Ok, we are weird.
My wife and I are “young-ish.” When we meet new people (without our children present)…well, here is a typical introductory conversation:
Us: Hello, we are Mr./Mrs. foolarch, nice to meet you.
Them: Nice to meet you.
After some light banter…
Them: Do you have kids?
Us: Yes, we have four kids.
Them: (noticing our “young-ish” appearance) Four kids! Wow, that’s
horribleterrific! What are their ages?
Us: Rabbit is eight (really 8-1/2), Eeyore is seven (really 7-1/2), Pooh is five, and Tigger will soon be four (btw, if you ask her, she will say “3-1/2” until her the actual day of her birthday).
As a side comment, age is soooooooo important to children; not so much to adults. When children meet, whether you ask them or not, they will tell you PROUDLY, while waving an alternating three-then-four fingers, “I am THREE AN’ A HALF years old! On my next birthday, I will be FOUR!” When adults meet the speaking of age is taboo. Especially for women.
When men meet, usually the first bit of information exchanged is “Wadda you do?” For women, well, you would have to ask an expert.
Them: Wow! They are close together, that is amazing. How do you do it?
Us: (me, looking at my wife quite sheepishly) Well, we do love each other…and we don’t have cable television.
Them: (my wife loves this one) Do you what causes that?
Us: Yeah, we have that one figured out, we are drinking filtered water now.
Within our circle of friends, four children is just above average as far as quantity of children. My wife is VERY competitive, so being above average might not just work for her. Like I said, we are weird; call us fools. We did not base the number of children we have off of anything that the world does. Children do take time, they cramp your lifestyle, they are messy, they are expensive, etc. I guess what shaped our world view in this area, more than anything else is God’s word:
A Song of Ascents. Of Solomon.
Unless the Lord builds the house,
those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early
and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
for he gives to his beloved sleep.
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.