Before we had so many children I didn't understand how moms of big families could intimately know and care for a lot of kids. I remember once saying something critical of a mom who had four kids. At the time my own two were such a handful and since I didn't know how I could possibly be a good mom to twice that many kids, it made me feel better to think she was off her rocker. Yes, her children were probably suffering, I mused.
How time and perspective changes our thinking, thanks be to God. And now I have five times as many children as I had back then. I am thankful to say that I do know each of these ten people very, very well. Each day I cry out for grace to love them well. I fail a lot. Sometimes I cry from exhaustion. Sometimes I'm perplexed on decisions I face. But the Lord has been and will remain faithful.
Contrary to some opinions of super-sized families, each one of our children are unique in their own way. They are not little cookie-cutters and they are more than just "one of the Moore kids." They share a similar genetic make-up and the same last name, but I cherish their many God-given differences because it makes them who they are. The walls of our home contain photos of each child, alone. It reminds me to see them as individuals, to thank God for their uniqueness and to ask Him to give them grace during the particular trials he has ordained for their lives.
Today we celebrated Shiloh's sixth birthday. A few things about this precious boy I love so much, that set him apart from his siblings are:
- Shiloh is our 7th child and youngest son. He weighed almost eleven pounds when he was born, a quick 12 minutes after I stepped into the birth center!
- Shiloh is timid, often quiet, and he is imaginative. He plays pretend by himself a lot and loves to dress up like a cowboy.
- He still gets in bed with us during the night sometimes.
- He is reading small words and short stories and learning to tie his shoes.
- He loves gummy worms!
- He plays more with Serenity (just 19months younger) rather than his brothers.
- Shiloh has been riding a bike without training wheels since he was three!
- He sits beside me at the supper table and rests his hand on my arm.
- He still takes naps!
- He picks flowers and collects special rocks he finds and gives them as gifts.
- He loves his play-tools and wants to "fix" things around the house.
- Shiloh loves to copy-cat anything Kevin does, even does his best to dress like him. He loves to go anywhere daddy goes no matter how much you tell him, "this isn't going to be any fun."
- This time last year Shiloh was recovering from mono, one of the worst illnesses to hit our home (and somehow, no one else contracted it!) I praise God for bringing him through that ordeal.
We thank God for giving us Shiloh to raise up. He brings us joy each day and I especially cherish these fleeting days that are left of little boyhood. Happy Birthday, my sweet Shiloh!