Sunday, September 20, 2009


Everywhere I look these days, it seems someone we know is having a baby. One of my play group moms just had a baby a month ago (in her car, no less!), another one is due in three weeks, and yet another one just told us she is expecting her second in March. Add to this, one of my husband's oldest friends and his wife are expecting their second any day now* AND another one of my mom friends is expecting their second in January. Not to mention several blog friends. I guess it kind of makes sense. When we had Sophie, it seemed like we were surrounded by people who were also having kids, but this time we're not sharing in the agony glory.

Neil and I talk about having another kid. All. the. time. Mostly it's him saying, HEY, ARE YOU READY FOR ME TO KNOCK YOU UP YET?? and me covering my ears with my hands and saying nananananana, I can't hear you. Because I am so, so, so not ready yet. What's funny is that I always thought that two years apart was perfect, it's the age difference between my sister and I, and clearly a lot of other people think it is perfect, too. If I were to get pregnant tonight, not that that is going to happen, but if I were, our kids would be 32 months apart. Which even when I write that it seems like a good number.

But here's the thing. I am not ready. No way. No how.

There was a long time in my life where I thought I didn't want kids at all. Like from the time I can remember until I was about 30. When someone came into my life that actually made me think that reproducing wasn't the worst thing that could happen. Where I began to wonder what it would be like to create a new life with someone. But making that realization and actually deciding to follow through with it took me several years more. It was on our first wedding anniversary that I finally said, okay, let's take the goalie out and see what happens. And almost exactly nine months later, we had Sophie. Maybe we got pregnant too fast. Which is a ridiculous thing to say, especially when there are so many people who struggle and suffer so much to get pregnant. But I didn't have the time to adjust to the idea of getting pregnant before BAM, I was pregnant. Which is what I'm afraid will happen again.

Pregnancy was so unpleasant for me, and delivery was SOO not fun and life with Sophie has been, well, challenging. All of which makes me not super excited to jump on that merry-go-round again.

So here we are.

One kid. Would it be weird to only have one? The upsides: only have to pay for one kid's college, never have to deal with fighting, can have a three bedroom house and still have a guest room. The downsides: will never be able to split a pizza evenly, no live-in playmates, can't pretend that both/all kids are my favorite.

People, this is the hardest decision I've ever made.

*Just heard from them that today might in fact be the day!! They're heading to the hospital as I type. What a strange and wonderful coincidence!


  1. you are right - it is such a hard decision - and I never - NEVER -wanted kids until I met my husband (literally me and my 1st hubbie pretty much divorced(among other things) b/c he wanted kids and I did not). I just kept having them - one after the other - not giving my self a chance to really decide. I have been trying for a baby or another baby since we got married! Isn't that hilarious and crazy to think about!

    Not all pregnancies are the same nor births - think about that. If you had a terrible labor that ended with a csect (I can't remember). Let me tell you - the second CSect is A DREAM - A DREAM - a beautiful dream!! Not joking!!

    Just take your time with this and the answer will come - either way - all will be well!

  2. It's not a decision to make lightly, for sure. I love having my kids 3 and 3 1/2 years apart. My nieces are 4.5 years apart. Guess what? There isn't ONE right age difference or family size. But remember that you won't get the chance to go back in time. If having another baby has more positives than negatives, then maybe you should open your mind to the possibility. But if it truly makes you want to have a nervous breakdown, then maybe it needs to be put on hold for a full year and re-evaluated next year.

    Good luck. Remember that we ALL go through nervousness when we think about family size and pregnancy. Each kid and pregnancy is different, though.

    That said, you should totally get knocked up so I can do the pregnancy thing vicariously, ok? Come on. Be a friend!

  3. I know this is a huge decision and your to make but think of the child having someone to play with, grow up with and just having someone around. Belive me even though my brother is accross the country it's nice to know someone understands what I'm going thru with parent and such. Just someone to lean on. that being said no two pregnancys are alike not eevn with tha same person as I experienced with both of mine. some thing similar but not tottaly the same. and the birth.... Well not at all the same a breeze with the first and not so much with the second.
    But you do what you feel is right for you and your family one for some is enough for others 18 is not enought.LOL (Duggers) it's all on what youe feel is right! ((huggs))
    do what you think is right no one will judge you

  4. This is hard for me to understand, see I was the person that always wanted kids. I wanted to have two or four. But then we ran into so many problems trying to conceive that I decided I could be happy with just one but I had to try for a second. This was my last shot. I was not going to go through the pain and hardship again. But it worked out for me, I got my four kids in 2 pregnancies.
    You are smart to wait. Your answer will come. And maybe when Sophie turns 3 or get a little older (aka calms down), you will start to want another baby.

