Sunday, December 31, 2006
I will not overindulge my children, but will teach them to have pride in earning things for themselves.
I will be more grateful for my children.
I will quit worrying!
I will nurture my children’s spiritual health by taking them to my church, synagogue, mosque or other religious organization.
I will try to get my kids outside more and involved in activities other than video games, computers and television.
I will make sure my family has dinner together at least 3 times a week.
I will read more books to my children.
I will encourage my children’s grandparents to spend more time with them.
I will pray for those who desperately want children and have been unable to have them.
I will let my teenagers learn the consequences of their actions on their own instead of always stepping in to prevent them from making mistakes.
I will get my preschoolers potty-trained!
I will remember that my husband needs attention, too.
I will do more to pamper myself, and not feel guilty about it!
I will take better care of myself—lose weight, eat healthier, get check-ups, etc.—so that I have the energy and stamina to keep up with my kids.
I will prepare healthier foods for my family.
I will teach how my children how to care about others through volunteer work.
I will take a vacation without the kids and enjoy it.
I will tell my children I love them every single day.
I will rediscover the joy of life, just like a child.
Friday, December 29, 2006
Some parents worry that their kids might be a little mentally unbalanced if they create this fantasy world, but, to the contrary, these children are often very intelligent. These same kids frequently become very creative adults; imaginary friends are just a natural extension of "pretend play." Often, these friends come in the form of children, but they may also be animals or other types of beings.
Experts say that about 65 percent of kids create imaginary friends, most frequently between the ages of 3 and 5. Some continue to play with their friends even when they enter elementary school. And imaginary friends help kids deal with sometimes difficult emotions, such as anger, frustration, or loneliness. They also help children maintain a sense of control, a natural struggle that young children deal with. You’ll notice that this imaginary friend rarely "disagrees" with your child and always follows his lead.
Parents need only be concerned if their child becomes so attached to this make-believe friend that he excludes all others, or if the attachment starts to interfere with his social adjustment. Most of the time, children naturally outgrow their imaginary friends. Sometimes there’s an abrupt break, and your child will announce that "Scotty" moved out of town. But most of the time, they gradually fade away. In the meantime, it’s often fun and informative to listen in on your child’s conversation with his imaginary pal. It provides a window for viewing your child’s creativity and emotions.
Thursday, December 21, 2006
". . . and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son." -- Luke 2:7
Monday, December 18, 2006
Another time, I took one of my sons to a specialist because he’d had a history of sinus infections and snoring. When we got to the office, the room was just packed with people. It was a zoo, with children crawling all over the place. We had to wait an hour-and-a-half to get in, and the staff was incredibly rude. When the doctor finally showed up, he never even touched my son. He shined a light in his throat for two seconds and announced, “Yup, let’s schedule him for surgery.” When I tried to ask him questions, he treated me like I was stupid, and he answered very condescendingly. I also noticed that there were an awful lot of people being scheduled for surgery. This guy had an assembly line going on! Needless to say, I knew this was NOT the guy I wanted to perform an operation on my young son.
I tell these stories not to criticize the medical profession, but rather just to urge you to use caution when you take your children to the dentist or doctor. There are many, many wonderful professionals who will take good care of your family. But, just as in any profession, there are a few rotten eggs. If, at any time, a red flag goes up for you when you’re visiting a particular doctor, heed the voice within. Get a second opinion. Don’t be afraid to trust your judgment. It could make a major difference not only in your finances, but, most importantly, in the quality of your children’s health.
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Friday, December 01, 2006
Sunday, November 26, 2006
1. A Day in the Life . . .
2. Reflections on Parenting
3. Family Ties
4. Treasured Moments
5. Trials and Triumphs
6. Becoming a Family
7. A Special Bond
8. Mischievous Multiples
The cartoon artistry of the talented John M. Byrne from London, England, is also featured.
PRAISE FOR TWICE THE LOVE
“Having just had identical twin boys, I can promise you, you need all the help you can get. This book helped me realize we were not alone . . . Enjoy it!”
-- Kenny Rogers
award-winning recording artist
“‘Twice the work, half the sleep’ says one mother of twins in this wonderful and entertaining book. As a mother of eighteen-month-old twin boys, I couldn’t agree more! Susan Heim has compiled the most entertaining stories of the good, the bad and the chaotic from parents of twins. The stories are laugh-out-loud funny, inspiring and right on the money.”
