Parenting Tales, Points to Ponder

I Get That A Lot

Just this morning I was approached by an older gentleman who politely asked me a question that I’ve gotten a lot: “Are they all yours?”

The “they” he was referring to was, of course, my kids. At the moment we were in a Burger King at 8 in the morning. My oldest son had band practice before school in which I had to drop him off at another district elementary school and wait 50 minutes with my other children and my 4 year old niece in tow. It was most definitely not worth running the whole way home, unloading everyone, and then loading them back up shortly after. So, I did what any other “good Mom” (ha ha) would do in the situation–we went to BK and snagged some $1 packs of hash browns and a couple of OJ’s to wait out the time without going nuts. So, when the man asked me the usual question, I just had to chuckle to myself and think about how many times I get that and other similar questions. Now I do realize there are tons of people out there with way more kids than I do. However, having 5 that are semi-close in age, I still get lots of the same kinds of questions. Some people are quite polite about it and others have been not as polite. So, this is a random list of questions or statements that my husband and I get a lot and either (a)what I respond or (b)what I’m thinking or (c) what I want to say when I get that question or statement. :

1. Are they all yours?

What I usually say, with a smile: Why yes they are.

2. Wow, you’ve got your hands full!

What I’m thinking: If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard that, I would be a wealthy woman.

3. Are you done yet?

What I say: Oh yes.

What I’m thinking: Yup.

4. Haven’t you figured out how that happens yet?

What I do: Usually I just laugh.

What I’m thinking: Um, yeah, we know.

What I want to say: No, I have no idea. Can you tell me?

5. Don’t you people own a TV? 

This one is related to the previous question. Usually I just chuckle. By the way, people who have asked us this question usually think they are hilarious.

What I want to say: We have one, just not in our bedroom! (True)

6. Did you always want a lot of kids?

What I say: Yes, but not this many!

7. How do you handle all of them?

What I say: I have different answers for this one. Sometimes I just make up something that sounds good at the time.

8. Are they twins?

What I say: Yes, they sure are.

What I’m thinking: Gee, two little boys that look exactly alike and are the same exact size. Do you think? (Yes, the sarcasm creeps up on this one.)

9. Are they identical?

What I say: Yes they are.

What I’m thinking or want to say: see #8’s what I’m thinking.

10. Holy cow, are there 2 sets of twins?

I’ve sometimes gotten this one if Andrew and Heidi aren’t standing next to each other. This kind of cracks me up because they are the furthest apart in age.

What I say: Nope, just one set.

What I’m thinking: Thank God, no!

11. How do you tell them apart?

What I say: I usually explain that I can just tell who’s who and that one of them has a chipped tooth.

What I want to say: Oh, I mix them up all the time. Who knows who’s who at this point?

12. Do twins run in your family?

What I say: Nope, they were a complete surprise.

13. Are twins more work than having one baby? 

What I say: Definitely.

What I’m thinking: Definitely.

14. Whoa, that’s quite a brood/tribe/crew you’ve got there.

Those are the main ones I get when I’m out and about. I have to say that I’ve gotten pretty used to these types of questions/statements and will usually politely respond to whoever is talking to us. Once in a while it is annoying and I feel myself mentally rolling my eyes. I’m sure other parents of multiples or parents of many get the same kinds of responses and can agree with me on this one. However, I do love having my brood/tribe/crew and wouldn’t have it any other way!

2 thoughts on “I Get That A Lot”

  1. There is a woman at church who has 4 little girls under the age of 6. I will say the same thing to you that I think about this woman every time I see her: God bless you! It takes a strong woman to raise children, especially young ones.

  2. Just happened upon your blog from the Little House in the Suburbs link. I think we could be great friends if we lived next door to each other! I have 5 children also; #1 was seven years old the summer that #5 was born, no multiples, so you know how crazy life was for a while. I got all the same stupid questions. They are all grown now (youngest will be 25 next week) and I am proud of how close they are, even though they live all over the country. Children are such a blessing, but some people just don’t learn to appreciate that. We even had one friend (who had two children) who used to think he was so clever when he said, “We don’t think it’s smart to let your natural enemies outnumber you!” Haha. One thing I was not prepared for is that even when they have moved out and started life on their own, you are NEVER through being Mom and Dad. One son is on the phone to his Dad almost every day (this is the son who was SURE that we were senile and ready to be put out to pasture just a few years ago…before he had a wife, children, house, job, etc.!) You are doing a great job. Hang in there! It is all worth it.

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