Before I became a mom, I swore I would never drive a minivan. After I became a mom, I still swore I would never drive a minivan, and for the first few years, I didn’t. I didn’t need to. I had one small child who fit compactly in the backseat of the silver Subaru Impreza I bought the summer before law school.
After a while, my husband and I swapped rides and his 2005 Jeep Liberty became my primary mode of shuttling our toddler around. We said that when we had our next kid, we’d upgrade to an SUV with third-row seating. In my mind, a minivan was still out of the question.
Then, during the eight-week ultrasound of what we thought was our second child, we learned we would actually be welcoming our second and third children in one shot.
“Oh My God, we’re going to need a minivan.”
Sure, we could have upgraded to an SUV with third-row seating, or one even larger. But, after months of researching and reading real reviews from real families, the minivan just made sense. The automatic sliding doors. The folding captain’s chairs. The extra room for storage in addition to the three rows of seats. The practicality of it simply won out.
Several months later—exactly one week before we welcomed our twins—we became the proud owners of a Chrysler Town & Country. If you feel bad for me, don’t. I love my minivan, and here are four reasons why.
Our minivan is roomier than our first apartment, which is good since three kids take up a lot of space. The problem with most three-row SUVs is that you must choose between using the third row of seats or using the back for storage. Beyond that, accessing the third row of an SUV is cumbersome, too.
With three kids, folding down a full row of seats isn’t an option. You’re using every row and you need a clear path to them. The great thing about the minivan is that it comes with all the seats and all the storage space—plus easy access to it all. Not only can our family of five hit the road together, we can do so with an extra friend, a triple stroller, a few suitcases, and still have room for a bunch of impulse buys from Target.
I don’t have three hands.
When you’re toting around your multiple children and their many belongings, you don’t have a hand to spare, and you certainly can’t waste your time opening and closing doors. Enter the minivan’s sliding doors.
Literally, enter them. Just push a button on your key fob and you’re in. It’s so easy and one of the van’s biggest selling points.
Its amenities rival the Westin.
Heated seats, in-ceiling TVs, rear cameras, tailgate seating for soccer games: the minivan has it all.
When you’re a mom, it’s the little things that matter, and my minivan is filled with little things I love. A GPS screen that also runs a slide show of my kids? Sure, why not. A billion cupholders? Yes, please!
The only thing missing is the phone number for room service.
I love my van so much that I take it even when I go out without the kids. It’s like driving a house on wheels, only the house is quiet because there are no children in it and you can take it to Taco Bell.
IDGAH (I don’t give a heck).
I believe the actual saying is a little different, but this is a family show. You get the point. I don’t have any hecks to give about what people think about the vehicle I drive. I give zero hecks.
Sure, one day I’d love to look out my window and see a Range Rover in the driveway, and I’d like to think I will down the road. However, now is not the time for Range Rovers—and not for virtuous reasons either. My kids would destroy it. You should have seen what my Subaru looked like before I handed it off to my husband, and that was with just one child.
One day my children will be grown, and I will have the time and freedom to drive whatever I want without having to consider things like car seat configuration and room for jogging strollers. Until then, I’ll happily slide behind the wheel of my swagger wagon with my Starbucks and my gaggle of children without an ounce of hesitation.
Like they say, YOLO.
Image via Getty