-- Soledad O’Brien
“This is a delight. I couldn’t stop smiling.”
-- Adrienne Barbeau
actress/author and mother of twins
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Everyone’s grumpier with inadequate sleep and nutrition. Try to get some zzzz’s instead of staying up to watch TV, and make sure you’re not skipping meals in your haste to serve the kids.
Try to do more things that give you pleasure. The laundry can wait. Break out the Play-doh with the kids. Find joy in the little things. . . and don't feel guilty about it!
Insert humor into your day. Talk to your kids in silly voices or pretend you’re Julia Child while fixing their breakfast. Laughter puts everyone in a good mood.
Don’t beat yourself up if you’re feeling stressed. Just because you’re having a rough time doesn’t mean you’re not a good parent. In fact, this is entirely normal!
Keep your relationship with your spouse strong. When you have marital problems, it spills over into your life with your children, making you more impatient. Make sure you and your partner find time to reconnect with each other.
Remember how lucky you are. When the kids’ noise is driving you crazy, think about how lonely you’d be if you’d never had kids. Appreciate the gift of parenthood.
Remind yourself that nothing lasts forever. Your kids won’t be throwing food on the floor in a few years, but neither will they be running up to you for kisses. Enjoy the good stuff while you can get it, and don’t sweat the bad stuff.
Monday, November 20, 2006
When you bring your first child home from the hospital, your skill level is low and the challenge is great. Psychologists will tell you this is a recipe for anxiety. However, nature has built into babies and their parents a special protection against this anxiety, which I call the "Ooooooooooo" response. When you hold any baby, but particularly your own baby, you experience a special kind of human moment characterized by a feeling of "Ooooooooooo." Translated into English, "Ooooooooooo" roughly means, "You are so incredibly adorable and cute and lovable and so divinely cuddle-able that I would like to simply rock you in my arms forever, and I just do not have the words to describe the transcendent feeling that you give me." The author of the following short piece gives an excellent example of "Ooooooooooo." -- E.H.
Eleven years ago, I was a new mother. I'd always wanted to have a child but, like most new parents, I was somewhat surprised at how overwhelming it was to keep my baby happy twenty-four hours a day. One particular evening, my little son had been overly fussy, and both of us were worn out from his crying. Finally, exhausted, I lay down on the couch with the baby stretched across my chest. Both baby and I fell fast asleep.
A while later, I awoke to the bright glow of the moon shining through the window. I opened my eyes to find this tiny body still sprawled across me, his little hands tightly clutching the sides of my shirt. His bow-shaped mouth was slightly open and his sweet baby breath caressed my face with each rise and fall of his chest. His skin was translucent, and his dear face was the picture of innocence bathed in the moonlight. Tears came to my eyes, as I realized that this delicate child nestled close to my heart had truly stolen my heart. I felt wondrously blessed to have this precious son.
From that moment on, whenever I grew frustrated with my attempts to keep my child satisfied, I'd transport myself back to that perfect night, to feel again the soft weight of his warm body on mine and his light breath blowing across my face.
Friday, November 17, 2006
I now have twin preschoolers, and it’s happening all over again! Their preschool teachers just love them! “They are such sweet little boys,” they tell me. I can’t believe it’s the same little boys who destroy my house and try to maim each other every day. They, too, have Jekyll and Hyde personalities. But I know this phenomenon isn’t unique to my kids. Another mother at preschool told me that her little boy has destroyed her house, yet is good as gold at school.
It’s sad, but I almost dread hanging out with my twins in public. When they’re in Sunday school or preschool, and I happen to be visiting or volunteering, they cling to my legs and cry, refusing to participate in the activities. But when I’m not there, their caretakers assure me that they’re just fine (after the initial clinginess as I drop them off).
In a way, it’s sweet that they want me, but it’s also exasperating . . . and, I admit, somewhat embarrassing. After all, we all want our kids to be “perfect,” especially when other parents are watching! I find myself making excuses when my boys act out in public. “Oh, they’re overtired,” I’ll say. Or, “He’s just acting that way because I’m here.” Or even, “He’s not feeling well right now.” It’s natural, I guess, not to want people to think we’ve managed to raise little “mama’s boys” or spoiled brats.
Fortunately, I have the benefit of hindsight since I have two teenagers. I know this kind of behavior won’t last forever, nor is it a sign that they’ll end up clinging to my coattails for the rest of their lives. It’s a normal developmental stage that most children go through. Some day, my twins will be more than happy not to have me around. And, sadly, that stage lasts a lot longer than the other one!
