Quintuplet Dad

This is a blog for Jayson Wilkinson farther to the Wilkinson Quints as well as Riley and Kaiya.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Living as a single parent and getting interviewed for TV

I have a whole lot more respect now for people who have to live as single parents. Rachelle has been gone about 9 days now and Riley and I are still alive. In the past, I have gone a week or so without Rachelle but in all those other cases, I always knew that it would be over in a week or so. Without knowing that, it is much more difficult. Rachelle, with her Masters Degree in Statistics, normally takes care of doing things like paying the bills, doing the shopping, and pretty much keeping things in order. I only have a batchelors degree in Engineering so I don't normally mess with that stuff. Now, I have to mess with it or bad things will happen. So far, however, it is going well and we are OK. There have been a lot of nice people that have had us over for dinner. I even saw Riley eat some vegatables yesterday thanks to our friend Kim Krenzer. Others have been really nice and I am very grateful.

On Friday of last week, someone from the local news station (News 8 Austin) came and intereviewed Riley and me. It was a funny experience because I am actually more used to being on the other side of the camera. The interview went pretty well I guess. Riley's interview was funny. He responded to the questions he was asked by mostly nodding his head and occasionally saying a very quiet "yes". Head nodding and short "yes" answers don't work very well when the person asking the question doesn't have the microphone. However, after some tickling and prodding, he did end up saying that he thought having these babies "Would be like school except less people." I thought that was probably pretty accurate. He could have also said that it would be like school except there would be less people, most of those people would be little babies, and there wouldn't be big yellow busses in the driveway...they would (hopefully) be A-team colored busses (or just one A-Team colored bus). If you want to check it out, I linked to the story here: News 8 story.

Something else I wanted to mention here is that we also added a bunch of new stuff on the "how to help" page here. The new things we added are a way to donate funds and a list of things we think we will need like plane tickets to Arizona and stuff for 5 babies.

Thanks again for all your prayers and support. I still get emails from many people telling us they are praying for us and I am very grateful for that. Thank you.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

More fun things and some not-as-fun things that happen when your wife is pregnant with quintuplets

Continuing on last weeks post, I had several fun things happen this week that I thought were interesting. I was able to contact an old high school friend, Rob Rogers, who ended up posting a comment about my blog on his blog. He said some nice stuff about me on there so, obviously, I recommend reading it. He and I used to have a somewhat impromptu disco routine that we would do at the our church youth dances. Everyone would crowd around us, glad for the distraction that seeing others making fools of themselves offers. We were glad to be the people that helped everybody else realize that no matter what they did that night, it wouldn't be as ridiculous as what those two guys were doing. If your are interested in seeing an example of the type of self-humiliation that Rob and I used to participate in, I actually have a video on YouTube of me at a company talent show performing something that is partly based on what Rob and I used to do.

My parents were also in town this week as well as my brother and his family. My brother is currently on leave from Iraq so it was nice to see him. We had dinner at our house on Easter and he brought his bagpipes. He has been learning how to use the bagpipes while he is there in Iraq. It turns out that Iraq is a good place to learn bagpipes because it is so far away from here. He is really pretty good now, especially considering that he had to teach himself. However, I'm not sure I would have liked to have been around when he was not as good. Lets just say that when he played for us, it was not inside the house.

On the not-as-good side, Rachelle left for Phoenix on Tuesday (which is why it has taken me so long to do this week's post). That was when the reality started sinking in again. She will be in Phoenix until the babies are ready to come home which I think will probably be September or maybe October if all goes like we hope it will. She took Kaiya, our daughter, and left Riley with me for some father son bonding. I just hope Riley survives the ordeal. You really realize how much a person does for you when he or she is gone. Rachelle really did a lot and it is a bit scary to try to take it over knowing you don't have any backup. Well, I suppose it will all work out. There have been some people that have donated some money to help me get to Phoenix which I am really grateful for. I am also really grateful for Rachelle's aunt Jeannie who is letting Rachelle stay at her house and offering to help take care of her (even though her aunt Jeannie has MS). Without that, I don't know if we could have even considered the Phoenix option.

