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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Grandparent(s) (04/03/08)

TITLE: Hoping for Hip
By Dianne Janak
04/05/08


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Didee. That’s the name I want our first grandchildren triplets to call me. My best friend said that means “dirty diaper ”, but I don't care. I've changed enough of them by now to qualify.

“Grand-ma” sounds like obese hillbilly, and strikes a raw chord, but Didee sounds hip, and God knows I need hip.

This is a tall tale that is short, or a short tale that is tall. I’m really too tired to care. We’re first year survivors and need a standing ovation. Or a crown.

When the doctor calmly announced during the ultrasound “there were three of them,” my daughter asked…”three WHAT?” I didn’t realize she expected puppies.

My reaction when hearing the news was to eat a whole pan of brownies and then go to bed. Believing I could bank some sleep hours for her if I got an early start, I started to identify way too closely.

I felt suddenly old. My knees and back were hurting, and I worried how on earth I could carry three babies. I had to be reminded she was the pregnant one, not I. Where did the time go? I still haven’t met Mel Gibson.

She had mandatory bed rest at four months, so I started taking more naps. She had to eat more calories, so I added ice cream to my snacks . This was a priceless adventure. Identifying may be sick, but such a trip. I was a hip trip.

My “friends” were worried when I started throwing up in the morning and planned an age intervention. They all brought mirrors for my reality check and I cried. I’m still not over it.

The first day I rocked my week -old grandson was special. I planned to spend an hour for each baby, singing songs about Jesus, praying and introducing them to their new world.
My daughter broke my bubble.

“There you are, Mom. What are you doing? I thought you were napping for me again. “

“Don’t be smart. I’m bonding with Nathan.”

After silence she suppressed her laughter.

“That’s nice but that’s Matthew.”
I guess I need to save up for Matthew’s therapy when he’s fifteen.

We all somehow made it threw the first year. Sleep deprivation does strange things to an ordinary life in the burbs.

My son- in- law poured water on his cereal. My daughter raced to pick up crying Jordyn one night before she woke up her brothers , and grabbed Nathan by mistake. I ran over more curbs than usual, and one night woke up my husband when I started burping him in my dreams.

First Year Facts:
1. Diapers for triplets: 30 a day $75 a week
2. Formula: 24 bottles a day $150 a week
3.Sleep for parents: None
4.Grandparents: Some ( the law of the perks)

People can be odd. Strangers would stop us on the street as we strolled the babies in the stroller, asking us “are they real?” Or “are they the same?” I was so tempted to say, “ they’re all plastic and cloned. We’re on Oprah next week.”

The Moms - of -Multiples group was a life saver. For the first four crazy sleep- deprived weeks, we didn’t have to make any meals. We were all zombies helping with shifts of feeding, diapering, washing clothes, making bottles, cleaning, holding, and doing it all over again every three hours. I secretly fantasized putting Prozac in our tea for sanity.

Just when we thought we couldn’t do another day, the doorbell would ring, and in came a Mom- of -Multiples with a meal, a smile and a word of encouragement.

“The first year’s always a blur. None of us even remember it. I promise you it gets better. You will survive. “

One woman with four -year -old twins waiting in the car gave us that speech and we just smiled at her. We didn’t have the heart to tell her her blouse was on inside out.

Underneath a tree that was planted in their backyard in memory of two miscarriages a few years before, lies a rock we bought at Michael’s with the word “HOPE” painted on it. That was the name of the first grandbaby lost, and we always wanted to remember her. Under the name were three painted daises.

God had given us a sign.

I absolutely love the name “ Didee,” so don’t mess with me. I’m hip.


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This article has been read 859 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Christine Dunn04/10/08
Very funny - I couldn't help but laugh my way through this one. I just love how she identified and empathised so much with her daughter, that she almost became her! Just one little mistake - I think you meant 'through' rather than 'threw'. I really enjoyed this one.
Debbie Wistrom04/10/08
What a slice of life, thanks for the details. Dratted word limit, I know there is more and I want it. Your words made daily details come to life for me.
Chely Roach04/10/08
I might be bias as a mom of twin 16 month old girls, but this was great. "We didn’t have the heart to tell her her blouse was on inside out" made me snarf out loud:)
Beth LaBuff 04/11/08
Yes, you had me smiling with the "Didee"/"dirty diaper" comment. Anyone with triplets or triplet grandchilden would definitely qualify as an expert on diapers. :) Your humor is infectious in this! -- "puppies", "sleep hours", "naps", ice cream snacks", and the "inside out blouse" to name a few. And yes, you deserve a standing ovation, a crown, and a medal. :) I can't even imagine all that taking care of infant triplets would involve. Thanks for entertaining me this evening. I promise not to "mess" with you.
Lollie Hofer 04/11/08
Hey, hip grandma...I mean hip Didee...cool! Boy, can I relate. My mother also had triplets. (I wasn't one of them.) Hip story. I'm still chuckling.
David Butler 04/12/08
I've never been a Grandma, so I can't fully relate. But I got a lot of laughs out of this. I recognise the hand and the humour here ;).
Actually I'm inclined to think that "made it threw the first year" was a Freudian slip, rather than a mere typo :).
My mother refused point blank to be even a "Gwanny" - there was one already - but insisted on being called "Moggie". This was not only hip-ness, but to recognise the important role that cats played in our extended family.
Great work. Go hip-Didee!
Gregory Kane04/13/08
Very amusing. We have had four boys but thankfully all well spaced apart. My sympathies go out to those with multiple births.
I enjoyed the anecdotes but thought that the statistical section on first year facts was superfluous and broke the flow somewhat. Might have given you room for just one more delightful yarn.
Glynis Becker 04/13/08
Just enough humor, but a lot of heart too. I loved this!
Joshua Janoski04/15/08
“Grand-ma” sounds like obese hillbilly

