In 2008, everything our family knew was turned upside down. To our little group of three — me, husband, daughter, we added twins, and one of them was born with Down syndrome. Shortly after that, my husband’s career yanked us out of New York City and plopped us down in Charlotte. I used to have a fulltime job in the heart of Manhattan, live in an apartment and take the subway everywhere. Now I manage a big house in the suburbs, live in my car and ruin dinner on a fairly regular basis. I’m a Type B personality (that’s the lazy one, right?) living a Type A life: too much to do, no skills with which to do it.
Why I’m Here
Though I enjoy writing this blog because putting words to paper is an outlet for me, I also am writing it because I’d like to be more than just “that” mom. You know, the one that always needs help: help opening the door to fit her twin stroller through; help wrangling three kids — preschool twins and a kindergartener; help from the state to educate our son with special needs. Most of all, help from fellow parents with all sorts of conundrums! It seems I am constantly on the receiving end of assistance or moral support.
But I want to be the one to offer help as well. To give advice, to be a caregiver, a nurturer, a comforter, a leader, if a modest one. It’s not that I know the right way to do things — my husband knows well that I’ve never been accused of doing things properly. It’s just that I enjoy sharing what I’ve learned from my own experience if it will help someone else.
And I think all parents today are like that. There is nothing more comforting than being in the company of others who are alternately perplexed, confident, in charge and on the verge of a nervous breakdown, depending on what kind of hour they’re having. This delicate dance that we do when we alternate between helping and being helped is what keeps us human, humble and happy. We all have much to give but we have just as much to learn. That’s why the Internet is the perfect tool for our generation, because it lets us switch between these two roles seamlessly.
So although this blog will tell my side of the story, I want to hear your stories as well. I hope you will write in to tell me about your experiences and your dilemmas in the comment section, or by dropping me a line on my Facebook fan page, Thoroughly Modern Messy. Trust me, I’ll need your help even more than you might need mine. Vicki Vila