  5. It's not weird to only have 1 child. You are the only one that can and should make that decision. My girls are 3 years apart and it took us a while to decide whether or not to have a second. I will say that going from 1 to 2 was really hard for me...when they were little, I never felt like I was able to do anything 100%, but that is such a short amount of time in the grand scheme of things, and now I look back & I realize that my younger daughter actually benefitted from not having my undivided attention! She's more laid back, out-going, less serious (everything I'm not & wish I could be). She has taught me a lot & I couldn't imagine life w/o her, but easy it was NOT. Not in the 1st year or 2 anyway. Now that they're 12 & 9? MUCh easier!

    You'll figure it out...but don't feel pressure because of other people--they're not going to be there when you have to get up at 3am all over again! :-)

  6. You DO realize that you probably just jinxed yourself with this post don't you? Cara, Cara, Cara, lol.

    Shane and I had a theory that having them every 2 years was the smart way to go.

    Turns out that was stupid. lol.

    You'll know when and if you're ready. Probably about 3 months along. ha ha

  7. Obviously it's a personal decision, but there's NO WAY I could have just one. I came from a family of three kids and I love the bond I have with my siblings. I loved being pregnant and I had my dream delivery though.

    Recently we took Maia over to visit her FIL & his new roommate, who has a 10 yr old daughter. The daughter is an only child ... and she was UNBEARABLE to be around. Any time anyone paid Maia attention, she was right there, saying to my FIL: "You love her more than you love me. You should stop paying attention to her, talk to me. Why do you like her so much? Why don't you pick me up?" etc etc etc... this CONSTANT begging for attention... these CONSTANT attacks on my daughter. I don't know if all only children are like that -- I desperately hope not -- but I could not deal with having a kid who was so spoiled and so used to being the centre of attention.

    I actually said to Chris yesterday that we should start TTC #2 this summer :P C'mon lady, do it with us!

  8. Maybe you are just not ready yet! I know lots of people that have their kids 2 years apart...BUT GIRL! I WAS NOT one of them! I needed a break! Physically, emotionally, spritially. It all is so draining to me. That is why our kids are so spaced out! I love a full house, but I needed a break in between each, and if you would have asked me when my kids were Sophie's age, I wasn't ready!


    Maybe that urge will hit you. Like a ton of bricks! When she is 3. or 4.

    When Matthew was 5 and started Kindergarten I freaked. Introducing Summer.

    You will know what is right for you.

  9. You're still a parent, whether you have 1 kid or go all Duggar and have 47.

    (Random sidenote... best Text From Last Night, ever:
    "Michelle Duggar likes to f*#k."

    My girls lack 3 months being 4 years apart. We didn't plan it that way. In fact we were only going to have one child. But God had other plans and now we have Caroline. Good times.

  10. Don’t get too hung up on the sibling to play with idea. My older brother and sister were too old to play with and my little brother and I never got along (4 years difference). Now that we are all grown up, we all live in different cities and have pretty much nothing to do with each other. (My one brother is a raging alcoholic.) I often think it would be easier to not have brothers and sisters and then I could blame my lack of sibling camaraderie on the lack of siblings. But sadly, that is not the case.
    All I am saying is, to think you owe Sophie a brother or sister is not a good reason to have another child. They may never even be close.

  11. Bito and Cupcake are two years, six days apart. Then there's two years, one month, one week and one day between Cupcake and BabyMuffin. But I always thought that four years apart would be ideal, because that's the span between my sister and me. Well. We see how that went.

    I don't think having one child would be weird at all. All families look different, right?

    And I personally think if you aren't ready, don't do it. But that's my opinion and you can take it or flush it away with the thousands of other opinions you will get. Solicited and not.

    What's does your husband want (other than to actively participate in knocking you up)?

  12. I'm only have one. At first it was by choice and now it is medical necessity (recently diagnosed with Lupus.)

    I'm not pushing either, but the one thing I will tell you is yu know what is write for you. Do not let anyone tell you you "have to" have another child. You don't. There are no rules.

  13. This quote from your post pretty much sums up my life right now, "Mostly it's him saying, HEY, ARE YOU READY FOR ME TO KNOCK YOU UP YET?? and me covering my ears with my hands and saying nananananana, I can't hear you. Because I am so, so, so not ready yet"

    haha. seriously. my life to a 't'.

