15 July 2009

I don't know how I do it either >:(

The main piece of commentary people have to offer on my life is, "I don't know how you do it."

I don't know how I do it either. I don't have a playbook or blueprints; not even, if you can believe it, a Vision Statement. It's just my life, and I live it. And it's actually not as awful as the "I don't know how you do it"ers make it sound, because as the saying goes, you can get used to anything. Four kids and one kid in progress is so not a big deal in the context of my WAY overadequate meat, drink, clothing, shoes, house, homestead, field, cat[tle], money, goods, pious spouse, pious children, pious servants (my favorite one is named Maytag), pious and faithful magistrates, good government, good weather, peace, health, discipline, honor, good friends, faithful neighbors, and the like.

Speaking of my life like it's some epic task cheapens the currency. I apologize to victims of famine, fire, flood, fascism, fistula, and every other truly terrible thing in the world whose suffering is diminished by the selfishness of our culture. But I know how they do it. They do it one agonizing minute at a time, God have mercy.

How would you do it if you had to take in your sister's kids or your husband's parents? How would you do it if a tornado flattened your house? How would you do it if you or a loved one became ill or disabled? How would you do something that you KNOW you can't handle? You would just do it. It would be hard and you would be sad and you would do it. Living under circumstances beyond their control is what people do.

15 comments:

MooreMama said...

I think the key phrase is "beyond their control". IME, people get flabbergasted at the thought of not taking advantage of modern science to (attempt to) control your fertility. I guess I'm fortunate (???) that my reproductively-challenged self doesn't appear to the rest of the World to be outside the Norm, which spares me "the look". I don't know how you do it. :)

Sarah D. said...

I get a lot of that "I don't know how you do it" lately. I just shrug my shoulders and say "I don't". My God, parents, kids and friends help me do it.

Reb. Mary said...

Hey Rebekah, quit making it so hard for me to indulge in a little whining over here :P

Rebekah said...

Ha! As you all know, I indulge in plenty of whining myself. But I do get annoyed with other people whining for me. MM and SD, I don't know how either of you do it. See?

Melrose said...

one night, two weeks before I turned 18, my dad didn't come home in time for our midweek Advent service. As midnight approached he still wasn't home. We finally got a phone call from the airport my dad was supposed to be flying into on his small commuter plane saying his plane had "gone down".

It took 24 agonizing hrs to find the wreckage and all four people on board died. Since I had been raised by my dad and he had custody of me this left me legally an "orphan". Thankfully since I turned 18 two weeks later, I finished out highschool at home with my "step" mom then went to college. Losing my dad at the time seemed the ULTIMATE horrible terrible un-liveable thing that I could never ever survive. Wow...here I am nearly 8 yrs later and though the drama and agony of that time has not left, I can hardly believe how blessed I am, how faithful my God is and the answer to "how do you do it?" remains the same: I put one foot in front of the other while always saying, "come soon Lord Jesus!".

Dakotapam said...

I get that comment a lot. My answer is always that I am not in this alone. And then my snide comment that after three kids I might as well have twenty...that really makes the heads spin.

Melrose, I lost my Dad around the same age, not as tragically, but just as suddenly, though I was not left orphaned. I still miss him a lot, but like you, I look at all of my blessings and am just so thankful to be right where I am!

lisa said...

"Come soon Lord Jesus." Amen.

Gee you guys, I don't know how you do it! :)
I haven't gotten that one yet. Too few kids :) I do get, "Better you than me..." though when I talk birth philosophies.
"Two was enough for me," is also a personal favourite, as though I thought children were petit fours and I need to go on a diet. Wow - babies - how decadent of me ;)

Rhonda said...

My husband and I raised 5 kids with less than a 10 year span between them. Prople thought we were crazy. They are wonderful kids. My parents moved in with us when our oldest was a senior in high school. That was much harder, but you do what you do. My parents have since passed away and we would do it again. We have since adopted a little girl we were foster parents to. We got her at 3 days old, right from the hospital. People still think we are crazy, doing that at our age. I am 51, my husband is 54, and our daughter is almost 4. We feel she is a wonderful gift. In life, you put one foot in front of the other and trust God. We have been extremely blessed.

lisa said...

A frightening thought just occured to me - maybe people don't know how you do it bc they really don't know Him.

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me (Jn 10:27)

Please hear me correctly. I am NOT saying that Christians who don't practice PP don't know Christ. But it seems a lot of folks say more about their relationship with Christ than they do your obedience and (*ahem*) "prolific-ness" when they proclaim not knowing.

Luzia said...

Thank you for your website. Dawn, thank you for inviting me to it. The outlook here is refreshing. I can breathe here. L├╝zia

Gauntlets said...

Welcome, Luzia. :) I'm glad to see you.

Comment all you like in our house.

The Mama said...

That comment is one of my all time least favorite. It's right up there with, "Better you then me", something that I have actually heard in recent years. It may be a regional thing, but it comes off very condescending.
I think that people always have a hard time envisioning the inner workings of family units that are totally different then their own experience.

Marie said...

How about, "Wow! Your hands are full!" Just the other day, I read the response, "Yes. And my heart is full, too!" I love it!

Cheryl said...

Great post, Rebekah. As a homeschooler who also works part-time outside the home and is the wife of a church worker, I often have people who say that very same thing to me. It seems like a common expression. When working (full-time outside the home) mothers with kids in school say it to me, my response is that I don't know how THEY do it! Each one of us has the life that God has given us to have, and in that life we each have our own blessings and trials. What may appear "hard" to someone viewing us from the outside is simply what God has given us to do, the life that he has made us for, and the life that he enables us to live. Of course, sometimes in our sinfulness we find outselves spitting on that life, but amazingly, He forgives us for our ungratefulness and continues to bless and sustain us. Wow.

Mama, I don't mind the "How do you do it" line so much--I take it as an effort to affirm and be nice--but I'm with you. That "better you than me" stuff is in total bad taste.

Pam said...

Nice to see you here, Luzia!

Great comments, gals.

Wonderful post as usual, Rebekah!