So, often I think about how I am not able to do things that I used to do before I had kids, before I had "so many" kids. I can't go to the store with ease. I can't take an hour to pick out my favorite chops sticks and kitchen decor. Eating out at a sit down restaurant is nearly impossible. The very thought of releasing all of my kids at a park with a lot of other kids is scary.
I hear this again and again from my friends with "multiple" children. Multiple meaning more than four. And we often sigh and say, "yes, but I do love my children and I wouldn't trade it for the world." Inside, at least I know, that I do miss being able to do all those things that I did when I was "younger and single."
It's frustrating because, I mean... isn't that the point? We aren't younger and single any more! God didn't make us to be children and youth our whole lives. I think of multiple scriptures that speak of maturing, changing, wisdom of age, etc. The Bible speaks of the beauty and blessing of multiple children, of modesty and simplicity. But in a world of do more, get and play, it can become difficult sometimes to remember that we are truly those who are blessed.
I think of our current culture. The abuse of drugs and antidepressants is astonishing. Over 1 in 10 people over the age of 12 is on antidepressants. Debt, divorce, and immorality increase. What is it doing for our youth? What do they have to live for? As for me, I know the limited satisfaction I gain from shopping, going, playing, doing.
But, I have been blessed to also know the immeasurable awe that comes from bringing not only one child, but five children, into this world. The joy and amazement I get when they love and entertain and defend and care for one another. I have seen the difference in peace and joy in their spirits when we have a simple day of learning and fun as opposed to running around, buying toys, playing video games and watching TV. It is amazing how happy they are to read a book with a grandparent, build a fort, make cookies, and even make their beds!
And this life of joy, wonder and amazement does come at a price. The price of my freedom, time, laziness, selfcenteredness, and prerogative. And isn't that the point? To gain freedom from our selfishness? To let go of all the things in this world that are passing away and to strive for greater good? To embrace a bit on this earth the joy and blessing and awe of the next world?
Embracing this life of simplicity and living it to the full is the key I think. When I spend my life seeking after these greater goods but keep looking back at what I have left, I stifle the potential beauty of what I am doing!
I pray for the grace to increasingly let go of the things in this world that keep me from the true goodness and glory that I have been given and chosen to accept in this family of multiples!