Nearing the end of my pregnancy and waiting to meet baby, these words have been swimming in my head periodically- a remembrance of my own childhood days, curled up on my bed with my Mother Goose and Dr. Seuss:
"There was an old lady who lived in a shoe. She had so many children, she didn't know what to do."
Getting closer to actually meeting and taking care of another little one, my confidence is weaning a little bit. We have 3 that are 8 and under now and life is pure chaos sometimes. And I'm not talking "order in the chaos" kind of chaos. I'm talking mostly mass hysteria. A lot of times, I stop to take deep breaths and center myself because it feels like my hunny and I are in the middle of a marathon relay race. I pass him the baton and off he goes then it's my turn to rest and on and on in an endless cycle. Since they are all little, I have to often repeat myself which makes my day feel a little Groundhog Day-ish to the point where my husband and I often wake up in the morning quoting the movie: "Okay, campers! Rise and shine and don't forget your booties 'cause it's cooooooold out there today!" Either that or Paul McCartney's Another Day: "It's just another day, choo, choo, choo, choo, choo, choo..."
While everyone's certainty that all will be well is comforting and reassuring, I don't always feel quite sure myself. Sure my 3 little ones are thriving and happy children so we've done well, but we don't know what kind of variable it will prove to toss another one into the mix. Financially we think WHOAAAAA; emotionally we wonder HOW; logistically we just break out into LAUGHTER. A friend of mine recently shared that on the way home from school from the backseat of the car her daughter expressed concern for me: "Mommy, I hope Pema doesn't end up like my gnomes. They have TOOOOOO many children." I hear you little one, loud and clear!
When I was about to have my 3rd, I cried so much thinking "what have we done?" when thinking about the possible limits to our resources. Turns out, we are sometimes worn thin physically speaking but mostly things have just worked themselves out and we can still have fun with life and with each other. But... one more? What will this look like. I just keep asking myself, "HOOOOOWWWW?"
The upside of asking "How?" is that life always answers, "Like this..." and you are shown the possibilities. The cream rises to the surface. The helpful, loving people appear. The resources find their way to you. You are reminded that magic really does exist and that it is more practical than anyone thinks it is, actually. And you can find the peace and enjoy the gifts of a new situation.
It still feels really frikking scary right now, though.