Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I've heard that the most difficult adjustment is going from one kid to two.  After that its just adding another child.  I can't validate that theory myself, since I've only gone from zero to one (and thought that was kinda tough) and from one to two (and thought that was really tough!).  But it makes sense.  I mean, I can't quite picture Michelle Duggar saying, "Well the transition from 10 to 11 was quite a challenge, but going from 13 to 14 was pretty easy, and we hardly noticed the difference between 16 and 17 kids."  Maybe after a while it just becomes second nature.

I was thinking about the Duggars the other day while reading Psalm 127:

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward. 
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one's youth. 
Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them.

Now, I don't ascribe to the whole "quiverfull" thing.  But while I don't buy into the whole philosophy I think they do have something right:  Children are a reward, God's heritage to parents.  Kids are an awesome blessing! 

And I think most people would agree with that.  Most parents I know truly love and enjoy their kids.  And is easy to say I'm thankful for my boys, especially this time of year when everyone is feeling thankful.  But some days, sometimes, it's hard to remember that they are truly a blessing, and not a burden, that they are my reward, not a cost.  They are our heritage, not a temporary stage of life. 

Sure it's been a challenge.  Anyone who reads this blog is well aware of that.  It's been 7 months of changing mutliple poopy diapers, 7 months of chasing a toddler in circles around the car while carrying a baby on my hip just so we can run a quick errand, 7 months of forgetting to clean-up the spit-up puddle because on my way to the sink to grab a washcloth the phone rang and then the oven timer went off and the baby needed a diaper change RIGHT NOW.  And 7 months of remembering the spit-up puddle only after I caught my toddler dancing in circles around it chanting "ma-milk, ma-milk!".  Seven months of juggling schedules, naps, meals, baths and a pile of laundry that has seemingly multiplied over the past few weeks! 

And it's those days that I want to go back a year or so ago, when I only had one kid and thought I was so incredibly busy, and slap that girl across the face.  Busy?  Honey, you have no idea!  But I can't.  And I'm sure God has a very good reason for not allowing time travel, I just haven't figured it out yet.  But it's also on those days when I think back to one evening in April.  Jon, Jack and I were enjoying some after-dinner time on the beach.  I was four days past my due date, torn between wanting to met our newest family member and wanting him to stay where he was - warm, quiet and safe from his headbutting brother.  A woman I'll never forget was walking along the water and stopped to ask when I was due.  After she found out we were expecting, at any moment, a second boy, only 18 months after his brother she said with more excitement than I had seen before or ever seen since, "Ohhh that's wonderful!  It's going to be great for you to have two boys so close together!"  And I believed her.  I wish I had gotten her name, her number, her email.  Anything.  So that on days that are not so hot, days when I feel like my only occupation is couch-cushion-replacer and baby-snuggler, days when I'm asking Jack for the twentieth time not to headbutt his brother, or put his hands in the toilet or dig for treasure in the car exhaust pipe.., I can call her up and say, "Tell me again how great this is going to be, I need to hear it again!"

And not that those days aren't happening less often, or that I suddenly don't mind them.  But we're starting to see small glimmers of hope, glimpses of that great future beach-lady alluded to. 

I see it when Jack and Jude start laughing together in the back of the car, I see it when my oldest son spontaneous picks up a toy and hands it to his brother, I see it when the boys entertain each other over dinner, and I see it during our special naptime book-reading ritual when the two boys, and Monkey, all cuddle under the blankets for storytime.  I see it when Jude's eyes light up when his brother walks into the room.  I see it in Jack's grave concern that Jude, and now Monkey, and dinosaurs, and Mr. Potato Head, etc., are all well-fed and burped. 

I see it in the way he apologizes, hugs and open-mouth kisses little "Jew" after doling out the aforementioned headbutt.  I see a good future with the four of us (and whomever else God chooses to add to our heritage).  I see lots of life lessons to practice amongst each other before we send our little olive shoots out into the world.  I see lots of opportunities to sharpen our arrows while they're still in the quiver, and I'm already beginning to see the targets we'll be aiming towards.

And I'm thankful. Not just for my two beautiful boys, or my wondeful, hardworking husband.  But also for the family that we're becoming.  For the hard days, the incredibly difficult days because they keep me working towards my goals.  For the poopy diapers that remind me that I have incredibly healthy little guys.  For the sour milk spit-up that reminds me I am still able to nourish my littlest one.  For Mickey Mouse Clubhouse because it allows me to write this blog this morning.  For the whining, "mommy-ing" and clinging because I know that I am loved and needed.  For the piles and piles of dirty laundry and dishes, reminders of special moments we've had together outside in the dirt and around our dinner table.  For two early, consistent risers that keep me from being lazy.  For the headbutting and arm swinging that allows us to daily practice loving discipline, forgiveness and restitution and has brought to light the importance of these things in my own life.  And for a God and Savior, who sends encouraging people along the way, whether on beach walks or virtual message groups, that motivate me to keep reaching for my goals, and Who dwells in this house and daily gives me the grace to do what I once thought I'd never be able to do.  My quiver may not be that full, but my heart most certainly is!

May you have a blessed Thanksgiving with your friends and family this week!

1 comment:

Meagan Duthie said...

That was beautiful! I hope that someday I will have the need to write to you and ask you to tell me again that this is what I dreamed and hoped for! That you will be able to encourage me that they grow up too fast, so enjoy them and that someday I will miss this phase of life! I am living vicariously through you right now!!!

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