Stalked by the Stork...a diary of raising twelve kids

Having twelve children is an amazing blessing and one heck of a crazy ride. Join us through all the joys, smiles, tribulations and trials as we navigate this fabulous journey!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


If you ask most moms to make a list of qualities that are important in raising children, qualities that make a good mom, a great mom, chances are that "patience" is probably going to be ranked fairly high on the list. And that's a bit of a problem for me, because "patience" is something I sorely lack. I am a yeller by nature. I run out of steam well before the kids do. They have infinitely more energy that I, and I can't take chaos. I'm just not good at it. Too many voices talking at once make my head spin and I'm actually not great at multi-tasking. I crave calm, peace and quiet. Yet, here I am- the mother of nine-almost ten- children. Calm, peace and quiet are not frequent visitors to our home.
I love my children and wouldn't trade my life for anyone else's and yet, I'm not afraid to admit that I eagerly welcome bedtime (the kids and mine) with a little bit of excitement and a lot of relief. It means I made it through another day.
In truth, patience isn't so difficult for me on the occasions where I am alone with only one or two, or even three children. The problem arises in the sheer numbers. As the number of children multiplies, so does the chaos, fighting, crying, needing, clinging, yelling, breaking, screaming, plate fixing, diaper changing, homework, extra curricular activities, emergencies, wants and whims. It gets overwhelming, stressful, and yes, sometimes I feel like I just can't handle this. And I wonder what the heck have I done- what the heck have I gotten myself into (Okay, what have we gotten ourselves into, because I didn't get myself pregnant!)?
But never fails that just as I'm in the midst of an "I-can't-take-another-minute-of-stress" day (as I was yesterday) God sends me something...a reminder of how incredibly fortunate and blessed I really am. It's always in the form of something I didn't even realize I needed until it happens. Like maybe Drew will come and sit beside me and just want to hang out. Or maybe Brice will look out the window at all the snow that is coming down but not sticking, and tilt his head sideways and ask "Mom, does God have a snow machine?" Or Kambree will be upset about something and as her siblings or her Dad try to make her smile again, it becomes readily apparent that only Mommy, and more specifically, Mommy's breast, can do the trick.
Then, in those seconds, I realize that this stage in life is so fleeting. We don't have many years left of having all our children, be children, and be under our wings. Drew is fourteen. Theoretically, he could be ready to fly the coop in four short years. Have I given him enough love to stock him up and make him ready to face the real world? And our babies. Though bath time is arduous (and I don't use that term in exaggeration given the number of small bodies in the bath, and my current state of third trimesterhood), I won't have this for very long. It really is a small drop of time in the spectrum of life. One day I might have to settle for long distance phone calls and a few visits a year. Then I'll miss bath time. And breakfast time. And even the dreaded homework time. Life really is great. I just have to be careful not stumble over all the little, hectic, stressful moments and instead look at the big, full, vivid picture. Because its perfect. Even when its not. And while all those not so fun things I mentioned are multiplied in a family as large as ours, other things are multiplied accordingly as well. Like fun and smiles, hugs and kisses, joy and laughter. A big family is what I always wanted. This big, well, I never could have predicted that but this is our "tribe of kids" as we've heard it not-so-nicely referred to before. And this tribe of kids is who I am, what I do and the only thing I want. I wouldn't change a single thing...except maybe the T.V. volume...and little boost of patience.


Nana said...

Why is it that you can make me laugh hysterically, as you did in the previous blog, but bring me to tears like you did in this one? You are an incredible young lady, and you make me proud that I'm your mom.

Love you!

albert & angela fontenot said...

Thanks anonymous! Why, no one will ever guess that you might be my MOM!

Sharlene said...

Ang I just wanted to tell you how much I love you. You are just plain awesome. So honest, so admirable, so funny. Just awesome.

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