I am one of 4 daughters. Growing up was reasonably good but there were times I wished I was an only child. School trips we couldn’t always afford, the competition for attention. The usual that comes from being a large family. There were of course the other times of company to play with and fun Christmases but mostly it was a clusterfuck of jealousy from what I remember. Especially once I entered my teenage years.
I mention all this because as Beth is now nearing a year old, the questions spring up of “do you plan on having another?” or “don’t you think she would like a little brother or sister?”. I seem to be in 2 minds about the answer to give currently. If you had asked me when Beth was 12 weeks old, the answer would have been a resounding NO! Ask me now and I have to weigh up options. I was thinking over it again last night and when I asked myself the real question of “Well, why do you want a second child?” My immediate reaction was “Well, I don’t really”. That should be the answer that matters and yet why does my mind sit and think I could go through it all again?
I hated trying to get pregnant (Well I enjoyed one aspect of course) but the obsession and let down and the time it took were too much to cope with.
I hated being pregnant. The morning sickness for 30 weeks and heartburn for 32 weeks were shit. The sheer exhaustion and I cant even claim I was doing anything too strenuous. College is not difficult if you stay organised. Trying to do is all again with what would be a toddler sounds like a nightmare though.
Childbirth, The one area that most repeat mothers would dread is not a concern to me. Except for perhaps how quick it would be. That sort of freaks me out a little but not enough for me to say I wouldn’t want to do it again. Like chances are I’d either need to be in the hospital the moment a twinge happened or go for the home birth. Not something I’m too confident with.
After childbirth though is something I don’t even want to think about. The sleepless nights, the crying. Oh so much crying. The physical pain and the trying to return back to normality. And this goes on for months. Almost a year down the line and I don’t sleep properly. She may wake for a feed and if she doesn’t I wake worried that she hasn’t even stirred. I don’t want to go through that again. I don’t want to be as depressed as I was again.
And then there are the future plans. Me learning this damn language and providing for our family properly. It will take time and energy. Something I wont have with a toddler and a new baby.
You may wonder then why I even contemplate it all again. I certainly have enough reasons not to. It’s because looking at Beth something stirs in me. An urge to do it all again. Something I can’t explain. When she was around 6 months I finally understood the loving feeling that mothers had described. And now each time I look at her I get that same feeling. Yesterday she finally started saying mama after months of only dada. And my heart swells each time she says it. I can’t explain what I want by going through it all again. I don’t want another child. I have my perfect child. I have my little miracle. I guess this is just something primal that doesn’t make sense in today’s world. Will she have any siblings? Not any time soon. Is it even an option? More so than it was. At least in my head anyways. Maybe I just need another basset hound.