Monday, 25 April 2011

Life with 5

I had J in a routine straightaway.  I needed to, as there was 19months between J and N, and 3years 11months between J and B.  It was easy to implement as had just done it with N and had the experience of multitasking with 2 children.  However, it was very tiring and the birth took a bit longer to recover.  It was about 6 weeks before I felt like myself again. 

We had an established routine that was working well for our family.  Without routine, it would have been chaos and not enough time for everyone.  The children had rest/sleep and eating patterns that I strictly followed.  They also had a strict bedtime and wake-up time.  I enjoy being organised and during this time I could plan all these details.  

We were living in a small house.  Plus side was it meant housework did not take up a lot of time however we were beginning to outgrow it.  When J was about 6 weeks, we sold and bought a renovation project in one day.  We then moved in 6 weeks later.  We prayed about the move and everything went through quickly.  It was exciting designing and planning how we wanted our family home to be.  Looking back though I feel we were to quick to make these decisions. 

There were and still are many times that I think God is this really the right decision? did we really hear from you or was it us being too enthusiastic and rushing in?  We had both always wanted to buy a house and do it up.  When we were students we had part time jobs in a diy store together which had taught us about decorating and building.  Our smaller house needed completely re-decorating, which we did together and really enjoyed.  However our new house was a much bigger project and needed lots of work and money (which we soon ran out of).

Time passed so quickly.  I had to be out most of the time, due to all the work that was being done.  We weren't really enjoying life with our new precious baby but just surviving through it.  The house project took up all our spare time.  Evenings and weekends were spent discussing or preparing for the next stage.  I found I did not enjoy the groups or going out as much with 3 children when there was no alternative.   It was so hard to keep an eye on all of them and to try and hold a conversation with another adult seemed impossible. I longed to be able to let the children play with their own toys and just relax in my own home.  I still stuck to our routine of sleep and eating to keep order for the children but it was hard.  It is sad as I don't remember that much of J being a baby.  In some ways I wish we had purchased a 'ready' house and enjoyed our family time instead.  If we had though, I would of missed out on more of Gods teaching and leading. 

After a year of renovating, we could actually 'live' in our house.  We took some time off from house jobs.  The house was not completed and is not still.  I really felt God saying to me that there is more to a home than just functional rooms, all looking good.  It was time to put Jesus in our home.  I don't mean fancy paintings or statues but looking at exactly what a home is and what it means to us. We want Jesus to be the centre of our lives and that includes our home.  So far life had been about material possessions and getting the space right.  God was teaching us - this is not His way.  We started to open our house up more and have people over.  I found that really hard, as I just like things as they should be and felt our house was incomplete but I am learning to be patient (not proud) and that it really doesn't matter.  We were learning to be thankful for what we have and we have so much!

I remember being given a word that Gods work in me, was like our house.  That as we went through each room restoring it to its original purpose, God was doing that to me.  I have had such healing and restoration from God but I will post more on that story later....

Back to life as 5, J was a great toddler and I made every effort to enjoy him and enjoy toddler hood.  Our new house has a big playroom so all the children can play together. It was a lot less stressful and easier to keep my eye on all of them and to meet their different needs, in our own house.  I think this is why I enjoyed J's toddler hood as I could finally relax!  The house is a blessing as now we have a great space for our children and their friends (as well as ours) to entertain in.  We could now make it into our home!

Lots of my original friends from having B had moved onto the next phase.  By this I mean, as they gained more freedom from playschool etc, it was easier to get back to work and be something other than 'mummy'.  As I was still in this phase, and a new baby in tow, I knew it would be a while before I had any time to myself again.  I did feel sad but God blessed me and met with me in this. After my third child, with all the lessons God had taught me, God started to reveal his calling to me...

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