Mother's Day x4: Raising the Crissman Quads

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SARASOTA COUNTY - As Mother's Day approaches, we start looking for ways to say thanks to Mom, for all her love and devotion and hard work. Raising a child is a tough job, but there’s one Suncoast mom whose job was four times harder than most.

We've been following Sarah Crissman since she and her husband first learned they were having quadruplets. These were naturally occurring quads -- she was not taking fertility drugs. The odds of this occurring are about one in a million…but here they are.

Today the quads are nearly 5 years old. "They are doing great. The two redheads are well above the growth curve; they are over 100%...they are definitely going to be football players. Joel is a little bit on the tiny side, but he's catching up quickly. Sophia is a gymnast…and doing great," says Sarah.

Big sister Abby, two years older than the quads, is also doing great. She's on the honor roll.

The quads start kindergarten in August, and they're ready.

When Sarah learned she was carrying 4 babies, she was advised to abort one or more of them. She said no. “It wasn't my choice to have four children. I wasn’t trying for four children, but I was given four children. So I thought if that was somebody else’s doing, a higher being, God’s choice, then that was my choice as well. And I'm so glad. I can't image a second without them."

But how on earth does she do it? “Patience, and a lot of it. Schedule…we have to stay on a very tight schedule. Being able to roll with the punches and when things change, being able to go with the flow."

She says actually multiples are easier to care for than a single child. They entertain each other. “They are best friends; although they fight now like cats and dogs, of course. But they are each other’s allies. They are best friends."

And they often go jaunting about the community. "They like to go with mommy. We go out to dinner together and go to parks and pools to play. And they've just learned that they need to listen, because there are a lot of people, and one mommy."

The whole crew is celebrating Mother’s Day at Sarah's mother's house. Sarah says her mother, family, and friends help her so much. She says it really does take a community to raise a child.