Starting the Second Trimester for the Last Time

I keep thinking about having more children…. or not. In my ideal world I would love pregnancy and then I would live on some amazing plot of land in a giant house and have a writing studio from which I could watch my beautiful gaggle grow and play. It would also be in a city. And everyone would have amazing jobs and there would be amazing schools and walkable grocery stores and farmer’s markets. Perhaps I would also paint and enjoy gardening.

Ideal worlds are fantasies of fantasies.

Back in the REAL WORLD. Here are a few realities:

– The idea of KNOWING that I get my body back forever and ever (until it betrays me in old age, that is) after this kid comes out makes me SO EXCITED FOR LIFE. Excited as in joy wells up inside of me like it does when you know something really great is just around the corner.

– Having only 2 children would be financially doable, whereas 3+ will be incredibly constricting for travel, education, any amount of fun that costs any amount of money, the size of house we’d need, and on and on.

– Being absolutely DONE making humans at 30 leaves me a lot of room for career and personal goal reaching. Think of that. Think of a decade focused on the million projects I have spinning in my brain. What possibilities are there? So many!

– But what if it isn’t a girl? And honestly, I ache for a girl. The beginning of the second trimester and still seemingly so far away of knowing who this second child actually is. (Who are you my little bunny frog? Who will you be?)

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– What if I feel like our family isn’t yet complete?

– And ultimately, making such a solid decision, choosing: NO MORE. It means shutting a door on possibilities. On a certain kind of possibility. On the choice of having more children. Making this decision means this is it! For us, it would be something we could not reverse.

Basically, our quality of life for everyone included would greatly benefit from only 2 children. And this excites me. But then i think… This is my last pregnancy? My last baby? Should I feel more panicked about THIS BEING IT? About cherishing every moment? About only having 1 more baby that falls asleep on my chest and snuggles me in the carrier?

I have no desire to live in that constant fear of THIS IS IT. THIS IS IT, LAUREN. Somewhere in my mind tickles at me to maybe consider it. Maybe consider the gripping panic of “You’ll never be 13 weeks pregnant again!!!” but the rest of me swats it away.

That’s right. I’ll never be 13 weeks pregnant again. But I will be so many other things.

14 thoughts on “Starting the Second Trimester for the Last Time”

  1. You know, I thought about this quite a bit, knowing that I was “only” going to have one kid. And I benefited greatly from simply living in the moment with it. While not a yoga-type person, it was nice to simply let go of those fears and worries that I wasn’t enjoying or memorializing every second. That panic can prevent you from enjoying it (as well as you can given the months-long flu symptoms you get), so eff it. Breathe, enjoy the moments that you can, know that you don’t have to make a decision on two or three or thirteen kids RIGHT NOW. Put that decision off to another day, maybe one once you know whether you will get your long-awaited girl this time, but make it another day.

  2. I am not pregnant with my second and don’t know if I ever will be, but I keep telling myself that adoption is an option. So many little kiddos out there that really need someone to love them. That works if I want to avoid pregnancy for the havoc it will wreak on my hormones, or because I get too far past the magical age of 35 and am worried, or because I finally lose the extra weight and don’t want to put it back on, or because I have one (or two) biological sons and still would really like a girl. I don’t know if it is considered bad or evil to specifically request a girl if you adopt though. I’d think there are more girls out there to adopt, people being crazy as they are.

  3. I have this exact conversation in my head almost every day! Two or three, what should it be?! My head lands on two for many of the exact same reasons you point out. I don’t hate pregnancy, but the thought of being done with the childbearing/nursing years is so dang exciting. Finances are huge. We just bought a townhouse and with two kids, we could stay there as long as we wanted. With three, it would eventually become very tight. But then, I wonder is it insane to make decisions about who gets to be in my family based on the size of our house, when changes are we’re not going to stay in the same house for the next 10+ years anyway? Also, beyond finances, I think that my husband and I would be better parents to two kids. I don’t think we have the temporal or emotional resources to spread thin. But, on the other hand, we both come from big families and, even more now that we’re adults, we love having a pack of siblings. I want to give that to my kid(s). It’s crazy making. All of this is to say, I HEAR YOU.

  4. I’m on week 22, first pregnancy, just passing the horrible illness that hypermeresis gave me but still doubting on having another baby. If you would’ve asked me on week 12 the answer was simple: no more babies… But now that I’m feeling better I doubt. I must confess that I feel really selfish about it, but is hard to see how your body is not longer yours, your time will not longer be yours and on top of that feeling so bad all the time… I know all this will be worth it, but… My kingdom for not being hormonal and sad or angry all the time and specially for losing this super power of smelling stuff no one can!

