Was it "burden?" Or perhaps "expensive?" Maybe "pity?" No? Me neither.
I'm thinking "joy," "blessing," "beautiful" -stuff like that.
I'm guessing many parents of large families feel the same as me and are baffled by the way others are baffled by the desire to have several children. I'm also amazed that many people think three children is a lot. I've been compared to Mrs. Duggar (mother of 20) several times recently. I hardly think three children compares to 20.
I was just asked today "Are you going to have more? I'm only asking because I know children are so expensive." There are a million things I could say. That this baby really doesn't cost much because we already bought all the baby stuff a few years ago. Or that maybe we use our money differently than many Americans so it's not that much of a burden (we don't have cable, we don't have cellular plans, we don't spend a lot on clothes and toys and vacations... -not that there is anything wrong with these things, that's just not us).
The thing I mostly want to say is "Mind your business!" I would never make someone feel small for having zero, one, two...twenty children because it's not my business. That's between that woman, her husband, and God. Also, I'm not asking anyone to raise these children or to chip in on the cost of groceries. If I'm not concerned I'm not sure why everyone else is.
This past summer I was out grocery shopping with a big pregnant belly and two toddlers in the shopping cart. A fellow shopper took one look at me and blurted out "Well aren't you a glutton for punishment?!" Why yes, yes I am.
I'm also amazed at how much pity people have for me. I've heard so many people gravely commenting to one another "It must be very busy at Mary's house." Maybe they should go back and read what the good book has to say about children.
My husband and I were talking this over today. He suggested that people hear other people making comments about the expense of children and so they just assume that's how it is. That's probably true. I shouldn't be so surprised that God's greatest gift (life) is under attack. And I bet there are many people out there who'd secretly be ok with having more children only they won't even consider it because it's so crazy.
So just for the record, I love my children. They are a blessing to my husband and I. My only regret is that we didn't start having them sooner because they make our lives so much more fun. And yes, I hope we'll have more.