In one of the Facebook parenting communities that I belong to, one of the questions that popped up recently was about knowing when you want to have a second child. The original poster had arrived at the “deadline” for planning for a second baby but found herself utterly unprepared for another child.
That post resonated strongly with me. Because, as I was telling husband recently, if I weren’t already pregnant, I may not feel the inclination to procreate at all.
All along, I have wanted two kids. I grew up in a two-child family and, despite the many fights and emotional battles that I have fought with my older sister, I am very glad that I have her. This is especially pertinent since we are a single-parent family. I am not sure I would have been able to deal with all the angst and drama on my own.
Husband, on the other hand, has two siblings but he is not particularly close to them. He was perfectly fine with having one child, or none at all. And if I had said that I was done with having kids, he would have been happy too.
What nobody tells you about is just how difficult the first year of your child’s life is. I am not exaggerating when I say that we heaved a collective sigh of relief when Aidan hit the one-year mark. Our lives had changed drastically – and that is an understatement – and it took us a while before we became husband and wife again, and not simply parents. As much as we loved our kid and being parents, we were also constantly exhausted and our lives revolved around him.
Once we crossed the first year, however, things became so much easier. Aidan may have his moments which drive us absolutely bonkers but life with a toddler is infinitely more fun and easier than one with an infant. I’ve never been one to love the infancy stage, it’s so, so hard. He’s at the stage now where he is chatty and strings sentences together brilliantly (and hilariously). He can play independently. He is, mostly, a happy child and we are a very contented and happy unit of three.
More importantly, we feel like life is back on track again.
And so, I can understand perfectly why so many parents are done with one.
I’m not sure how we will cope with having two littles in the house once Two comes along. Oh, I am pretty certain that we will adapt and life will go on. But the thought that our relatively stable routine will be turned topsy turvy, and that we are going to take a while to find our footing, can be a little scary.
But that’s not to say that we are not looking forward to having Two with us. 🙂 We’ll figure it out. Eventually. As we always do.