Sunday, November 12, 2006
My friend Monica grew up in a family with six children. Her mother gave up her nursing career to devote herself full-time to raising the kids. Not surprisingly, she spent a lot of time running them to and from their various activities. While Monica’s mom was caring for the kids, their father, a police officer, took as much overtime as possible to be able to cover the expenses of such a large family. While the children prospered, their parents’ marriage floundered. Monica’s parents rarely spent time together, and whatever free time they had was devoted to the children. One day Monica’s dad devastated the family when he left Monica’s mother for a woman he had met on his bowling team. He told Monica’s mother they no longer had anything in common except the children.
Experts say that couples with strong marriages make better parents. The peace and love they feel from a successful relationship spills over to the entire family, benefiting everyone. Therefore, couples should not feel guilty about taking time away from the children for a “date” or even a vacation together. Maybe if Monica’s parents had hired a babysitter and bowled together once a week, they would have continued to enjoy some “couple” time together and would not have grown apart.
God intended marriage to be the core of a happy family. Find ways to continue to grow in your love for your spouse. Attend a couples’ retreat weekend. Take a trip together for your anniversary while the grandparents watch the children. Schedule a “date night” once a week. Make your marriage a priority. You won’t be neglecting your children; you’ll be preserving your family.
Thursday, November 09, 2006
When I was growing up, I dreamed of traveling to exotic foreign countries. I wanted to visit as many places and cultures as possible. But I also had another dream: to be a mother. I even determined that four kids would be the perfect number. I’m thrilled that I’m now fulfilling this dream—even down to the desired four children!—but there’s also a longing in me to achieve the other desires of my life, such as the urge to travel. I know that—for now—my other dreams must be put on hold as I spend most of my time raising my young children. But I also realize that it’s still important to hang on to my other dreams and not lose that part of myself.
As the kids get older and more independent, mothers can work on smaller steps to achieve their dreams. For instance, I plan to take a foreign language class to prepare for my future travels, and I keep a file with pamphlets and articles about places that I want to visit. I may not have a lot of time yet to pursue all of my life’s dreams, but I’m happy knowing that I don’t have to let go of them while I devote myself to caring for my children.
Write down the dreams you have for your life and rediscover your passion for them. Figure out what small steps you can take to keep your dreams alive. Continue to nurture your God-given dreams as you raise the children you’ve been blessed with. When your children are older, you’ll be ready to continue making your dreams come true!
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
I must admit that Halloween has never been one of my favorite holidays. I just don’t like the pressure to come up with a great Halloween costume! I don’t know how to sew, and I’m creatively challenged when it comes to costumes. I thought I did pretty well for my twins this year. I bought their dinosaur costumes at 75% off after Halloween last year! Unfortunately, because the costumes are yellow and purple, my husband thinks our little boys look too “girlish.” Since when, I told him, do little girls ask to be dinosaurs? These must be little boy costumes! Anyway, at least I got a good deal, and the twins do look adorable. When you’ve got twins or a lot of children, you need to bargain shop! (So hit the Halloween sales on November 1st!) If you’re still stumped for a last-minute costume, here are a couple of ideas:
My niece Paige is trick-or-treating as a “frumpy housewife”! She’s going to put her hair up in curlers, don an old robe and slippers, and smear cold cream all over her face. Guys can go as a hobo, with an old baggy suit, a drawn-on beard, and a hat.
You may not realize that you probably have a costume in your house already! If your children are on sports teams, their uniforms make great costumes. Have girls wear their ballet costumes or cheerleader uniforms. If they’ve been in a play, dig out the costume to wear again.
Wear last year’s costume (if it still fits). Nobody will remember it’s the same as last year’s, and even if they do, who cares? Why spend the extra money for something you’re only going to wear for a few hours? Better yet, swap last year’s costumes with a friend or neighbor. Then you’ll each have something “new” to wear.
A big box can be made into lots of different costumes. When we were young, my mother transformed my sister into a table by gluing cheap plastic dishes to the top of a box, with my sister’s head poking out of the middle! Then they put flowers in her hair so she looked like the centerpiece! You can also make a robot, a box of crayons, a train…get out the paints and use your imagination!
