Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A Beautiful Ruckus

When I was a kid, I used to get bent out of shape over the littlest things.

My mom's favorite story to tell about my need for order is what happened one day when I was 18 months old. A friend came over to play. Sam had been over often and our moms were best friends so apparently we knew each other pretty well. I had an adorable Fisher Price Tea Set that my parents had given me for Christmas that I loved. It had a little tray with four cups, four spoons, four plates, a creamer, a sugar pot, and of course the tea pot. I loved that little tea set and enjoyed setting everything just right.

And then Sam came over and the first thing he did was knock everything off of the tray. Little plastic dishes went flying while I started wailing.

At 18 months old I was beside myself with the disruption of order.

When I got older, I shared a room with my sister. There was an invisible line down the center of the room separating my Type A personality from her Type B personality. I thought her side was a disaster, and I'm pretty sure she thought I was boring and unimaginative. We drove each other nuts.

I wish the perfectionism only extended to how orderly I kept my belongings, but the need for perfect order, lists, and schedules was only blossoming.

I got very, very cranky when people messed with my plans. Scratch that. I still get cranky.

I remember on multiple occasions, my mom would take me aside and tell me that I needed to loosen up because being this rigid in life just wasn't going to work long term.

But, I still took that rod up my you-know-what straight into our marriage without another thought.

And then one day, God decided that we were perfect candidates for quadruplets.


That severely screwed with my plans. I had a list. A timeline. An ideal. A way my life would look and progress. Twins did not fit in there even sort of. Quadruplets never even crossed my mind.

If only I knew that having multiples was just the start of the chaos that was coming my way.

Sean loves this video (click here). And honestly, I kind of do too. I'll warn you now, it's thirty seconds of my kids screaming. They were tired and clingy and all wanted mommy to themselves when I filmed it.

It's my day in a nutshell (even though they are older now). But I think it's beautiful.


Because when they aren't screaming, they are hilarious toddlers who are learning all the different expressions that their faces make.

Because nothing beats an open-mouth, drool covered kiss from Elijah.

Because nothing is cuter than the big wet hug that Ellie gives me as I'm rinsing her hair in the bathtub.

Because when one of them does something correctly, they all clap for their sibling as I praise him/her (adorable!)

Because, without fail, Elijah runs into something daily and the puzzled expression on his face, "Where did that come from?" still makes me laugh!

Because that final tight hug just before they go to bed for the night let's me know that Sean and I are the two most important people in the whole world to them.

Because Abby is quite possibly the cutest little jumper when she is excited about something...unless she's jumping during nap time when I'm desperate for all four of them to sleep.

Because even when they are whining, crying, and generally carrying on, they come running to me because they know that I will try to fix it.

Because Caleb just wants to be held and reminded that I'll always, always love him.

Because of how deeply I'm in touch with other multiples moms and preemie/NICU moms, I hear a lot of really sad stories. Stories of moms who don't ever get to meet their kids, or whose kids go through excruciating things in the hospital. The stories make my heart hurt and my arms wrap a little tighter around my kids.

Two-years-old is an extremely tough age. I think it's the hardest so far. But I'll take the screaming, the clinging, and the boundary testing because with it comes the laughing and the cuddling. My days never go according to plan, I'm always running late, and generally this is not the route I saw my life going.

My plans were derailed in a royal way.

But in the end, I'm so happy that it all adds up to the derailed plans of a beautiful ruckus.


  1. They clap for each other? That is the sweetest thing ever!

  2. Sounds like you have adjusted very well to your unexpected life--good for you! I am a type A too and could relate quite well with the beginning of this post. God knew I wouldn't be a very good mom so don't have kids--just furbabies which I love!

  3. Beautifully expressed from a mother's heart who, despite the chaos, Loves what God has blessed her with. You are the perfect parents for these kids. :-)

  4. You have embraced the unexpected so well! God knows what we need, LOL, even if we'd never choose it. So who was the one quad sitting there watching TV while the others cried, LOL? That's funny. I'm sure you've seen the quads laughing video. It is so hilarious I have shown all kinds of people including Brady.

  5. Nice share and btw two years old is nothing....every year brings its own set of challenges best to just take deep breathe and be easy :) Enjoy the ride look forward to more shares :)

  6. I love plans and schedules and to-do lists too! In fact, I could have written this post myself minus the quads part. As much as we hate that God is always intervening and messing up our perfect plans, His plans always turn out to be just want we needed and wanted, even though we didn't know it at the time!

  7. you know, I think it was the opposite for me. I was "fly by the seat of your pants" before kids. then I had to smarten up and fly straight! ha
    Suddenly my day had to have routine and schedule -- no wonder it was hard in the early stages. but in the end, the round out all our rough spots for us don't they?
    and they soft spots - just go to complete mush.

  8. Yes! :) Beautiful post! Perfectionism is a hard beast to conquer, something I'm working on as well. God definitely has a sense of humor, yes?

  9. What an absolutely beautiful job you are doing! ♥ I love you -- -Mama


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