If you have more than two children. You know the feeling. Walking through a grocery store and someone counts out loud to themselves your kids and then gasps. "Four?!" The higher the number, the more shocked they are.
It seems that the more children you have, the more people feel the need to let you know that they're a burden. That somehow there is something wrong with you for wanting so many children. Comments about birth control and other intensely personal questions that only a doctor should be asking get thrown around like candy, as if having opened your womb more than twice somehow means you deserve less privacy.
So I guess this is my answer to the gasps, to the sidelong glances, to the rude and often personal questions.
Yes. I'm busy. And my hands are full. But you look at them and see burdens and I look at them and see something more. I see legacy. I see potential.
My children are each perfect little individuals. You see my nine year old laughing and chasing around his brother and sisters. I see a little boy who is growing into the man who will one day be a great dad to my grandbabies. You see my daughter throwing a fit and me talking to her about attitude for the seventh time. I see the shadows of a young woman who will push those around her to insanity fighting for the cause of the Christ she already shows a thirst and passion for. You see my two year old dumping out all the toys in nursery. Again. I see a curious drive that pushes him to find everything new and how it works that will serve him well in the hands on fields he's already showing a preference for. You see my nine month old daughter smiling at the 30th person to hold her today. I see a budding 'people person' who charms those around her with her generous and forgiving spirit.
My children are little bits of the future. Little blessings. Yes. I'm busy. So busy. And so so tired. But they won't be this size forever. One day they will show their glorious potential. One day their lives will touch others, and I hope the message that I impart on them is not one of burden. But one of potential.
I want my children, and those who ask about why I have them to understand that I chose that potential. I chose that potential over riches or fame, over sleep filled nights, and over clear schedules to do as I wish. Because just maybe. My childrens potential is worth more than my comfort.