What were you thinking???


I get asked this question at times- People questioning my possible lack of sane judgment when they notice that my husband and I have 7 children and the 4 youngest are all 6 years old and younger. Funny thing is the question usually comes from a family member or close friend. Strangers usually smile admiringly and tell us we are super heroes in their minds. But family members feel less constrained to hold back the opinion or two. The biggest reason for the “what were you thinking” is because my husband and I are middle-aged with our oldest “children” in college and the other 17 years old. After all, we were nearly finished raising children, why in the world would we choose to start over? When I say choose, I mean actually choose more children. We decided to increase the size of our family through adoption. This wasn’t an easy decision and I won’t go into how we came to it. Let me just say – it was definitely a “God Thing!” There are days when I myself ask “what in the world was I thinking?” But, most days, I know. I know that I know that I know, this is a God led calling. The knowledge of this humbles me. Sometimes I feel overwhelmingly in over my 43 year old head. Most of my days are long hard days with lots of precious memories mingled in with some tough moments that usually involve poo, dirty dishes, laundry, or tantrums. I’ve always wanted a large family and had intended that I would birth all my babies or at least most of them into this world. Of course, adoption was a dream of mine also, but I never knew that most of my family size would come through adoption. I physically labored and birthed in 3 of my darling “children” and experienced a different kind of birth pangs while bringing the other 4 into our family through adoption.


So, in reply to all those that have posted this question to me at some point, I have a list of answers because the question is a loaded one. Please note that some answers may have a slant of sarcasm, which was very intentional, since the question, “what were you thinking” was indeed disguised in sarcasm although the person asking the question was truly thinking we must be stark raving “mad” to do what we are doing.

  1. I love children, most of or the majority of the time. No, really. Children add spice to our lives in so many ways.

  2. I never want to get too self-focused, so I decided the best way to do that was to have so many children to take care of that my own needs were never top of my to do list.

  3. God tugged at my heart and gave me this unexplainable desire to bring children into my home who needed a family. I had always felt there was someone missing from my family even though I was content with the children I had. I suppose it was God’s way of preparing me for the others He sent to us.

  4. Early on, when we made the decision to become adoptive parents, I told the Lord that whatever child he sent to our home we would answer the phone calls from the social workers with “yes”.

  5. My most precious memories in life have come from raising my babies. Why wouldn’t I want to do this all over again?

  6. I’m good at mothering. Notice, I am not saying that I’m a perfect mother. I’m a good mother and have a heart towards mothering. I am well aware that there are huge sacrifices and that it brings much pain, but there are priceless perks as well.

  7. I go into a frenzied panic when there is not enough laundry to wash, dry and fold and put away. After all, its good exercise running up and down the stairs from the laundry room to the bedroom dressers and closets.

  8. Mothering is serious business. After all, the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. Deep stuff,right? I like being part of a bigger plan.

  9. I like to feed large groups of people. My grandmother did it and it looked like great fun. Oh, and the horrible mess afterwards makes me do a little happy dance every time.

  10. Raising children presents many challenges. These challenges prove only to make me grow and gain more wisdom and patience. I’ve learned more about my relationship with God through parenting. I like challenges with an eternal purpose.

  11. Years ago, I prayed and asked the Lord to give me wisdom and patience. He answered by making me a mother of 7 children. Be careful what you pray for. Sometimes God will answer those prayers by giving you “hands on” experience.

  12. Someone has to do “it” (adopt children that needed a good home). So, why not me? I couldn’t give any valid reason not to, so I did.

  13. I like having a long to-do list and too little time to do it in.

  14. Family is important to me. Always has been and always will be. Life was not meant to be lived out alone or without a group of people we call “home.” I like sharing our life with this large family. There may be more noise, clutter, chaos (at times) conflict and work. But there is also more love, hugs, memories, fun times, laughter, moral support, and helping little (and big) hands.

  15. and finally, to answer the question “what were you thinking” – we were “thinking” with our HEARTS not our HEADs.



  1. I love you and your whole family! I am blessed to have been welcomed into your home and given the honor of helping you for the short time I did. I continue to pray for you and look forward to heaven, when we will have all the time in eternity to visit and praise our God together!! ❤

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