There have been times I was sure I didn’t want another baby…
–When I was trying to chase after a toddler while I was pregnant with baby number two. Nope.
–When I had gestational diabetes in my second pregnancy and had to poke myself with needles eight times a day. Never again.
–When my kids are sick, and I barely get to sleep for more than an hour at a time—not to mention the unspeakable things produced by their tiny, sick bodies, which I dutifully cleaned up. I could never add another kid to the chaos.
–When they’re throwing tantrums simultaneously, and I have to carry them out of the store, one under each arm, football style. Seriously, where would I even put a third one?
I know that I’m lucky to have two healthy, beautiful children: a girl and a boy. My brain understands that we’re already stressed—emotionally as well as financially—and that another baby would just make everything more chaotic. But sometimes my heart needs convincing. My heart doesn’t care what’s affordable or convenient. It’s what makes me smile when I think about the possibility of another baby in my arms. There are definitely times that I ache for another baby…
–When I look at the kids in the rearview mirror and notice that gap between them is the perfect size to squeeze in one more car seat. I’m already loading and unloading two of them. How much work could one more really be?
–When I feel a pang of jealousy when one of my friends is pregnant or has just had a baby. Will I ever have that feeling of excitement and newness ever again?
–When I see baby clothes. I need another tiny person to buy tiny things for.
–When I see my kids playing sweetly together. They would be so sweet to another sibling.
I guess this is how biology works. We are designed to crave the oxytocin that floods our systems when we hold a baby in our arms. Babies are basically drugs. We crave that connection, that sweetness, which is unlike anything else we will know in this lifetime. As much as I fight it or try to talk myself out of it, I think that desire will always be there.
All I can do is try to shift my focus to the sweetness of watching my children grow. They become a little more independent every day, just as their legs grow longer right before our eyes. Sure, it feels nice to be needed, but it’s even nicer to not be needed all the time. The bigger my kids get, the more time I have to explore my own joys and passions outside of being a mom.
I’ll just keep trying to talk my ovaries out of having another baby. Who knows, maybe in another 20 years I’ll have a grandbaby to hold and buy tiny things for. Maybe that’s the reason grandparents spoil their grandkids so much: they finally got that baby fix they’ve been craving.