notesfromthetrenchesIII

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Friday, August 19, 2005

Imagine Me Standing At The Front Door Playing Taps

People ask me all the time why I have so many children. Sometimes it is asked with the undercurrent of "you are crazy", sometimes it is asked wistfully, but mostly it is asked out of genuine curiosity. In a day and age when the average American family has 1.7 children, seven children seems absurdly large.

I also get asked, "How many are you going to have?" And before I had my seventh the honest answer was always, "I don't know." There had been times over the years when I thought I might be done. But yet I mysteriously saved the baby things up in the attic "just in case" and the thought of parting with any of the baby paraphernalia made me well up with tears. I love babies. I love holding them, nursing them, rubbing their round fuzzy heads. Older children, well, I find them to be much more challenging.

This morning I kissed my husband goodbye at the front door, like I do every morning. Only this morning he wasn't heading off to work. He was going to the doctor for the Surgery-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named. He rolled down the window as he drove off and yelled, "You're sure about this, right?" And I yelled back, "Oh yeah! And you're going to have SO.MUCH.SEX from now on you won't know what hit you." I am sure all the neighbors are thrilled with this newly acquired knowledge.

So this is it. The grand finale. The quit while we are ahead. The why tempt fate. The final curtain call. The caboose. The last straw. The End.

The complete family. Perfection.


Baby
Originally uploaded by the big yellow house.

43 Comments:

Blogger TBG said...

Well that is wonderful. And I love that baby behind. Oh so cute.

I guess you just know when you are done. I have no babies yet but I wonder how will I know I am done, everyone always says you just know.

11:26 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I envy you your decisiveness. As for the neighbors, well, they probably knew you guys were having sex anyway ;-)

11:36 AM  
Anonymous stillheidi said...

I sent my husband off for the 'procedure' after baby #2....I had 2 c-sections and DO NOT want to do that, or the whole pregnancy thing, again! Its been 2 years and we haven't thought twice about our decision....And not having to 'worry' about anything has made sex super fun.

11:44 AM  
Blogger Meg said...

Go you guys!

I'm going to have myself "fixed" in the Spring and we only have one!

Enjoy having all the sex...

11:45 AM  
Blogger nextcommercial said...

Well, I'm jealous that your husband is willing to get the "procedurethatshallnotbenamed" and I'm more jealous about the "so much sex" comment. But, I'm happy someone is.

I often wonder why you would purposely be pregnant seven times. Not that you HAVE seven children...just that you would spend nearly seven years of your life pregnant. (I did not enjoy pregnancy) But, what amazes me most....is that all of those pregnancies and you have only ONE girl??? Is that right? But, she's SUCH a girl, I bet.

12:46 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Good for your husband-my hubby is still totally against the "procedure". We're still not sure our family is complete yet, so I still have time to change his mind, and I will.

12:56 PM  
Anonymous jason berggren said...

even in the old days seven was a lot. I want for I feel like that's a bunch nowadays. We have two down and two to go. I love it but I certainly understand your decsion. I will probably do the same when the time comes. You must be extraordinary people to be able to manage seven kids. You have my respect.

1:21 PM  
Blogger Melanie said...

I only have 4 children, but I get those same questions and comments from people. My answer to "How many children are you going to have?" is the same as yours was. I truly don't know, but DH and I sincerely hope and pray for more children. All of those nosy questions and comments are forgotten when surrounded by the love my DH and children. Good luck to your DH on theprocedurethatmustnotbenamed. Had to LOL at your reply to him. Don't think I'd have the guts to shout that reply out my front door!

1:59 PM  
Blogger dazeymae said...

be sure to have him an ice pack ready.
its a hard decision to make
especially when you look in their little faces and think, what if we'd done it before we had _____.

but, we've never regretted the decision once made and snipped.....

and yes....we do it like bunnies now....not that we didn't before, but I digress

2:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

so sad

2:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vasectomies increase a man's risk of cancer. Just a FYI.

2:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ugh. I am so sorry that you have made this decision.

2:21 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Anonymous,

No, what is sad is judgemental people like you.

FYI, If you are going to have an opinion have the guts to leave your name or else shut the hell up.

2:37 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Uh... congratulations? Does Hallmark have a vasectomy card section?

I've donated almost all my maternity and baby clothes. I gave away my Medela Pump In Style. The youngest is now out of his car seat.

But I just can't bring myself to okay that trip to the doc. I'm very happy for you both, that you've found your peace.

2:40 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Forgot to add--DELICIOUS photo of the baby!

