When one is 47 and pregnant with a 7th child, the range of reaction by others who greet this news is truly wide; sometimes comical, and often surprising. But, of course, at my age I should have heard it all by now, shouldn’t I?

Dropped jaw is the immediate first physical detection. My wonderful friends, family and acquaintances who view life as a gift are full of smiles and exclamations as if this is my first!  What a joy these people are and how wonderfully I am blessed by them. These special individuals fill a mother’s heart so she can continue to persevere with a smile when others pose the usual:

Was this planned? (God’s plan to be sure).

Are you and baby going to be okay? (Really, no guarantees here).

You must be a little sheepish because there are so many ways to prevent pregnancy… (Actually, we are open to life and trust the Father).

Well, so long as the baby is healthy… (actually, this baby is loved by us beyond its health, sex, age, physical characteristics, but more importantly by God who formed him before we even knew of him).

But what if it’s another one like Peter? (To this we say, “Yes, please”. Peter is our five year old who has Down Syndrome, another love of our lives).

This new baby of ours surrounded by the mystery that is God’s creation is loved and cherished already.  There is no doubt that there is some anxiety and level of suffering that comes with all pregnancies and the older mom has some unique concerns. But healthy or not, short or long lifespan, this little one is one of the clan and part of the plan!

You must be so tired… Well, of course I am tired. I am a busy mom in an eventful household but I am also wise enough and practiced to prioritize, and have had enough experience to know my limits and what is truly important to expend my energy. This baby and my other babies are definitely important enough…

And what if I had no children and was a busy executive that travelled with work and had great demands, physical and mental, to deal with on a day to day basis? Do I sound jealous? Not really, but some days we all want to change places.  My point is that in any vocation there are high demands, opportunities for sacrifice and a great need for grace.  This is my path, the special one that God has led me along and I humbly ask to reach Him at the end!

Copyright 2011 Cathy Craig