I Think I Can

May 23, 2010 at 4:24 pm | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop | 41 Comments
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I read Lollipop her bedtime books and tuck her in. We sing a song, blow away the noises, blow kisses to each other. I turn to leave, and she asks: “Mommy, will you please stay with me? Will you please?”

And I think: I can’t do this. I can’t mother three children. Because Giggles needs his teeth brushed, and Bun needs to be fed, and I need to sleep. I can’t do this.


I hear the thump upstairs. I hear Giggles cry. He’s fallen out of his crib. I rush up, despite the nurse’s warnings to limit my trips. He’s already got a bruise swelling on his cheek. I hug him and rock him. We sing together. I know it’s time to move him to a big-boy bed. But with what time? With what energy? I snuggle him close and breathe in the scent of his sweet blond hair.

And I think: I can’t do this.


Bun won’t sleep. He’s got the hiccups or gas, or maybe he’s still hungry. He’s agitated, upset. I sit, I stand, I rock, I bounce. Nothing helps. He’s so tired. I’m so tired. We both cry as we watch the sun come up.

And I think: I can’t do this.


My mom leaves tomorrow. I think of the laundry, the dishes, the cooking, the vacuuming. All the things she’s been doing that now will be undone. All the things she knows to do because she’s my mom, because she knows me, because there are so many things we don’t need words to say.

And I think: I can’t do this.


And then. My husband is at work. My mother is at the grocery store stocking up our pantry before she goes. I am home by myself. Bun is full and sleeping. Lollipop and Giggles are finger-painting at the kitchen table. I am folding laundry.

And I think: I can do this. In this moment, I can do this. Not in every moment, not yet. But right now, I can. I am.

For now, that’s enough. To know that one day, I will.



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  1. Great post, babe. You CAN do this.

  2. Yes, you CAN do this! Because you are a mom, and I’m pretty sure that comes with an invisible super-hero cape or something.

    Thinking of you! Congrats on the addition to your beautiful family!

  3. Hi Stacia – that is a tough load you are carrying right now and those first few weeks with any new baby make you feel the way you are feeling right now. But I think you already know that and have the strength and resolve to get where you are going.

  4. You can, and you will. You are incredible, just remember that. Take each moment as it comes.
    Love and hugs to you 🙂

  5. Oh, sigh. So many needs. Just one Mama.
    But, of course you can and you do and you will.

    Sending hugs,

  6. You can do this! And most days, it will be good enough. but sometimes it will be magical.

    As you said, take it moment by moment. Moments are easier than hours.

  7. Yes you can do this because it ends all too quickly. And right when you think I can’t do this, everything changes.

    Yes you can do this because you are amazing. Exhausted and still going strong.

    I envy you. And don’t think into the vast tomorrows. Do what Alex says and stay in the moment.

  8. One of my girlfriends just had her 3rd child (all under 5) and her husband travels for work A LOT. She told me that she has accepted that at times things will be a disaster – all the kids will be crying and need her and she won’t be able to do it. And at other times, all 3 will be happy and content and she will be just fine. Usually things will fall somewhere in the middle, but knowing that the disaster-times won’t last forever gets her through the days.

    Good luck – I wish I was a million miles closer to help you out!

  9. Oh, Stacia. That totally is how it feels. What a perfect post. But here’s what I remember – it got better in the tiniest increments so that I didn’t even notice it happening. Suddenly it was a month later and I thought, “Hey, last night I slept through the whole night with no interruptions” and then suddenly one day we wheeled away the stroller for good.

  10. Correction: you ARE doing this! Just when you think you can’t go on for even a minute more, that minute passes and you think ‘I’m doing it, I’m actually doing it.’ And so, to the minutes! Long may they pass.

  11. Yes you can! What a great post. I had tears right along with you and Bun! But you know it gets better. It gets easier. Just stay in the moment and it will all fall into place.

  12. Oh honey. I often feel like I can’t do it and I only have two and they are 6 and 3!! I have complete and utter faith in you. Somedays we can’t do it – and that is okay. Take those moments that you can and savor them, there will be more as time goes by…


  13. You’re so right. B/c it never gets any easier. Break the day into one hour segments, do a bit here and there.

    The most important will get done. The rest can wait.

    This is the only life you have, be happy in it..

  14. Beautifully said. You will, and you *are.* And just bear in mind you are at the toughest point with a newborn. Adjust the expectations and know that getting through each day – each hour – is an achievement in and of itself. Hang in there.

  15. I don’t think parenting wins are expected of us every moment of the day. But when it does happen, however fleeting, it keeps us strong enough for those moments when we think we can’t.

    I know it’s not going to be easy but I can’t wait until I have to juggle the needs of more than one child. I’m not sure how I will be able to do it, but like the mothers before us, we just do it. Because we absolutely can. Somehow…

  16. I’m glad that your blog posts remain a priority, just like one of your kiddos! I love reading these. It’ll get easier with time – Bun is only just a few tiny weeks old! You must be exhausted. Hang in there!!

