So God Made a Mother is Here! 🎉

I was still pregnant the first time someone asked if I was done having kids since we had a boy already and a girl on the way. I’ve had people assume this several times since then, and it still gets under my skin every time. Why should everyone assume I’m going to stop? Why do they think two is enough? What if I want more?

Comments that suggest I should be done just make me feel guilty for considering more. Is there something wrong with having more than two kids? The facial responses I’ve seen on the occasions when I’ve responded, “No, I’m not done,” certainly seem to suggest that I’m making a poor decision.

My husband and I still only have two children, but we do hope to have more.

When we were engaged, we played those cheesy bridal shower games when you had to guess answers about the bride and groom. Our answer to the question of how many kids do you want was as many as God gives us. That answer is still true.

RELATED: To the Mom of a Big Family, Your Heart Was Made For Many

We will lovingly accept any and all children God gives us, but my vocal answer is a bit more nuanced now that I’m a bit olderat least one more than we have right now. My motto now: One child at a time. One pregnancy at a time. One childbirth experience at a time. One day at a time. And today? We want at least three.

In my dream future, my daughter has at least one sister, and my son has at least one brother. So will we be done after three? Maybe, but probably not. We might not even be done after four. Or maybe we will. I don’t know what the future has in store for us, or what God has planned. One child at a time. And as many children as He gives us.

I don’t think I’m selfish in wanting more than two children.

Children are meant to be gifts, and if God chooses to be overwhelmingly generous to me, I will accept those children happily and willingly. And I don’t think I’m choosing my own happiness over that of my children. I think they will love having brothers and sisters.

RELATED: Dear Kids, Your Siblings Are a Gift For Life

Our children will be loved and cared for, and as I’ve learned, the love in my mother’s heart does not get divided with each new birth. It is multiplied. I knew I was ready for another child when my love for the first became so painfully overwhelming that I thought my heart might explode. My love for my firstborn son overflowed, making room in my expanding heart for his sister. And now? I’m feeling that pain again, and my heart longs for another child to love.

I don’t think I’m doing the world a disservice by choosing to have more children.

I know some people believe we have a moral duty to reduce our environmental footprint by limiting the number of children we have. People argue that the world is already overpopulated, so we have a moral obligation not to add to the problem. But I don’t think my family, or large families in general, are to blame.

RELATED: 7 Reasons Having a Big Family Rocks

We behave responsibly and teach our children that we are meant to be caretakers of this planet. We recycle, reuse, and conserve in our house, and we have taught our children to do likewise (or will teach them). I do believe we are meant to care for this world as a gift from God, but this world has been given to our children, as much as it has been given to us, and as the Giver, God has every right to decide just how many children He desires to receive this gift.

I don’t think a husband and wife with their one son and one daughter necessarily make the perfect family. There is no perfect family. We are all human after all. We make mistakes. We make poor decisions from time to time.

We are not perfect, but there is love here.

And right now we are confident that our love is overflowing to the point where a third child needs to be welcomed into our family to receive that overwhelming love. So no, we are not done having kids, but thank you for sharing your opinion. I hope you’ll be willing to allow me to share mine as well.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Shannon Whitmore

Shannon Whitmore currently lives in northwestern Virginia with her husband, Andrew, and their two children, John and Felicity. When she is not caring for her children, Shannon enjoys writing for her blog, Love in the Little Things, reading fiction, and freelance writing on topics such as marriage, family life, faith, and health. She has experience serving in the areas of youth ministry, religious education, sacramental preparation, and marriage enrichment.

Our Kids Need to See Us Slow Down Too

In: Living, Motherhood
Friends with feet up around a fire pit, color photo

I have a girlfriend who has a lake house just over an hour away. It’s in a small town that has a local Mexican restaurant with a fun, easy-going staff that feels like they have to be family. There have been times over the last few years that something about that casual, bright restaurant with its rowdy waiters and surprisingly outstanding, cheap food makes me feel so content. The small lake town is not that far from home, but it feels far enough away to be unavailable to my responsibilities and have a tiny piece of that vacation vibe (without...

Keep Reading

God Holds Her Every Step of the Way

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother holding infant baby's feet, color photo

We were told she wouldn’t make it to 20 weeks. When she made it, we were told she wouldn’t survive to full-term. When she survived to full-term, we were told she wouldn’t grow properly. When she grew, she thrived. When she thrived, she confused the doctors. RELATED: Keep Fighting, Little Miracle When the doctors tried to find the science to explain away her defeating all the odds, I had the answers. God. Prayers. Miracles. At 10 weeks when I found out about her condition, I prayed. I gathered my prayer warriors, and we prayed. Ultrasound after ultrasound, the technician was...

