Monday, 18 May 2015

‘Stop That Noise!!!’ / A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Insanity / Kids Follow my blog with Bloglovin

I have 5 children.
               I have 5 children.
                              I have 5 children.
                                             I have 5 children.

It doesn’t matter which way I say it, the result is the same, there’s 5 of em!

I remember sitting and thinking this very thought one day while all 5 were playing around together in the back room of our home, toys scattered from one end of the room to the other, dress up clothes half on, half off, television blaring and the stereo pumping out the golden strains of ‘Take Me To The River’ by the Commitments.  I wished someone would take me to the river, and drown me! No, not really. Well, at least take me to the river so I could sit in a boat on the quiet water and fish with the only noise being the gentle lapping of the water against the side of the boat and the distant sound of gulls on the shore and the only ones I had to feed were the fish. sigh…..

The noise I was enduring was anything but peaceful. There was, ear piercing squeals and gales of laughter. The sound of  #1 bellowing instructions while #3 sang at the top of her lungs and danced on the coffee table. Movement of the foundations as stampeding feet from #2 chased #4 around the house in gay abandon, and to complete the quintet, the dulcet tones of #5’s screaming could be heard across the boarder.

Now before you say anything, No, I did not have unruly, ill bred children who needed a swift upper cut. Well, sometimes I did, but for the most part they were just normal loud, noisy, busy, imaginative kids who loved to play and dance and listen to music and put on plays and rough house and generally have a good time. Except #5 who seemed to just want to scream for a year or so. Hey, what can I say? You’d probably scream too if you were the youngest and only boy in the family with 4 older bossy, fussing sisters getting in your way all the time!

That was our home. Always alive with noise, mess, people coming and going, phones ringing, baths running, dinner cooking, kids yelling and running around, televisions going and music playing and I loved it, most of the time.

There is an interesting phenomenon though when you have a large number of children. The neighbour’s kids usually come to your house rather than the other way around. In fact, my neighbour once said to me ‘I guess when you have 5 of them you don’t notice a few extra’. In a way it’s true. What’s  7 or 8 or 9 when it’s all boiled down.

There are a few drawbacks of having 5 children though. Like, how everything comes in packs of either 4 or 6 so you always end up with one less or one over. And if I ever had to go away for a night or weekend I would have to split the kids up and send them in different directions because no one wanted to have 5 extra kids over night when they already had 2 or 3. Funny, it was always ok for me to add their 2 or 3 to my 5. That math seemed to work for people, but not the other way around. And cars were a problem as well. Most are 5 seaters which was fine kid wise so long as they didn’t need a driver. Hence we owned a Tarago or two throughout our early years. And with 5, someone always has to share a room, unless you can afford a huge house with 6 bedrooms or convince a couple of them to sleep in a tent in the backyard until someone moves out.

Anyway, what was the point of this post? I’ve momentarily forgotten. I got so wrapped up in my memories that the point now escapes me. Wait, It’s coming back to me. Noise! I remember now. I just lost my train of thought there for a moment in the silence of my office with only the sounds of my keyboard clicking and my brain rattling. I think I think better with a racket going on.

For me, the absence of noise is a sad thing because it reminds me that my children have grown and moved on (well, three of them at least). That’s why I love Wednesday nights when we have family night and we all gather round the dinner table talking over each other and laughing and eating and loving being together. When we manage to have everyone together, there’s 13 of us including partners and grandchildren. It’s not so different really. There’s still orders being bellowed and tv’s going and people singing and the sound of feet chasing the littler feet of the granddaughters around the house with squeals and laughter and conversation and banter and sometimes, sometimes I just sit and listen and enjoy the sound of my family and I ponder why the good Lord decided to entrust me with 5 precious gems. I don’t know the answer to that question, but I’m eternally grateful that He did!




  1. Beautiful! I think my Mum is missing the noise of four as we all leave the nest. I know I miss being in the noisy family environment.

    1. I bet she is too. There is something very special about a big family

  2. I am the oldest of five, and this so reminds me of my childhood. Noisy, and having to share a bedroom with my sister for YEARS, and even in the same bed(a double) at one stage! I remember her making a masking tape line down the middle of the room when we were teens, and my singing myself to sleep used to drive her nuts. Great memories. I also love it when we all get together at mums, and the stories that get rehashed there :)