Most of all, just have fun, and relax the rules a little bit when it comes to letting the kids chow down on a little bit of candy (after you’ve inspected it, of course)! Happy Halloween!
Saturday, October 28, 2006
I often wonder if pioneer women had trouble getting their children to do chores. After all, surely children of old had more responsibilities than today’s children. Farm animals had to be cared for; water needed hauling; wood awaited chopping; crops had to be harvested. Today’s children can’t even begin to comprehend the work performed by pioneer children. So if their workload is lighter in today’s times, why do children give us such a hard time about doing it?
I don’t really know the answer, but I do know it’s normal behavior. I remember giving my own parents fits when I stalled and procrastinated about doing my chores. Thursday night was housecleaning night, and I would do anything to get out of it—make other plans, plead illness, express a sudden interest in homework. I swore I’d never put my own children through such an ordeal. But when I grew up, of course, I discovered that housework couldn’t be put aside. It needed participation by all members of the family if it was going to get done.
Sometimes it’s easier to do the chores myself rather than listen to the kids complain or do the job poorly. But I know this isn’t good for them in the long run. I’ve tried chore charts, allowance, special treats—anything to motivate the children to help out. These methods usually help for a short period of time, but then the complaining begins anew.
I have faith that, one day, God will show my children the same thing that He showed me when I grew up and had a house of my own: Housecleaning might not be fun, but it is necessary for every family’s health and well-being.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Has your heart ever longed to have a little boy or a little girl, but things didn't quite work out the way you wanted?
When I was little, I wanted to have four children, and figured there would be at least a few girls sprinkled in. I grew up in a feminine household with my mother and just one sister. We had no boys in the family. And my father— no offense, Dad — wasn't a particularly manly man. He knew much more about cooking than kicking. I was lousy at sports and was sure I'd have daughters because I had no idea what to do with sons. I had even saved my beloved Barbie dolls to pass on to future daughters.
When my first son was born, I was surprised yet thrilled. "After all, I still have plenty of time to have a daughter," I told myself. "Surely the next one will be a girl."
When I got pregnant with my second child nearly three years later, the ultrasound technician drew an arrow pointing to a particular body part on my unborn child and typed, "It's a boy!"
"Well," I thought, "maybe it's better this way because the two boys will be company for each other. The next one will be a girl."
After a divorce, 10 years of single parenting and a new marriage, my husband and I tried for a baby. We showed up at our first ultrasound appointment eager to check out our new family member-to-be. It seemed to take the doctor an awfully long time to take the baby's measurements.
Finally, the doctor turned the screen toward us and announced, "It's twins!"
I think my husband and I caught a few flies that day because our mouths flew open in shock. Twins?
Some months after we had recovered from the news, I began to look forward to having twins. My brightest thought was that, surely, with two babies, at least one of them would be a girl, right?
Wrong! Amazingly, I gave birth to two more boys. And at 7 lb, 13 oz, and 6 lb, 9 oz, they were ready to join the family football team.
So now I am the mother of four wonderful boys. Despite an overabundance of testosterone in the house, my husband and I have decided that our family is definitely complete, and I wouldn't trade my four boys for the world.
I've now become an expert on video games, Yu-Gi-Oh cards and hockey. Still, under my bed lies a box, getting older and dustier by the minute, with my treasured Barbie dolls tucked safely inside. I'm not giving up hope yet for a girl.
"Surely," I now tell myself, "at least one of my grandchildren will be a girl."
There's still hope that I'll be buying frilly, pink clothes someday. In the meantime, I'll embrace the color blue and know that I've been given the perfect assortment of children to love.Originally appeared on the ClubMom Web site.
Monday, October 23, 2006
Just as we longed to be popular when we were children, we hope that our own offspring will enjoy their share of popularity. “I’ll love my children whether they’re popular or not,” we tell ourselves, and it’s true, but nevertheless we want life to be easy for them. We don’t want them to know the pain of being rejected by other people.
When a child of mine comes home from school some days and pronounces, “Nobody likes me,” the mother tiger in me rears up, and I want to march over to the school, shake up the kids who teased him and demand, “Why don’t you be nice to my child?” After all, I know that my child is the most wonderful being that God ever created. He is smart and funny and cute and sweet. Why can’t everyone see that I have the most fantastic kid in the world?
But when I look back on my own childhood, I realize that the taunts and the teasing made me a better person. Yes, they were painful to go through. But I gained a “tougher skin” because of it. I learned that I’m never going to please everybody, and that, indeed, I shouldn’t. I realized that I should just be the best “me” that God created, and not worry about whether everyone likes me or not.
