::pack:: of fixations

life after tragedy. living while grieving. love and triplets.


The snowball effect

I've had a few bad days the past couple of weeks (or maybe a couple handfuls of bad days).  Sometimes I get what I call 'Colum sad' and then everything in my life just kinda snowballs.  

Sometimes, I feel happy.  Really really happy.  I feel guilty.  I ask myself, am I crazy?  I shouldn't feel this happy.  Then I begin arguing with myself about no, of course it's not crazy to be happy, you're crazy to even think that; crazy lady.

The other night Finn was doing these weird jumping tricks on our bed.  It was kinda bugging me and I could tell he was just bored and needed a friend.  My eyes watered because dammit he should have a little 4 year old live-in friend to play with all the time.  I should have a 4 year old pacing the house waiting for his big brother to get home from FIRST GRADE!  I got most of my stretch marks from that 4 year old, yet he's gone.

The babies are getting teeth.  Like their mouths are filling up with these white little squares and it kills me.  The more teeth that they get, the more they look like him.  They have the exact same teeth as him, like exactly exact.  I love it, but man it's hard on the Colum sad days.  

I miss him.  I wonder if sometimes I try to not think about it in order to avoid this stupid snowball effect (if it's affect instead of effect I'm really sorry).  If I even look at an old picture of him it happens.  I can't really talk to any one about it, in fact I'm pretty sure people can smell it coming (even if I've showered) and they stay far far away from me. 


I'm having a personal crisis.  You see, I've had a job since I was 10 years old.  I haven't worked in about a year...for the first time since I was 10 (besides right after the accident).  I've looked at part time jobs, and applied at a few.  But the problem is how do I make enough to pay for childcare and ummm, doesn't any one want to work around my schedule, oh and Finn's school schedule?  Best case scenario is I make a profit of $5 after I pay my overhead.  Should I be taking online classes while the babies nap?  Should I become a drug dealer?  Should I stress out and mope around the house cause how in the hell am I gonna pay for freaking triplets?  What do I want to be when I grow up?  Ideas?


My oldest is now in first grade.  I know I'm plenty old enough to have a child in the first grade, I just don't feel old enough.  A week ago was back to school night and after the quick meeting in the gym both parents and students wandered around to find where their classrooms were.  Finn and I stood there in line as the teacher introduced herself while hands were being shook.  The woman in front of us introduced her dark haired son, some words were exchanged, her son walked off as instructed to find his desk.  The Mom quickly turned to the teacher and explained to her that her son had lost his Father, "it was a couple years ago...uh, he's doing fine most of the time....", I didn't hear the rest.  

I know Finn heard.  I smiled and introduced Finn and I.  Do I hit her with another tragic story?  "Finn has triplet baby sisters, [nervous laughter] so bare with me".  That's all I said.  I could feel Finn hesitate.  I could feel he wanted me to tell his teacher about his brother, but I didn't.  

His teacher doesn't know. 

It's a struggle I have, one that I will always have.  I feel Finn hesitate often when asked how many kids I have.  Sometimes I say it and sometimes I don't.  I don't want it to be who I am, but I don't want to pretend he never existed.  It's a very uncomfortable struggle.  

I don't want Finn to feel uncomfortable like I do.  I'm hoping I did the right thing and he can tell her in his own way.

And as promised here are some pictures.  All of the girls are in Holland, Wren, Dale order except the jumper one.  Can you tell them apart?

This was a couple days ago at our Dr appt.  We were lucky there were large hallways...gotta swing that thing wide.

couple weeks ago at Snowbird.  Exactly 1 year ago they were in my belly at the same place.  I was being pushed around in a wheelchair.

Jumping triplets!

Love this picture of Finn and his cousin Donovan sitting on a hammock while camping.

This was waaaayyyy back on the fourth of July.

Finn, his friend Tyler, and I went hiking.   Tyler took the picture :).

