Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Speech Class

One of my required classes for my degree is a speech class. I think most people panic at the thought of that, but I loved speech in high school, and even joined the speech team, and earned a couple of awards. So while I still get the jitters before a speech, I still love the class. Recently we were asked to give a narrative speech. We had to tell a story, and share what we learned from it. This was the story I shared with my class.

I’m sure that you have all felt the frustration of setting an object down and finding that it is nowhere to be found when you return for it, it’s happened to all of us. Most of the time, though in this situation more than a minute or so has passed before you return for the item.

The story I plan to share with you today isn’t about a lost set of keys, a wallet, or even a cell phone. The object I lost was a person.

As some of you know, I have six year old triplets at home. Life with them has never been dull, in fact, every day has been a chance to learn something new.

On one typical day when my triplets, Eric, Josh, and Hannah were around 7 or 8 months old, I left them playing on the living room floor while I went to the restroom, and to get something to drink. I was alone in the house at the time, other than the triplets.

We had spent months perfecting the baby proofing of my living room. Every single area of escape was covered by a baby gate, because every time we thought we had it perfect, they outsmarted us, and escaped. There were even occasions where they worked as a team to escape. We were pretty confident with the latest configuration though, because we hadn’t had an escape attempt in a month.

So when I left the room that fateful day, I was positive that nothing major would happen while I was out of the room.

I was of course, wrong about that.

When I returned to the living room, I did the head count that is just second nature to me now, Josh, Hannah, and… um. Where was Eric? My first instinct was to check the front door. It was still locked up tight. I checked to make sure all the gates were up, and they were all secure. I stood in the middle of the room just looking around.

I even tried calling his name, and asking the other two, but no one answered, since they hadn’t learned to talk yet. I ran to their bedroom, wondering if I had forgotten to get him up that day, or maybe just forgot that I had put him down to nap (I was still pretty sleep deprived at that point in time). The bedroom was empty too.

I rushed back to the living room, thinking that maybe he would have reappeared by then, and he hadn’t. I checked their toy basket, all the corners of the room and even under the couch. I even pulled out the cushions, as though there was some chance he had fallen through the cracks like the remote does. I searched every inch of that room twice. Understandably I was becoming quite frantic at this point.

Finally, I looked over at Hannah, who was sitting by my entertainment center patting one of the closed drawers and giggling. I stared at her for a moment, and then it occurred to me that she probably had a reason to be giggling at the drawer. I should explain that this drawer at one time was home to part of our DVD collection, but they had figured out the baby lock almost instantly and torn apart several DVDs, so we emptied the drawer. It was usually stuck partly open because of the baby lock but in my frenzied search, I had failed to notice that it was closed tightly.

I pulled open the drawer, momentarily slowed down by the baby lock since they had figured it out before I even had the chance, and looked inside to find Eric, sleeping soundly. I picked Eric up, and just as soon as I moved him out of the way, Hannah slammed the drawer closed and giggled like mad. I assume this is what happened to poor Eric. Eric, is a very calm boy, even to this day, and hardly ever gets mad at his sister (even when she throws up on him, like she did Saturday night). So rather than cry in the drawer, like any other child might, he just accepted his fate, and took a nap.

So what I learned from this experience is thatwhen you lose something perhaps it wasn’t lost, maybe someone just hid it from you, and as a bonus lesson, I offer to you this advice “never trust your sister”.

I got an A+ on this speech, but beyond that, I got to share an adorable memory of my crazy triplets.