2:41 PM  
Blogger buffi said...

It's a bittersweet thing isn't it. I am sad somedays that I won't have any more, but so happy to not have to worry about it.

Love the baby bum!

Oh, and anonymous? Shove it. The risk of cancer after a vasectomy is much, much less than a womans chances of dying in childbirth. Try to have the big picture, buddy.

2:51 PM  
Blogger Meg said...

Anonymous - you are a TURD. A big one. I won't even ask why you care. Because turds stink.

3:39 PM  
Blogger Gretchen said...

Chris, I am almost jealous of your ability to make that decision. You note I said "almost" because if I were, well then, I could make it too! LOL But hey, maybe #7 would do it for us too. I remember that you were already playing with the idea of being done when #7 snuck up on you.

And even though you know there are people out there like "Anonymous" (plenty of those in our old group)just ignore them. I learned a long time ago that you can't make other's people's decisions for them and vice versa. Obviously that person hasn't learned that yet.

I laughed at the comment you shouted down the driveway. *I* would have shouted "We are going to have So Much Sleep!!!" rofl

3:51 PM  
Blogger Annalise said...

Absolutely love the picture :-)

And ... have fun :-)

3:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was just wondering how you feel about being the mother of lots of boys and one girl?? Did you ever think of trying for one more girl? Just curious. PS Have you seen the blog Belle on her Toes at blogspot I think?? She has 11 kids! It's a great blog, too.

3:55 PM  
Blogger Darren said...

This has been covered, but I wanted to get my two cents in. Yeah, Chris, stick to anonymous!

I might have the procedure, and I only have a dog.

3:55 PM  
Blogger RANDI said...

Hi! The picture is too adorable! You might want to have a bag of ice or frozen peas available for your guy when he arrives home-it helps with the swelling. And by the way, he NEEDS to take it easy, just like the doc says!

You know, I think it is so ridiculous that "anonymous" people seem to be so brave when leaving rude comments! I am glad to see that you gave them a piece of your mind!

5:10 PM  
Anonymous Chuck said...

Well we stopped at 6 when we got our little girl, not sure if that was a good plan or not yet... Girls are different than boys, I know suprise.
Anyways, I let the wife do it. Cause I am a whimp and well, yeah, read above.

Anyways, good for you two, now you need to do like we did and get two of the most active dog breeds so you have somthing else to do.

5:22 PM  
Blogger halloweenlover said...

What a poophead Anonymous is- and I am trying to be nice with that word.

I just reread the title and cracked up! I am happy for all of you! You DO have a perfect family! I love hearing stories about them and seeing pictures.

That little tooshy is the cutest ever.

5:24 PM  
Anonymous rachel said...

love the picture!

we alternated bags of frozen peas & corn for dh after his procedure. It took a few days before he felt OK, too. I think all the little kids climbing on him and stepping on his parts didn't help much, though. :)

it was a bittersweet time for me, i still wish we had more kids, but ah well.

5:38 PM  
Blogger another lisa said...

We opted for the big V three years ago, after we had been together for almost two years. I told my sweetie if he was absolutely sure he didn't want any more children, he should do it... otherwise... we might just have another baby! (We have seven children in our blended family) He made an appointment the next week! I was very proud of him, as it is a much simpler procedure for men than women.

6:19 PM  
Blogger another lisa said...

I was also going to say that although there are moments that I wish I had another baby, I have options... we could adopt, as there are many needy children in our community who need homes... also there are many babies around to "borrow" in our extended family. Plus, our eldest could be parents in the next few years so I am saving my energy for that.

6:20 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Job well done:-) May the days ahead with your complete for now (wait for all those DIL's) be full of joy:-)

And kudos to Rob for one doing it and two making sure you were really OK with it:-)

8:29 PM  
Anonymous holly said...

So, just out of sheer curiosity, you weren't subscribing to the quiverful mindset? We are, and have discovered alot of people who had seven children and stopped with the biblical basis that seven was perfection, but I never understood that. Its not many who have lots of children without a biblical viewpoint. If you werent, than I am NOT judging you at all, but I am just curious.

9:39 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

holly,
We did not have seven children based on any sort of religious conviction or quiverful mindset. Rather we just wanted a large family, granted our definition of large has changed over the years.

10:05 PM  
Blogger DollyMama said...

Well, my take on this is that even a vas does not have to be forever. There are reversals to be had if one was feeling very regretful.

Our 6th kiddo is now 2.5 and it is frankly very nice to be past safety gates at the top of the stairs, potty seats, even almost through with diapers altogether. Things are getting sane in many ways that they were always INsane when we always had babies.

