Originally Posted by velochic
As others have said, it's an individual issue for each family. I have to say that when I see other women with 4 or more kids and they look like they have it all together, I often wonder if that mother has completely lost her SELF... that part of you who makes you you. Sometimes they seem like they never get to take off the "mother" hat, if that makes sense. When you are forced to be mother 24/7 just because of the sheer size of your family, I can't imagine that it's healthy, even if it appears that she has it all together. I'm sure some women thrive in those situations, though. They appear to love having a very large family, and indeed, do, as it is their fulfillment.
I'm quoting this because it is SO well written and expresses so much that I, as a full time mother of 5 wish I had the brain power left to tell other women.
Children are a WONDERFUL JOY. Mine especially. They are all high needs and the ones who have been tested are actually genius-level intelligence. I am not. It's HARD. I didn't know I was loosing myself until I was basically GONE and there was this insane, natural living to the core, OCD-perfectionist homeschooler left that I hardly recognized.
The financial part has ruined us.
I joke in my CBE classes about how one day we realized our relationship wasn't simply on the back burner but had fallen on the floor years ago and had been kicked under the stove by some crazed sling wearing woman with a swiffer in one hand and a pot of coffee in the other. Clean floor meant more to me then spending time with dh. If I was given the choice between a date and a day alone cleaning..oh man that whould be a tough choice!
I wouldn't be one to say not to do it, or that I wouldn't do it all over again even knowing what I know now. I'd just want to be honest about what it is like. It's really chaotic (as far as movement goes, and I'm really sensitive to that type of thing) and loud, and messy. Some days I can clean 8hrs non stop (meaning not even 5mins sitting with a glass of water) and it makes little difference. We have a good sized house and not a lot of stuff yet there is clutter everything all the time.
It doesnt get easier as they get older. It's gets more complicated, more expensive, more messy (??), more noisy and more rushed. In general you won't see many families with more then 2-3kids in the GD forum. You all can guess why. There isn't always time for thoughtful approaches to every infraction. After 3 our motto changed to the Vulcan motto: the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. Very scary stuff
I also still have long stints of time where I am totally on top of things and happy being a housemaid (as they grow that's all you are in many respects. The 2, 4, 6 8 and 10yo will all go to the park, outback or watch a show while you clean) and working part to full time out of the home.
Recently I enrolled in college part time. I finally realized that things will never be easier, so I am embracing it and doing my best to enjoy the ride without loosing view of my goals again. It may take me 10 years to graduate, but if I had done this 10 years ago; I'd be done now! My best advice would be to not sell yourself short. Not to give up or put aside things that are importnat to you, because of the belief that they (whatever they may be) are incompatable with motherhood. I did this with my education, assuming that to be a good mother I needed to cross these t's and dot those i's.
Once I started pursing some things that I needed to (um besides the help I need for the OCD cleaning issues
) like in 2003 when I started my homestudy for my CCE, or the year before that when I began volunteering at births and working for hospice when time allowed (during that time dh was working FT and in college FT) I feel that I became a better mother simply because I was no longer frustrated.
I greatly admire those mothers who are fully fulfilled with their role as wife and mother and desire only to care and homemake.
I used to pray to become one of them, I still pray for peace about my current situation, but I've also learned that I have ambition and drive pouring out of me for a reason! In a million years I'd never wish one of my kids to put out their light, whatever it is, for anyone else. I no longer think I'm doing them any good by putting out mine.
just FYI this window was open on my computer for FOUR hours because of all the interruptions whil ei tried to write this. LOL