I laughed at this line and many others in this very humorous piece. I liked the sarcastic remarks. They really set the tone for this story.

One teeny tiny minor error that I saw, you used the word "threw" at one point when it should have been "through." No biggie though. :)

Thank you for adding a nice bit of humor to this week's topic. You put a smile on my face.
Jan Ackerson 04/16/08
Funniest one I've read this week! I love the voice, the wit...well, everything about this wonderful delight!
Joy Faire Stewart04/16/08
This is great. Love the humor and your shared memories (or what you remember). LOL Excellent on topic.
Lyn Churchyard04/16/08
This was such a fun read. I particularly loved "My “friends” were worried when I started throwing up in the morning and planned an age intervention", and
"I was so tempted to say, “ they’re all plastic and cloned. We’re on Oprah next week".'
Wonderfully funny story, well done!


Sara Harricharan 04/16/08
ROFL! This Didee is definitely hip! Lol! This was too funny, I was laughing all the way through-you nailed the touch of humor. I loved the chart that showed the diapers and the bottles of formula. The voice for Didee was just right, it fit her spunky personality and definitly gave a great twist to this! Awesome writing! ^_^
Sheri Gordon04/16/08
At first I thought the rambling thoughts were a bit disjointed, but then I realized no, they're exactly what they should be. Disjointed and rambling--as a tired grandma of triplets would be. :)

I love this line: "I guess I need to save up for Matthew’s therapy when he’s fifteen." LOL

My mom refused to be called grandma, too--thought it made her sound too old. So she was called Oma--grandma in German. But the ultimate joke was on her--she found out years later that in Germany, Oma is used for a really old grandma. :)

Great job with the topic.
Joanne Sher 04/18/08
Congratulations, Dianne, on placing 12th in your level and 33rd overall with this piece. Great work!
Peter Stone05/16/08
Oh, this is simply priceless. Quips such as "I didn’t realize she expected puppies" and the mother who thought she'd survived twins with 'her blouse on inside out' were just perfect. I can't imagine life with triplets, but do understand sleep deprivation. My daughter woke 2-3 times a night until she went to school, and my son has just only began sleeping all night last week. He's 4 on Monday. So in ten years, my wife and I slept well for two of them.
Jan Ackerson 06/22/08
Dianne, I'm going to feature this delightful essay on the Front Page Showcase for the week of July 14th. Look for it on the FaithWriters Home page, and congratulations!
Seema Bagai 07/14/08
Dianne, this is funny. Loved the narrator's voice and sense of humor. Congrats on the front page showcase.
Sharlyn Guthrie07/15/08
Dianne, This is such a fun read! I'm glad I seized this opportunity to read it after missing it during grandparents week.
Marsha Landers07/16/08
I just wanted you to know that I loved your story. I laughed and I cried. I tried for a cool name, too. Granddaughter # 3 just arrived. I'm still hoping!
Sherri Ward07/16/08
I guess I'm different - I love being called Grandma by my 5-year-old twin granddaughters. They have no doubt who I am - then 3-year-old Isabelle once set her mother straight saying, "Mom, her name is Grandma!" Great article, great sense of humor!
Rita Garcia07/16/08
Congrats! Delightful story filled with love and humor.
Joanne Sher 07/16/08
Ohhhh Dianne. What a HOOT! Love this, girl - congrats on your showcase, my dear.
Sara Harricharan 07/16/08
Congrats on the showcase-awesome! So glad to get to read this one again! ^_^
Samantha Arroyo07/17/08
This was such an enjoyable read. I love your raw humor :] I couldn't help but smile :]
Beth LaBuff 07/17/08
Dianne -- I'm so happy to see your writing showcased on the FW homepage. Congrats!
Verna Cole Mitchell 07/19/08
Dianne, this is marvelous writing. I love the description, the humor, and the hope. You really did a great job!