I am also grateful for the people that have offered to take care of Riley while I am at work. He realized yesterday that Kaiya was gone and said, "With Kaiya gone, who am I going to play with?" I think he really misses her but I assured him that this is actually going to be kind of fun for him because he will get to play with his friends, Will, Sarah, Henry, and Roger.

It is truly amazing to see how this is all coming together so far.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Some of the fun things that happen when your wife is expecting quintuplets

I was thinking today about all of the fun things that happen when your wife is expecting quintuplets. One of the main fun things I noticed is that it gives me something interesting to tell people about. Normally, I only have mundane things to tell people about like how frustrating it is to mow a lawn with really complex and occasionally dangerous shrubbery. With topics like that, you can only keep someones attention for maybe 5 or 6 seconds before they start to drift off to sleep. Having quintuplets, however, is a different story. Now I have a great thing to talk about with people which has given me a wonderful excuse to look up old friends and relatives that I haven't seen or heard from in years. As a side note, when we moved to Texas, we pretty much moved out of the lives of most of our old friends and many of our extended family members. We had to start fresh which was fun but it meant that we really didn't keep in contact with many of our old friends because they were just so far away (yes, although Texas probably isn't as big as most Texans claim, it is still a fairly large state). Now, I have been in contact with a whole lot of people that I hadn't heard from in years. It is great!

Another fun thing that happens when your wife is having quintuplets is that you get to make a web site and a blog that people actually have some interest in checking out. I have tried to keep a journal over the past few years but I keep not doing it. This is mainly because I mistakenly assume that I don't have much to write about. I know that if I were to just write about all of the funny things my kids have done, it would be time well spent. With a blog about quintuplets, I have a better excuse... the only problem is that other people read it which didn't happen much with previous journal attempts.

One more fun thing is that I can sometimes sit there and day dream about all of the great potential things you could do with 5 kids of the same age. If I can teach them (or hire someone to teach them) to sing, they could be a nice quintet. If I can get them to work together, they might make a great basketball team that could come up with secret plays because they know each other so well. If I can teach them how to do yard work... well, the potential is endless! Either way, there are a lot of really fun things to think about.

My favorite however, is thinking about all of the great family hugs we could have each morning before I go to work. Can you imagine 5 little 3 year old kids crowding around to give mommy and daddy a group hug? That just sounds like it would all be worth it.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

The funny people that don't understand what it means to have this many babies

Last week we had some funny things happen. Most of the time when we tell people what is going on, they understand the gravity of the situation. Occasionally, however, there are people that just don’t get it. For the last few months the Austin Blood and Tissue center has called us a few times a week to see if Rachelle could donate blood. When they first started calling, we would tell them that Rachelle was pregnant and that she couldn’t donate blood. After about 6 or 7 times, I finally decided that we needed to tell them what the situation was so that they would realize that it was much more difficult than just a normal pregnancy and that she would likely not be able to donate blood for another few years. When they last called earlier this week, the conversation went something like this:

Lady: “Hi, this is the blood and tissue center, is Rachelle Wilkinson available?”
Me:“No, she isn’t and I don’t think she will be able to donate blood for a while. She is pregnant with quintuplets.”
Lady: “Oh, I see. Well, when is her due date?”
Me: “Well, her real due date is in September but she will probably have them in July.”
Lady: “Well, you know, she can donate about 6 weeks after the delivery.”
Me: “Did you hear what I just said? She is having 5 babies. Do you know what that means?”
Lady: “Well, can you give me an email address that we could use to let her know about our blood drives?”
Me: “No. Do you realize that we probably won’t even be able to leave the house for 6 months after this happens.”
Lady: “Well, thank you for your time anyway.”

I am pretty sure that there are a lot of people that either don’t get it or think that we are lying. Rachelle also had a similar experience when she went to the bank to see if they could possibly set up a fund of some kind that we could put on our web site for people that wanted to donate. The young woman Rachelle was talking to basically treated it like it was twins and said that she didn’t think our issue was important enough to even ask for that kind of fund. She said that it would have to go to the regional managers and she already knew that they would reject it so it wasn’t even worth it to try.

It is understandable that people, especially young men and women who have never had any children, would not think it was that big of a deal. I would guess that there are people out there that would lie about this kind of thing in order to get some attention. It seems like a really bad idea (mainly because of the fact that after about 3 months, you have to have something to show for it).