It's been a while since I last posted a blog...so it's time to get back on with it. 8 and 1/2 months ago our youngest daughter was born. She has been such a delight. After plenty of time worrying about how I was going to cope with 4 children I have been living the reality. The biggest impact for me has been how much we have enjoyed her. It has been tiring and challenging but also rich with smiles and cuddles and with the depth and simplicity of building a new relationship. It doesn't matter how tough the rest of the day has been, a smile from our little one helps.
I was thinking about some of the things that I have learnt over the last few months and so that is going to form the theme for this blog:
1. My fears and worries are usually worse than the reality.
God doesn't give us the grace to deal with a situation until we are actually in it . When we worry, we enact the worst happening in our minds and emotions without His grace and help. Rarely does the worst happen anyway!
2. Ask for help when I need it...I am not a superhero.
Swallowing my pride and letting others help me has been good for me! I like to think I can do it all...but actually I can't. I know my limits better now and try not to push myself beyond them!
3. Bigger families can be good learning environments.
When I was pregnant, one of the positives I could see of a bigger family was that my children would need to share some responsibilities and help! This is hard in reality because they are just as reluctant as ever, however, I can see how they have matured in ways that happen naturally as a family expands.
4. It's important to be intentional about one to one time with each child.
Bedtime is a challenge because I still try to give each of them some of my time and attention as I put them to bed. There have been some difficult evenings, like the other night when each child followed me into the next room so after an hour and a half I still had 4 children in one room! But generally they want their own time with me so they don't disturb the others. Taking my eldest out for hot chocolatre and sitting building lego with my son have been highlights for me.
6. My marriage is the most important relationship in the house.
When I am kind and forgiving to my husband we have a happy home...nuff said!
5. Friends are a gift not an entitlement.
In the busyness of the past 8 months I have felt so grateful for good friends and really enjoyed time spent with them, just chatting on the phone or FaceTime. I have felt a keen motivation to look after myself and my friendships with the little time that I have free.
6. Sometimes you have to work hard to get back to strength.
After 4 pregnancies and births my body, especially my back and stomach muscles were left weak. I had to make a decision to work at this so that I can be strong again. I am motivated to get back into shape so I can keep fit and go on long bike rides with the kids. Trying to fit in my physio exercises is a challenge but sometimes you have to work hard at something boring to help your body heal.
7. It helps when I stay grateful
This is sometimes hard to do when my husband and I are both stressed out. But keeping my heart soft, forgiving easily and trying not to keep a record of wrongs are my aims and when I get it right (which is definitely not all the time) it helps me cope in the difficult times. I am so grateful for the people in my life and aim to keep smiling!
These are the things I could think of as I sit and write today. There are more, I'm sure, but my time is up and the school run beckons!!!