We love babies, and as my husband says, if it were all about loving the babies we would never quit and have about 50 kids. But, alas, it is about more than that.

Fearless sex is, well, mighty nice. Non-pregnant, non-nauseated, non-hugely pregnant, non-I weigh 50 pounds too much, non-I just had a baby so leave me alone, non-will we get pregnant again sex is extremely nice too....

12:03 AM  
Anonymous tammie said...

Wonderful post, thanks for sharing. Miles has the cutest butt! Not only are you pretty, have cute kids, a hunk of a husband, but you take such nice pictures. And did I mention that you are up for mom of the year?

1:40 AM  
Blogger Sleeping Mommy said...

Bless your husband for stepping up to get the ol snipperoo. My husband wouldn't, so I did while they were doing my Csection.

2:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello,

your blog is really beatiful!

Regards,
VIPsports

2:11 AM  
Blogger Effortlessly Average said...

Normally I just read your blog because it appears to be mostly a discussion among a group of friends and I don't want to insinuate myself into it. But this particular entry compelled me to respond.

I, too, had the procedure after my wife's last pregnancy, which was difficult on her. It didn't go quite the way I'd always imagined, but I'll save the humorous details for my own blog (mostly since I write profusely and don't want to use up the space here). What made me laugh here was Chris' declaration that Rob's having "the Procedure" would result in a veritable cornucopia of sex. lol. My wife said the SAME thing! And it was true. For about two weeks. Then her renewed sexual vigor turned into the same insistence that I'm just a horndog and should stop "pointing that thing" at her. The thing is that once "the Procedure" is done, he can't then claim that he'll "return it" if she's not going to hold up her end of the more-sex bargain. Yep, you women are devious. lmao. Now I'm not allowed to fire the weapon more often even though it's shooting blanks!

8:51 AM  
Anonymous Jordana said...

What a wonderful photo. When people ask if we're done yet, I say I don't know. And I don't. Some days, I think three is three too many. Some days, I really want at least one more. I'm certainly not ready to give away my baby clothes or maternity clothes yet.

I do some what envy you the ability to finally make the decision. I hope I get there eventually.

6:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful post, Chris.

How are your husbands ying and yang feeling today? I hope he is not too sore.

We are not sure what the heck we are doing in regards to more kids or not. I would love more, he is sort of pleased with the 4 we have, but would not be upset if we had more. The one thing we agree upon is that neither is ready to do anything permanent yet.

Hell, we may not have to, since I am 40 and Father Time is having his way with me!

"As for the neighbors, well, they probably knew you guys were having sex anyway ;-)"

Lisa, you so crack me up!

9:16 PM  
Blogger Jody said...

Oh, that was me above. I forgot to log in! :*()

9:18 PM  
Anonymous Karnak said...

Hi Chris

You do have a nice family and youur blog is one of the several I love to trawl.

Yu are right you do know in your own heart when you have enough kids and when to stop. In our case I was the one to get done and I really enjoy no longer having to worry about getting pregnant. I also loved giving away all the maternity clothes, baby gear and clothes my little boy grew out of as I knew I was glad to be done with the whole thing. I do like holding other people's babies and then enjoy giving them back

I come from seven children and my mother had two girls so you must be like my mother and run to boys. In my children's generation, girls are in the majority so maybe you will find that when your boys have children of their own.

Keep up your blogging as you are one of my lurking fixes as you paint a happy picture of being a wife and mother and having happy kids. It beats the Waltons anyday

Karnak

9:18 AM  
Blogger MissBossyPants said...

Somehow people always think I am nuts with my three kids--aged 5, 3 1/2, and 2--probably because I look like I'm 19 (I'm really 29) and because people think THREE kids is a lot. Three kids is NOT a lot for us...four kids would have been too many, that's why we reluctantly went to the urologist last November. In Alabama you have to have spousal consent, and I had to sign a form saying that 1) I knew this was permanent and I would not be able to get pregnant and 2) it may fail and I might be able to get pregnant. Got to love those lawyers! LOL

10:02 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

Good for you! It's a tough decision no matter how many kids you already have. Just the other day I was thinking maybe six wouldn't be so bad. But that ship has sailed (I was "fixed" 2 years ago).

4:24 PM  
Blogger martha marmot said...

I think that it's wonderful that you and your husband were able to come to this decision together. Blessings on your beautifully large family, and hoping for a speedy recovery for DH!

8:03 AM  
Blogger Meg Taylor said...

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7:25 PM  

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