This past week, we had two little friends stay with us for a couple days. These girls are practically part of the family, and with their addition my mini-van was full to bursting. (As was my heart.)
A small aside: After we had a third child and were debating whether or not we were going to have more, many people with larger families told us that if we could do three, then we could four or five easily. There’s not much difference between three kids and five kids, they swore. These people lied.
With five kids the house feels twice as small. There are more toys strewn on the floor, more noise echoing down the halls, more dinner to plate, more arguments to mediate, and more bedtime chaos.
(To be fair, there is also more hugs, more snuggles, more sweet talks, more horrible knock-knock jokes that make you laugh because they are so wretched, and more love.)
To give our poor abode a wee break, my husband and I decided to take the kids to the park. What could go wrong? Outdoors, sunshine, fresh air? It was a brilliant idea.
That twenty million other parents had. We got to the park to find it teeming with over-excited, rambunctious, flailing children. At this point, however, we were committed. Our kids had already piled out of the car.
My husband and I took a deep breath, looked at each other and whispered “Those who are about to die, salute you,” and entered the fray.
It was, perhaps, the fastest fifty-five minutes of my life. Mostly, I suspect, because I was trying to keep a two year old from becoming trampled by people twice her size. However, our kids (both genetic and borrowed) insisted it went by amazingly quick also- and they weren’t concerned with much beyond their own enjoyment.
Despite everyone’s reluctance to leave, well placed bribes of Slurpees got everyone into the car without too much trouble. Except for the two year old. They don’t have a real clear grasp on the joys of Slurpees. But the chance to hold my husband’s hand proved to be the only incentive she needed to leave.
Fifty-five minutes at the park + one million calories burned + Slurpees= quiet ride home.
The things we do for the sounds of silence.