If you had asked me how I felt about being a stay-at-home mom to two baby boys after Finkle was born, I might have asked you if we could change the topic. It seemed extraordinarily overwhelming. First I could barely fathom the thought of my mother leaving. Then I got to where I could think about it a little more. Then I started planning. Then I figured it would be okay. Then she left, and now I'm doing it.
It's really not that bad at all. A single child turns your life inside out and upside down, so when you add a second one there aren't a whole lot of new changes that take place. I'm not one of those parents that says, "After the first one, the second one barely makes a difference." The second one does make a big difference, but it's not more than you can handle with a smile. At least after you've given yourself a few months to recover fully from childbirth. I would say.. don't make any huge judgments about life, future happiness, or how many children you can handle right after you have a child, because you're viewing life through the lens of someone who's body has been invaded by another human, sucked dry of energy, riddled with a ridiculous amount of aches and pains, and then almost destroyed (at least it feels like) in the process of giving birth. After you've fully recovered from that small ordeal you'll be in a better state of mind, and you'll have some emotional energy to do little things like enjoy your life fully.
All that said, I love my life right now. Motherhood is an adventure like no other. It also seems so full of paradoxes. The simplicity of being a stay-at-home mom -- the daily grind of cleaning, cooking, entertaining little faces, changing diapers.. it can all get a little old and make you wonder how significant your life is. But inevitably the moments come when you realize the path you've chosen was the best and most rewarding path you could've picked. You get to raise the next generation. You are teaching a complete worldview to the minds that will shape future history. Through you they are learning love, kindness, tenderness, self-control, and how to have integrity.
Then there's also the stay-at-home part... when you stay at home you're not exactly hanging out with everyone that you could be hanging out with. Some stay-at-home moms are part of close-knit communities where they can get all their social needs met without a problem. Due to various and sundry reasons (including the different places where God has had us living), however, I've been more secluded than I wanted to be for the past couple of years. But my community is growing and more ladies around here are having babies, hallelujah. The paradoxical part comes when I realize that despite the days that make me feel like a lonely hermit, I still don't know that there's been another time in my life where I have felt more relationally fulfilled and content. Having a family really hits the lonely heart spot.
I mean, I could just be having a good day. :) But as it stands, I'm thrilled by my babies and so thankful for the life God is allowing me to live right now.