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There’s more to this adventure than a bunch of pretty pictures

October 6, 2014

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I spent my first week in Australia seeing the sights in Sydney and Canberra, and just having a great time in general. Then I came up here to Brisbane and worked two days before having Thursday-Sunday to myself. I spent those free days seeing Brisbane, meeting new friends, visiting a new church and meeting everyone there, and also just hanging out at Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast [I still think there should be an apostrophe after the “s” in Surfers, but whatever.] The Gold Coast is absolutely fabulous, and puts our California beaches to shame. No surprise there, unfortunately. I’d love to say Cali has the best beaches, but let’s be honest, we really don’t. Not by a long shot. [We do have the best weather though. Hands down on that one.]

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But I digress.

In general the first few weeks were sheer bliss and I was head over heels in love.

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And then reality set in. Today. Let’s just say that 6 year old triplets are a WHOLE lot more of a handful than I naively thought possible. Especially when one of them has autism. We could also just say that I seriously considered just heading straight to bed when I got off today. At 6:30 pm. [it doesn’t help that it gets dark at 6 pm here.]

Backing up a bit…Today started off like normal. Except that it’s a public holiday, which meant the kids wouldn’t be going to school today. So I headed upstairs at 7 am and started the girls’ breakfast. “L” [the autistic boy] has an issue with eating around others, so he had already started eating toast. [always toast] After making them breakfast and sitting to eat with them, I did the dishes while the kids’ mom headed off to get caught up on some work. After a lot of random things like a long, involved treasure hunt, drawing and writing some Hello Kitty stories with the Hello Kitty stickers we’d found as a treasure, watching some cartoons so Jen could clean up the messy house, and doing some reading to the girls, I made us lunch and then we made some jewelry before cleaning up and setting off for our first trip to the park.

I had been worried about L running off while we were walking to the park, so the girls used that against me to get me to change my mind about riding their bikes to the park. “If we ride bikes, L will come with us.” So I agreed. That was a mistake. While L is a pro at bike riding, with no training wheels, the girls are another story. They still use training wheels and were constantly calling for me to pull them over cracks and up slight inclines. Meanwhile L is riding off way in front of us, nearly giving me a heart attack with each intersection he approached. I was running back and forth between him way ahead of us and the girls way behind. Partway there, the girls got off their bikes to walk them up a hill, and one of them ran the pedal or something into her leg and started crying. After dealing with that, they all got back on their bikes and then freaked out as they started down a hill out of control. One crashed gently into a wall just as I got to her and got her off. The other was walking her bike and ran it into a pole and started crying that she’d hurt herself. I managed to somehow get them all, along with their bikes, safely to the park (that’s the extremely short version). By the time the girls and I caught up to L, he had dumped his bike somewhere and was playing on the playground equipment. I searched all over for his bike, afraid it would disappear, before I finally found it. I had just settled down onto a bench next to a mom and her baby, when L decided to grab his bike from inside the gated playground, open the gate, and ride out towards the street! I jumped up and followed him. After a slight meltdown, I got him back inside.

Thankfully their mom decided to stop by and drive us all home with the bikes, so we didn’t need a repeat of the bike drama on the way home.

[insert several hours of kid-entertaining and house cleaning here].

Around 4 pm I decided to start dinner since the kids eat at 5. Other than an extremely annoying stove that gets way too hot even on low and burns EVERYTHING, ugh, (I have no idea how I will cook here), dinner was drama-free. Except for the fact that L would not eat anything, but that’s nothing new.

Oh, I should mention here that earlier L had opened the fridge and taken out an entire container of strawberries while I was downstairs for a minute and had eaten them ALL. I had already told him no when he tried it earlier, but he wanted to eat them and not the lunch I made him. Then when we were at the park later on,  their mom came by with a container of strawberries which he proceeded to consume, along with a little help from the girls. This will be important later in our story.

So we finished dinner and I washed the dishes while S tried to “help” me dry the dishes, ha, and E was drawing or something. Next thing I know, E is coming and telling me she pooped her pants and needs help. Her pants are down, her fingers are brown, and so are her legs. Gag.

I go into the bathroom [which STINKS] and see brown marks smeared on the WALLS and all over the toilet. Keep in mind these girls are SIX. I didn’t know six year olds did things like this. Literally gagging, I wipe her bum as best as I can and then I decide that she just needs a bath. So off comes the shirt and into the tub she goes. S wants to take a bath too so of course, brilliant idea! Into the bath they both go while I wipe off the walls and clean the toilet, shaking my head that this is really happening, and rethinking this whole au pair idea.

Mercifully, the girls were happy to play in the tub while I sat down for a few minutes and rested my tired legs and feet. Then I cleaned up all the messes I hadn’t been able to get to earlier. After a while the girls decided they wanted to get out of the tub so I toss a towel to the first one who wraps herself in it and who then decides to follow me into her room to help me get her pjs. As I am getting something out of a drawer, E says in a surprised voice, “what is THAT?”  I turned around and was stunned to see red everywhere. Everywhere! On both of the girls’ beds, and all over the floor in between the beds. I stared at it in shock. Where had it come from? Why hadn’t I noticed it when we first walked in? What was it, blood? Then I noticed it looked like someone had dumped a huge, strawberry smoothie. Strawberries! L had eaten ALL THOSE STRAWBERRIES. He must have come in and barfed all over and then gone back out to the couch to lie down. Because last I saw him, he was on the couch. In fact, he’d been on the couch the entire time. Or so I had thought. Why had he thought it would be a good idea to get up, go in his sisters’ room, barf everywhere, and then go back to the couch?

All I could do was laugh. Really? Poop AND barf in ONE day? Not to mention the bike meltdowns and the approximately 7 meltdowns L had had earlier for a myriad of random, trivial things.

I got the girls back out of their room so we didn’t get barf all over us, went and cleaned my shoes since I had stepped in it all without even seeing it, got the girls into their pjs, and then thankfully at 6:15 mom walked in the door just as we were getting ready to tackle the barf and she got to help me clean it up [she did most of it and I was more than happy to hand over her mom duties after more than 11 hours with her kids].

If I wasn’t so thoroughly exhausted, I might be able to write that all a bit more eloquently. But at least it’s written down so I won’t ever forget it.

As if I could.

And people have the gall to think I’m crazy for not wanting kids. Ha. You all can keep your kids. After this, I am spending the rest of my life at the beach. Or in Europe. Or someplace off the grid. Having kids is for the birds.

Australia though? It still rocks.

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Q1 from the bottom

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 6, 2014 5:02 pm

    BAHAHAHA! This cracked me up soooo much! 😀

  2. October 14, 2014 8:54 am

    I laughed SO hard. Omw, Jen. This was hilarious. They sound like a handful. You’re gonna have so much fun! 🙂

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