Generation Cedar

Well, it happened again, but this time, it was absolutely absurd. There I am pushing my buggy with one of my children, and a lady I “used to know”, is checking out. “Well hey girl!” She yells across the aisle. I smiled and greeted her. She glanced down at the tummy and her eyes got really big.

“Your pregnant?!” she asked like she was shocked.

The reason I found this response strange, is that to my knowledge, she didn’t know I had five other children at home. “Yes, I am.” I smiled. We talked a little longer, and of course the number came up.

The dropped jaw didn’t surprise me. Hers, or the one’s of the women checking her groceries out. The bewilderment, the shock…I’m used to it all. But this lady then began a barrage of comments/questions that even my “warrior” temperament found difficult to handle.

She started with the typical, “don’t you know what causes that?” And I gave her my typical, “well, I believe the Lord does.” (This lady is not a Christian.)

Then she insisted that she had something at home for me to “help” me. Trying to be gentle, yet use the opportunity to affirm the blessing of children (and remember my five year old is taking all this in!) I just kept answering her positively.

At one point I said “I haven’t had any yet that I wanted to send back”, and she said “well I didn’t either, but I don’t want any more!” very emphatically.

And THEN, when she said, “well I hope this is the last one” (as if my having children affected her life in any way!), I said, “well, we’ve decided to take all the children the Lord give us”. She audaciously said, “Well the Lord has given you too many!”

I was about to not be nice anymore when I decided to smile, say my parting goodbyes, and walk away gritting my teeth. Her last words to me?…”don’t you have anymore!”

I think I just walked away, which is something I don’t usually do. But I could see there was no point in casting my pearls before swine, and my one little pearl had already heard enough.

After the anger subsided (somewhere about 9:00 that night), I felt a recurring, stabbing realization of Satan’s successful attempts at dehumanizing God’s most treasured creation. And really, to speak of a child, any child, in the above fashion, is to discredit your own worth and value.

It’s almost as if we have put children into a separate category as other humans. No one speaks to an adult as if his existence were tragic…but that same adult was once a baby, once the little soft bundle that created a lump underneath his mommy’s shirt at the grocery store. Whatever value that adult has now, he has always had. If people only thought about how ignorant their reasoning is when it comes to children!

And this proves, yet again, my biggest contention with birth control: there is just something about the acceptance of preventing children that made the idea of having them absurd. The two concepts are polar opposites. I can’t be for both.

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6 Responses

  1. Hi!

    I have five boys and expecting my sixth child next year. I know people like this lady you described. I don’t think I’d have handled it very well at all.

    In the past I would just agree with everything the other person says to get them off my back, because there is no way you can teach willfully ignorant people. That and I just have too much to do than to get all emotionally involved with someone who is just going to trash me anyway.

    Then when I’m out of earshot I would make sure to tell my kids what a jerk the person in question is and why their arguments are stupid. (Did I mention I am a Christian? LOL) I’m the same person who would leave a nice tip in a restaurant and never complain about the bad service, but tell everyone else how awful it was! I stink!

    I really need to work on POSITIVE confrontation with people because I will pretend to be nice, nice, nice and then eventually I will BLOW UP and the other guy will wonder what on earth happened!!

    Mrs. C

    PS I always enjoy visiting your blog and hope you come say hi sometime!

  2. I already have 2 responses lined up for the “don’t you know what causes that” question.

    1. No, could you please explain it to me?
    2. Yes, and clearly my husband and I like it very much.

    Single with no children.

  3. Wow.
    I would like to simply offer ENCOURAGEMENT to you, and all the other parents willing to embrace God’w will concerning children/childbearing. God will truly bless those who are faithful to HIM!!!
    We have seen His faithfulness exceedingly and abundantly in our own lives – and some things directly related to our faith in Him concerning our family size. We have five children so far. God has been so good to us! I’d love a dozen (at least), but at 36, well… 🙂 I look forward to what He has in store for us. I honestly haven’t encountered a whole lot of opposition with having a “larger-than-the-norm” family. We, though, have been very up front with our families (and church family – my husband’s a pastor) that God is in charge, and we’ll take as many children as He sends us. So, I guess no one that’s very close to us should be surprised… 🙂 And, they’re really the only people whose opinions matter a whit.
    I can SAY that to encourage you, though, if I had encountered the conversation you did, I would have been boiling inside!
    May God continue to bless your family, and may He give you the grace to speak when He wants you to and be silent when you must! 🙂

  4. I have enjoyed all your comments today…thanks for the encouragement! I can’t imagine what our “foremothers” did with hardly any encouragement! Now, with the internet community, we have a whole world of kindred spirits! Pretty neat, I think1

  5. I have just recently found your site, and love what I’m reading. We have 3 boys, 3 girls, and have suffered the pains of 4 miscarriages (most recently, last week), so we are quite familiar with the comments you have received. I, too vascillate between trying my dead-level best to be a picture of meekness, and then sometimes wanting to give these rude, nosy child-haters a vision of righteous indignation. My favorite reply to the “don’t you know what causes this?” question is:
    “Well, we’ve got it narrowed down to a couple things, and we really like both of them.”
    Not very discreet or ladylike, I know, but it sure shuts them up.
    I must say, however, that my biggest gripe is with the way modern “Christians” have come to also adopt the world’s view of “planning” and “controlling” the size of our families.
    Those very words should tell us what Christians today really believe about a sovereign God.
    If you haven’t done so, listen to Voddie Bauchom speak on the value of the family, based on what God’s Word says. I’m not sure how to tell you to find his message, if you haven’ listened, I lost my link that was saved in “Favorites”, but you can “Google” his name to get the website.
    Blessings to you and your family, and I will definitely be returning often.
    Beth in MS

  6. Beth,

    I’m glad you found our blog! It’s always encouraging to hear from another child-loving mommy! I’m so sorry about your miscarriages. I’m sure, though, they provide you with just another opportunity to say “Yes, God is sovereign”, even though it’s hard.

    Thank you for introducing me (and our readers) to Vottie Bauchman–I had not heard of him before. I think I’m going to order his book “Family driven Faith” (I may have the name wrong). It looked really great!

    I’m not able to hear a podcast on my computer right now as I accidentally deleted the sound card. OOPS!

    Stay in touch!

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