I Have A Say Thanks to My Mom and Dad!!!

Being the oldest of 11, I am so thankful, especially now, for my Mom and Dad saying "yes" to life! Growing up, we never had a ton of money. My Dad was a high school chemistry teacher and my parents decided from the beginning that they wanted to have one of them home with us. My mom gave up her teaching career, and raised me, followed by 10 others! My Mom also taught all 11 of us at home for part of our childhood before we would head off to Nativity Catholic Grade School. My Dad worked long hours, eventually earning other degrees so that he could first become dean, then principal, and finally, when I was a sophomore, he was named Roncalli High School's first president. My Dad and Mom both sacrificed SO MUCH for us.

I remember, even as a young person, getting stared at by people, and I remember the comments they would make. I can still hear a dental receptionist asking my Mom "Are these all yours? You know how children are made right?" followed by a real insidious but ditzy chuckle, followed by a secretarial gum crackle. My Mom and Dad were always tight budget wise, and I'm sure at times ached with a desire to not have to take bags of clothes from other families so that we could have clothes. I'm sure my Mom and Dad had desires to simply go to Nordstrom and buy us and give us all our own new clothes and Gameboys and Reebok Pumps etc. I'm sure they at times really wished they could just get a new car and not have to drive a fifteen passenger van around. I'm sure at times they wanted really badly to just go to a restaurant and sit back and enjoy a big expensive meal instead of having to cut coupons and craft together economic meals on the stove.

But they chose life for us, and they chose sacrifice for themselves.

I often think about that ditzy secretary now when our family gets together almost every weekend for dinner to laugh and hang out. Some of the siblings might be out of town or busy with other obligations, but inevitably, all weekend long, every weekend, our family gets together. Sometimes, when we're out at a restaraunt, I see the couples who are alone with each other. They hardly talk to each other and the loneliness is palpable. A part of me feels bad that we're having so much fun with our 8 tables shoved together, telling stories, laughing good hearty and healthy laughs. Sometimes I wonder if one of the couples sitting in the restaurant quietly and solemnly is that dental secretary - who now has piles of money and can eat wherever she wants, but doesn't have hardly anyone to share it with. My heart breaks for the people who are alone, especially the ones who are alone because, when they could have been having children, they instead bought into the contraception lie and lived for themselves only.

I have a say today, and so do my ten younger brothers and sisters, because my parents chose life. Mom and Dad - thanks a million!!!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Faith Has a Say

I am my parents' tenth child! Sometimes when I think about that, it boggles my mind. I have a say because my parents didn't contracept. They believed that every child was a beautiful gift from God.

My mother was a diabetic. The doctors told her she should not get pregnant. She had 13 children! (Only nine of us are still living). Nowadays everyone goes on and on about how hard having one or two children is. What if my parents had decided that two or three or even six children were enough for them! I wouldn't be here. And that means my own five children wouldn't be here either.

What does a mother of thirteen look like? Well, my mother was slim and elegant. She loved beauty. She decorated our house so that it was cozy and charming. She loved dressing stylishly, though she had to do so on a limited budget, but she was clever and frugal and pulled it off amazingly. She was a voracious reader. She loved British literature, art history and theology. She loved learning new things. And she loved us children. She read to us and sang to us. One of my fondest and earilest memories is of my mother holding the latest baby in her lap with us all gathered around her while she sang to us. She had a lovely voice. She was a great cook too, very good at coming up with delicious, hearty inexpensive meals to feed us all. She was a hard worker, in spite of her health problems and she lived life to the fullest. When she was 77, she passed away. Her health had declined steadily during the last decade of her life. She couldn't play bridge the way she used to. She went blind and couldn't read anymore. She was very depressed until she realized something she could still do: pray. She spent the last ten years of her life praying almost nonstop. She had a peaceful and holy death.

My mother's life is testimony to the deep beauty one can live when one is open to life. People with a Planned Parenthood worldview have such a narrow, shallow understanding of things. They can not know what true joy is. Poor, vapid souls don't know how cramped and twisted their hearts are.

So I thank my parents, and especially my mother, for letting me have a say.

1 comment:

  1. Robert E Crowe,Jr.March 10, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    God bless you,your beautiful mother, and Fr.Hollowell for these stirring stories of love and nobility.