Everyone has drawn one of those ‘picture perfect’ families; you know the ones with a husband and a wife (both with smiles nonetheless), a boy and a girl child and then usually a dog as well. Everyone is holding hands in front of their house, the sun is shining and the perfect little stick figures are our ‘dream life’. This narrative needs to change. Not only about who marries who, but that a full family is a family of multiples.
Not a day passes that I don’t think about having another baby. It lasts about 10 minutes, then I think about all the reasons we are good the way we are. Then I’ll watch a youtube video of an amazing birth story or see a beautiful family of multiple kids on instagram and go right back to wanting to expand our team. All but ONE of my friends has said that they always knew they wanted multiple kids or just one. This is whats making my head spin constantly, is I don’t know. I’ve never known. I thought I never wanted kids in the first place. And if everyone else has always known, why don’t I? What am I missing?
On top of feeling out of place, I think about all the other things. Deciding you want to expand your family, doesn’t mean you will. There are complications, there are strains on your relationship (at least in ours), and there months and months when you don’t feel like yourself. And then I feel bad that most of my reasons for not trying to have another baby are selfish. I don’t know where we’ll find the time, how I’ll cope, how I’ll bounce back in confidence after stretching my body limits again…. the list goes on and on. Then I go right back into the thoughts of not giving Lincoln enough; not having him grow up with a sibling, not providing a playmate for him, choosing to not try for another when so many people don’t even get the chance to try for a baby. Who am I to not appreciate the gift of possibly being able to carry another baby?
The only constant that I’ve said since I can remember thinking about a family is either being a foster family or adopting. I think about all the kids who aren’t in a loving, stable home, and that I would be taking away the chance to help a child who is already in this world.
“There is no such thing as a perfect parent. So just be a real one.” – Sue Atkins
Every quote you come across about having a child is then about the children, plural. I don’t hear many people talk about the conversation before deciding to try and have more another child or more children; what does it sound like? Maybe it wasn’t even a conversation, it was a fact and that was it. This is the time I could really use a fortune teller, or psychic or someone to basically tell us what our path and future holds.
For now, I’ll just follow Sue’s advice and keep talking about the thoughts in my head. Hopefully they resonate with someone, and maybe we can open up this conversation.