Kids Are Blessings

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. . . but yet we often treat them as burdens.

If you haven’t heard me rant on this before, well, then I hope today this blog post does my thoughts and feelings justice. It’s something I am not perfect about or something that I have all figured out but it is something that I am passionate about. I realized the topic of how we treat children in our society is so long that I am going to have to break it up into multiple posts over multiple days – it will probably take me a week or so. I would love your comments, but if you do, just remember that I am a human too 😉

Today’s topic: Kid are a blessing, so why do we act like they are a burden?

“After you have kids, your life is over.” Or “After you have kids, you don’t have free time anymore.” Have you ever heard statements like that? I bet you have because statements like that are everywhere. To many people, kids are a game over.

Now it is true that you can’t be as spontaneous with a kid as you probably could before kids, but that doesn’t mean that your life is over. And to be honest, you can still be spontaneous even with kids. It’s a little more work, but it can be done. And we act like kids are the only thing that limit your spontaneity – there are many other things that can limit your spontaneity – lack of finances, a work schedule, sharing a car with someone else – but for whatever reason we don’t treat those things that way. Most people view jobs as a blessing and treat them as such, in that it’s better to have to go to work and miss out than to not have a job.

And people, too, act like once you have kids it means that your dreams are dead. But in today’s day and age it is more possible than ever to have a kid and finish college or keep working or travel.

And you can see it in the way we treat large families. Now I’m not saying everyone has to have a large family – certainly there are legitimate reasons not too. But just because it’s not right for you, doesn’t mean you should look down on someone else for having a large family. We say children are a blessing but then with the next breath make comments like “You’re having another one?” or “Don’t you know what causes that?” to moms who have large families. Since when did more blessing become such a bad thing? And what makes children 1, 2, or 3 more wanted and appreciate than 4, 5, and 6? Could it be that they weren’t actually wanted and appreciated but there’s some level that’s acceptable and some level that’s crazy? It’s because we think they are a burden that we can’t understand why people would want more burdens.

And isn’t this burden mentality why we have so many abortions? Because if we really viewed children as a blessing why would anyone ever want to get rid of them? It’s like someone walks up to you and hands you a million dollar check – most people would think of that as a blessing and maybe getting that much money at once would complicate things, just like having a child would complicate things, but most people, just guessing, wouldn’t turn down the money. Just ask any couple who desperately wants a child but yet continues to not get pregnant month after month – I bet they know how special of a blessing a child is even if the rest of society has failed to grasp it.

Mainly I think we view children as a burden because we are selfish people. We want the whole world to be about us and no one else and nothing shows you the world doesn’t revolve around you more than having a child does. It forces you to consider the needs of someone else.

Are children challenging? Yes. Is raising a child well one of the hardest things to do? Yes. But many, many things in life that are worth having are challenging. Look at pro athletes – even if they are naturally, athletically gifted, for most of them it still took time, hard work, and energy to get to the point where they could play pro. And children take time, hard work, and energy to raise up, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t worth it.

Children are a blessing. They enrich your life like nothing else. By forcing you to realize the world isn’t all about you, they can make you a better person. They are a huge blessing and one of the most unique blessings out there. They are yours to love and cherish and help to grow. Not to mention children as a blessing is a Biblical concept. They are a blessing. Period. And I want to treat them like that. I want people to be excited for every child born, not just the ideal ones or the ones born in ideal situations. I want people to say things like “After you have kids, your life is richer and fuller than you could ever imagine.” Because it is. Because they are a blessing. So let’s start having our actions and comments line up with that. I am privileged every day that I get to be a mom to Dominic. I will admit that I have not always acted this way on the tough days, but I am making an effort, because I do think that children are a blessing and I want to live like I think that. I don’t want to say he’s a blessing and then act like he’s a burden. I try to be very careful, for example, about the language I use to talk about Dominic, especially in front of him. Am I perfect? No, but I am trying. I try to look for the positives and cherish the smiles. I try to be thankful. I try not to post social media status updates complaining about him or write negative things about him on my blog. Because he is a blessing (and now I just sound like a broken record.)

P. S. I still have free time – this blog is obviously evidence of that. Maybe I can’t have free time whenever I want, the instant I want it, but I’m adult enough to recognize that the world doesn’t revolve around me. If I worked a regular 9-5 office job with meetings and such, I wouldn’t have free time whenever I wanted it the instant I wanted it either.

P. P. S. This argument times 1 million for special needs children, for whom the idea that they are a burden is much, much greater and still just as wrong. I’m not equipped to talk about it, but this post from a mom of a special needs son does it so well.

Stay tuned for tomorrow, when I will talk about how we treat kids as accessories instead of humans.

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