Bones. We decided, with an impulsive dash of insanity, to spend a day visiting the Museum of Natural History in the City. Of course I mean New York City. Yes, there are plenty of cities scattered across the country. And many of them are great. (So I’ve heard over the last ten years, anyway. I wouldn’t know personally, because if there is no drive-thru window to accommodate me, then… I’m not going there.) But to people in my parts, NYC is The City. Because we’re arrogant, or self-centered, or whatever it is people assume New Yorkers are. So be it!
The Captain and I decided to take the kiddies into the city. Yup, all six of them. Because we’ve heard that people take their kids places, and we want to be like those people.
Now I adore the City. I always have, and spent so much time there in my college years. Just me, my backpack, and my Doc Martens. In fact, I planned to live there, before I married The Captain.
If I’m city folk, then The Captain is country folk. He’d be thrilled to be holed away in some spacious patch of forestry, with deer and mountains as his neighbors. Wearing thick, lumberjack-tyoe clothes, and probably some sort of off-the-grid lifestyle.
Me? Um, no. So the suburbs it is.
So an early morning trip via train for the crew. Just The Captain, myself, our six kids, a well intentioned grandmother, and…
the umbrella stroller. The Snap & Go stroller. Diapers. Wipes. Teething toys. Juice boxes. Change of clothes for toddlers. Sweatshirts for the chill. Extra baby blankets. Wallets, phones, Goldfish, and a partridge in a pear tree. Get the idea?
Now to be clear, I’m not a paranoid, hysterical mother when it comes to keeping my kids safe. Of course, I take necessary precautions, but I am great about being relaxed and enjoying the journey.
Unless the journey is by train or subway. Then apparently, I am less motherly, and more… matronly.
As in, prison matron.
My focus in shepherding our kids to and fro public transportation was that they remain alive the whole time. And I enforced that responsibility by ensuring that the children stay away from the edge of various platforms at all times. Sort of like this:
“GET AWAY FROM THE YELLOW LINE! (push) MOVE BACK! (shove) DO NOT GO NEAR THERE!” (hip check)
I blame the kids. I wasn’t always crazy. In fact, taking public transportation used to be half the fun in going in the first place. But now that I had a big pile of kids to join me, I was pretty convinced that one of them wouldn’t be able to resist jumping headlong in front of a subway car, or would at least try to squeeze their tiny frame into the gap between train and platform, consequently being dragged down the tracks.
(Motherhood can be intense.)
But thankfully I overestimated my kids, b/c not one felt the need to do anything other than board the train. And with #6 in his infant stroller and #5 in the umbrella stroller, we made our way into the city- taking up an entire car by ourselves.
Once we made it to Penn Station, the real fun began… fun, as in, scrambling to lug strollers up crowded staircases, and weaving through foot traffic to dash into overcrowded elevators. But we did, and then made it down to the subway.
Again, a mom moment. Now, I used to spend an exorbitant amount of time down in the depths of NYC’s maze of subways. It’s been awhile. What was once a charming method of quick & painless transport is now fraught with thoughts of… germs.
Because when you tell* (*read: YELL AT) four older kids to stay closer to the walls, away from the yellow line, they don’t just linger near the walls. They:
touch the walls. Flatten their bodies against the walls. Try to roll their bodies along the grimy tiles.
But they loved the subway trip. And what kid wouldn’t? Isn’t it awesome to stand, holding a shiny metal pole, and try your best to let the sudden stops hurl you into the strangers next to you?
At the museum, we toured several different areas, but obviously a big favorite was the dinosaur display. Oh, & the Mbuti/Pygymy displays. Because all kids love dinosaur bones,
and tiny, native naked butts. Yep.
We tried to do the IMax Penguin movie, but that crashed and burned. We tried. And we settled the kids between ourselves and the grandparental unit, with #6 asleep in his car seat, and #5 perched happily on The Captain’s lap. And all was well (quiet) until seven minutes into the movie when The Captain leaned over and whispered these sweet nothings into my ear:
“#5 just peed through her diaper. We’re both soaked.”
What is parenting six kids like? It’s sort of like peeling the soaked pants off of a giggly, squirming toddler while adjusting your booby-hunting infant in your hip sling in the grimy basement bathroom of a New York museum while your husband strips his jeans off in the men’s room and dries them under the hand dryer. Sort of, anyway.
#5, thrilled with her new dry pants.
But hey… if you’re going to try to silence a wailing infant by jamming a boob in his mouth as he dangles in your hip sling while you wait for your semi-naked spouse to finish drying his urine-splattered jeans, then what better place to do so than New York City, right??
Suffice to say that the rest of the trip was anticlimactic in comparison. But the kids had a blast, we spent quality time as a family, and all six came home intact. And dry!
© Copyright 2013 Six Pack Mom, All rights Reserved. Written For: Six Pack Mom