How many children do you have?
I’m often asked this question. It’s usually by old friends or acquaintances I haven’t seen in a while, or by new friends and people I meet in our new town. The thing is, I always struggle to answer it.
I know what the “comfortable” answer is. The easy answer is what they can see. Four. I smile and say that I have four children. Usually that’s enough to have someone raise their eyebrows and say, “Oh wow! What a big family!”.
And we are. We are a big family.
…but for me, we’re a little bigger. And as we head into September each year, I feel it a little more than most. While you see four children in my arms, there were five that grew in my belly. For 13 weeks there was another that we planned for. That we longed for.
One that we loved. One that we lost.
So while I usually give the easy answer, it’s not the one I want to say. It’s not the one I feel.
“How many children do you have?”
Five. I have five children.
Four in my arms, and one in my heart.