One Potato, Two Potato? Contemplating Family Size

As I sit here trying to outlast my sixth-month-old in the game of sleep training, I wonder at the fact that just earlier today I was entertaining the idea of having more children. Seeing an adorable, blissfully happy pregnant woman with her toddler in the kiddie pool will do that to you.

But seriously, now that my rock-hard shoulders have navigated their way up to my ears and I’ve ground my teeth to nubs, I’m trying to imagine how I could possibly raise more than one of these at a time. Don’t get me wrong: I have plenty of good times with my son. From relaxing in the kiddie pool today to playing jet plane on my back to discovering the exact location of his tickle spot with my nose, we spend a lot of time laughing and cuddling. But then a night like this comes along, and nearly 30 minutes into a losing-his-shit crying fit, the thought of a second beast-child terrifies me.

I’ve never liked the idea of having an only child, so in a sense, once I had my son I committed to a two-part deal. And when I envision future camping trips, road trips to the Grand Canyon, and other such family vacations, I always imagine more than one child, never just one. It seems like a lonely way to grow up.

Then again, I think about the difficult road ahead for me and my husband as far as retirement goes–we are woefully underprepared–and I know that having any more children will just make our goals that much tougher to realize. Then I pass the girls’ department at a clothing department (all tutus and sequins, as if all girls must be prepared for an impromptu dance recital at any moment), and I think to myself, “I want a girl!” And just like that, thoughts of financial security vanish in the haze of my campfire daydreams of having two little ones to sing songs with under the night sky.

It’s silent now. My baby boy has finally cried himself back to sleep. Why he woke up in the first place is a mystery. As the muscles in my neck start to relax and the insects of the night resume their singing, I take solace in the fact that I don’t have to decide anything tonight.

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Comments
4 Responses to “One Potato, Two Potato? Contemplating Family Size”
  1. Gaby says:

    I have I say when Camila was a baby I didn’t want another baby. The baby stage is sweet but not my favorite. It is a lot of guessing and sleep deprevation! When she got to about two years old my perspective changed. She started to have play dates! I realized how much I could get done when he had a friend to play with. Life was no longer revolving around me she had another distraction and I was like this is awesome:)
    And I love having siblings so there u have it baby number two on the way… And hen my tubes get tied:)

    • lupinelife says:

      That gives me hope. I think the perspective time brings will definitely influence the final decision. Because right now it is a lot of guessing and sleep deprivation (and self-doubt). Looking forward to all the changes ahead, while trying to appreciate the baby stage for all that’s uniquely baby.

  2. Lovely! It’s interesting that you posted this today, as the Today show had a segment with a woman who just wrote a book titled “One and Only”. She is an only child, as is her daughter – and the overarching message is to not let any societal pressures or questions of loneliness for your child overrule your personal decision to expand your family. And interesting interview as I have wrestled with this problem myself. Here’s the link : http://www.today.com/moms/joy-being-one-case-only-children-6C10280034

    And as for retirement, you could always have a ton of kids and they’ll be able to take care of you. Problem solved. 😉

    • lupinelife says:

      I love it when things are accidentally well timed! Thank you for including the link. And yes, if I have a baker’s dozen, statistically one of them has to be a neurosurgeon who loves her mommy, right?

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