't feel good on our outing was a complete stranger we encountered in the drug store. She was very sweet and well-intentioned, but I think she touched Mazie on every area of skin that was exposed. She rubbed her cheeks, her legs, her hands, her arms. She even kissed her on the head. Mazie cried most of the time we were in CVS. I think she was scared. It was not one of her usual "I'm mad/sleepy/hungry/wet" cries. This lady, after telling me how much she loved children, asked me if she could pick her up and hold her. If Mazie hadn't been strapped into her stroller I think the woman would have just picked her up without asking. I told her no, that we needed to get going since she was unhappy. The lady then let me know that my baby was crying because she was hungry. (I had just finished feeding her.) These are the encounters that are not so enjoyable. One area I definitely need to work on is gracefully protecting my children. I have lots to learn.
Once in the grocery store, I first went for the items I knew I wanted most, so that if we indeed had a meltdown, I could hit the register and go. But, the babies hung in there and let me enjoy the shopping. NanaLin gave H and me each one of those nylon shopping bags for Christmas last year; the kind you are supposed to use so you don't have to use so many plastic grocery bags. These worked perfectly for my shopping extravaganza. I hung them from the stroller handles and filled them with my items. Once finished, I just handed them to the clerk. She unloaded, scanned, and then reloaded them. I hung them back on the stroller handles and could make it out to the car by myself. It was an easy little system that worked well. As long as what I need fits into those two bags, the four of us can handle some grocery shopping.
The photos below show the girls in the umbrella stroller. The second picture also shows Elliott's head in the Baby Bjorn looking over the girls.