I was at the pool the other day, watching my Big Two tear it up with their friends in the water, and drying off my sweet R. It was a beautiful and relaxing day, with sounds of summer all around us.
I couldn't help but catch a few phrases from a group of mothers next to me.
"I can't imagine having more than two."
"You can't do everything you can if you have more."
"Right now, each one of us can take one, and more than that would be crazy."
I leaned in to hear more of their discussion, and for minutes they discussed their happiness of having only one or two, and couldn't understand how more could be better.
My first inclination was to thrust myself into the conversation of these four ladies, to explain the joys of having more than two, that chaos exists with any number of children, but my sensible side reminded me that by doing so, they will simply feel that mothers of more than two will, in addition to their preconceived notions, seem both impulsive and defensive.
And really, who am I to feel like I should defend my own reproductive rights, since they were chatting among friends, albeit loud.
Still, I walked away from the the afternoon a little scathed. I am an equal opportunity mother, I believe. My mama-friends are diverse in race, religion, political affiliation, choice of schooling, family size, etc etc etc. I respect each one of my friends and their decisions and situations as simply, theirs and really none of my business.
On that day, I felt judged.
I held off on writing about it until today, when I thought I could articulate *a little* of what is in my heart.
To those mothers, I had wanted to say:
- Each one of my children are unique and special, each born from my womb bringing gifts insurmountable to whatever material pleasures you feel you may have "saved" from having only two.
- My capacity and potential to love, care and dote is limitless.
- My heart is not divided into different parts which are allocated to each child. All receive everything from me.
- My parenting is no more imperfect than yours even if I have more children than you. We will fail in some cases and hopefully triumph in most.
- No one can do everything.
- And just like you, I cannot imagine....having one less at my dinner table.
And my final question to them..
- Why perpetuate a mommy war? Why can we not encourage one another, instead of alienating those who make different choices?
(thank you friends, for listening, and for supporting my PERFECTLY big, chaotic, loud and imperfect family!)