Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My Men

We went to the library today.  I would normally have Isaac in the stroller, and carry Sebastian on me in my Ergo, for outings like the library, but lately Isaac has been showing me he can handle walking with the big guys.  So that's how we were:  Baby in stroller, entourage of men-in-the-making, and me in the middle.

The boys were really good.  Everyone behaved while we made our rounds, and we were just about to leave when I remembered I had to make a stop at the front desk for some audio holds.  The librarian looked up from her computer as we approached, and smiled.  She asked, "Do you have three boys and a girl, or do you have four boys?"  She had decided Sebastian could be either one in his little blue romper, and had missed altogether two of the older boys who who were standing off to the side.  I smiled back and said, "I have six boys", and waited for the reaction.

Mostly it's the same.  They usually smile, even as their mouths drop open.  There's some question of disbelief as they discern whether I am serious or not.  Then the turning of interior gears is almost audible as they try to decide which is more astonishing:  The fact that I have six children, or the fact that they are all boys.  Once they digest all of that for a second, there's almost always an exclamation of sympathy of some sort.  "Oh you poor woman!" is probably the most common.  Today the librarian used the word "bombarded", as though I'm the victim of some random act of violence.  Really, it's okay, I do understand why people are so intrigued by us, we are an unusual family by today's standards.  I just wish they'd take a second to think, before they blurt things out in front of my children.

As we walked out of the library, we passed a mother and daughter reading a book together.  The little girl was sitting on her mom's lap, completely engrossed in something with a very pink and sparkly cover.  I looked up and saw three of my boys scaling the cement wall that lines the walkway, and two more calling back to me from the fountain ahead, "They should put fish in this thing!"  I glanced back at that woman with her little girl, obliviously enjoying that book, and thought how different our lives must be. 

Not better or worse.  Just different. 

And that's where I struggle the most with relating to the general public.  It doesn't matter to me how many people feel sorry for me that I'm "stuck with" all these boys, I know they're wrong.  They'll never convince me that I should be upset about what God has given me.  I just couldn't be.

But when I'm asked if I want a daughter, the answer doesn't come easily.  I feel like if I say yes, people will take that as a confirmation of their suspicions that that's the only reason I have so many children - we keep trying for a girl and just keep getting boys.  However, I can't honestly say no, because of course I'd love to have a daughter!  In addition to my sons, of course, not instead of.

If I thought they'd understand, I'd put it like this:  I want to have a daughter, the way a young girl wants to have a husband.  When I think of my future, I can picture a daughter in it.  I sometimes smile at the thought, and feel the sweetness of anticipation, at what that might be like someday.  I think of the things we'll do together, and I love her already. 

I don't feel a void though.  I don't have the sense that I've been deprived of something, any more than a young girl would feel something was missing because she doesn't have a husband yet.  It's a possibility to look forward to, not something to demand or expect.

And you know what else makes me happy?  The thought of having nothing but an army of boys.  I'll take ten more, if God will send them to me, and I'll love them with a heart bursting with gratitude.  I would gladly accept the joy of knowing that He thought me worthy of such a unique life.
I know that if God wants me to be the mother of a girl, then it will happen that way.  And that's good enough for me.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Daybook: A Summer Monday

Outside my's sunny and warm, a perfect summer day.  Nothing like the record highs and lengthy heat wave we had last week, thank GOODNESS!

I am listening to...the boys above me:  Someone's playing the piano, someone's playing with the puppy, and the rest are either yelling or laughing.  Pretty typical sounds for this house.  Love, love, love my basement.

I am wearing...nothing special - Black cotton pants and a light blue v-neck tee.  My hair is back in a getting-heavier-by-the-day bun.  It's time for a hair cut.  A serious one.  Maybe this week.

I am thinking...
about schedules.  How our days will look during the upcoming school year.  What time we get up, do chores, eat lunch.  The activities we commit to.  Schedules.  Lots of thinking to do.

I am looking forward to...this week.  We had a nice 3 day visit with my in-laws last week, but Grandma and Grandpa in town = party time in the boys' minds.  And cramming months worth of visiting into 3 days is exhausting for everyone involved.  My calendar is nearly blank for the next 7 days, and I plan to enjoy it.

I am thankful...for my home.  We've lived here for over a year now, and some days it still doesn't seem real.  I just love it. 

I am praying...for my husband.  He has a lot of pressure on him right now, in many areas of life.  He handles it well, but I know everyone has a breaking point somewhere.  Praying he can get through these next few weeks, finish the class he's taking, and have a chance to relax for a minute at some point!

I am creating...a school room!  Last school year was the first time we lived in a house with enough room to even consider having an area dedicated to school alone.  Except, with moving here in July and having a newborn, I didn't exactly have a chance to set something up.  We finally have our basement pretty well organized (considering it's just a wide open, unfinished basement), and I have an area that's about 15 ft. x 15 ft. to work with.  I'm surrounding it with bookshelves, cubbies, drawers, file cabinets and desks, to separate it from the rest of the basement, and we have our old dining table in the center.  Mr. Smith is going to put up some good lighting for us.  I have a lot more work to do in the next three weeks before we start our school year, but it's really starting to come together.

I am the library.  Hopefully today.  The boys are all registered for the summer reading program, so they each get to choose a free book.  Love free books.

One of my favorite things...summer.  I soooooo need this time to rejuvenate. 

Around the house...too many tan walls!  I loved the neutral paint they used to sell us the house, but it's time for it to go!  I have an idea of what colors I want in some of the rooms, but finding the funds for paint, and the time to take on such a huge project is another story.  At this rate though, we may have tan walls for many, many years.

From the kitchen...sugar-free fare.  The Mr. and I are giving a week to South Beach style eating.  No crazy diet fad, just a detox of sorts.  We've done it before, and even with just a week of cutting out the sugar, we feel so much better.  After a week, we just don't want the sugar as much, and the new habits we've created tend to stick around for a while.  This is day one though, and by tonight I'll be dreaming about ice cream...

From the school room...lots and lots of planning!

A few plans for the rest of the week...
last baseball game
piano lessons
park with homeschool friends
fishing this weekend

A picture thought to share...
sadly, no pictures.  My camera died the same week as the computer.  I know, when it rains, it pours.  The computer was obviously higher priority.  It may be a while before I have a decent picture to share.  There's a time for everything!

Visit Peggy at The Simple Woman for more Daybook entries.