Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Truth About Big Families

When I was growing up I admired big families. I had one sister and that's all, not exactly a big family. But, I thought those big families must have it figured out. Jen and I fought constantly and it wasn't until I moved out of the house and we had our first babies within 3 days of each other that she became an indispensable friend to me. I digress, it seemed like those families got along all of the time. I pictured them surrounding a huge table sharing a meal and sharing their day and I thought it seemed pretty special. I also figured it would be hard work, so I didn't necessarily plan on a big family, just sort of admired them from afar. But, the Lord had it in mind for me to have a huge, noisy, messy family and because of that now I know the truth! The truth is:
#1 A family outing is always accompanied by noise, fighting and disagreements. We just went on the mountain to get a tree and I heard things like, "it's squishy in here, I can't breathe, this is stupid, I don't want to go." Lyndon and I snapped, "well, we are going so deal with it."
#2 Sitting around a table is not usually a warm fuzzy thing, but more like a war zone in which you a. hope you have something to eat when they finish and b. consider the meal a success with only two spills.
#3 There is never enough time to feel like you meet their needs. You notice that baby's toe nails are so long they curl, you realize your 6 year old still can't ride a bike, you see that your 11 year old is only about 1/2 inch shorter than you and you are sure the last time you checked it was at least a couple of inches and you realize that your kids are often living in squalor and you promised your kids would never live that way.
The list could go on and on sharing the "truth" about big families. But, may I end on this note...While I watched my husband grabbing each of my kids today and dipping their heads in the snow, them giggling so hard they could hardly breathe I knew that this is what it is all about. I wouldn't trade it for a quiet family with perfectly trimmed toe nails. The truth about big families is that they are awesome and I am grateful the Lord had it in store for me to have one....


David and Candice said...

I also come from a small family but my husband has a large family and i love that we will have a big family to love when everyone come's home it will be great:)-Candice

Tanielle Callaway said...

Hey, Heather,
I found your site through Amy Barton's site and I have loved catcahing up with everybody. I just had to tell you that I LOVED your post and it was DEFINITELY something that I needed to hear because it is so true!
Tanielle (Miller) Callaway

Pete and Mare said...

Amen! I came from a big family and had to help out a lot. I wanted a smaller family so that I could give our children so much time and cut every toenail... now... knowing that our family will be large as well... I understand that Heavenly Father has better plans. What a sweet family you have Heather! Big families change everything... not always easy but soooo worth it! Love ya, Mare

Janette said...

Leaving aside the debate about what actually qualifies as a "large" family, I think it's so easy to notice the toe nails and messiness and noise, but the love and joy is also there, just less demanding of attention.
Love your posts and the back of your head, which is all I saw of you when we visited your ward last Sunday. :(

Perla said...

great post, sister! i sure love you and that family of yours!