So Carola and I spend a lot of time talking and lately the topic of choice and questions has been how in the name of all that is holy did your mother have ten kids?
My answer is usually: I don't know...she just did.
I look back on all of this and I think I am really lucky to come as the youngest of my siblings. She kept saying things like,
How did she keep the house clean?--She didn't
When did she wash the dishes?--After we went to bed
Who drove you all to your different activities? --She did
Who cooked dinner?--She did
When did she sleep?--Well...she didn't.
How did you guys find time to get what you needed from your parents with that many siblings?
--I don't know..we Just did.
I never in my life have felt unloved from my siblings. And I most certainly have never felt unloved by my parents. I can't speak for my siblings, but I think we all pretty much feel this way. I always felt as a child that if my parents wouldn't take care of me, my siblings would. And they still do. I didn't care that there were dirty dishes, I didn't care that there was laundry everywhere. What I cared about was when my siblings would go to school my mom and I would go on morning walks through the orange groves. I cared that Russell would let me come swimming with him and Ed. I cared that Kendra would help me with my math when I needed it.
I also think my mother taught us to be independent in the sense that I remember doing my laundry when i was 10 years old. My mother would have done it, and I'm sure i didn't do it every time (I still don't do my laundry every time). I remember packing my own suitcases for vacations (we always had to buy me a new toothbrush and once a sunday dress) but they point is, my mom didn't do everything for us like most mothers do. She couldn't. She relied on us to do things and help each other do things.
So I don't know how we did it. I don't know how we stuck together and all loved each other and had a mother who raised 9 of us. I just know...
We just did it.