And that is the lesson I try to impart to my own children. If they look beyond themselves, they will see that all children are teased and ridiculed by their peers at one time or another. And it hurts so very badly when it happens to them. But I also tell my children that the only person they need to please is God. He made them perfectly, and He doesn’t make mistakes. His opinion of them is much more important than that of the team captain or the head cheerleader. Being popular with God wins the popularity contest.
Saturday, October 21, 2006
When I watch the evening news or read newspaper articles about the war and poverty in the world, I can’t help but view them through the eyes of a mother. Somewhere out there are mothers just like me who are scared because their sons are fighting a war. Or they’re worried that they won’t have enough food to nourish their children. Or they can’t afford medical treatment for a sick child who is wasting away before their eyes. No matter what language they speak, what color they are or where they live, mothers all over the earth have the same hopes and worries for their children.
Even during times of happiness and prosperity, we all share the same experiences. How many mothers at this very moment are watching proudly as their little one takes his first step? How many children are holding their mother’s hand as they walk down the road to school? How many mothers are combing their daughter’s hair or tying their little boy’s shoes? These loving acts we perform with our children are universal. As human beings, we may not agree with each other’s politics, religion or personal preferences, but we all share that special love that only a mother has for her child.
Even though I have never been to
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if only mothers could lead the world? Surely our great capacity to love would ensure that no child ever goes hungry, fights a war, or becomes jobless or homeless. We would see each other not as strangers in foreign lands, but as sisters unified by common goals and a fierce love for our children. Together, united as mothers, we could change the world for the better.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
The more people have studied the different methods of bringing up children, the more they have come to the conclusion that what good mothers and fathers instinctively feel like doing for their babies is the best after all.--Dr. Benjamin Spock, 1946
First-time mommies usually have a thousand questions about what is right when caring for their infants. When do they start solid foods? How long should they be sleeping? When will they start crawling? New mothers may read every book and magazine they can find that tells them the "right" time for reaching each milestone. Even experienced mommies might seek the latest advice about raising their new children.
Other mommies are more than eager to give advice, too. "I started my baby on solid foods at 3 months." Or "You have to use diaper cream on their delicate little bottoms," they'll say. Even worse, some moms play the competition game. "My Sarah was walking at 9 months," one says, as she glares at your little one still sitting on the floor at 11 months. "My Justin was speaking in complete sentences when he was 1 year old," another proclaims, while your little one is still babbling "da-da" and "boo-boo." It's enough to make any mother feel insecure.
But you've been given a wonderful gift called mother's instinct — the ability to know what's best for your child — if you know when to heed the call. When my oldest son was a baby, the pediatrician told me that the latest research said that under no circumstances were babies supposed to start cereal until they were 6 months old. My son was born at a hefty 9 lb., 13 oz., and was already the size of most 6-month-olds at 3 months. He wasn't sleeping, and he was begging for food between feedings. Although I trusted my doctor and knew he had my child's best interests at heart, I realized that nobody knew my son better than I did.
Finally, I put my guilty feelings aside and started gradually giving him some rice cereal. The change was miraculous. My son was much happier because I listened to my instincts and gave him what he needed. I've learned to have faith in my own abilities as a mother and not let others make me feel unworthy or incapable. Yes, I still listen to advice from others — including my doctor and friends — but then I apply it to my particular child and listen to my heart. A mother's instinct is a powerful tool.Originally appeared on the ClubMom Web site.
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Encouraging teens to do volunteer work is one of the most important things you can do for them as a parent. And the amazing thing is, once they get a taste of it, teenagers love to volunteer! In 2004, 55 percent of American teenagers volunteered—almost twice the rate of adults, according to the Corporation for National and Community Service. And students who do volunteer work actually do better in school than those who don’t volunteer. Albert Schweitzer once said, “The only ones among you who will be truly happy will be those who have sought and found how to serve.” In fact, volunteering provides many benefits for teens, including increased self-esteem, a feeling of being valued, the opportunity to meet new people, the acquisition of valuable new skills, and a lifetime of wonderful memories and experiences.