  5. Love this mentality and empathize with it so much. Knowing we want to have kid(s) but aren’t quite ready to start trying yet is making me so so aware of my body as it is right now and how it is going to change in the future (well, obviously by the gradual decline of old age, as you mentioned) but by pregnancy (hopefully) and so I can totally empathize with you knowing you’re about to (in a few more months) get your body back for good and the conflicting emotions that produces (though mostly, squee!).

    I’m also aware of the option of adoption – not sure if it’s a good fit for your family but I like the idea of birthing two children and then, if we feel like our family is still incomplete, adopting another child. All the parenting, none of the pregnancy. Always an option out there.

  6. I’m 21 weeks pregnant with #2. I’m excited but truthfully I knew we were done long before finding out, as soon as I peed on that stick I knew this was it we were done. I’ll be 29 when little miss is born and I absolutely can’t wait I hate pregnancy, the physical aspects of it, the social aspects (everyone wants to talk about it). I do not think we’ll ever want another but if we do we will adopt. We’re going the crazy permanent route of both of us closing it up. Such is life and it is time to move on from this portion of our lives.

    1. Oooo Are you getting your tubes done at the same time as birthing this kid? We are just doing the snip snip for Kamel. Tell me about this process for you!

  7. In a lot of ways, Lauren, this post rings so so true to me as a woman who has chose to NOT have kids. I went through it when I decided, at 27, to get my tubes tied. I’m adopted so in the back of my head I always know that I could adopt but it was such a final decision.

    I love kids (seriously, after my nephews photos of your Gabe are THE BEST) but I decided that there were other things in life that I wanted more. This piece, this amazing piece of honest writing, makes it seem like not that different of a choice. I prioritized All The Travel and All The Things I Want vs the trade off of a good amount of travel and two kids vs a loving brood of three/four/five that teach you all sorts of amazing things.

    Hugs to you. All life choices are hard and come with mourning. Getting married. Having a baby. Getting divorced. Choosing to live in a certain place. They close off options and its hard sometimes. <3 <3 <3

    1. I think about the choice to not have kids A LOT. Maybe due to its finality and taking an option away from myself is freaky, but also OH GOD SO FREEING. And yes. Travel, doing all the things you want to do, it is a fantastic existence to be kid free. I really don’t understand the big push for everyone to make babies as the “right” way. Because… oh the money I would be rolling around in naked right now.

  8. I am totally there with you, friend! I am an only child who always dreamed of having siblings, so I constantly wonder if two is the right number of kids for us. My husband, on the other hand, is absolutely confident that two is plenty. (He is the middle of three brothers.) Logistically, financially, and in terms of being ready to have family adventures that are more appropriate for slightly older children, we’re ready to stop at two. But closing that door is tough. I’m due in just over a month with #2, and we’ll plan for me to get an IUD again. My husband is ready for the big snip-snip, but I’m not ready to close that door, lock it, and throw away the key. I figure that if we did have a third, it would be after a longer stretch in between, so I plan on making that final decision in a few years.

    Thankfully, my husband hasn’t said “No, definitely no third!” (but rather that he knows he’ll feel fulfilled with and likely at capacity with two), so I enjoy the luxury of waiting. I will admit that if we hadn’t gotten lucky and conceived a girl this time, I think the chances of me feeling fulfilled would be much lower. Fingers crossed you get the girl you ache for! I know we would have loved two boys, but my husband and I have also both yearned for a daughter.

  9. I feel like I’m in a much different boat, since we haven’t even been able to think about having kids, yet and so I’ll be starting after you’ve finished. I’m honestly really scared that I won’t be able to have kids, and that this (hellish, awful) period of unemployment and underemployment will have made the decision for us, the way it has made putting off getting married for us. And then we’ll just never have the money for any kind of infertility treatments or adoption… And there’s just no way for me to know that, right now, so there’s lots room to worry, you know?

    1. Oh God Margaret. That is a whole WORLD of worry and concern you just heaped on yourself. I don’t think you should be worrying about not being able to have kids let alone not being able to afford fertility treatments. You are 30. You have YEARS. And think about how much can happen in just 1 year. 1 month. How much change that we never ever ever see coming can just APPEAR from one day to the next.

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