|Me with MacKenna at her birth (She's baby #8, my first water-birth)
I just want to share part of a comment I wrote in response to a GREAT blog post on pregnancy I read today.
I think when people hear the number of kids I have, they imagine eleven 2 or 3-year-olds running around causing craziness. They forget about all the helpers, cleaners, chefs, diaper-changers, and assistants we have in all the older children we took the care to train.
The same could be said of pregnancy! It's not all the pregnancy sickness, heartburn, aches, bone creaks and swollen ankles all in one big "OUCH." Each pregnancy come one at a time, each with its own aches, miracles, and cravings.
I think that we in the modern age are just used to ease and convenience-- but being pregnant is neither of those things! However, pregnancy is a sanctifying sacrifice that brings us closer to God, relying more on His power, wisdom, and help.
I am grateful for the ONE-BY-ONE refining that eighteen pregnancies have given me. (Eleven births, six miscarriages, and one baby coming in September.)
The most beautiful part about the sacrifice of pregnancy is that we get to be a HUGE part of the lives of some of Heavenly Father's most amazing children.
ANY sacrifice is worth that. :)
I truly do think that we have it easy in this day and age. We have every kind of comfort, convenience-- and even fashion-- for our pregnancies that we could wish for! Most modern women opt for pain-free births. (Been there, done that, NOT judging in the least!)
But pregnancies are neither pain free nor easy. They were never meant to be! They are HARD. Yes, even for a "baby-making machine" like me. (Ha!)
But how many women work their tails off to get beautiful, fit bodies? Is that easy and fun? NO WAY! I submit that there would be a LOT more beautiful, fit, trim people around if it were!
It's a matter of what we value. Is pregnancy easy on anyone's body? Uh... no! (My stretchmarks alone can attest to that!) But I happen to think that bringing another baby into the world is more important than having a lovely body. (Obviously!)
Each couple needs to keep the decision of how many babies and how often they come, between them and the Lord. But DO WE INCLUDE THE LORD? Really?
I've dictated my personal wishes and ideals to the Lord countless times, only to be blessed when I finally submit to HIS plan instead of my own. I am amazed at His patience with my selfish, "well-ordered"plans. It's so wonderful that He wants to continue to teach me and humble me! All the times that He leaves me to my own own ideas because I cut Him out of the decision-making process have been pretty disastrous. (And I'm talking about more than just having babies.)
Not every family can or should look the same. But I hope that I am always willing to allow myself to be molded and formed by the Master's hands.
I pray we all allow His assistance in the forming of our families, as well. (And then rely on Him in raising them, as well!)
May the Lord bless each one of you!