20 September, 2013

"Your hands sure are full."

Newborn Gage; photo credit Lindsey Redfern
I hear it at the store, most often. When both kids are crying and throwing glass jars onto the floor that I'm trying to catch with my feet while also attempting to be the budgeting woman I want to be by following the scribbled-on grocery list to a T. You get it. And then, oh, hello pregnant belly! And the stranger that already watched me with such pity and maybe a small amount of disdain - because really, that pickle juice on her shoe is the direct result of my four-year-old propelling the jar into the air like Iron Man. Anyway, it's in that moment that I get that look. Eyebrows raised, head slowly shaking back and forth, sigh heaved.

"Your hands sure are full."

And the thing is, they are. My hands are full. So are my feet if you count the potatoes I'm secretly kicking under the shelves - the potatoes from the bag that KJ bit holes into and then Gage "saved" by dumping over, causing a cascade of brown to roll down the aisle, kind of like a red carpet announcing our arrival.

My hands are full. And it's wonderful.

I'm not one of those people who claims to enjoy every single second of parenthood. I don't think it's possible to enjoy cleaning poop out of bath tub drains or disinfecting bite marks on your shoulders. But I do love it. I do enjoy 99.9 percent of parenthood. Because I choose to. Because I think I'm starting to understand the sacredness of being a parent, the finite nature of infancy and childhood.

When we had one child, I felt like I had been too blessed. How in the world did I, of all people, get to bare this beautiful boy?

And then two? TWO CHILDREN? I die! Two kids?! Stupidly happy dance and lots of tearful prayers of the gratitude that only a mother who understands how difficult it can be to bring them into your family can feel.

And then three? Well, you might have to shock me back to life because I still can't completely comprehend that I am pregnant with our third child. It just seems too wonderful, too blessed, too perfect.

Please don't assume that I'm so starry-eyed about this because I'm having one of those perfect pregnancies. I'm not. Please don't think our kids are excellent sleepers and we're so well-rested that we've forgotten the sleep-deprivation that coincides with newbornness. Our kids are terrible sleepers and we are tired all the time. Please don't think we're rich and so the financial implications of having babies don't affect us. We aren't rich, we have decent insurance (praise heavens) and we are about a month away from meeting our $5,000 deductible.

Don't cast aside my joy because I just must not get how hard parenting is - because I do.

But I will never complain about my hands being full. I will never complain about being pregnant and the difficulties that come with growing a human being. I will also probably never go to the grocery store again without at least two major melt-downs and "Clean u

p on aisle three!" following us wherever we go.

"Your hands sure are full."

"I am so, so blessed. Aren't I?"


  1. Haha at least you have an excuse! I break pickle jars in the grocery store all by myself! I'm so so happy for you, Brooke! Being a mother is truly a calling from Heavenly Father.

  2. Having your hands full is wonderful because that means your heart is full too, it only takes one look at your kid(s) or one smile in the morning to make it all worth it!

  3. I had to chuckle when I read the title of this post, because I TOO have heard those same comments. I recently walked into Khols with my three boys, two of which were fussing about something, and a lady exiting the store said, 'Wow, three boys? You must be busy.' I just smiled and said, 'Yep. I sure am.' Finding time to count our blessings seems to help ease us through the hard moments of parenthood.

  4. Yes you are! Being a mama is extremely hard but also the best thing in the whole world. I feel bad for anyways who doesn't have kids. Children make life much richer.


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