Sideshow Jen here, reporting in with the gobstopping idea of having a seventh child.
Last Friday at a party I was in a group of women and one asked me if we knew the gender of this baby yet. I told her yes, it is a girl. She just said, “Wow, you’ve kept up this boy girl boy girl thing really well!” Another mom standing somewhat within the conversation said, “Wait, did I just hear that right? You have *FOUR* children?”
Um no, I told her, we are having our seventh. I swear to God it fried her brain, right there and then.
I don’t want any more comments. When people ask me if this is my first, I just answer no. I don’t offer any more information than that. No, it’s not my first. That does, in fact answer the question they asked, right?
Maybe I am just feeling grouchy tonight because this week I have had several people find out this is number seven and proceed to tell me how THEY would NEVER do THAT. X number of kids is PLENTY for them. It’s not the statement itself that bugs me; it’s how they speak about their children, often right in front of them, as if they are just so awful that having them around convinced them it wasn’t a good idea to keep going.
Oversensitive? Jumping to conclusions? Yes, I fully admit it. I honestly do try to give these people the benefit of the doubt. Having a large family is not for everyone. And I am no saint for doing it. It is just that this same scenario plays itself over and over. I probably was that person at one time. If you got me on an overwhelming day when I felt like I was swimming full speed up stream and only losing ground… some days I still feel like that. But aren’t our children ALWAYS gifts to us? Even on horrible days, I don’t think that idea ever gets too far away from me. What if, God forbid, one was taken from me? I had a nightmare about that very thing just the other day and it chilled me to the bone.
I have a large family because each time it seemed like there was room in our hearts and family for one more. That’s all really, nothing saintly or mind boggling.
(And yes, we are Catholic, and believe strongly in the Church’s teachings on and birth control, but that does not automatically equal a large family.)