Children are a gift from the Lord; the fruit of the womb, a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children born in one's youth. Blessed are they whose quivers are full. They will never be shamed contending with foes at the gate. ~Psalm 127:3-5

Friday, July 20, 2007

DaySCARE

These past two weeks have been a little crazy around the Mack house. My husband is dealing with some issues with his family, so that means we both are because naturally, it affects me as well.

In the middle of these issues, it was brought to our attention that my in-laws think that we should put the kids in daycare, or as I call it, dayscare, and I should go back to work. For what, we inquired? So we can have tons of money and buy our kids everything and so we can do what we want to do, was basically the gist of their answer. My f.i.l. even made the comment that his 3 kids, which include my husband, were in daycare and he doesn't see anything wrong with them. My husband said "are you blind?" My f.i.l. also said that he worries about my husband having to work all day and then come home and deal with the kids and not getting to go and do whatever he wants to do. My husband said "I'm their father, it's my job. I chose this life."

I worked in a daycare. I've seen some of the things that go on, how they're run, etc. It's scary. I know people that work in daycares, some that have their children in daycares, some that wouldn't go near a daycare if their life depended on it. I can honestly say I've had a fair share of experience, even if it was through other people, to be able to justify our decision for me to stay home with the kids. None of this even touches the true reason why I stay home, though: BECAUSE IT'S MY JOB. If we can get by with paying our bills and feeding our children, why should I get another job that actually pays me money?

Sure, more money would probably help with the stress we have over bills sometimes but I feel like there is always going to be stress. It won't matter how much money we have, we are always going to be stressed about it in some way. And if it's not about money, it's going to be about something else. And I don't feel like sacraficing my children's happiness and emotional well-being just so I can buy them tons of things and have a huge house and do what I want to do is what God wants me to do. Besides, there's no better pay than the time I get to spend with my children, experiencing the world through their eyes, allowing them to teach me about a love I never knew existed. No job I could ever get out in the world would pay me in sloppy kisses, bear hugs just because, angelic faces deep in slumber, sibling rivalry, lessons in disciplining children, peanut butter faces, or even messy hands and feet on a clean floor.

I know there are some people who need to put their children in daycare for certain reasons such as being a single-parent or disability, etc. But I have a bit of a problem with the people that put their children in daycare just because it's covenient for them, because it frees up time for them to do what they want to do, because it allows them to work and make more money and all of that. I just don't see how you can trade spending time with your children, raising your children, having the opportunity to really love your children in every way possible, for some extra cash and time.

The reason why my husband and I made the decision that I would stay home with our children is so they would have a secure environment with someone who loves them, not someone who is 20 years old and works for $8/hr and doesn't have anything invested into our children whatsoever. My motives for caring for my children are of love, of sacrafice, of selflessness. Their motives are a paycheck.

God did not give ME these children so that I could give them to someone else to raise while I went out and chased after money, more time, a bigger house, etc. He trusted ME with these children to raise them how He wants me to and that means staying home when they are home and taking care of them. I can't imagine missing all the milestones a child goes through between being an infant and being a toddler. I can't imagine someone else spending all that time with my child, getting to know them, but not giving back what children deserve to get from a caretaker.

God told us it was my job to stay home with our children and raise them for His purposes and no matter what anyone says to us, no matter how much the world pushes money and everything being about 'me,' I will not disobey my Father. My sister pointed out that the Lord said 'you will look like a fool when doing my work.' But, I feel like those people who think we're the fools are really in for a big surprise.

Monday, July 9, 2007

The Incredible Shrieking Woman

I haven't written in a while and I apologize to anyone following my blog. It hasn't been very interesting, huh?

Today I had this huge melt down and I started to feel kind of crazy inside, catching an even bigger glimpse than I had before of why some mothers really just can't handle being good mothers or why some even go as far as hurting their children. I have had a rough couple of weeks, an even rougher couple of days. Most of this lies where my children are concerned; disciplining them, taking care of them, dealing with their day to day emotions and personalities as they are constantly testing me and figuring out what to do to really push me. (As is normal for children to do.) Today, after one small instance when my daughter upset me and I went to my room to scream into my pillow, I came out to find that I had been gone what apparently was far too long because they had enough time to find the Desitan and squeeze most of the tube all over themselves and the rug. At that point, I lost it. I started shrieking and screaming and crying and wondering why they would do this "to me" and as I started to run a bath and put them in to scrub them down, I couldn't control my hysteria and I just kept sobbing and muttering about how I couldn't do this anymore and how much I hated "you."

And I was so angry with God and I'm pretty sure it was Him that I felt like I hated at this point.

After all, why would He give me these horrible children that would do something so awful to upset me and why would He allow me to become pregnant once again when I can barely take care of the two I already have?

Of course, this was my hysteria thinking, not that I actually feel this way when I am calm. Of course the children are going to get into whatever they can get their hands on, it's my job to keep stuff like that out of their reach. And wouldn't it have been a completely different scenario if I came out to find that they had gotten into a medicine bottle or some cleaner?

And of course He's going to continue to allow me to become pregnant with children if that is His will because I left it completely up to Him to control this aspect of my life and was willing to accept and love any children He gave to me. After all, it is our privilege as women to be given such gifts and who are we to refuse them?

But at the same time, is there room for me to "plan" at all and do I have the right to say not at this time, Lord?
I struggle with this issue, especially after having several discussions with different people in my life who all have different scenarios and feel strongly about it in different ways.

This may sound awful but I still haven't come to the point in this pregnancy where I actually want this baby and it really kills me to feel this way. My husband tells me that's not normal and I shouldn't feel that way but I have to wonder if it really is just a normal reaction to the situation I feel I'm in? It hasn't helped being harassed in the beginning from certain people about our "choice" to get pregnant again. And it hasn't helped that my daughter is just at that age where she's really starting to test her limits and boundaries with me. It hasn't helped that I just can't seem to make a decision about what I want and how I feel most days.

When will I come to the point of being excited and happy about this pregnancy, having the joy that comes with doing God's will and allowing Him the power over these things?