§ When you just have the urge or need to play or be silly, you have a whole group to do it with you.
§ You always get many kisses for your boo-boos, even the ones you can't see.
§ You get more hugs than you imagined possible.
§ One toy can be easily played with by everyone!
§ You can always get a smile, and indeed, often many smiles - even at the same time!
§ You learn more patience than you ever would have thought possible.
§ Your children can sing and play music for each other or even so their siblings can dance.
§ Your children always have someone to play with - each other.
§ Your children form bonds that will last a lifetime and beyond.
§ Your children are always learning together.
§ Your children enjoy the same books, music and movies.
§ All your children enjoy the same outings!
§ Each child genuinely and strongly supports each other.
§ Your children understand each other.
§ Your children learn to depend on each other as well as you.
§ Your children learn to help each other.
§ Your children learn responsibility helping you.
§ No one is ever lonely.
(If you think of one that should go here, please add it in the comments!)
I understand several small children can making people think of the dirty diapers, the laundry, the cutting of food into tiny pieces, the spills, the crumbs, the handprints, the footprints, the tantrums, the tears, the stains, the doctor visits, and the potty training all multiplied. Some even go above and beyond thinking of the teenage phone bills, the hair and makeup, the borrowing of the car, and the college tuitions all multiplied. And, yes, those things can be a part of life, but I'd remind them of two things.
First, when you have several children close in age, doing multiple of things can be simple. I may change two diapers but make one trip to the garbage can. I cut up 3 pieces of chicken on one plate and then divvy up. Each child uses a towel after a bath but they all take the same bath.
Second, you are forgetting the laughs, the hugs, the kisses, the moments of discovery, the hand-holding, the blowing of bubbles, the chalk drawing, the crayon coloring, the playing Hide And Seek and Ring Around The Rosey, the story telling, the excitement of reading wonderful books, the racing of cars, the squeaking of a rubber ducky, the hanging of pictures on the fridge, the wagon rides, the strolls through a park or down the street, the first steps and the first words, the bedtime prayers and the daily glimpses of God ALL multiplied!
And, although my girls are not far apart in their years, they are very different in personalities. Each brings different gifts and treasures to our family and my day. One morning, Elizabeth woke up and I was so happy to greet her that morning, I began writing a little letter to her telling her so. I've since completed one to each girl. So, in addition to the difficult days and the tests to patience, endurance and peace, consider the following:
Each of my children shine reflecting God's light from a different angle, each one bringing Him into my day, into my life, in a different way. Each is unique and precious and a beloved gift beyond description. Sometimes, when I am tired and my patience is running dry and my head hurts and the house is a mess, it can be easy to forget just who it is all for. Each of my children is a blessing from God in themselves but likewise each is a lifeline from God to me. For, though they do not know it, each of them is teaching me about God, holiness, my vocation, virtue and sanctity just as much as I am teaching them.
Yes, my hands are full, very full indeed, but they are abundantly overflowing with blessings to be cherished and appreciated. For this, to my Savior, I shall be forever grateful.