  17. Yes, you can do it and you will. It will be the sweet moments that will carry you through. Hugs.

  18. You can do it, and you can still write about it eloquently. Sending you virtual casseroles to get you through this hard part…

  19. Yes, you can. When I had my daughter, my 3rd, it felt like things would never get back to normal again. I would never have a moment for myself again. But you find a new normal. You find yourself again, sometimes better. You can do this.

  20. You can. You will. Just breathe in between. Sending you a virtu-real hug.

  21. This is one of the most beautiful posts on Motherhood. It’s amazing how we think we can’t do something, and then we are given the opportunity, and we can.

    I missed congratulating you on the birth of your son. I love the shot of his perfect little hand.

    I need to get your guest post scheduled. I’ll let you know when I do.

    Congrats again!

  22. You ARE doing it!! And the only thing that matters is right now. Right now, you are doing this! AND, you wrote a beautiful blog post about it.

  23. Knowing how many times I had that thought when I became a mom to TWO, I can’t imagine how you’re doing it with THREE. But you are doing it, right? And every moment you are is experience to put in the bank. And I have to believe – for your sake and mine – that it will get easier.

    Sending enormous hugs!!

  24. You’ve really captured it. Somehow we make it through the moments, prioritizing the best we can as we go. And our kids make it and our home survives and we’re doing it! Sometimes I feel a little crazy and a little worse for the wear… but even still, I somehow make it through.

  25. Oh Stacia, I can’t imagine 3. I was just talking to my in-laws the other night — they had 3 when they were very young. Had one, and then 11 mos later, had twins. She talked about how she cried everyday, all the time. He talked about how all they did was take care of these three babies and they didn’t have any money to do any fun things.

    It seems to me you ARE doing it. So what if nothing’s perfect now? To have three little ones to hug and kiss and love, I think that’s such a wonderful gift.

  26. You can do it! GO out and get the Little Engine That Could! Great book! :o)
    Mine are 19, 17, 15 and I was in your shoes once. Actually, I felt like that the other day, but it does get better! :o)

  27. That’s exactly what goes on in my mind every day, too. One minute I am freaking out, and thinking, I can’t do this, feeling unfit to be a mother. The next, I am high on life as I observe my son playing peacefully while I cook dinner (a rare happening, I assure you). And then, I read awesome posts like this, coming from a mom of three, and I feel like such a wimp.

  28. I remember reading bedtime stories, holding a screaming infant. Just a year ago. A big hug for you and wishes for sleep, for calm moments.
    Beautiful writing, as always!

  29. Wow. It’s hard. I can’t imagine how hard with 3. I don’t know how mothers do it! I have one and I’m full out. Mothers of more than 1 child are absolutely amazing creatures. You’re already doing it! You’re tired and overwhelmed, but you are doing it. One step at a time. (((Hugs.)))

  30. One moment at a time.

    I had 3 under 3. It was hectic. I felt like I wasn’t able to do it on a regular basis. But then it was also wonderful & I did it! Even if it wasn’t always perfect, it was worth it, every hectic moment. Everyone has survived, we even had a 4th. That time I fell off a cliff, but got back up. Now it feels like old hat except when it feels like a disaster & even then it’s really darn good. I mean look at it, you helped make these amazing little people! And that’s life, it’s a beautiful & terrifying roller coaster. You have to remember to hold on, take each turn as it comes & enjoy the ride.

    AND congrats on the newest addition!

    (I came by way of Angie @ 7 Clown Circus)

  31. What a fantastic post – you’re clearly a great mom.

  32. You have perfectly captured why I am a little bit terrified to parent three children, too. I mean, I want this baby to get here and safely! But man, I think, How the heck am I going to do this??

    You can do it. You can show me the way! 🙂

  33. You can do it. So can I. We can do it. Heck, we are doing it! It’s going to get easier every day.

  34. A girlfriend of mine just had her third and posted, “moving from two to three is just so hard.” I can’t even begin to imagine. I have a five year old and a two year old and putting an infant on top of that… I would lose it. But that’s me, not you, and I believe that God doesn’t put anything on us that we can’t handle; therefore, you definitely can do it.

  35. You will. It won’t always be easy, but you will.

  36. Yes. You can. You absolutely can. You might not know how it happens but it will. They’ll each get what they need from you and you’ll make them all happy. No, not every day, every moment but most of the time. And that’s all that matters. You’re a wonderful mommy.

  37. I know.

  38. Oh Stacia. I hear you. When my mother left after I had Andrew, I cried and cried, sure I would not make it through the week. Now I look back and realize how far I’ve come. It was a journey but I am glad I made it.

    And you, my dear, CAN do it. You are an awesome momma.

  39. Hang in there! Even those of us with one have that feeling from time to time.

  40. It’s hard. The hardest. And loud. And it only gets louder. And lonely sometimes. Even though you’ll fantasize about two moments of time alone for just you. But, and you’ve experienced it already, I know, then, you turn your head and nearly fall over with happiness and humility and strength.

  41. Oh my goodness, well said. And yes, you can do this – there will be moments every single day in which you will find that, in fact, YOU ARE DOING IT!

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