When we moved to Cincinnati I thought things would be a certain way.
For example, I figured that I would get even more eyebrows and “four-headed alien” looks from people as we marched our brood around – especially going from five to six! I mean good grief, I was at the Oregon zoo once with just four and people were looking at me as though we belonged in the exhibit.
It doesn’t bother me. I know that large families are becoming a rare species, but I LOVE the chaos and hubub (I love the word) that rolls along with large families. Sure, we have to work harder to make ends meet, (we eat lots and LOTS of soup and casseroles because they stretch best), our kids go without gameboys and ipods and cell phones and brand spanking new name brand clothes, and they’ll probably have to work and pay their own way through college (makes them appreciate it more, right?).
But they have built in friends. People that will say, when no one else will, I’ve got your back. They have their own cheer squad, no one cheers louder than the kids during soccer games and band concerts (yes, we cheer at band concerts, but only at appropriate times, I promise). There are tough times. Goodness knows at least twice a weak I’m ready to sell my kids on the street corner in exchange for my sanity, but sanity is highly over-rated. (Have you ever noticed how only the insane people have fun?).
I pray and fret over my kids and how I am doing as a mother. I plead with Heavenly Father about how to help them in their struggles. But admist all the struggles and pleading and crying there is nothing sweeter than a baby’s smile, a two/three-year-old’s sloppy kiss, the five-year-old’s giant hug and “help” with the dishes, the 8-year-old’s laughing face at her dad’s latest joke, the ten-year-old’s sweet smile as we snuggle down for a story, and the eleven-year-old’s grin as you flop on the bed to have a heart-to-heart. Every moment is WORTH it.
Anyway, I digress, I love my family and I’ve gotten used to coming up with clever jokes to answer questions like, “are they all yours? (in a disparaging tone), and “you’re done right?” (which by the way we are, but that’s not the point). And I was expecting that out here – in fact, I was expecting MORE of that out here. I was gearing up to feeling like the bizaar zoo exhibit with my crew of awesome kids and the dissaproving glances.
But you know what? Out here in grand ol’ Cincinnati I haven’t had a single alien-headed look, I haven’t had one disaproving glance, and I haven’t even had to use one of my clever jokes yet! Not once! In fact, most people think it’s awesome. They came from a big family too! They might not want to have that many kids, but they think it’s pretty awesome that I do. I love that.
And there’s something else I never expected. Just a cool little thing that is bizaar in the most WONDERFUL way. Just one little half hour every Sunday morning at 8:00. Who would have thought it, but a radio station out here plays Music and the Spoken Word from 8-8:30 every Sunday morning. And not just any radio station but a rowdy rock radio station? (and not Christian Rock either, which would make a little more sense somehow) How awesome is that? We can put CDs in and listen to all the church music we want, but there is just something awesome about flipping on our radio way out here in Cincinnati and listening to a re-broadcast of Music and the Spoken Word. It makes my heart happy. It makes my hubby grin. It lightens our home and we think, WOW, this is SO cool.
And then we rush to the radio at 8:30 to snap it off before the rock music starts blasting away the spirit. Hee hee.
So those are two things I NEVER expected out here. Pretty awesome, huh?
By the way, after I wrote this I looked up Music and the Spoken Word – they actually have it broadcast all over the place! If you want to find a station that plays it near you, go to the link and look up your state! 🙂
3 responses to “Who’d have thunk?”
When we lived in IL and had only two kids (I was prego with #3, but no one knew it yet) I had so many questions about what I was going to do when #2 went to Kindergarten. Was I going to work? What? I just smiled and said that I didn’t know. Now I have 4 with 5 making it’s debut soon! Large families are just starting to not be the norm anymore! Even here in ID, I get a lot of looks when I walk into the grocery store with my big ol’ belly and carrying my two year old. Even some of my family have questioned us. That’s ok! It’s what’s right for us and for you!! GO BIG FAMILIES!
Oh, and we found the Music and the Spoken Word too! Awesome!
I think people see what awesome parents you are and are amazed like I am!
I’m one of four-only girl. I was closer to my brothers when I was younger, but then when you have your own families things can change a bit.
I look at your hubby (and you when you show a few snaps) and see the love in your eyes for your brood. Keep up the good work! BTW, we all had to pay our own way in school, etc. and that’s the best way to appreciate things.
We got a lot of those raised eyebrows and almost accusing stares when we lived in Vermont. We moved there with 3 children and left 10 years later with 6. It was tough sometimes to deal with being so very different. But we always knew it was the right thing for us and always joyfully welcomed a new child to our home. Here in Arkansas it is very different. The children have many friends who have families the same size or even a little bigger! People may be surprised a bit at our family-size, but I haven’t come across any judgmental stares yet. It feels so nice.