Long ago, in what seems like a distant galaxy (our apartment) I had The Towhead Twins, Bubba and Sissy. Most weekdays, I also had my nephew and another child his age.
When you have two kids, more children are actually helpful. For some time, the children don’t fight with one another, and everyone is happy. After some time, any amount of children, who are people after all, start to get on each other’s nerves and then havoc is wreaked.
*It’s important to note that this works best when the additional are not your own.*
Other people’s children mind better. I don’t care who you are, this is the truth. If your personal truth is different then you are a liar liar pants on fire and you cannot come to my birthday.
After three, it doesn’t even matter anymore.
Four, five, six, umpteen, no difference. If they’re yours it gets more expensive and crowded and your time belongs to you less and less, but barring any unusual dynamics, any amount of children over three is basically the same as three. (Most people read that as more than two = too many.) People who have two children think people with four children are crazy and people with four children think people with eight children are people who have more children.
I know some people don’t like kids at all and that’s cool, I didn’t have them for you, anyone who’s got ‘too many’ children will tell you, it’s not that different.
Lots of boys = more loud booms and injuries
Lots of girls = more squealing and crying
Later, we added The Irish Twins, Sassy and Moo, to The Towhead Twins and then there were four. My husband can’t even hear high-pitched noises anymore.
There was a time in my life when my kids were all kids and they all lived in one house with cats and dog and goldfish and my house was the place to be. I would happily receive additional children, “Oh yes, it’s fine. Just let him stay here. No problem at all. Sure. Anytime.”
The people on the other side of the door would be like, “Are you sure you’re sure?” and “That seems like a lot.”
Because when you have one child, a peek into a household like mine resembles a nightmare.
“Does it? Does it seem like a lot?”
It’s not like I would know.
The only REAL, non-imagined problem with having four kids is that no one, not anyone in the world, will babysit all your children at once for free. If you’re lucky enough to befriend other people who have more than two children, then you can sometimes barter and trade. No one offers. No one says, “I would be delighted to take full responsibility for your four children so that you can dine in peace and fuck loudly.” Even grandparents don’t offer. You have to ask them, and then they exchange glances, and sometimes they can, for x amount of time, and you must decide whether you’d rather dine in peace or fuck loudly which takes about two seconds.
So, you know, if you have four children, you have the joy of four children, and the joy of free babysitting is denied to you, because you can’t have EVERYTHING or whatever.
Now my house isn’t as often the place to be. They’re teens now, so two is fiiiine, thanks.
But Moo still goes to homes where her friends are the oldest.
The other day, I dropped her off at Shay’s house and I thanked Shay’s mother for letting Shay spend the morning with Moo, keeping her company while everyone else was out. She said, “No problem. Anytime.” As she said it, she was sticking the Labrador in the chest with her knee because he wanted to lick me forever, two children were dancing and singing to a video on the tv, and a diapered child ran in to announce super important gibberish.
“Anytime something like that comes up, just bring her here, or I’ll bring Shay there.”
I asked if she was sure.
And you know what she said? “Absolutely. It doesn’t even matter.”
And we laughed and laughed.
That’s kid math.
Happy Friday Everyone!