Hi! I’m Melina, homeschooling mother of 11 and Grandmelina to 2!
I recently encountered the question in a Catholic Mothers’ Facebook group, “What kind of shape does your prayer time take when you have your baby & littles around?”
I didn’t have to think long to come up with my answer.
We’ve always prayed a rosary with our kids – right from the beginning. Daily mass was important to me too – for the graces I needed for my day, but also it was a shorter mass to teach my kids to be good, so that come Sunday they were better behaved at mass. I was always part of a bible study that “forced” me to schedule the reading of scripture and meditate on it. Middle of the night feedings gave me time for scripture reading or Mercy Chaplet. That was my “alone” time with the Lord even though the baby was present. I tried adoration but I would always fall asleep from lack of sleep. Then I read the book The Apostolate of Holy Motherhood where Mary is speaking to a young mother encouraging mothers to pray all 15 (now 20) mysteries of the rosary daily. I would start the morning praying a decade, and squeeze in as many decades each day as I could – while driving, folding clothes, washing dishes, nursing the baby, watching the kids play at the park, before falling asleep at night, during middle of the night feedings. Even if I didn’t finish all 20 mysteries, I would continue the next day where I had left off and then start all over again. This is the number 1 best thing I have ever done. I had 11 kids in 13 years and homeschool, and now that there are no babies in the house any more, I still continue this rosary praying and have reaped immeasurable graces from it. So it is true, one day you also will have no more babies in the house and the perseverance you have now with prayer will have a chance to blossom even more later on. Now, the days where I can pray all 20 mysteries all at once (during my morning walk) are my mini-retreat where God teaches me something new each time and builds my desire for adoration, scripture and sharing Jesus with those I meet during my day, especially my family.