I'm now 15 weeks pregnant with our 3rd child. In some cases when I told people, they've raised their brows in a "Oh wow you are brave" type fashion. One waitress at a restaurant saw me with my two kids and asked me if I was pregnant. My immediate reaction (in my head) was "Great! I'm only 14 weeks and showing!!" When I told her that her observation was correct, she clapped her hands and gave me a big hug and said "I get so happy when I see women like you." Her congratulations was well received and I know she meant well, but that made me wonder "What does she mean women like me??"
This made me more aware of the fact that we as a society come to conclusions about people based on the number of kids they have. It made me wonder, "What if I had 4 or 5 kids? How much more would that be the case, if I'm getting reactions from just having 3?" Long gone are the days when you would pop out as many kids as possible, raise the first kid right and have each child raise each subsequent child (Today my daughter ran into the wall with a shopping bag over her head and my son just jumped off the couch b/c he thought he could fly...so they're not ready). Through this pregnancy at times I feel overwhelmed with anxiety.
My concerns can be boiled down to 3 categories.
My husband is a pastor, I'm a stay at home mom. The unbelievably high cost of living in Hawaii for food/ gas/ household items etc, compounded by the fact that USA Today projected college tuition to be $44,000 per year for PUBLIC SCHOOLS by 2030 makes me think that we just might have to win the lottery to raise 3 kids.
I think about how tired I am stretching myself between two kids, I don't know how much more stretched I can be before I snap.
3) Feeling Insufficient
When I told my parents, they were happy for us but you could also tell there was clear concern for me. I could tell they were worried, considering they only had two kids (my brother and I) and yet had to work so hard to provide for us. I also think about my mom. She raised two kids and I know I don't have half the resolve, strength, and determination that she has.
All these thoughts and concerns plague me at times. If I were to count the reasons, the dollars, while looking at my own abilities and if I were to only see what I had in my hands...the odds are glaringly against me... but I'm reminded there's an X factor that throws out the whole equation and tips the scales.
Ultimately I have to put my faith in God and His provision. I don't know how we'll make it through but my husband and I are 1 month away from celebrating our 6 year anniversary and if there's one thing that God has taught us the last 6 years is that he is always faithful in His provision. There have been times in our marriage where things were tight, spaghetti and peanut butter sandwiches were our main fare. There were times when there were things we needed but couldn't afford and He provided so graciously and abundantly, our doubt and worry was made petty and shameful.
Recently I had been wanting a new couch really really bad. The only "couch" we had was a 6 year old futon that has seen better days. It was uncomfortable to sit on and slowly becoming more like a bench than a futon. My dream couch was a La-Z-Boy full reclining sofa but I would have gladly settled for anything that didn't made my back kill every time I sat on it. A new couch would have been way too expensive so I did my Craigslist search but found nothing. Apparently there are a lot of people out there that think people will pay money to buy a couch that looks like it was shared with a family of raccoons. Then my friend texted me randomly acouple weeks ago asking if I wanted a couch. He sent me pictures and it seemed nice, clean and comfortable. My husband went to pick it up and lo and behold. It reclined! It was clean! It was a full size and sooo comfortable. I looked at the side lever and on it was the La-Z-Boy logo. It was the full reclining couch of my dreams, the one that I had wanted but lacked the faith to ask for.
The moment I saw it, I knew again God was telling me and reassuring me, that he provided in the past, provides today and will continue to provide for us in the future. I know if faith weren't a factor I don't think I would want more than two kids. I think all my concerns would be overwhelming and I would need things to add up. Faith allows me to get on board to start an adventure I wouldn't normally agree to and my only task is just to be faithful with what He has given me. In the many ways I lack as a mother and as a person I also need to have faith that God can come through in my weakness, that He'll provide a community and grace to fill up all the areas that I lack. How are things going to work out with 3 kids exactly? I don't know, but I feel all the assurance I need because of the X-Factor =)
I've been terrible with taking pictures. All I have to show are my instagram pictures. Follow me @daechoongmama!