Thursday, January 21, 2010

Updated Look

The title of my blog was threatening to become monstrously long...because of ezra, and asher, and......, so I decided to update it. This title came from a note I was writing to my boys today, in a journal I started to record their funny moments and the progress of this pregnancy. I told them that I was so glad to have them, in the midst of the chaos and clutter, the kisses and cuddles.
My musings to them came from a book I picked up this morning and paged through, a book I have read previously. It is called Open Embrace, with the subtitile "A Protestant Couple Rethinks Contraception". While it talks about contraception and NFP, it also, and perhaps primarily, focuses on the joy of having children and God's heart for families.
When Asher was still an infant, I mentioned something to my mom about our timing for a third child. My mom (who has nine children, and is very pro-children), said something to the effect of, "whoa....slow down! Are you feeling pressure to have kids? You can take a break!!" That was something I needed to hear at that time. It gave me the freedom to adjust to two children rather than anticipate the craziness of three. response to her questioning my about "pressure" has stuck with me. I don't feel pressure to have children. By contrast, I would say that the prevailing mindset of today is "wisdom". We want to be wise with our money, so we are going to wait to have children. We want to be wise about planning for our children's future, so we are going to limit it to # many children. We want to be wise about not spreading ourselves too thin, and we think # is enough for us.
In many ways, having children, and not setting a limit, seems to be an oddity...perhaps even faulty thinking on our part. Haven't we thought everything through?
I was thinking through the chaos of my life today. The house has become a monster that is constantly needing attention, attention I usually don't have the energy or time to attend to! Laundry is my constant companion, clean, dirty, folded, unfolded, ironed, wrinkled....and yet, I have no regrets about being a mom, having two children and one on the way, having a limited income and a lack of money for wants, sometimes even necessities. Why? I don't know. It isn't natural, right? If I went out and bought a car and was now feeling a financial squeeze, I would begin to doubt my decision. If my life was crazy because of too many jobs and committments, I would say, "No more! I am done". But children are different. Even in the midst of this season, I am thankful, oh so thankful, for my boys, for the hope of another baby to love. This must be a God thing.
My heart in writing about this is to speak to the person who has heard about "wisdom", but hasn't heard that there is another way. Be free to follow what God is speaking to your heart. More kids? Maybe, maybe not. But if so, know that joy will follow you. Yes, so will chaos and clutter, but the kisses and cuddles will be there as well. If there can be joy in the midst of what my life currently has to offer, then there will be joy in yours as well.