When I'm out and about with the triplets, people often ask me "How do you do it?" Generally, my response is simply, "I just do. Don't really have a choice!" And we all laugh and move on our way. But that really isn't the entire truth. There is a lot that goes into raising twins and triplets. It isn't like having a singleton.
Mostly it boils down to schedule, schedule, schedule. Everything is on a schedule. Diapers, feedings, sleeping, playing, grocery shopping, doctor's visits. Let the schedule slip, and your whole day (and maybe the next few) are thrown off. I start my mornings, like most moms...immediately. And I absolutely must make sure that certain things are done before I get ready myself, or the rest of the day is a big game of catch-up. Forget to run or unload the dishwasher? It's all down hill from there! Because there just isn't time to pick up the pieces the rest of the day.
But for the most part, if you stay on schedule then things move along pretty smoothly. It just takes a lot longer to get through the diapering, feeding, bathing, and loading up of the van than it would with just one baby. It takes 15 to 20 minutes to get everyone and everything loaded into the van, so when I go shopping I have to figure in 40 extra minutes just to get people into the car two times! It sounds crazy when I type it out like that, but in practice it isn't that bad. And I've never really noticed that it takes an absurdly long time to do this. Until my last visit to the pediatrician.
We have a wonderful pediatrician, but she's on the other side of town, which means it's about a 30 minute drive each way. Plus loading and unloading twice. You've already killed some time right there. Inevitably, I will also have to feed the babies sometime in this process.
So. The triplets had their 6 month appointment that day. This requires us to schedule two time slots with the Dr. We were there for 2 hours, which is what I was expecting. That's generally how long it takes. This time, as I was leaving, I walked past a mom with a new little baby who was just getting weighed. This is the first thing they do at a regular check-up (which is what the babies had just had). I told her congratulations and headed to the car. I got the babies settled and the stroller put away in the trunk, and as I turned around to get into the van to leave, that same mom was walking to her car...already finished with her appointment! NEVER. Never did I realize just how insanely long our appointments are. Nor how long it takes to load up! It has given me a new perspective on just how time consuming multiples can be.
So yes, there is a lot that goes into raising multiples. But then again, maybe my simple answer is right. How do I do it? I just do.