I really try to be a good larger family mommy ambassador. I want the world to know that having 4 kids is not that big of a deal. Having 2 and then twins? Challenging yes..but not unmanageable.
To me, being a good mommy ambassador of the larger family means not being that hassled mean mommy dragging her kids through Target barking orders. It's being the woman who has a smart and polite answer for all of the "Wow! You sure have your hands full!" comments. I hear this comment a million times a month and I want to find the perfect answer. One that isn't smartass or make my kids feel like a burden.
Let me give you an example of how NOT to be a GMALF (good mommy ambassador of the larger family shortened from here on out because it's 10:20pm and I have a lot of laundry to fold!) :
Friday we had to change our "Fun Friday" plans to take Baby to the Dr. Poor Baby had an ear that was all clogged up and painful. I try not to drag all of us to the Dr at the same time but because it was short notice I had no choice.
Opportunity #1: We walk into the office and a women with 2 kids is walking out and says
"Wow! You have your hands full! (shocked face) Are they ALL yours?"
(Now keep in mind that our Dr has 4 kids himself and their picture is displayed in every room. 4 is not the Duggars people! In fact..most of my friends have 4 kids!)
I said yes to the lady and smiled and she said "I don't know how you do it!!" I decided to go with my humorous response and said "Lots of coffee!". It got a laugh from all the ladies in the office and we made our way to our room and got settled but I really don't LOVE that answer. It makes me feel like I am agreeing with the original asker that 4 is way too much to handle. At least it isn't rude.
We left the Dr with a prescription for a case of swimmers ear and headed to Target. Our Dr is about 40 minutes away and the kids were ready for a snack so I figured we could stay local and get a snack at Target and sit in the Starbucks (ironically) while we wait for the prescription.
I made the very stupid mistake of giving Buddy his way when he said he wanted to sit in the cart. I put Bunny in the strapped in seat and let Buddy sit in the big basket area. If you are going to be a good GMALF you have to make sure you are not adding to what could already be a stressful situation. Buddy kept trying to stand up and I kept repeating "Sit on your buns!" while I started to stress sweat (coincidentally I remembered as I started to trickle sweat from my forehead that I forgot to put on deodorant that morning because of course I use crunchy homemade deodorant and of course in the heat it was melted and I needed it to firm up in the fridge and then forgot about it)
We dropped off the prescription and paid for our snack and then strolled over to the Starbucks.
Opportunity #2: A lady was sitting at a table watching our chaotic show of ordering drinks and handing our snacks and said
"Wow are these all yours? 4! What a blessing!"
Ready for my big fail? I mean she made it so easy for me. All I had to say was "Yes they are" and what does bad bad mommy say? "Somedays they are!"
I immediately felt terrible. Talk about making your kids feel bad. The girls didn't hear me because they were too busy fighting over the snack at the table but that was a major fail.
Opportunity #3: Being guilt ridden from my mean comment I decided to let the kids ride the money trap rides in the mall. They had a blast and we spent a bundle of money but it reset my mood. Right as we were leaving a women came up to me and said
"You have a beautiful family!"
And I finally got it right and said "Thank you. I do"
Maybe it is just our area but I feel like 4 is the new 17 when it comes to kids. The last ladies' comment made my day because I really do feel like each and every one of my kids is such a blessing and I am so lucky to have them. Yes things do get hard. Daddy has been working A LOT which makes my days very long but I have been trying to focus on the blessing that my babies are. Which is why I want to be a good GMALF. I want my kids and the world to know that I count myself as one of the lucky ones.