My Mom had an unique expression for describing being out of sorts. “You’re all sixes and sevens,” she’d say.
I’ve felt like that for a while now, but haven’t had external validation until a few days ago. I was looking for large family blogs on the web, and stumbled on a few that were collecting links from any Mommy who was interested. Except for one condition: 7 kids or more.
It’s official. I don’t have a big enough family to be “special” and I have too many kids to be “normal.” In the gigantic game of family match-up, no one is picking our family for their team.
However, I’ve noticed that most big families that make a point of getting out there to represent “Big Family-ism,” the “many-kid boosters” as it were, seem to be pretty interested in boosting a whole bunch of stuff that I don’t necessarily go for, either. I hear a lot of advice and bite my tongue: Homeschool or they’ll lose their faith. Natural health because drugs just make you sicker. Juicing cures everything. Organic food because that’s what people who love their kids feed them. If your kids are bad, it’s because you don’t eat whole grains.
Until this blog, I never made a big deal about how many kids I have. I try not to bring it up (unless I have all six with me and they are bringing up the rear.) I don’t want an award, a prize, or young Moms to follow me around looking for advice. I also don’t want excuses. I can get everyone to Church on time, as they say. I think that I should try to have a family dressed in clean clothes, well-mannered, with enough social skills to carry on a conversation with someone their age. If you have two kids, you pretty much do what I do, except I’ve got a couple of babysitters waiting in the wings. I am not a specimen nor a spectacle.
In retrospect, I doubt I belong in the official big family club. I’ve never been much of a joiner, not since I got kicked out of Brownies for a dispute over Easter Egg dye. I’ve always been the loner, like when I took shop in Grade 7, just to make a point. But this point is a little bit bigger — the next time these folks make you feel like you don’t measure up, remember that they even get under the skin of the Gal with Six.
Good mothers support each other. They don’t look for chinks in others’ armour to play a game of “Who Loves Our Kid the Most.”