Six year olds can be funny at the best of times. Job and I laugh constantly at the ideas that Sisi comes up with. Yesterday morning, while I was making breakfast, she came into the kitchen and said seriously -
"Mum, you must have lots of trials."
"Huh?" I replied, trying to understand. "Lots of trials....what do you mean?"
"Well, because you have 6 children!"
I laughed and assured her that my 6 children are blessings, not trials. To which she replied -
"No, that can't be right!"
She is such a character. I find it especially amusing seen as she is one of those supposed 'trials.'
The last few days the kids have all been quite sick.
Between the both of us, Job and I have been balancing medications, vomit cleaning/catching, baby rocking and general boost of morale for the small troops. We have taken turns being on night duty for the feverish or queasy. We organised mattresses in the lounge room so that we could all sleep together and look after eachother. The kids are well on the way to recovery now but Sisi's question - or rather Statement, made me realise that not once in the last four days did we ever consider our parenting to be a burden.
In fact I remember that only a few hours ago (at 3.45am precisely) I kissed Sione's chubby cheeks and forehead while I lowered him back into his cot. I told him I loved him and felt incredibly blessed to have such a cute and cheeky little baby. He'd been awake since 2am refusing to go back to sleep. After all my hard work getting him to bed, he woke up 15 mins later. At which point I prodded hubby awake and told him it was his turn!
Although we haven't enjoyed the kids being unwell, we have enjoyed the family time that has accompanied it. No appointments to keep, no leaving the house.... just hanging out in the lounge room. Together.
When I take all the children out in public, I receive mixed reactions and responses from people. For the most part, I am not really interested in what others say or think. I am more invested on what the kids and I are doing together and what they are getting out of it; whether it be grocery shopping, a trip to the museum or playing in the park. I love having a big family and our kids love it too. Imagine how they would feel if I ever projected feelings of embarrassment or inadequacy. Luckily they don't , because I never feel it. I am proud to be the mother of six beautiful kids. I love them completely. I could never do anything more important with my time, than spend it with them.
Occasionally I do let the odd negative comment get to me. I can be quite sensitive sometimes. The latest jab coming from a paediatrician at the local hospital. Maybe his ignorance was heightened to me because his group of interns all laughed. I clearly didn't get the jokes. Probably because they weren't funny. He apologised as I continued to ignore his attempts at humour. I wondered why someone would specialise in paediatrics if they didn't enjoy having lots of children around them.
Usually I don't take other people opinions personally. I respect that big families aren't everyone's cup of tea (but they should be because they are Awesome!!!!!) In most cases I feel pity for the grown up who can't enjoy the innocence and wonder of a child - or 5 children all wanting to push the trolley at the same time! Our kids aren't perfect. They each have their moments, but I am confident that I have many more than they do, yet they are patient with me.
I have bad moments, I have bad days, I have bad weeks and have also had bad months. I don't love being a mother because it's easy. Hahahaha.....easy. But I could never think of my 6 monkeys as trials. Parenting being more difficult due to having more children is an absurd notion to me. It's like not being able to enjoy the beauty of your garden because you have too many flowers in it!
I love having a family. I think all size families are beautiful, whether they have one child or ten. Parenting is the most difficult and the most rewarding experience that I enjoy. I count myself to be blessed beyond measure for my 6 little trials (7 if you include hubby;))