In this day and age, having a large family is often equated with either irresponsibility or a lack of concern for the environment–both of which are nowhere near the truth. Having a large family also seems to invite comments…not all of them kind or even rational. The rude comment of, “Don’t you know what causes that?” makes me want to scream..it makes my husband nod and smile.
Just the other night, we took an excursion to the grocery store…all of us. My husband is zipping up and down the aisles with the children strapped into those car carts I won’t ever let them ride in when it’s just me, while childless bystanders count heads over and over, trying to figure out just how many of us there are.
Finally, one of them, a young woman in her early 20′s, has the courage to speak to our crazy bunch. She says to me,
“You sure have your hands full.”
Never heard that one before, but she said it good-naturedly, so I don’t mind. And then she follows it up with,
“But you sure look like you have a lot of fun!”
Now, you’re talkin’!
So, without further ado, I bring you my top ten reasons for having a large family, with her comment as…
#1 – They sure are fun! We have a blast together! In fact, many years ago that was what drew me to large families. They always looked like they were having a great time together. Now, I know that isn’t always the case, but in our family fun just comes with the territory.
#2 – 5 (or 6 or 10) is easier than 2. I often hear, “I can’t handle my two children, I don’t know how you do it.“ Honestly, I didn’t handle my two very well either. I was exhausted, short-fused, and outnumbered. But, they grow up! They aren’t all in diapers all the time. They aren’t all house-wrecking toddlers all at the same time. If you are diligent to train them with love and discipline, they grow up into lovely “big kids.” Which leads me to…
#3 – Many hands make light work. I have a lot of helpers now. I’m not left to do everything by myself all day long. I have a 12 year old who could single-handedly run this household if need be, and a 9 year old fast on his heels. The 4 and 5 year olds are learning and the 16 month old isn’t going to be 16 months forever. They grow up and take on more responsibility, and there is such a blessing to working alongside a “big kid”!
#4 – There’s always enough people to play a game. Whether it is basketball or football or a board game, there’s many available bodies.
#5 – If you’re bored, it’s your own fault. Need I say more?
#6 – You get a lot of attention. Who needs paparazzi? Unload a slew of kiddos out of a 15 passenger van and see how many stares your attract.
#7 – Filling out paperwork is always interesting. Whether it’s medical forms or tax forms, I get a kick out of always needing to add spaces in order to get all my children’s information listed.
#8 – I never run out of big plastic hospital cups or baby lotion. Frequent trips to the maternity ward keep me stocked up.
#9 – Meals are always full of lively, entertaining conversation. Never a dull moment and never a word edgewise.
#10 – The Bible calls them blessings.
And they are.