At the time, I had two small children ages 2 and not quite 1, and I was several months pregnant with our surprise baby number three.
I was loading the two kids into the car when the mail lady, whom I have NEVER spoken to before, stops me and asks, “Are these two kids yours?”
“Yes.” I replied smiling.
“And you’re pregnant again?”
I really wanted to say, well obviously but instead I came back with a rather profound “Yup.”
She stared at me for a minute, as if evaluating my very intelligence.
Finally, she responded. “Ummm, I have some uh, reading material on how all this happens if you would like it.”
Needless to say, I was rendered speechless.
I flew by myself from Utah to Florida with my three children ages 3, 2, and 8 months. (that was a whole experience in and of itself)
As I was walking out of the terminal, looking for my family, a lady approached me.
“Oh, what adorable children! Are you the nanny?”
“Nope,” I replied with my best smile on, “I’m the mommy.”
She stared for a moment, then spun on her heel and walked away without another word.
We had moved into a new ward and didn’t know very many people yet.
I was conversing with a few other adults when the man in the group turned to me and asked my due date.
I told him and in turn, asked about his wife’s due date.
After telling me, he asked, “Now this is your second one too, right?”
I laughed a bit, braced myself and replied, “No, no. This is my fourth.”
And I kid you not. His eyes about doubled in size as he pointed his finger at me and firmly declared, “You’re crazy! You. Are. Crazy!”
My name is Serene and I have five children ages six years old and under. And before you ask, no we aren't done.
Now, I am in no way unique. There are oodles of women out there that had all sorts of large numbers of children under all sorts of wildly young ages. My own mother had her first seven children in only eight years.
On the flip side, there are oodles of women out there who would love to be in my shoes, but struggle to conceive or carry children. I personally know many, and they are amazing women. Truly amazing.
Now, I’ll be the first to admit that we didn’t exactly plan it this way. I’ll also be the first to admit that I really don’t enjoy being pregnant, at all.
I voted for the stork in the pre-existence.
But our little situation it is what it is, and I love it... eh, most of the time. The thing I don’t love? People who feel like they have a say in our “family planning”.
The family proclamation states, “The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife. We declare that God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force.”
No, we are not trying to do that single-handedly for pete’s sake. But whether I want one kid, three kids, eight, or heaven help my poor, screaming uterus, a double digit number of kids, than fine! It’s none of their business!
In turn, people who have no kids, only one, or have them spaced years and years apart, it’s none of our business! And while sometimes these situations are by choice, which is fine, you’ll find that often it isn’t.
People are different. People’s situations are different. It’s a wonder that that is so hard for us to remember as we jump to conclusions about someone.
I so wish people would stop judging, snickering, guessing, gossiping, and butting in. The decisions people make about their family are between them and the Lord.
So while I may not particularly enjoy having all my curling irons plunged into the toilet by my children, I no longer feel embarrassed when I get snide comments or remarks from other people.
Because it’s none of their business.
And because I thoroughly plan on doing my very best as a mother. After all, the proclamation does state that, “Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness....”
I am hardly perfect and there are days I have to lock myself in my room with some chocolate to keep from loosing it... again.
But with the Lord’s help, I’m doing my best.
And that’s all that matters.
Serene is a mom of five crazy monkeys who is not ashamed to admit her addiction to chocolate. She blogs about all her parenting misadventures at Serene is my name, not my life! She is also a freelance artist so be sure to view her portfolio page!