Well, it's a fantastical thing, stepping into a ready-made family. Suddenly I'm surrounded by laughing children every evening, filling up the house with the kind of energy and enthusiasm for life I can vaguely remember from my own childhood.
Suddenly, not only do I get to curl up on the couch with my honey and watch a movie in the evenings, but I get to lean in the doorway to the boys' room and watch him fold himself into the lower bunk to read them a story. I never realized what a tender feeling it brings, to watch children curl up next to their father and drift off as he reads to them.
Suddenly, I've got a beautiful, intelligent young lady who includes me when she's making "I Love You" pictures, who asks me to help her with her hair. And who often asks me, "why don't you just move in?"
Suddenly, I've got two little boys who, with the artlessness of youth, tell me "My dad needs to give you a trophy!" "No Bubba, if he gives her a trophy she won't be happy and then she won't come back. Daddy needs to give her a ring, and then they'll be married, and she'll be happy, and she'll stay!"
Suddenly I've got dinner around the table, reminding the youngest to chew with his mouth closed, Middle Child to eat his vegetables, and Eldest Child that bigger bites don't count for extra points.
Suddenly I've got new challenges. Middle Child still doesn't accept authority from women very well. We have battles, when he gets in trouble. Youngest Child follows his big brother's lead, except instead of screaming, he'll give you his big blue eyes and say "Aw wight," and then do it again five minutes later. Eldest Daughter, well, she mothers her brothers, instead of being a kid herself.
We're working on all of that, and being consistent and firm is helping the boys a lot. I have to remind Eldest Daughter to just play, a lot, but she's starting to figure it out, too.
Suddenly, I've got a day care schedule to work around. I'll be dropping them off every weekday morning at eight, and picking them up at five most evenings, starting Monday.
Suddenly........... Suddenly I've got a family. Three great kids and a wonderful man who thinks that I'm perfect. He's crazy, but he's sweet.
If you'd told me, a year ago (right around the time I started this blog, remember?) that I'd be here, now, I'd have said you were nuts. And, I'd have been terrified of the prospect. Three kids? Yikes.
But, suddenly, it's not so bad. Suddenly, I find myself doing all the things that my mother used to do for me. And suddenly, I find that I like it.
I might have days that I want to pull my hair out, and I might have days when I feel like there is no way I'm up to the challenges, but even on those days, I wouldn't give it up for the world.