Volunteer opportunities for adolescents aren’t difficult to find. Some organizations may have age restrictions if the job involves a certain amount of risk, but opportunities abound for all ages! One of the best places to start is with your local church, synagogue, mosque or other place of worship. My kids have also found volunteer opportunities through the Parks and Recreation Department, hospitals, nature centers, libraries, children’s museums, community and teen centers, and just through word of mouth. My 13-year-old had a great time as a volunteer at a boat show, which raised funds for charity. Don’t be afraid to ask around. Most people jump at the chance to put a volunteer to work!
When teenagers learn to serve others, they become empowered. They grow up knowing that they can make a difference in the world. Just imagine what this kind of attitude can accomplish when our adolescents are soon the leaders of society! Making the world a better place starts by showing our kids how they can be part of impacting the future through volunteering.
Monday, October 09, 2006
Thursday, October 05, 2006
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
I was so grateful to my mother-in-law for noticing the problem because it could have resulted in the loss of one or two toes! Even though I had already successfully steered two other children through infancy, I had never heard of this phenomenon or been warned of the possibility. Experts call this a “hair tourniquet,” and it can be a real threat to infants. Hair can get wrapped around fingers and toes—and even penises! (In fact, I read an article where a baby girl lost her clitoris due to “hair tourniquet syndrome.”) Even pet hair or loose threads from a blanket or piece of clothing can become entangled. Because human hair is so thin and tends to contract when it dries, you may not even notice a problem until the appendage starts to show signs of distress.
So be extra vigilant. (Who doesn’t love to check out those adorable little fingers and toes anyway?) If your babies wear mittens or gloves, check their fingers for signs of wrapped-around threads once they’re removed. Check toes after removing booties or slippers. If a child is inconsolable and you can’t figure out why, he could be in pain from a hair tourniquet. If you find a problem, you’ll need a sharp tool like a small knife to cut the hair if you don’t see a loose end. Get some help to hold your child still while you remove the hair so no one gets hurt. If you’re unable to disentangle the hair or thread, contact your physician immediately. He may recommend soaking the limb in a hair-dissolving solution (like Nair) or have you bring the baby into the office or emergency room. (If you can’t reach a doctor, head to the hospital or urgent care center right away.) It’s important not to delay removing the hair because serious infection or loss of the limb can occur. I have long hair, so there’s always lots of my “shedding” around the house, but even if your hair is shorter, women tend to lose a lot of hair soon after giving birth due to hormonal changes, which can make the possibility of hair tourniquets more likely. So frequently examine those little fingers, toes and private parts!
Sunday, October 01, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Monday, September 25, 2006
I just read an e-mail from a new friend. She's adopting a baby girl from China! Seconds later, I opened a note from another friend. A picture of her co-worker's adopted daughter from China was attached. I couldn't take my eyes off that little girl's face.
A woman at church just adopted a girl from Guatemala. A business associate adopted a daughter from India. Enough already! I feel like I'm being haunted.
I always wanted to be a mother. In my youthful dreams, I saw myself holding the hand of a little girl. Imagine my surprise when I was blessed with four sons whom I love dearly.
But I'm over forty now, and for various reasons, I've decided I'm done with childbearing. I know this decision is for the best, but my heart grieves. I loved being pregnant, and the thought that I'll never bear a child again saddens me. But I also love being a parent -- and perhaps I'm not ready to relinquish that dream quite yet. Yes, I am a mother -- but not to a daughter.
So, I have to ask myself, are these adoption announcements some sort of sign? Or are they just a reflection of the pining I feel to hold a baby girl in my arms? Am I subconsciously seeking news of my heart's desire?
I haven't convinced my husband to adopt yet. Where would we put her? He's right. We don't have room in our house, but there's ample room in our hearts. We'd manage somehow.
Thus, I continue to ponder -- and to grow older. Soon, the decision will be taken out of my hands. I'll be forty-two soon. My husband is forty-four. Do we really want to be raising children into our seventies? Parenting youngsters while running around grandkids? Forfeiting years of freedom for ourselves? Maybe not.
And would my teenage boys think their mom is crazy? Or, worse, that I wasn't pleased with them -- that I wanted a girl instead?
Who really wants five kids, anyway?
I do. I think. So, as if all the adoption announcements weren't enough to convince me, I'll continue to look for a sign -- a stronger sign. A voice to tell me that the time is right. That I'm not crazy. That a beautiful little girl is just waiting for her new mommy to make up her mind.
And I long to tell my daughter, "Hey, Mommy's coming!" I'm just taking the long way. And praying I don't get lost.