I have read somewhere that the average American family has 2.5 children.
We are a family with 5 children in our care. When ever we go somewhere it seems like people feel compelled to comment on my children. My children are very aware of comments made, especially if it is directed at only having one boy in the mix. Almost always, at least three of them speak up to say , “well, our brother Luke is in heaven so we have two boys in the family!” Good for them! We need to count every child God creates as one complete person! Now Luke is actually more complete than we are. He is with his Creator looking over us and of course praying for us!
When people who feel they must comment on how “full my hands are” I usually smile and introduce them to my “hands full by name” Somehow they don’t look like a large group of kids when you give them a name and they respond with a hello.
I have yet to meet a .5 child in any family. Whether a child is in a mother’s arms or snuggled away in a mother’s womb…a “bellybean” according to my dear friend, Jen, a child is whole and complete from the moment of conception.
To no surprise to our family, we have been able to give life to five on earth, and one back to God. A child to us is a gift, given freely by the Creator. When recently approached by one who didn’t seem to keen on a large family (probably in a grocery store) are you done? My loving dh answers with a smile ” well, done for this year!” M&M was born in February so technically, we are done for this year. We might be done for many many years. We might just be done, but that call is God’s call as we are a family who is open to life.
I think Mother Teresa said it best when she said “Saying there are too many children is like saying there are too many flowers.”
Another thing many forget is that most families with more than the “average” don’t have a family with children all one age.. God bless the ones who have multiples!…Our children are stair stepped very nicely and do help with the family needs. Most of the time our family does receive compliments…usually to the amazement that so many can be polite and reverent when need be.
In Mass, the children practice prayer hands, genuflecting, kneeling, and praying and listening. I think the more they go to Mass, the more they learn. They certainly know when to act like kids… especially in the heat of the summer on the trampoline and sprinkler or when we get together with friends.
I know that God never gives us more than we can handle, and yes, on some days, I am in much more need of His grace to make it through with my family larger than 2.5.. But I thank God everyday for the chance to be the mother to 5 happy children, always aware that they belong to Him.