a real life love letter to Kate Gosselin

Write a public love letter to someone.  
{It doesn't necessarily need to be romantic.}

Since you all know how I feel about my husband (I love him) and you all know how I feel about the baby (I adore him), I thought I would write a letter to Kate Gosselin, who inspired me when I was home raising twin infants and losing my very  mind.

Dear Kate,
You don't know me, but I am your biggest fan.  No one can say a single bad word about you in my presence.  I will defend you to the end.

People just don't understand.  As a mother of multiples, I get it.  I would sit on the floor of my living room, both babies rolling on the floor, screaming their way through tummy time and I would think, "If Kate can do six, I can do two." I would repeat this to myself when dinner time, bath time, bed time got ugly.

Watching the show, obsessively like I did, and seeing how organized you were, the perfection you demanded not only of yourself but of those around you and the confidence you had in your parenting choices inspired me.  You gave me permission to not apologize. To not apologize for wanting things done with my children a certain way. To not apologize for being a schedule-nazi, as I was sometimes referred to.  To not apologize for having insanely high expectations.

One child or six, I wanted my sons raised my way.  I didn't want to sacrifice anything even though they came in a pair instead of as singletons.  You inspired me to do things with my family, to create memories from those experiences and to enjoy the moments I did get with each of my kids alone.

People saw you as a bitchy wife with no respect for your husband. I simply saw you as a mom, drowning in the responsibility that had fallen on your shoulders, reaching out to your co parent, hoping he could save you.

When your marriage began to crumble, I cried right alongside you. My heart broke for you that your marriage had become a statistic, and that you were going to have to face parenting alone. I single parented my three for six short months while my husband was gone for work, and I have never experienced anything so hard in my life.  You are my hero for doing it with such grace.

I want you to know, if ever I have a daughter (so far we have only sons) her name will be Bailey Kate. After you.  Keep on keeping on, Kate. There are moms like me all across America cheering you on.

Forever indebted to you,

Shelly Cunningham


Anonymous said...

Hahaha. Love it. :)

Jennifer Kunz said...

I love ya, but here we disagree. We loved watching Jon and Kate plus 8 but we actually stopped at some point because we couldn't handle how Kate treated her husband and kids. I read her books, even, and while there is a lot of good there, I must say I'm not a fan. But then I don't have multiples and have never been through the things she has been through, so I'll try to hold back judgment.

Alyson Steiner said...

I agree with you...mostly. =)
I too thought/think the same thing about raising multiples... if she can do it, so can I! I was so sad to see their marriage fall apart. I cannot even begin to imagine the stress of 8 children so close, being thrust into the spotlight, the stress of everyone's judgement of you, etc... I think she is doing a fabulous job of raising her children and they seem to be growing up amazingly down to earth--I hope they stay that way and have productive lives!
The only thing that always made me cringe (maybe because there are times that I see it in myself and hate it?!) was her sharp, cutting, unkind words to her husband. No matter what he was or wasn't doing, or how much he was helping or not, or even how schedule-nazi (guilty!) we have to be raising multiples, as wives we are called to be our husband's helpmate, support, and biggest cheerleader. I truly believe our words and attitude direct how life is lived out in our homes and the strength of our marriage. Only God can give us patience, kind words, respect, and true kindness in our actions to our husbands. A lesson I'm learning and relearning (and apologizing for!) too often!
I just can't imagine raising kids alone...when Justin is gone for a short business trip, I feel it! I give her (and any single parent) abundant praise for having to do it all for their kiddos.

What a cool idea to write this letter--you should try to actually get this to her! I'm sure she doesn't get much praise!