Keep Reading

When the Last Baby Graduates

In: Grown Children, Living, Motherhood
Graduate with parents smiling, cap and gown

We’ve been through this before, so we know the waves of emotions that roll through us. When our kids graduate—be it from preschool, elementary school, middle school, high school, or college—we moms come to terms with one season ending and a new one beginning. RELATED: I Blinked and You Went From Kindergarten to College When it’s your last child who is graduating from college, this can feel like uncharted territory. Yes, we know that we find new rhythms to our relationship from having gone through this with our other child(ren). But we as moms have not yet left the college...

Keep Reading

God Bless the Teenagers (and Their Parents!) Who Impact Our Young Kids

In: Motherhood, Teen
Teen coach with young rider on horse, color photo

Lucy wears tall riding boots and a helmet that looks like a bonnet when it’s hot out. Her hair is curly, but sometimes she straightens it. When I first met Lucy, she was wearing plaid pajama pants. My little girl, Ada, refuses to trim her nails because she wants them to be long, “just like Lucy’s.” I met Lucy almost four years ago when she was only 14. She carried herself like she was older. The ends of her hair were bleached, she had a quiet confidence that reminded me of an old friend. She took my daughter outside to...

Keep Reading

The Face In the Mirror Has Changed, But It Tells My Story

In: Living, Motherhood
Woman standing in kitchen next to roses, color photo

If I were to do an inventory of my home of 42 years, I would get a grip on what should be thrown out, given away, or kept. The older I become, the more difficult it is for me to make these decisions. I attempted making a list of personal items I would like each of my sons to have (not that they wouldn’t get rid of them after I am gone) and have started thinking about items to bequeath to grandchildren. I believe I know which son would be happy to acquire books, which son would gladly be the...

Keep Reading

But How Will I Let Her Go?

In: Motherhood, Teen
Mother standing with high school graduate

It was nothing as I pictured. Really. Nothing about it was how I thought it’d look, feel or be. I mean I knew I’d be emotional, duh, but all the rest of it was like a dream or something. A feeling I really can’t describe because it’s not how I’ve ever allowed myself to feel. All of the huge moments leading up to these past few days have been so insane. And the fact that I am who I am—and am obsessed with embracing them all and truly eating them up individually—had them come one by one but at lightning speed....

Keep Reading

Before You, Boy, I Never Knew

In: Kids, Motherhood
Three boys playing in creek, color photo

Before you, boy, I never knew that little boys could get so dirty. Play so rough. Climb so high. Assess your risks. Make me hold my breath. Messes everywhere.   Before you, boy, I never knew how much my lap will make room for you. My arms will stretch to swallow you up in endless hugs and just hold you close. And love you to the moon and back. And back again. Snuggling and snuggling.  RELATED: I Met a Boy and He Changed Everything Before you, boy, I never knew that there would be so much wrestling. And superheroes, and far-off...

Keep Reading

Dear Son, As You Move on from Middle School

In: Motherhood, Teen
Teen boy getting into passenger side of car

When you were almost two years old, we were driving home from the library and a song that used to be one of your lullabies, the old Irish folk song “Carrickfergus,” was playing in the car. You put your hand to your heart and said “ohhh,” as if it was so beautiful to listen to that it was almost a little painful, which any good song can feel like. You weren’t quite speaking in total full sentences, but you were already super verbal. It was just one of those moments where you didn’t have to be though, because I understood...

Keep Reading

As the Mom of a Teen, I Belong in the Backseat Now

In: Motherhood, Teen
Teen driver, color photo taken from the back seat

I remember growing up, the best thing in the world was calling “shotgun!” and beating my sisters to the front seat of the car. The coveted seat next to my mom or dad—seeing the world from the grown-up view, instead of craning my neck around the huge barrel seats of our station wagon, trying to catch a glimpse of the wide world ahead of me. Somewhere along the way, early in my teen years, I stopped calling shotgun and headed straight for the back. While the view was smaller, it was mine alone. Facing out the rearview with my headphones...

Keep Reading

It’s the Flower Food Packet that Hurts

In: Grief, Loss, Motherhood
Flowers on a headstone

It’s the flower food packet that gets you. That little plastic packet with the powder that keeps your flowers alive longer. The little packet you know you’ll never use because these flowers aren’t going in a vase. They’re going on the ground. RELATED: The Impossible Grief of Child Loss Hurts Forever Buying flowers for my baby’s grave is a normal process for me. Every so often, and especially around the time of year we lost our boy, I grab a bunch at our local grocer. I lay them carefully on top of where his very tiny body was laid to...

Keep Reading