I've never been a huge follower of Jon & Kate plus 8. I would watch the re-runs in the afternoons when I had a few moments, but I had no idea what night their show was on or that much interest in their family.
But my follower status changed from "occasional" to a "regular" when I read Kate's book: Multiple Blessings. My sister-in-law Katie (who is very into reusing items) passed the book off to me at Christmas, and I was incredibly inspired by it. Here I was, all nervous and in a tizzy about having two boys really close in age. And here was the Gosselin family raising six babies (and twin toddlers) at once! After reading that book, I felt rejuvenated and so ready for Elijah to get here. If they can raise eight kids, I could surely handle two and a dog. Geesh!
In addition, the book was full of Kate discussing their faith in the Lord and how he had helped them through the difficult times surrounding the birth and raising of their sextuplets.
I could have read the book three times. I really could have. It just really motivated me and reminded me of how capable I was of raising these little boys.
I had heard people say that they couldn't watch the show because of the way Kate talked to Jon. I had to defend her. I have a philosophy on relationships. My philosophy is: If it is working, leave it be.
My relationship with JB is a great example of this. If you have spent much time with John and me in person, you've probably noticed that we are a tiny bit sarcastic with each other. We banter back and forth and like to make jokes. Sometimes we take it too far.
This results in "PT" (pillow-talk) time. You all know what that is. It's that moment that you are lying in bed at the end of a night with friends and one person rolls over and says, "Why did you say that?" to the other person who had no idea that there was any problem whatsoever. The other person thought they had had a great night only to discover that it is now "PT" time.
PT time could get a post all to itself so I'll leave it at that.
JB and I had many nights like that early in our relationship. People also gave us a hard time about the way we communicated. So we would attempt to not banter or be sarcastic in front of other people. We'd be in the car on the way to someone's house and promise each other to be well-behaved. "No picking on me tonight." I'd say. "Don't be sarcastic for a few hours, okay?" JB would say back.
The result? Complete crabbiness! Honestly, take away our ability to be sarcastic and banter and we ended up being completely and utterly lost in our communication. It only took about two years of trying that before we both decided that as long as we didn't push it too far, our style of communication was okay because it worked for us.
So back to Jon & Kate. I used to defend them with that same line. Obviously that line isn't true anymore because it doesn't appear it has worked for them. It appears they are on the brink of divorce. Tonight on their show (which I'll watch after Isaac goes to bed) they are making an announcement about the future of their family.
I know this is reality TV. But after reading her book and watching re-runs of the show, I feel pretty attached to this couple. Mainly because they were my chief motivation and encouragement as I prepared to welcome baby #2 into our family. I would say, "Hey if they can raise six babies at once and have a great marriage, so can I." And then their marriage falls apart. And thus my motivation falls apart.
Anyways, I've been meaning to write this post since I watched the season premiere of this show many weeks ago. I literally felt sick to my stomach during the entire show and vowed not to watch ever again. JB actually watched it with me that night (while reading some journal articles). He felt the same way. It was so amazingly painful to watch this family torn apart and their eight children about to lose their parents as they know them.
Repeatedly during that episode, both Jon & Kate reiterated that their children were their biggest priority. I had two major issues with this statement. The first issue is that I don't think it should be that way. I think your marriage has to be the biggest priority. It has to come first. If it doesn't, you can't give your kids everything you need to give them. My second major issue with this statement is that I don't think it is true. If their kids were their first priority they would turn off the cameras, retreat into their home, and give their marriage everything they've got.
I think it bothers me even more because Kate's book was a glowing testament of her faith in our Lord. She talked repeatedly about the fact that they were strong Christians. I know Christians get divorced. But it is just painful to watch everything she talked about come crumbling down.
All right. I could go on and on, but I don't want to bore you all. I just had to get this off my chest. I really am hoping that their "announcement" tonight will inform the whole world that they are turning off the cameras to work on their marriage.
But, unfortunately, I doubt that will be the case.