A Survival Story

Yesterday I woke up to Clark running into my room telling me that Grant was bugging him so bad that he made him drop 3 bowls of oatmeal on the floor.


By 8 a.m., I had already posted the following status on Facebook:

Goal for today: Do not sell the children. Do not harm the children.

I just want to report that despite going to the store and having the same kind of experience there that I would have had if I had rented 3 chimpanzees to accompany me …

… and listening to cackling, arguing, tattling madness everywhere I went in our van (a.k.a. parental torture chamber on wheels) …

… and asking my children over and over and over again to do their chores, and when they finally got moving in the late afternoon, I had to clean up some kind of mysterious collision that resulted in 3 large glasses shattering and scattering all over the kitchen floor …

… and trying to watch a movie together where Grant asked me every few seconds what was happening despite the fact that the movie was trying to explain what was happening if he would actually listen …

… and making a dinner that was noticeably insufficient for the starving, suffering masses,

I survived.  At Family Home Evening I bore my testimony about the scriptures, and shared a personal, uplifting story that went something like this:

I just want you children to know that if I had not read my scriptures this morning, it’s quite likely that I would have killed you today.

It was a touching moment.  You had to be there.

Carry on.


36 thoughts on “A Survival Story

  1. So awesome. You are awesome. This story is awesome. I have had so many days like that. I would be having more, except my two oldest are in kansas this months with grandparents, so my trips tot he grocery store only involve two monkeys, both of which I can physicall restrain in the shopping cart. Have a better day.

  2. i love growing old and leaving all those challanges behind. Some day in the far future, at a family gathering the grown children will start to reminisce, do you remember when we were trying to juggle the three glasses and we dropped all three. That’s how I found out so many things, like how the catsup got on the ceiling, how the baby cut the bridge of his nose so badly he had 7 stiches. (Robin pushed him) Have fun!!! Oh I like this one. How my son got dropped on his head at the MTC.

  3. Survival is the goal…..survival is the goal. As one whose nest is almost empty, I can tell you that you WILL be able to look back on these days and laugh, and laugh, and laugh. Not now….but someday.

  4. I often think of my mother’s counsel at the end of a particularly hard day. It was one of those days when I felt that my children would have been safer in a house other than their own, with a mommy with different DNA then theirs. Beating myself over and over for various thngs I’d said and done all day long. After the brethren were all ‘safe’ in bed we spoke on the phone and her questions came in rapid fire and went something like this, “Is everyone alive?” – “well, yes.” – “Was everyone fed?” – “of course!” – “Are they all asleep?” – “yes.” – “Well then, have you ever considered that THAT was your best today? Just today. Remember that tomorrow is a NEW day. But for today THAT was your best. That’s all HE asks of us. Our best. Just start over tomorrow.” It doesn’t excuse my crazies but it helped to realize that all the He ever has asked of me is my best. Sometimes my best is rotten and at the end of the day no one has practiced, homework is not done, mom is yelling, there is soda covering the floor, laundry piled high, babies crying with stinky diapers and boys in bed with uncrushed teeth. But it’s OK because TOMORROW I can sit at the piano with them, send a note to the teachers about homework, apologize to the brethren for hollering, mop the floor, bathe the baby and brush teeth with a vengeance.

  5. So true some days, isn’t it? This morning we had two of our easiest children at home while the three others were gone at various activities. My husband wondered about locking the door and using polyjuice potion (Harry Potter) to make it look like we still had all 5 of our kids, but in an easier-to-parent form.

  6. Had a good chuckle at your day! We do all have days that seem to go like that.

    Just a quick tip for getting the chores done in a timely manner – our rule is no food unless your chores are done. The corrollary rule is that food is only available at set times, so if you miss it you’re not getting anything until the next regular meal time. 🙂 Some children are very motivated by their stomach …LOL!

  7. My days of little children have passed, but I can still feel the pain a little when you post stuff like that.

    My testimony of the scriptures today is, “If I hadn’t read the scriptures today, I would have gotten really really mad at the work events of today and at being on hold for half an hour and I would have wondered why I agreed to do this job. But because I prayed and read the scriptures today, I was able to handle the stress and the lack of knowledge on my part and on others’ part with patience and serenity. And I didn’t talk bad about someone when I could have vented. We got it all straightened out.”

  8. Hahaha. That’s awesome, Steph. I saw your Facebook status update yesterday and thought, hoo boy, I wonder if I should have her send them over here? My kids and your kids could have run around in the backyard until they wore themselves out. Next time, feel free to drop ’em off for an hour or two.

  9. YOU ARE AWESOME! Love you! So glad I got to see you! I just read your post to my family and Jeff was cracking up! My *lovely* mom of the year award moment yesterday was trying to force my 14 yr old into the car to go to piano lessons. It was not pretty!

  10. This sounds so much like “summer”!!?!! I do wonder WHY they don’t just have school all year round? I have one child that takes everything I say that I never should have said and really didn’t mean, extremely literally; and what I really do mean as something that…well like “I don’t remember you saying anything like that, Mom.” I would have to be very careful to not repeat the last comment you made…although I’m pretty sure I’ve said something very similar more than once! There’s tomorrow–you can hope for better. If not, it’s one day closer to the first day of school!

  11. I walked into my living room today and saw a pair of shorts and underwear on the floor. So I asked, “Henry, why are your shorts on the floor?” To which he responded, without even missing a beat, “Duh, I peed in them.”

    Oh awesome. So, so very awesome is my life.

  12. LOL! 😀 …love your style! BTW. I have, on my blog, a little reminder to myself that says, “Stay Calm, and Carry On!” And you know… I think the little reminder is actually helping! Yeah!!
    Corine 😀

  13. I got goosebumps when you shared your very touching moment you had with your children. I am sure they will always remember it fondly. 🙂 Glad you survived because the blog world wouldn’t be nearly as fun with out you.

  14. Thank goodness days like that are few and far between, right?

    Or maybe sometimes it is the “good” days that are few and far between 🙂

    Nevertheless, I’m glad you survived. I’m glad the kids survived too.

  15. I really don’t know what you have to complain about, Stephanie, because if I had a running commentary in my head that was as funny as yours, I’d be smiling all day. I mean, chimpanzies? For goodness sakes, woman, you are hilarious!

    Your grandchildren are thanking you for not killing their parents. Good job.

  16. I laughed so hard when I read this post. I had to return a few hours later to read it again. Thank you for writing about chaos with so much humor.

  17. I LOVE this post! It is a true reflection of my life right now… The comments from all your readers are GREAT too! I wish all mothers got a week-long vacation by themselves during the summer. Compensation for all that we put up with. =)

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