  14. I've thought about you a lot on this topic, because I can tell with everything you've written that it would be a lot for you to take on being pregnant again right now.
    Z truly was an accident though we were talking about the when of it when I got pregnant. We knew we wanted 2 and I wanted them roughly 2 years apart, so he was a happy accident and I love their age difference. (But you don't have to worry, you've already passed up our 21 month age gap.)
    I won't lie to you. It was really hard that first year, and part of that was having two very small, very active babies in the same house. I'm not going to kid you and say that the second may not be as active because both of mine are live wires.
    The fact that you're having such trepidation makes me think you should wait a little longer. A lot of my friends are just now having their second with their older one going off to Kindergarten this fall. I think there are pluses to any decision and if you decide not to have a second, there's nothing wrong with it, and there are plenty of only children. Happy ones too! ;)

  15. I could talk all day on this. I am an only child, who later in life found myself parent to twins. Polar opposite life than I had growing up. I hated being an only child growing up, but I love it now. And I also understand it now. I think there is nothing wrong with having an only child. Nothing at all. You can spend more time with the child, focus on your life more, go to the grocery store, all kinds of things. What I love about having two is that they play together, have bonds, have each other. Being an only child myself means that they have almost no family on my side so, it's good they have each other. Anyways, I'm rambling. And I'm rambling because there are good arguments for both. Do what's right for you. It will be the right decision.

    And crap! You are over thirty? Oh I so didn't see that coming. I thought you were undoubtedly in your twenties. I'm befuddled.

  16. wait til you are ready. It is very personal, having kids. Besides, there is no cookie cutter spacing pattern you should abide by. If Sophie is older, she will get more out of it and can be a big help. Besides the next kid is bound to be the opposite of the first (God help me, CRW is on a well behaved streak lately, so that means a wild child is next!?!).

  17. If you're not ready, you're not ready. At a certain point, it's probably a leap of faith though. I know I didn't have a moment like, "Wow, I have really mastered parenting and Bub is just an angel so let's go!" (For the record, I know you're not expecting such a moment.)

    I will say that my second is SO MUCH EASIER than my first. It's like some kind of miracle and if you choose to expand your family, I wish that miracle for you!

  18. First, I don't think you're ready right now if you are having to think about it this much. Timing is everything. I was like you, wanted one. Then after one, 2 was good. 3 and 4 were the big surprises...especially number 4. Kids being far apart is NOT a bad thing, my oldest and youngest are 12 yrs apart. My 2 hardest are 5 yrs apart. Just wait, then you may find yourself ready in a few years.

  19. Just keep in mind that it's a totally personal decision. It's your family, your life, and you are the one who has to live it.

    My little girl is 26 months old. And she will be an only child. Mostly due to medical complications with me that we don't want to have to go thru again. However, I was never really sure that I wanted children, and while I love my precious daughter dearly, I just don't want any more.

    Every day someone asks me "when are you going to have another", or I get "are you working on a second yet", or something like that. And a lot of derogatory comments have come my way when I say that I don't plan to have any more. It should be no one's business but your own if you choose to have another, or not, and why.

    Good luck with the decision!

  20. I will tell you, because I feel like we are kindred spirit, in that we have daughters who are very similiar in dispositions....ahem....that you should wait until you are ready or until you miss a period....whichever comes first. Is that vague enough.

    Actually, God knows exactly how many you need. I sometimes question the last one He sent to us, however, God knows better than I do, so I'm just going to press on.
    Every child is different. They are all equally challenging in their own ways, but they all have special personalities and I wouldn't trade any of them.....on a good day.....

    ....kidding....of course.....:)

    For the record, I did have my tubes tied to stop pregnancy from occuring after #3 coming totally unexpectedly.

  21. Keep in mind that your little girl is at a high maintenance sort of age too. My second was a surprise and my two are a couple of months over 2 years apart. So that first few months after she was born were labor intensive, but then it got better as J got older. And now they are close enough that they share a lot of the same activities and friends and toys, but not so close that I was tandom breastfeeding or had two in cribs.

    My older child is also a challenge, so it was a nice surprise when his sister was nice and calm and easy, and she remains that way to this day.

    After the second was born and I didn't know if we should stop or keep going, I prayed a lot for guidance before coming to the conclusion that two is good. And once we made that decision, it came with a lot of peace.

  22. I totally feel you on this one. Adding to my hesitation is anxiety and superstition. I had a healthy pregnancy, easy delivery, healthy baby... I don't know if I could handle something going wrong if I do it again.


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