Take a moment to imagine what a mother of 11 births looks like. Imagine this mother’s sanity, her weight, and her looks. If you are truthful, you will likely have a picture of someone like the title of this web log suggests: barefoot, fat and ugly.
This is a perspective most people have of mothers of large families. Now, I know many large families (we hang out with each other). I can think of a mother of 16, 12 and 9 right off the top of my head. Each of these women are beautiful women. In fact, I cannot think of one mother of more than, say, 6 kids who actually fit the stereotypical obese image that most people have of mothers of large families.
In fact, here’s a photo that’ll knock you over:
This is my wife, Wendy, a mother of 13 children. This was taken right before she got pregnant with the twins. So much for barefoot, fat and ugly, eh?
The lesson here is simple and so incredibly true: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2a). The world has an negative view of what becomes a woman when she is blessed with children. The exact opposite is true, and I have seen this manifest in many families. This is the renewed vision for mothers of many children: they are beautiful, confident, and fulfilled when they allow God to bless them with the wonderful gift of children. Overcoming the negative stereotype of motherhood is a healthy step to understanding the choice of large families.