Countless times over the years a person, once a person realized that all the children were in fact ours, responded with a, “I don’t know how you do it,” as if our parental duties were more difficult than others. Now I’ve thought about that. Is the chore of raising soon to be nine children that difficult? Have Wife and I taken on more than we could handle? No I say; but rather, how do they do it?
If we had stopped at the “normal” two or three children; firstly we would have never had any boys, and secondly we would have stalled at the hardest number of children. As close as ours were, we would get no assistance from the older children with the younger. Babies just don’t help babies very well. It’s one of those unbreakable laws of nature. So as the children would be unable to help when they were younger, there would have also been no need when they were older.
I guess we could have spaced a couple of children way apart; that seems popular. So let me figure this out. Say we waited a few years to start, that means cross out #1 and #2. In that case #3 would have been first. Just for argument, let’s give Wife a space between births of five or six years. That bumps #7 up to second place and drops out #4, #5, #6, #8, and #9. Oh my, that gives the terrible-two-year-old the run of the house; not good.
Well, there’s always the “late in life” strategy we could have used. You know, travel the world, see lots of places, and then at the close of Wife’s fertility, hope desperately that she gets pregnant. That sounds too much like a failed retirement strategy. I think at that point I would have to look myself in the mirror and tell myself that it’s too late, and probably go on public welfare. But here’s the real secret, if Wife had me all to herself for twenty-five years, without anyone else to share her love with; then she’d smother me to death with love… or a pillow.
Now that you know all the possible scenarios, Wife and I have planned to craftily evade all the above problems, by giving the children a whole bunch of siblings that they would have to help with. Pretty smart, right?