Rule 15: Keep Your Eyes on the Prize
This is part of an ongoing series chronicling my attempts to regain a bit of my sense of self, and my sanity, by implementing Elizabeth Lyons’ 32 Rules that Sustain a (Mostly) Balanced Mom. Subscribe to my RSS feed to follow my experiment, and check out the rest of the posts in the series!

While out shopping one day, I passed by a mom pushing a double stroller, two car seats snapped into the frame.


This always grabs my attention. Twin moms almost always accost other twin moms. We know how irritating it is to get stopped by just about every person who sees that you have more than one infant, but once we let on that we’re twin moms too, it’s like meeting an old family member –someone who knows your trials, triumphs, and debilitating sleep deprivation.

I smiled and asked her how old they were, and gestured over to my three year old twins behind me with their dad, in an “I know what you’re going through” fashion.

“I’ve heard it gets easier,” she said, pushing the stroller back and forth, desperate for me to agree with her.

“Well…”  I didn’t want to break her spirit, but I had to tell her the truth: “…it gets different.”


If there has been anything that we’ve said over and over again since Rachel and Claire were born, it’s “It’ll get easier,” or “It won’t always be this hard.”

Going out with three young kids means constant wrangling. Buckling three kids into car seats. Handing out snacks and drinks times three. Unloading three kids out of car seats. Trying to get everyone from the parking lot to the destination without a) getting hit by a car, b) melting in the 105 degree heat, or c) getting their arms pulled out of their sockets because COME ON ALREADY! Walk faster, PLEASE!

But lately I see that light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes the light taunts me with the “it’s getting better” song right before it slams the door in my face and I’m left in a sweaty mess, dragging whiny three year olds out to the car or chasing the fastest one year old you’ve ever see through Barnes & Noble before she can unshelve ALL of the Twilight books.

But still, sometimes I do see that light.

It started when they learned to climb into the car and into their seats on their own. Even into their booster seats at the dinner table. All I have to do is buckle them, and that alone is saving my back tons of heavy lifting.

They can fetch wipes if I find myself without any while Zoe’s poopy butt hovers dangerously above the carpet. If they’re listening. It’s kinda touch and go on that one.

They let the dog in. Heck, they’ve even locked me outside before and knew well enough to let me back in when I told them to. So nice of them, right?

And last Wednesday as we perused our normal boredom buster with it’s irresistible dollar section and monstrous red carts, they begged to walk on their own. Actually, it was more of a public service announcement: “I have to get out and walk!” And I let them.

My husband thinks I’m crazy when I say I want to take them somewhere by myself. He doesn’t get the monotony of staying home with them day after day in this ridiculous summer heat. That it’s good for ALL of us to get out.

Sometimes I’m met with wins, sometimes I leave with total fails. But I have to get through the failures to get to the successes.

And I won’t experience even the smallest success if I don’t ever try.

Sure, it wasn’t long before Claire took off running through the Merona dresses and Liz Lange maternity swimwear, rounding a corner and booking it to the frozen pizzas while I was still trying to get through home decor, stopping only to pick up the coloring book that Zoe so thoughtfully threw overboard and maybe to examine a piece of wall art that would look perfect in my living room. But a quick plop back into the cart, a stern talking to, and lots of whining later, she was ready to try again.

And I let her.

And when we made it safely to the toy aisles and they found some plastic dinosaurs to march around with? I heard, “Okay dinosaur…Stay. With. Mommy.”

And they did.

Someday it won’t be this hard. And that someday may be closer than I think.


Have you reached out for a light a the end of a proverbial tunnel? What kind of prize are you keeping YOUR eye on?


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Leigh Ann Torres
Writer, artist, wife, cook, maid, bookkeeper, mom to twins plus one...all around genie in a bottle, except you only get one wish, and it has to be reasonable.
  1. My prize is “work won’t always be like this. One day you’ll be home more. Be home be home be home”

    • That;s an excellent goal. I do realize how lucky I am to get to stay home with the kiddos, but it’s funny how sometimes the grass seems a little greener on the other side.

  2. This sounds like a very helpful book. And you’re awesome for taking all three out of house alone.

  3. Oh I love this.
    This is how I live my life!
    There is a light, I can see it. The negative, the hard stuff, the annoyances; they’re only for a second.

    • I know you have reached for the light in a very dark tunnel, my friend, and you’re amazing for finding it.

  4. I think we might be the same person. You just described my life. One thing though, I have a set that is now almost 15 and I hate to tell you this but…it just gets…different.

    • Ha ha, I was afraid of that. But at least there will be some day when they cam walk with me without as much flight risk. :)

  5. Girlfriend, it DOES get easier. And that day IS closer than you think. I swear I was in your shoes just yesterday. Keep the faith.

    • Thanks for the words of encouragement! I relish in their 3 year old-ness because it’s so sweet most of the time, but it’ll be nice to get a little of my life back someday!

  6. I have recently come to realize exactly that…it doesn’t get easier, just different. My triplets are now 17 months and in some ways this toddler stage X3 is more challenging than when they were babies. But I try to remind myself to appreciate every stage because once I reach the light at the end of the tunnel I’m sure I’ll feel sad that my babies are all grown up.

    • Very true. Once you get past all the night waking, you’re then dealing with little toddlers! Although I have to say that once my twins started walking, life got a whole lot easier. No more carrying them everywhere around the house times 2!