My son is six months old today. He is fascinating, delightful and awe-inspiring.
Until very recently I’ve been adamant that I did want another baby as soon as is sensibly possible. After having a c-section the midwives told me that I should let my body heal for a year before I start to try for another one, so I decided to stick to that advice. I wanted another baby so soon because I wanted three children close in age, just like my siblings and I. That way, in my idealistic brain, my babies would be as happy as myself and my siblings are, and they would have the same cherished upbringing.
However, three days ago, like an RGB bag full of bricks crashing onto my head I realised something. My life is unique, trying to recapture it through my child(ren) is a big mistake, that will only lead to unfulfilled expectations which in turn will make me disappointed, anxious and resentful.
In subtle ways.
In quiet ways.
In ways I may not admit to myself as my three children grow up distant from one another, finding nothing in common. Maybe I won’t be able to have three. Maybe I will have many more and never sleep again. Maybe, maybe, maybe.
This realisation, in turn, made me analyse my family's journey so far...
Seven months trying to conceive.
Five months of morning sickness.
Twenty four hours of labour.
Three hours of pushing.
One emergency c-section.
Ten weeks of colic.
Four failed hearing tests.
Three audiology appointments.
Two paediatric appointments.
One scheduled blood test.
One scheduled MRI.
I’d have to be, in my opinion, clearly insane to want to go through all of that again.
All of this is coupled with the growing resentment that people seem to expect you to have another baby after you’ve had one. They feel entitled to tell you that you should have another.
I don’t actually want another baby. Not really. Not anymore.
My son is the reason, and not for a negative reason either.
Every moment of my son’s life is precious. Watching him, learning with him, evolving as a family. Watching my husband become this strong, wonderful role model. Precious.
Having another baby will change that, it will change everything and although I could do without the grumpy screaming hours and the sleepless nights, I don’t want to change the dynamic our family of three has built. We are, more or less, contented.
Isn’t that the most important thing?