Saturday, January 16, 2010

How many??

I find when talking about the children we have, that I'm often apologising. Well, maybe apologising is the wrong word; maybe it's more 'explaining'. You see, we have four children. Yes, in this day and age, that is generally considered more than the norm. Let's face it, anyone on the telly with more than the average 2.4 children gets barked "buy a bloody telly!" by yours truly. Tongue in cheek and cheeky grin in place of course.

I always wanted three kids. You buy a station wagon/family car, there are five seats; one for Mum, one for Dad and three for the kids. Three seemed a good number.

I met my husband, he wanted two kids, stated, "we already have one with your eldest, now we just need one more". Yes, several girlfriends swooned at this (I can't tell you how many times I heard; Oh he's a keeper!) He knew I wanted three in total. Then I had one more, my second, his first, and he agreed with me and wanted another.

We thought we'd go for number three, but the month he knocked me up my womb was having a two for one deal and we got twins. That changed the dynamic of our lives.

We sold the station wagon and bought a people mover. Thoughts of one child in school and two in child care while we both worked went out the window; who the heck can afford three in child care? If we both continued to work full time, after paying for child care, hubby darling would walk out of work with just $15 cash! That ain't gonna pay the rent kids! Our rental situation went out the window and we started to consider seriously the possibility of buying or building our own home.

All of these things that were never considered all came into play.

So let me just say, when someone asks about my family situation, and I admit to the four children, once my conversation partner stops gasping for air, I then point out that the third child turned out to be twins and it wasn't on purpose and yadda yadda yadda. And at the same time, I feel that I'm apologising for the fact that I have one more child than I expected.

And through the apologies and explanations, right now, I have to admit I wouldn't change that number for the world.


frog ponds rock... said...

I always wanted 6. A mad chaotic house full of children and muddy gumboots,noise and laughter.

I have two.

Cazzie!!! said...

Right on Raelene! I have four kids too. We, my hubby and I, come from large families...he 5 and me 4. We had the boys first and then we were stopping there. I then conceived the girls and they were definately meant to be.
We had to upgrade from a station wagon to a tarago people mover and now we have a Nissan Pathfinder.
When Tom started school, Nick was in day care 2 days a week. Socially it was great for Nick and it was great R&R for me..well, I did have Sarah and was pregnant with Mia not much R&R.
Then, when Sarah was 18mths old I had her at daycare 1 day a week. I must say, I never had them there more than 6 hours in a day.
Today, they are all at school and hubby's job and mine are so that we work shift work. It is a bugger to get home in time to get them from school every day, and often we have to leave earlier than appropriate to leave them unattended before school.
So, we have an Au Pair. This means hubby and I work the same shifts, same days and we all have the same days off as a family. On the days off we go on trips in our Pathfinder and hook up the caravan and away we go.
Our Au Pair is live in and it has been a marvellous thing. I must add, it is much cheaper than before and after school care too.
I get where you are coming from when you say daycare costs the Earth! It does here too. When my kids did their 0ne then two days a week at daycare it was also their pre-school. This made two costs into one.
At work I get patient's joking with me about the whole "don't you have a telly thing". My answer, "Sure we do, but we have more than that, we have love!" It is true. I would not change it for the World. Sure, some days can be harder than others...but isn;t that the case for everyone?
Oh, I forgot to mention something someone else said to me, "Here comes the girl who had my quota of kids". She said to me then that I had done her job for her so she never had to have kids... well, thank God for that, I reckon she'd be a rotten mum! Haha

Star said...

Your children are beautiful. And they will have fantastic memories of growing up together. I grew up as an only child and have always wished to have had a sibling to share things with.

Marika said...

A guy I work with has a great tale about people's reactions when he told them that his wife was expecting their fourth (they had 3 boys and went back for a late last-ditch shot at a girl...they got another boy!). With the announcement of their first pregnancy they got delight, the second they got congratulations, the third they got ambivalence and with the fourth they were told they were being irresponsible! I find that fascinating - even 30 years ago that wouldn't have caused anyone to even blink. How quickly things change. They're thrilled with their brood now...wouldn't change it for the world!

I'm an only child and I think making sure that your kids will always have someone to turn to, and count on is one of the most responsible thing you can do for their futures.