 This picture basically explains how my girls are during bath time.  Holland is fearless man!  I call her Brutus cause that girl is a brute!  She pulls her sisters to the ground by their hair and steals toys, she's also got some serious rhythm.  Wren, my bird...she just hates the water.  She is my mini me in a lot of ways.  She says "mom" all the time and very matter the factly, she's sneaky, my best and very enthusiastic eater, and independent.  Dale, my Daisy Jane...whenever you go to pick her up out of her crib or off the ground she immediately rolls the opposite way to make it a little more difficult for you and then cocks her head to the side and smiles.  She clucks her tongue and is still my most patient one.

My first grader!  Everyday I wonder if he even eats anything at lunch.

The day before the girls turned 11 months old at a Beck concert.  That's a stranger touching Holland's foot, and that's her why are you touching my foot face.  A stranger a very rude stranger told me I was a bad Mom for not putting baby ear plugs in their ears and how awful I am to let them inhale all the 2nd hand marijuana smoke (I couldn't even smell any).  I ripped him a new one.  Umm, they don't make baby ear plugs.  We were a mile away from the stage, and it was an outdoor Beck concert with babies everywhere.  I almost beat him up, kinda wish I would have.  If he only knew how hard it was to take triplets and a 6 year old anywhere.

This picture may look insignificant but I'm so glad I remembered to take it.  My first time ever taking all the kids to Costco all.by.myself.  It was sorta genius to leave Wren in the car seat because nobody could tell right off the bat if they were triplets.  Therefore nobody asked me if they were natural and therefore I didn't have to tell a single soul that they were actually robots.  I'm sure all the triplet and quad moms are shaking their heads and thinking I'm a wimp.  I am a wimp okay.

Camping triplets!  Please take notice of Dale in the back, leg propped up, chillin'.  She insists on just chillin', sitting up is too much work sometimes.


  1. You are the exact opposite of a wimp - I was terrified to take TWO kids to Costco at the same time! And as for your sad days, how could you not have them? You're certainly entitled after all you've been through. As for the work thing - ugh. Maybe train to do something that you could do from home...I know there are medical things (transcription, coding, etc). I can't imagine trying to juggle all that you are and you ARE amazing whether you know it or not! Thanks for sharing :-)

  2. I am so glad to hear from you! I was wondering how you were doing and can't believe the girls are almost 1!!! Even though it's nowhere near what you went through, I kind of (in a much smaller way) know how you feel about the "How many kids do you have?" question. I placed a baby girl for adoption 12 years ago and had a miscarriage 3 years ago. We just had another baby recently, which gives me three kids now at home. I hate being asked by the nurses and doctors "How many pregnancies?" (Why isn't this in my chart somewhere?! Why do they keep asking every time?!) which is always followed by "And how many living?" Having to explain always ends in awkward silence. They don't know what to feel or say and at that point I almost don't care. I shouldn't have to explain everything to everyone always. Even if sometimes I want to last out and make them feel sorry for me.

    I guess what I am trying to say is, I understand. It sucks. Even 3 and 12 years later I still get moments of overwhelming sadness. I find myself nodding when I read your words, because I feel the same way sometimes. The only thing that helps me looking around at what I currently have. I bury my face in my new baby's hair. I squeeze my older two a little bit tighter. It doesn't take away the pain, but it helps ease it.

    You are an amazing person, and I just wanted you to know that I am in awe of your strength. I know you probably don't feel strong, but just know that you do inspire others. Keep your chin up, lady. You're wonderful.

  3. My mom's little sister passed away at 9 months of age. I have heard my Grandmother tell people that she has 6 children and raised 5 of them. It stinks that such simple common questions can bring so much heartache.

  4. Oh Kelly, I sure love you! You know our family knows about bravery... and you are Brave and Fierce. Seriously. Even when you feel small and weak, thats really when you are strongest. That being said - I have my hard days, too. Sometimes I wonder if I'll be able to handle it all. It is so heavy, so daunting, and seems so impossible some days. Sometimes I just give into it and let myself have a dark day... then the light on my face later feels all the better.

    I'm still bummed that summer came and went so quickly. I haven't had time to breathe let alone do anything socially! I hope we can get together before too long. Our first graders would have a blast together, and our girls would have fun too!

    My Scentsy business is rockin'! Going back to work just isn't an option for me right now, and I find this much much much better! Let me know if you're ever interested in hearing more, but seriously zero pressure. It's totally an awesome opportunity, being that you can work your business anytime, anywhere. I get most of my stuff done while Harper is at school and then when both kids are asleep.

