“What’s it like having four? Just imagine you’re drowning….and somebody hands you a baby.” ~ Jim Gaffigan
The comedy sketch by comedian Jim Gaffigan rings true for so many parents, but is especially relatable for those with large families. Because when it comes to sleepless nights, potty training, messes and spills, bickering, and those annoying surprise egg YouTube videos, well….why would anyone choose to do that all over again—for a fourth time?!
It’s been 2 months since we added our fourth child, and I can say with absolute certainty that Jim Gaffigan is spot on with his view of adding a fourth child. In the weeks before Rafe was born, I felt like I was drowning. Physically, I felt terrible. I was sore. I was exhausted. Emotionally, I was terrified at the thought of adding another child. It was the first time I ever felt incapable of being a mother. I could barely keep up with the three I had, and I was going to have another in a few weeks?! No. Way.
So there I was…metaphorically drowning…and somebody handed me a baby. And you know what?
It was exactly what I needed.
Because it doesn’t end there. That sweet baby that you are confident will push you completely under the murky waters does the exact opposite. You find yourself gaining strength. You’re able to start swimming again. Because when you accepted that baby, you also accepted God’s anchor of grace. He is a God of love. A God of mercy. A God who will never leave us nor forsake us. And when Satan sneaks in and fills our minds and hearts full of self-doubt, God is there to whisper His truth and grace back into our hearts.
I see my children light up every morning when they first see their brother. I see them lovingly holding him; covering him with hugs and kisses. I see them willing to help out, especially if it’s anything for Rafe. I relish those early morning feedings when the house is quiet and I can spend time in the Word. My heart bursts at every little grin; at the delight I see from my older children.
And so, even amid the chaos that comes with having four kids, I am eternally thankful for these children. Because when I look upon their faces, I know I’m seeing a glimpse of God’s infinite goodness.
Thank you, God, for sending me exactly what I didn’t know I needed.