Thursday, June 20, 2013

CONTINUTED: Are We Having Any More Kids?

This is just a little extra info and in-case you-missed-it stuff related to the last blog, "Are We Having Any More Kids?"

First off, I wanted to repost this from the last blog, because it kind-of goes with the theme of this blog. Also, I know that some may have not read all the way to this part in the last blog, and I think it is important:
"7)  Are you trying to force your beliefs and/or some sort-of political agenda on others?
No and no.  I think that when people hear about someone doing something like this that is quite radical, they automatically assume it is in some way meant to impose a belief system on them.  But, that is just not true here.  This is a personal decision that we have made for our family, and that's all it is.  I have used the birth control pill in the past, myself.  I have simply had a personal change of heart.  No agendas."
Next, I wanted to address some issues that may come up with skeptics and nay-sayers.

Are you taking financial assistance from government programs to support your family?
No.  We have taken financial assistance in the past, though.  Before we got pregnant with our last baby (which was the first baby that resulted from this decision), we had gotten gotten off of public assistance.  At one time or another, we have been on Medicaid, WIC, and Food Stamps.  We've never been on welfare.  I think these programs are great when there is a need for them.  I am thankful that they were there when we needed them.  Again, I will mention that it's actually only AFTER we committed to this decision that a job opportunity came along for Kyle  that allowed us to free ourselves from assistance.

Miscellaneous info.
I want to mention that yes, I know there are higher risks once you pass the age of 35.  I am turning 35 this year.  I've gone through miscarriages already.  I am also aware that the risk for Down Syndrome  increase as my age increases.  I am not afraid of what lies ahead.  We will face each challenge just like we do with everything else, with prayer and hope.

I think that it's important to note that people are going to judge us for this decision.  Please consider that we are financially able, able-bodied, clean and sober, and in a committed marriage.  We aren't perfect, but we can raise kids in a good environment.  I really don't see a reason for anyone to find an issue with what we are doing.

One last UPDATE:
If you think I might be crazy for following my faith this far, as it turns out, I have a blog about that, too.  It's from March 2012.  You can read it here:  You Might Think I'm Crazy.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Are We Having Any More Kids?

Every time you have a child, one of the most common things you will be asked is whether or not you plan to have more children.  In case you hadn't noticed, I've had 4.  The answer to this question for us is a little unusual.  We have decided, as a step directed through prayer and faith, that we are leaving the amount of children we have up to God.  I know that this news is shocking and perhaps even bewildering to many, even close friends and family members.  So, I have decided to go ahead and break it down the best way I know how, through writing.  I am going to do a little Q & A to help answer your questions.

1)  Did your church/pastors tell you to do this? 
No.  We have never heard a sermon about this, and we will definitely be a minority in our church for choosing to do this.

2)  Are you trying to get a tv show?
Haha!  No.  I am only posting this question, because people have actually asked me this in a joking manner in the past.  I do not want a tv show.

3)  Are you trying to join the quiverfull movement? 
No.  We came to this decision on our own.  I have heard about the quiverfull books, but have not read any and don't intend to.

4)  Why are you doing this? 
This is a legit question.  Basically, after one of my pregnancies, I was reading up on the Mini Pill, which is a birth control pill used with less hormones to help aid in birth control for nursing mothers.  (Nursing mothers aren't supposed to use the regular pill, because it can reduce milk supply.)  Anyway, I was reading about the Mini Pill before I decided if it was going to be the best option when I came across some information saying that the Mini Pill could be less effective in preventing pregnancy in nursing mothers (due to the lower-hormone factor), but the chance was there that you could become pregnant and then the baby may not implant causing a chemical pregnancy.  (Of course, there was also the possibility that it could fail completely, and you would just get pregnant again, but that's besides the point.)  Anyway, I didn't really know how I felt about that.  I wasn't comfortable with the idea that I may get pregnant and have a super early miscarriage due to this form of birth control.  I talked to Kyle about it, prayed about it, read more about it, then just left it open-ended for a few months.  During all of this I read more about regular birth control pills that also made me a bit uncomfortable.  We weren't at a point where we were sure that we didn't want more kids ever again.  So vasectomies and tubal ligations were not on the table, at that point, either.  After a few months of leaving it up in the air, I stumbled on an article about a Christian family and why they did not use any form of birth control.  They explained the typical "children are a blessing" scriptures, logistics, and they also explained that choosing this kind of lifestyle is one way to truly live on faith.  You see, when you choose this, you are trusting that God will provide for your family's every need, God will get you through the hard times, God will give you the strength to raise your children, and God will even help you through all of the stress that comes with having many kids.

5)  So, you believe that God will help you through the stress, financial hardships, potential health problems that come with pregnancies and children, etc.?
Yes.  But, let me explain.  My faith was not always like this.  It has taken a really long time for me to get to this point in my faith.  I am aware that this is a very tough road to take.  I am aware of the risks involved to my own health.  But, I truly believe that God will take care of my family no matter what circumstance will arise.

6)  What does Kyle think?
Kyle and I talked over some time before we reached this decision together.  Kyle has really amazed me at the rate of his spiritual growth.  By the time this issue had arisen, he was already at a point in his faith walk where he knew he could trust and rely on God for everything.  Kyle is on board 100%.

7)  Are you trying to force your beliefs and/or some sort-of political agenda on others?
No and no.  I think that when people hear about someone doing something like this that is quite radical, they automatically assume it is in some way meant to impose a belief system on them.  But, that is just not true here.  This is a personal decision that we have made for our family, and that's all it is.  I have used the birth control pill in the past, myself.  I have simply had a personal change of heart.  No agendas.

8)  When did you decide this?
We decided this after R was born (so after baby #3.)  We used different forms of birth control up until that point.  So, my last baby, baby A, was a product of that decision.

9)  How's that workin' for ya?
In answer to this Dr. Phil-esque question, so far, so good.  It was AFTER we made this decision, that our long-time prayers for better employment and better benefits were answered.  Kyle has been at his new job for a year and a half now, and things are getting better.  Of course, not everything has been perfect.  Baby A was breech, and I had to have a c-section.  He got very ill before he was 3 months old.  We had to ride out one little financial storm.  And, daily life always poses it's challenges.  But honestly, I can say at this point in my life, I have never been happier, and I have never felt more blessed.  We still get to do so many things.  I know there will be challenges ahead, but I also know that God has brought me through every challenge so far.  I am trusting that He will bring me through whatever is to come.

10)  Are you pregnant now?
As far as I know, no.

11)  What do people think?
Up until this blog, we only told a select few.  Reactions have been mixed, but mostly positive.

So, there you have it.  I'm open to answering more questions, but I only ask that you keep things on the positive side.  I won't entertain negativity.  I close this blog with a feeling of uncertainty.  I know that by sharing this, I am making myself vulnerable.  But, I feel like this needs to be said.  I know the questions will arise, and I am not very good with on-the-spot answers.

UPDATE: I just posted a new blog with a few extras on this subject here:
http://www.broomsticksandbananasplits.com/2013/06/continuted-are-we-having-any-more-kids.html