    Give those sweet kids hugs and kisses from us! xo

  5. Oh my gosh. I love reading your blog. Triplet moms can totally relate how accomplished you feel by just taking all your kids to Costco. It feels amazing (well, if they are good). And I love my robot kids too :)

  6. Love reading your blog, but hate hearing that you are sad. Of course I know part of your heart will always be sad. As for you letting Finn tell his own story good for you. I was 12 when I lost my 14 year old sister to a tragic accident...that was 24 years ago and I still dislike the question of how many siblings I have. Even though I hate getting the question, it always makes me think of her (I do everyday anyways but it gives me a different thought.) It took me many many years to answer that I have one LIVING sister. That alone tells a story, Finn will find out his way and I applaud you for letting him be the writer in his story. Good luck to you!

  7. When the time is right you or he will tell his teacher about your family's huge loss. You did right not informing him of it at that opportunity, not the right time or place.

    You are all looking so wonderful, beautiful :) Love your updates.

    Vent away, I hope you find this a safe place.

  8. I so look forward to your updates, both about Finn and the girls. You're such a talented writer it would be great if you could find an income in that. Someone mentioned medical transcription from home and that's a good idea, I have a couple of relatives that do that. I think it's great to let Finn tell his teacher about Collum when the time is right but can understand how it might confuse him when he doesn't hear you do it right away as he might have come to expect you to. That's probably something for you two to talk about at some point - see if he prefers to do that himself or have you pave the way. I admire you so much, Kelly. The pain you've endured but the joy that you've allowed yourself to experience has to be so overwhelming everyday. I look forward to hearing about your escapades with your children and Ryan and it's such a treat to find a new post here. Oh,, as for the guy at the concert, I'd have wanted to clock him too but seeing Mom carted off in handcuffs probably wouldn't have been a good memory for the kids. Enjoy the fall weather! Gail

  9. Your girls are beautiful and full of life. And Finn, OH MY, he is such a terrific big brother and has the warmest smile. And I can almost hear Colum saying, look at my brother and sisters. I know he is so proud. You have a beautiful family.

  10. "The" question. Oh how I hate it. "How many kids do you have?" I actually avoid new people in my life so that I don't have to answer that awful question. My heart aches for my kids at the start of every school year now, because teachers always have a getting to know you paper, or draw a picture of your family assignment. It sucks. It just really does. I'm so sorry. Your kids are beautiful, all FIVE of them. Thank you for your raw, honest words.

  11. I'm with Karin...your words are so true and honest....directly from your heart. You cracked me up though with "Therefore nobody asked me if they were natural and therefore I didn't have to tell a single soul that they were actually robots." That made me laugh. Your children are beautiful amazing wonderful little people and they each have a little bit of Colum in them to remind you that he is always yours, always your boy, always your love, always to be remembered and always one of your treasured children. When people ask, count him in the mix and don't let their uncomfortableness change the way you answer the question "How many children do you have?" P.S. Why do people have to comment about your parental decisions? Their shut-up filter must have malfunctioned. Ha Ha!!

  12. I live in BC Canada so things may be different there but... I work with individuals with developmental delays and physical disabilities. Starting wage good ($16 per hour with benefits) and flexible hours. I currently work Mon-Friday 9-3 but many other shifts and hours available. Just a thought.

  13. Eahelp.com :) Completely legit work from home. It's basically at home executive assisting according to your strengths and personality. I've worked there for over a year now and get to stay home with my 3 under 4. It's been amazing and they're SO supportive. Worth a shot for sure!

  14. I loooove that picture from the concert. I am thinking of you! I am sorry you've been having sad days. Finn is adorable, the girls are too cute, and I know your precious Colum watches over all of you every single day. Sending love and prayers your way.

    When I found I had too much free time on my hands (but not enough for a job) I turned to photography. There is so much to learn online and from different groups on facebook and through different blogs. I used it as a hobby for a year or two and just started doing photo shoots to make money. When I am having a bad day, it's so easy to pick up my camera and take a beautiful picture. It always makes me feel better. Of course, you already are a writer :-) And a good one!