Just Me and Three

July 17, 2018 by Maureen

Its been just over a month of full time living here in Bethany Beach and for the most part I have been here alone with just our three children. While I am so blessed and grateful that Greg is able to have a flexible work schedule it’s still a lot of just me, a big house, a new yard to maintain, and three kids. I wish I could say it is easy but sometimes it’s not.

Just last week was a true test: Maggie, 19 months old, hadn’t been feeling well for a while and as a mother of one child who had a series of ear infections and tubes in his ears, and then another child with more ear infections.. I just knew. So I casually scooped up all three, googled the closest urgent care and headed out armed with an iPad, snacks, water, and too much optimism. Twenty minutes later I arrived just over the Ocean City border into Maryland to a 2.5 hour wait. In my poor judgement, I let the kids wander the toy aisle of the CVS minute clinic for about 45 minutes before they got bored and then discovered the greeting card aisle. I discovered very quickly that was the wrong aisle to be in and from there things went south real fast. Our wait time hadn’t decreased at all so I shoved everyone out the store back into the car and back home to hopefully get some sleep that night with a glass of wine for me and Motrin for the baby. The next day is clearly one for the books and in hindsight the reality of it is OK but it was a tough one. Here it goes..

Maggie woke up super happy and a little less snotty so I thought a quick trip to Rehoboth to Michaels for some craft supplies would be no problem. Kinda like a reward for the big kids since they have been so good to me in dealing with a sick kid. Nope. It turned into an epic journey that lasted from 10am till 4pm when we finally arrived back home. I got stuck in Rehoboth where I had to pull over because I could hear Maggie crying and throwing up all over herself (if you don’t have kids this probably sounds horrible…if you do, you know this happens), where then she refused to get back in her carseat. I had to bribe her by turning her car seat around, some random bits of food I found in the car, and a movie on the dvd player. Then I tried calling all of my husband’s phone numbers because I just needed some guidance. Should I drive home to Maryland and go see the pediatrician or try the crazy minute clinic again?

Once I finally got in touch with him I summoned the strength to just start driving again. I had him looking up online wait times for the two closest clinics near us and together we decided I should drive to West Ocean City over 20 miles away. That was a bad decision because once I herded all 4 of us into the clinic there were no doctors there. I wanted to cry so bad but had no energy so it was back into the car where I stopped for a hurried lunch at Chick-fil-a. While there I bribed the kids that I would buy them toys at the next minute clinic if they ate their food quickly, didn’t ask to play on the playground, and got back into the car. It worked somehow.

So back to the lovely minivan which was growing ever so gross with food wrappers, dirty diapers, movie cases and stuff just laying all over, not to mention our full supply of beach chairs, umbrella, and beach cart that goes with us wherever. I finally got to the other minute clinic, signed our names in, bought the kids toys, some snacks and Advil for me, took them to the bathroom (finally), and sat them back in the car to wait out our turn.

The end result: after 1.5 hours of waiting…our name was called, we ran into the office, shut the door, and sat down only to get Maggie diagnosed with not one, but a double ear infection, Amoxicillin for 7 days, and prayers that it works. Maggie has been resistant to Amoxicillin in the past so if you see me crying in the corner of a minute clinic next week with three kids climbing on me you will know it didn’t work. So far so good, but I do have some doubts as she still has a runny nose.

Anyways, this isn’t to scare you or myself into thinking life at the beach can’t be done with three children or that it isn’t “Just a Dream”. It still is, but sometimes you get thrown a curve ball and you have to rise to the challenge and learn if you will fail or succeed.

So far this summer I have learned a lot about myself. I learned that I can assemble an entire twin over queen bunkbed set by myself, I can take three children to the beach for the day and not lose a single one, I can survive an urgent care center, I can take them on the trolley to town for dinner on the beach, and I can plant an entire garden while they play in the hose. I have to say I think I am succeeding.. but who wouldn’t when you realize life at the beach is pretty amazing but you just have to watch out for a few little hiccups along the way.