ESPN NFL features reporter Michelle Beisner-Buck talks about her life during football season -- and the World Series -- now that she and her husband, MLB announcer Joe Buck, have six-month-old twins.
I'm a Type A control freak, an "I got this" kind of driven woman who thinks she can take on the world. But since becoming a mother of twins 6 months ago, I have no problem saying I can't do it all.
You need help. It takes a village, as they say. My husband Joe Buck and I are just so thankful we've got a great "Buck boys team" who I feel like have been dropped from the heavens that make it all work. We have a great nanny with us part-time and an au pair who lives with us. We've got family that comes by and babysit when we need it.
Wyatt and Blake were born on April 26 (which means Joe's April 25th birthday doesn't exist anymore!) and we were so happy. I carried my boys to 38 weeks -- full term with twins. And they were big babies! Wyatt was 7 pounds 6 ounces, and Blake was 6 pounds 5 ounces. We felt so blessed -- they are just healthy, happy boys. You can't ask for anything more than that.
But it took us a long time to get to this point. We went through IVF, and I can tell you there is not much that's more financially, emotionally, physically taxing than in vitro fertilization. It is a very grueling, gnarly process. But after three total rounds, Joe and I found out we were going to have two sweet little miraculous babies.
As a new mom, I read everything cover to cover three times during my pregnancy. I over-prepared myself for bringing two humans home. But you can't really prepare. It's scary. It's also pretty incredible how your motherly instincts kick in and you just know what to do and how to care for them and what's right. I'm learning every day. I'm winning every day. I'm failing every day. And it's awesome -- all of it.
Before having twins, I thought, "Two can't be that much more difficult. Double the responsibility, sure. Double the laughter, double the love, double the diaper changes. But it can't be that much harder."
A friend of mine who has a 3-year-old and twins told me something different, though: Having one is like having two; having twins is like having 10. And she was right in a way. It is just a massive amount of attention that needs to be paid to every little thing. It's kind of wild and crazy.
At work, I'm all into the process. I've always had my hands all over every little step of the process, from pitching stories to booking interviews to editing to tracking to writing to wrapping around the games. But I have had to find some balance, and so I've had to pull back a little. I'm not as hands-on in the writing and editing process, and I'm also not at as many games this year.
Someone and something has to give a little bit, and it's got to be me. So when I'm home with the boys, I'm with them and I'm very hands-on. We're getting to the point where it's not just about survival -- we actually get to engage in experiences like sensory play and different fun activities. We just introduced real food to them and it's so fun! They had avocado puree -- and they loved it.
I've been really strict about getting the boys onto the same schedule. They have to be. They get up around 7ish and they eat at 8:00, 12:00, 4:00, 8:00, and go down around 9:30. Rinse and repeat.
My schedule, on the other hand, is not nearly as predictable. With Monday Night Countdown, we try to book ahead, but a lot of it is dictated by what happened the week before, so planning ahead isn't always possible. So, for example, last Friday I was in Boston for a Week 8 sit-down. I went home on Saturday afternoon, and if the Dodgers had won, Joe would have gone home Friday night. That would have been a dream -- to be together as a family from 2 p.m. until bedtime. But unfortunately the Dodgers lost!
The biggest challenge is just managing all of it. Joe is on Fox a lot right now. And that's really hard for everyone. It's hard for him. It's hard for me. It's hard for the boys. It aches to be away from them, and it's hard for me to leave to do these shoots. I try to schedule them to get the most done in the shortest amount of time. It's an adjustment because your life isn't yours anymore. You're living, working, loving for someone else.
It's a grind, and it is what it is from October to January. That's the way it's been for us as long as Joe and I have been together. But we don't take a second for granted. When we're together we just kind of soak it in. We just hang with the boys. We do a lot of laughing and singing and dancing. Joe is really kind of silly and I am too. We're homebodies and we just kind of hang out at the house.
There is nothing better than walking into Blake and Wyatt's room in the morning and seeing the smiles on their faces. It fills my heart in a way that is so indescribable. I say the same prayer every morning when I wake up: Happy and healthy. That's all that I care about for my family: that we smile and we are healthy.
All this other stuff is great. It's amazing the work we get to do. But what really matters is family. What really matters is my children. It gives your work new purpose and new perspective. Being with them and having them snuggle up on me and seeing them smile -- that's everything. And being able to be with Joe, just the four of us hanging out together, that to me is a little slice of heaven that I don't take for granted.
Having children changes everything. I'm 42 years old, and I've been in this business for a long time. I've worked independently on my career for a long time. But it's different now. It's the love you didn't think you could ever have and ever imagine. It swallows you whole and your heart lives outside your body.