Kristen Freeman says she and her husband Larry used to be an ordinary couple. She was working as an accountant and he was working in market research, living together in Atlanta, Georgia. Then, after some fertility issues (her cycle never returned after she went off the pill), she saw a specialist, took some medication “to get me up and running,” and soon after, found out she was pregnant with triplets!
“After drinking a few cups of water and laying back down to take in the information,” Kristen says she and her husband were both “excited and terrified.”
Kristen’s high-risk pregnancy meant she had to leave work in her third trimester. It also meant she didn’t return after she gave birth because financially, that made more sense than daycare X3. After Larry went back to work and the grandmas went home, Kristin was on her own during the day, taking care of Lulu, Desi, and Jude. She says in the beginning she couldn’t even leave the house.
“Trying to feed the kids (we did combo formula with breastfeeding for three months, then just formula) and then pump immediately following was exhausting. By the time everyone was fed, changed, soothed and the pump and bottles were cleaned, it was time to do it again.”
One of Kristen’s biggest struggles was making mom friends.
“In the beginning, when moms of babies do play dates, it benefits the mom the most I think. I was very isolated and truly needing those connections, but I was not able to get out to do any of that. At the time, logistics were the obstacle. How do I park somewhere and carry each car seat? What about time to feed them at a play date? I’m sure most moms would have lent a hand but they had their own babies to tend to, so I was afraid to immediately ask for help.”
In fact, one of the reasons Kristen volunteered her family for this series is because she wants other moms to know she can still relate to them.
“I want moms with one kid, or with five, to be able to vent to me, be friends, just chat about life! I think, at least in the past, people may have hesitated or felt guilty venting if they had one little one vs. three. Yes, some of the challenges are different, but so many are the same! It’s so wonderful to connect with people who share ups and downs. I know that I would have been as crazy (and happy) with one at a time. It’s just rolling with the punches and appreciating what cards you’ve been dealt.”
Now the triplets are three years old, and although that makes some things easier, there are new challenges as well. Can you imagine potty training three kids at once?
I asked Kristen what she thought about the video and she said, “It’s a wonderful reminder that I need to stop and smell the roses when I am stressed, and enjoy this happy family. Life is hectic and this video gives the ‘pause’ that is needed to appreciate small, sweet moments in the middle of chaos.“
I also asked her if having triplets gave her any extra parenting insights that she could share with the rest of us. For moms of multiples, Kristin recommended getting them on a schedule from the very beginning. For everyone else, she said, “Having triplets was immediate confirmation that all people are born different. Even at a day old, what worked for one baby, usually did not work for the next. We had to adjust to this immediately while most parents only learn this once another child comes along.“
Lastly, Kristen wanted to give a shout-out to both sets of grandparents, “who go above and beyond any time they are here or if we need anything.”
Please leave a comment in support of Kristen and her extraordinary family below.
This post is part of the “Extraordinary Families” series sponsored by Allstate. “Extraordinary Families” aims to show what life is like, sun up to sun down, for families facing (and overcoming!) unique and challenging circumstances. As the nation’s largest publicly held insurance company, Allstate is dedicated to protecting what matters most.