On Saturday, Melisa attended my cousin Karen’s baby shower, so I decided to take the girls to the Buffalo Zoo for the day. It was a beautiful day and we’re members, so I figured it would be fun to do something we all like and spend as much time outdoors as possible.
I always get a little nervous taking all three kids out to a busy place by myself. I’ve done it a bunch of times now, although no where near as much as Melisa. I’ve never had any problems and our kids are VERY well behaved ((We get told this a LOT when out in public. Second most common response to our circus show, behind only ‘are they triplets?’ As a parent, it’s awesome to hear. Although I always wonder if it’s because they expected the worst when we walked in!)), but there’s something about being outnumbered 3 to 1 — especially when the kids are growing so fast, in size, speed, confidence and naivety. Things can definitely get out of hand fast.
Throughout the day I kept catching myself thinking ahead: what are we going to do about lunch?, when should I start heading home for nap?, etc. etc. Your run of the mill parenting paranoia and trying to feel in control. ((From Day One of the twins we worked hard to keep the kids on a routine, both for our sanity and because the kids always seem to do better on the days we followed a basic schedule. Maybe it’s the secret of our “success” so far, but who knows. I feel lucky regardless.))
Each time I started to think about the future, I pulled myself back to the moment and focused on the girls. It was amazing how much more fun I had concentrating on the present, rather than spending my time trying to figure out the future. We wandered the zoo with no plan, grabbed lunch when we wanted, and decided to leave when we all had enough. It was a thoroughly enjoyable time, despite all of the earlier worry. The kids were happy, they listened, they enjoyed their dad spending time with them.
It’s these kind of moments that make being a parent awesome. Sharing experiences with your kids, fully in the moment. It’s one I’ll never forget, for sure.