The decision to expand one’s family is usually one of the heart not of the mind. It is not logical to enter into a situation that will necessitate more time, energy and resources. And yet, we make those choices when following the heart. That happened with us with each one of our children. We did not set out to have four kids under the age of 6. Any sane person would advise against this kind of family planning. Years later, I can look back and wholeheartedly say that I would not have done it any differently. Sure there were days when I questioned my own sanity, but the joy this life has brought us diminishes any doubt about our choices. The oldest two children have earned college degrees and are gainfully employed. Our third child is entering his senior year in college and the youngest is in his senior year in high school. My days of heavily involved mothering are far and few between. Aside from a crisis here or there, I go about my days quite autonomically, doing whatever I choose.
So then, “Why?” you may ask, would I entertain the idea of returning to sleepless nights, whining, crying, and potty-training? The logic of adding chaos to my calm life does not exist. My house is clean, I sleep well, and I can come and go when I please. But there is a quietness to my day that is slowly revealing a void that is growing in my heart. My babies are grown, they are moving on to adventures of their own. I dedicated every day of my life for the past twenty-five years to raising them, being there for them, and preparing them for this separation from me.
My husband shares this feeling. He also sees in me the desire to nurture, teach, and care for others. We have had different pets over the years, but somehow this decision feels different. We recognize our place in life, as our children are no longer children. After the extremely sad loss of our dog we had for fourteen years this past August, we needed time to grieve. She was our family dog, and grew as our children grew. Losing her marked the end of a chapter in our lives. I will write more about her in another post, her impact on our lives was huge.
Recently we made the decision, without clear rationale, that we wanted to bring two puppies into our lives. Two puppies at once. Everyone online and in the real world says we are crazy. We might just be. But we are leading with our hearts. I could not be more excited (or scared) about how our lives are about to change. The countdown is on. In less than ten days we will be bringing home a pair of eight-week old puppies. Our eyes and hearts are wide open!