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Before we get started, I’m not pregnant, this is all introspection.

 

Before having Ava, I had this burning desire to have a baby.  I wanted to add to our family by creating something new.  I was also under the influence of hormones and I wanted to hold a tiny mewling baby.  Once Ava was born, I got the perfect wonderful baby I always wanted.  But she grew so quickly and stopped looking like a newborn.

Ava213

I’m not sure exactly when the feeling started again, but maybe about six months after Ava’s birth, I started pining away for a newborn again.  What craziness is there in these hormones where I’m still so desperately sleep deprived and my C-section scar still twinges, and yet I want to do this all over again?!  And of course it would only be worse because I would have to contend with both a newborn and a toddler.  This Salon article captures the sentiment nicely: “That desire for another child, it called to me like a Siren and I was rendered helpless by its song.”

Ava212

Jon and I have been talking a lot about whether to add a second child to the mix.  I’m breaking this down into pros and cons because I can’t think about it in a rational fashion otherwise.

 

Pros

  • Ava would be more social adept
  • Ava would have a potential best friend for life
  • Ava is so amazing, if we could make another Ava it would be a benefit to the world

 

I am the cutest

Ava214

  • I can have another baby to snuggle and a whole infant period where I wouldn’t be terrified of the baby
  • A bigger family means more people to love, more kids to visit when we retire, more grandchildren

 

Cons

  • I feel like I can barely keep my career work as it is and I wouldn’t become a stay-at-home-mom, but it would be even tougher
  • This morning I almost put the coffee beans in the water reservoir and I let the espresso drip without a cup beneath it.  And Ava’s been sleeping so much better lately!
  • Another child would require giving Ava less attention, and Ava is the best!  Why would I take time away from her?
  • What if the next child wasn’t as amazing as Ava?  What if the next child required more work?
  • Ava is a bad sleeper.  She doesn’t sleep for more than three hours without waking up.  Add another baby to the mix, and I might test whether you can die from sleep deprivation.
  • $$$: We’d need a nanny for even longer, there are associated educational costs, more, more, more
  • I started taking another classes to get closer to that CS degree.  Another child would make it harder to finish.

 

So tell me, internet, do you have regrets about not having another child?  Are you happy that you added another child?  Help me out!

6 Responses to “Should We Give Ava a Sibling?”

  1. Shannon says:

    I dearly love Ava. You are right: she is a gift to the world, not just to your little circle of family. We will need more and more Avas to help this world become a better place in the next generation. I’m unable to weigh in on the practicalities, since I have never had children. Pros and cons are a smart thing to do, because it is a serious decision to make. But they don’t ultimately decide this question. It is a matter of the heart. A next child will be different than Ava. The decision, I think, should never come from fear of what-if. Life is messy and wonderful and it takes a lot of courage and flexibility to get through!! But you are both doing it already. All the best to you!

  2. tess says:

    I can relate to feeling like you might short child #1 by having #2. When Max was a newborn I felt so guilty and she struggled with my divided attention. But, now, they love each other and have a blast playing together. I really think overall Zoey is happier for having him in her life. And, it grounds both of them having to share and compromise all the time. Wanting another as soon as when #1 is 6 months makes it sound like you really don’t feel done to me. 😉 I’m sure you would be happy either way you choose.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you Shannon, that’s so nice!

    Tess, your kids are a great example of why siblings are fantastic. They are so adorable and they seem so happy to play together.

  4. tess says:

    Aw, thanks. :)

  5. cindy says:

    I came from a large family and did lots of babysitting for sibs and neighbors from about 9 years old onward. I always thought I would have two or three – after all that’s how it was done.

    It’s so different when it’s your own child. I remember the feeling of wanting to do it again – I loved being pregnant, being a mom. (And I was a STAM.) I didn’t have the sleep deprivation after three months. (Most of the time.) I opted for one and sometimes missed not having more; but I am happy with my decision.

    You’re clearly doing an awesome job with Ava and you’ll find your way to *your* answer. :)

  6. Elizabeth says:

    It’s so hard. I’m really going to miss this baby stage. Ava is so much fun and I love watching her learn new things every day.