Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Women and Children Series: On Deciding to Have Another One... by Emily

Hi new friends! I’m Emily and I blog over at Peck Life. I was flattered Sarah asked me to be a guest on her blog while she’s enjoying vacation and the topic couldn't be more perfect! I am a 30 year old mama to a 2 1/2 year old boy, Schuyler (pronounced “Sky-ler” but it’s an old family spelling) and wife to my high school sweetie, Josh.

Us circa 2009

It’s a hard thing…this whole “having kids” business. On one hand, they really are a life changing gift. Not only do you get a nurture and teach a little human being all about the world, re-live your childhood, and enjoy the simple pleasures of kiddie pools, the zoo, lemonade stands, and seeing the world through little eyes, but I don’t think there is any other single experience in this entire world that will make you grow and discover who you truly are more than becoming a mother.

When I went to the doctor recently, I asked if I could have my thyroid checked….and my iron levels…and anything else they think might be important….because GOSH am I tired, and burnt out, and maybe there is some reason, medically, why I feel like it’s hard to keep up. Lucky for me, I’m as healthy as they come. I guess it’s just called “HAVING A KID”.

Which brings me to my next point: the downside.

Pregnancy aches and pains, the trauma {physically and emotionally} of giving birth, post-partum anxiety and depression, sleep deprivation, breastfeeding {although a true gift, it was hard and I did not enjoy cleaning pump parts 3x a day for a year}, stress on relationships, tantrums, little free time, exhaustion, and a constant feeling of being stressed, overwhelmed and never “caught up” on bills, errands, groceries, laundry, cleaning, dishes….ALL OF IT*. Compound this with 2 parents who both work full time, and it can really make one think long and hard about having a second go around.

Do we really want to do this AGAIN? We’re barely making it now….what happens where there is TWO? Am I going to go crazy?

When it comes down to it, here are a few things that have helped us with our decision {which ultimately is YES…there will be another baby at some point in the future….}:

1. If you often envision your future with two+ vs. one, that’s probably good intuition to follow. Listen to your gut!
2. Sky deserves a sibling and will be a wonderful big brother. There are a handful of life lessons you can only get via sibling rivalry.
3. There will always be bad with the good but one day it will pay off {right?} The low parts need to be in there somewhere in order to make the good shine through. Having kids is not a cake walk, but I’m keeping my eye on the prize that one day, it will all feel worth it. Because Sky is only 2 ½, it’s hard at this juncture to feel like this “job” we’ve been given is super rewarding. In some ways it is, but I’m trying to remember that he's only barely a toddler and isn't able to show how much he appreciates all that we do for him. I know one day it won’t be like that.
4. Everyone says it gets better. I’m putting my trust in you people!

The right number of kids is different for everyone, so there is no one way to decide if what’s best for your family. Trust your instincts, talk with your spouse, and do what you feel is right!

*NOTE: Not all mothers experience these side effects of children; I’m just speaking from my own experience. I envy people who love mothering so much that they don’t let these things get under their skin or just chalk them up as being small annoyances. Unfortunately for me, I sometimes have a hard time coping and welcome any tips on the best way to manage ANY of this.

Read more of  Emily's writing over at her blog Peck Life.

1 comment:

  1. I love this! I read with interest since we were pretty sure 1 was our number for a while because the beginning was so much work, and it is still so much work with a 2.5 year old.

    But sometimes the universe has its own plans too, and I am so, super-excited to have 2. I think our logical, analytical sides were winning, but deep down inside I was really excited at the thought of having another baby. :)